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The University of Glasgow (Scottish Gaelic: Oilthigh Ghlaschu, Latin: Universitas Glasguensis) is the fourth oldest university in the English-speaking world and one of Scotland's four ancient universities. It was founded in 1451. Along with the University of Edinburgh, the University was part of the Scottish Enlightenment during the 18th century. It is currently a member of Universitas 21, the international network of research universities.
In common with universities of the pre-modern era, Glasgow originally educated students primarily from wealthy backgrounds, however it became a pioneer in British higher education in the 19th century by also providing for the needs of students from the growing urban and commercial middle class. Glasgow served all of these students by preparing them for professions: the law, medicine, civil service, teaching, and the church. It also trained smaller but growing numbers for careers in science and engineering.
Over the last five centuries and more, we’ve constantly worked to push the boundaries of what’s possible. We’ve fostered the talents of seven Nobel laureates, one Prime Minister and Scotland’s inaugural First Minister. We’ve welcomed Albert Einstein to give a lecture on the origins of the general theory of relativity. Scotland’s first female medical graduates completed their degrees here in 1894 and the world’s first ultrasound images of a foetus were published by Glasgow Professor Ian Donald in 1958. In 1840 we became the first university in the UK to appoint a Professor of Engineering, and in 1957, the first in Scotland to have an electronic computer.
All of this means that if you choose to work or study here, you’ll be walking in the footsteps of some of the world’s most renowned innovators, from scientist Lord Kelvin and economist Adam Smith, to the pioneer of television John Logie Baird.
Find out more about our buildings, alumni and world-changing achievements:
- Men and women of fame
- University of Glasgow story
The University of Glasgow
- is ranked 62nd in the world and is the first and only UK university to be rated as 5 Stars Plus overall. (QS World University Rankings 2015)
- is rated third in the UK for international student satisfaction (among universities participating in the International Student Barometer Summer 2013)
- welcomes students from more than 140 countries worldwide
- has more than 25,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students
- is a major employer in the city of Glasgow with more than 6,000 staff, including 2,000 active researchers
- has annual research income of more than £181m
- is a member of the prestigious Russell Group of leading UK research universities
- is ranked top in Scotland and third in the Russell Group in the National Student Survey 2015
- is a founder member of Universitas 21, an international grouping of universities dedicated to setting worldwide standards for higher education
- includes among its alumni, the father of economics Adam Smith, Scotland’s architect of devolution Donald Dewar and renowned physicist and engineer Lord Kelvin.