University of the Highlands and Islands


The University of the Highlands and Islands is the only university based in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland.

Our partnership of 13 independent colleges and research institutions is accountable for all formal education beyond school in our region and provides access to study at further and higher education level as well as research opportunities. Each partner serves local, regional, national and international needs, as well as making a distinctive contribution to the university partnership.

Each partner has its own character. Some are relatively large colleges in the urban centres of the region such as Perth, Elgin and Inverness. Others are smaller institutions, including some whose primary focus is on research. All, however, have a student-centred culture and an individual approach to student learning. In addition to the main campuses, our partnership also provides educational opportunities through a network of more than 70 learning centres located throughout the Highlands and Islands, Moray and Perthshire.

In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework review, over 69% of the University of the Highlands and Islands’ research was rated as world leading or internationally excellent.


Fact sheet exchange studies 2021/22

Facts and figures

Year Established 2001
Total Number of Staff 688
Number of Academic Staff 501
Number of Students 7889
Focus Areas

Marine science

Environmental science

Mountain studies

Interpretation studies

Social sciences

Renewable energy

Diabetes and cardiovascular science

Rural health/well being, policy, history and development

Archaeology – world heritage

Agronomy, natural products (sweet gale, bere)


Culture and language, including traditional music

Study of Gaelic & Nordic culture and history

Highland history

Humanities and arts – theology, fine art, music

Fields of Study Offered Arts (broad programmes)
Fine arts
Humanities (broad programmes)
Social and behavioural science (broad programmes)
Biology and biochemistry
Agriculture, forestry and fishery (broad programmes)
Veterinary (broad programmes)