The University of Glasgow is the fourth-oldest university in the English-speaking world and one of Scotland's four ancient universities. The university was founded in 1451 and is often ranked in the world's top 100 universities in tables compiled by various bodies. In 2013, Glasgow moved to its highest ever position, placing 51st in the world and 9th in the UK in the QS World University Rankings.
The University of Glasgow was founded in 1451 AD by a charter or papal bull from Pope Nicholas V, at the suggestion of King James II, giving Bishop William Turnbull permission to add a University to the city's Cathedral. Teaching at the University began in the chapterhouse of Glasgow Cathedral, subsequently moving to nearby Rottenrow, in a building known as the "Auld Pedagogy". The University was given 13 acres (53,000 m2) of land belonging to the Black Friars (Dominicans) on High Street by Mary, Queen of Scots, in 1563. By the late 17th century, the University building centered on two courtyards surrounded by walled gardens, with a clock tower, which was one of the notable features of Glasgow's skyline, and a chapel adapted from the church of the former Dominican (Blackfriars) friary. Remnants of this Scottish Renaissance building, mainly parts of the main facade, were transferred to the Gilmorehill campus and renamed as the "Pearce Lodge", after Sir William Pearce, the shipbuilding magnate who funded its preservation. The Lion and Unicorn Staircase were also transferred from the old college site and are now attached to the Main Building.
There are currently four Colleges within the University of Glasgow, each containing a number of Schools;
- Adam Smith Business School
- School of Education
- School of Interdisciplinary Studies
- School of Law
- School of Social and Political Sciences
- School of Chemistry
- School of Computing Science
- School of Engineering
- School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
- School of Mathematics and Statistics
- School of Physics and Astronomy
- School of Psychology
- School of Life Sciences
- School of Medicine (including Dentistry)
- School of Veterinary Medicine
- Arts Lab Glasgow
- Graduate School of the College of Arts
- School of Critical Studies
- School of Culture and Creative Arts
- School of Humanities
- School of Modern Languages and Cultures
There are around 16,555 undergraduate students and 6,426 postgraduate students enrolled in the university with the staff of around 6,133.
Unlike other universities in Scotland, Glasgow does not have a single students' association; instead, there exist a number of bodies concerned with the representation, welfare, and entertainment of its students. Due to the university's retention of its separate male and female students' unions, which since 1980 have admitted both sexes as full members whilst keeping their own identities, there are two independent students' unions, as well as a sports association and the students' representative council.
The University's teaching quality was assessed in 2009 to be among the top 10 in the United Kingdom, along with its reputation as a "research powerhouse", whose income from annual research contracts also placing among the top 10 the UK. The university overall generates a total income of over £450,000,000 per year- also amongst the top 10 in the UK. The University is a member of the Russell Group of research-led British universities and was a founding member of the organization, Universities 21, an international grouping of universities dedicated to setting worldwide standards for higher education. The university currently has fifteen Regius Professorships, nearly twice the number held by the next nearest, Oxford.