University of Aberdeen named Scottish University of the Year

Among the areas in which the University was judged to have performed strongly include teaching quality, degree outcomes, and graduate prospects
Among the areas in which the University was judged to have performed strongly include teaching quality, degree outcomes, and graduate prospects

The University of Aberdeen has been named Scottish University of the Year in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019.

A strong performance across several key indicators has seen the University climb 14 places from 40th to 26th in the UK rankings - the biggest move by a university that appeared in last year’s top 40, which placed it on the shortlist for UK University of the Year. It is the University's third successive rise in the rankings.

Among the areas in which the University was judged to have performed strongly include teaching quality, degree outcomes, and graduate prospects.

The Guide has also acknowledged the University’s world-leading medical research, which was recognised earlier this year when Aberdeen was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize - the highest national honour for a UK university.

Other areas of strength include the University’s role in supporting the local and national economy through its energy-related teaching and research activities, recently demonstrated by the creation of a National Decommissioning Centre.

The Guide has also taken into account Aberdeen’s activities in areas of importance including widening access, investment in facilities, student welfare, and internationalisation – the University opened its first overseas campus in Qatar last year.

Professor George Boyne, Principal, said: “This is a major honour and a testament to the efforts of our staff and students, as well as the great sense of identity and community that we have at Aberdeen.

“As an institution we consistently attract students with exceptional ability and potential, and this - along with the quality of our teaching - has been an important factor in our success in areas such as degree outcomes and graduate employability.

“In addition, our strength in research - exemplified by the Queens Anniversary Prize for our contribution to health services research - places us at the forefront of innovation in key areas of economic, environmental and societal importance.

“This University was founded in 1495 with the purpose of being open to all and dedicated to the pursuit of truth in the service of others, and this continues to inspire our academic achievements.

“Our focus on widening access and inclusivity, strength in interdisciplinary teaching and research, and international outlook are the modern-day interpretation of our founding principles, which have played a major role in Aberdeen being named Scottish University of the Year.

“I’d like to congratulate everyone at the University who has worked so hard to help us achieve this honour.”

Alastair McCall, editor of The Sunday Times Good University Guide, said: "Aberdeen's sharp rise up our league table this year is the biggest of any university in the top 30 and gives it a ranking commensurate to its status as one of the UK's leading academic institutions.

"It was a clear winner of our Scottish University of the Year award and earned a shortlisting for the UK University of the Year title off the back of improved performances in most of the metrics used in our tables. Aberdeen selects some of the most highly-qualified school leavers, who go on to achieve excellent degrees and become highly sought after in graduate employment market. No wonder students speak of the university so highly.

"The university's contribution to cutting edge research in fields as diverse as medicine and offshore engineering demonstrate that excellent teaching and research can go hand in hand – and are not the either/or options that some pretend them to be."