The University of Dundee serves Scotland's fourth city. It is highly successful and it claims that more graduates move into the professions (such as law, accountancy, medicine and dentistry) than from other Scottish university. The medical and dental schools are especially seen as centres of excellence when compared with others across the UK, and its molecular biology, biochemistry and genetics departments are also extremely well regarded. Dundee is the only UK university where students can choose to read for an LLB in either English law or Scottish Law.
The university is divided into four colleges: The College of Art, Science & Engineering; The College of Arts and Social Sciences; The College of Life Sciences; and The College of Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing.
A major investment program costing some £200m has meant that the University of Dundee saw in 2007, the 40th anniversary of its gaining full independence as a university, with a series of major new buildings. The investments included £39m spent on new university accommodation (meaning that accommodation is more readily available than at many universities); £5.5m on an extension for the library; and £4m on extending the quality and range of indoor sports facilities. Another new building now houses the School of Education and Social Work. Investment has also gone into the Old Technical Institute, the Medical Sciences Institute and the Old Medical School buildings.
The Dundee University Students' Association (DUSA), unlike many other students' unions in the United Kingdom, is not affiliated to the National Union of Students. It is instead affiliated to the Coalition of Higher Education Students in Scotland (CHESS) and the National Postgraduate Committee. The DUSA building is located in Airlie Place, in the centre of the University's Main Campus and caters as a private members' club offering bar, nightclub and refectory services for students. DUSA also provides a number of other typical students' union services such as advocacy on behalf of its membership and assistance to individual students.
During the 1800s the population of Dundee increased dramatically, producing a corresponding increase in the demand for a means of providing higher education in the city. Meanwhile the University of St Andrews, in an (at the time) isolated location on the other side of the Firth of Tay, had a small and diminishing number of students. The building of the Tay Railway Bridge raised the possibility of a joint "University of Dundee and St Andrews". Fund raising within the city allowed progress to be made towards the establishment of an independent university college, though always with the thought it might become part of the University of St Andrews.
In 1881, University College, Dundee was incorporated with the aim of "promoting the education of persons of both sexes and the study of science, literature and the fine arts". It opened for business in 1883 with five faculties: Maths and Natural Philosophy; Chemistry; Engineering and Drawing; English Language and Literature; and Modern History and Philosophy. It was unable to award its own degrees, instead preparing students for external examinations of the University of London.
In 1897, University College finally became part of the University of St Andrews, an arrangement that allowed the latter to open a medical school in the city. By 1904, University College had a roll of 208, a figure that amounted to 40% of the combined University. By the mid 1900s, relations between the University of St Andrews and University College were becoming severely strained. A 1954 Royal Commission led to University College being given more independence, being renamed Queen's College, and taking over the Dundee School of Economics.
On 1 August 1967 Queen's College became a fully fledged university in its own right and was renamed the University of Dundee. In 1994 it merged with Dundee's Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, and in 1996 it incorporated the Tayside College of Nursing and the Fife College of Health studies as a new school of Nursing and Midwifery within the university.
Notable People Associated with The University of Dundee