The University of St Andrews is a British public research university in St Andrews, Fife, Scotland. It is the oldest of the four ancient universities of Scotland and the third oldest university in the English-speaking world . St Andrews was founded between 1410 and 1413, when the Avignon Antipope Benedict XIII issued a papal bull to a small founding group of Augustinian clergy.
St Andrews is made up from a variety of institutions, including three constituent colleges and 18 academic schools organised into four faculties. The university occupies historic and modern buildings located throughout the town. The academic year is divided into two terms, Martinmas and Candlemas. In term time, over one-third of the town's population is either a staff member or student of the university. The student body is notably diverse: over 120 nationalities are represented with over 45% of its intake from countries outside the UK; about one-eighth of the students are from the rest of the EU and the remaining third are from overseas — 15% from North America alone. The university's sport teams compete in BUCS competitions, and the student body is known for preserving ancient traditions such as Raisin Weekend, May Dip, and the wearing of distinctive academic dress.
It is ranked as the third best university in the United Kingdom in national league tables, behind Oxbridge. The Guardian ranks first in the United Kingdom the Schools of Physics and Astronomy, International Relations, Computer Science, Geography, and Mathematics, whilst The Times and Sunday Times ranks the Schools of English, Management, Philosophy, Anatomy and Physiology and Middle Eastern and African Studies first and the Complete University Guide ranks Management, Divinity and Middle Eastern and African Studies first. The Times Higher Education World Universities Ranking names St Andrews among the world's Top 50 universities for Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities. St Andrews has the highest student satisfaction amongst all multi-faculty universities in the United Kingdom.
St Andrews has many notable alumni and affiliated faculty, including eminent mathematicians, scientists, theologians, philosophers, and politicians. Recent alumni include the former First Minister of Scotland Alex Salmond; Secretary of State for Defence Michael Fallon; HM British Ambassador to China Barbara Woodward; United States Ambassador to Hungary Colleen Bell; Olympic cycling gold medalist Chris Hoy; and royals Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. Six Nobel Laureates are amongst St Andrews' alumni and former staff: two in Chemistry and Physiology or Medicine, and one each in Peace and Literature.
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