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25 September 2016, 12:46
Scotland's oldest university has been ranked the best in the UK for quality of teaching.
St Andrews University has been named as the UK University of the Year for Teaching Quality in the latest university guide from The Times and Sunday Times.
The institution, where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met as students, has also been ranked as the third in the UK overall - up from fourth in the previous guide and putting the university behind only Oxford and Cambridge.
Scottish universities account for 12% of the 128 institutions listed in the 2017 guide.
Meanwhile the University of Dundee is now ranked as the second best place to study in Scotland and the 28th in the UK, according to the guide.
That is an increase of 21 places in four years, with the rise largely due to levels of student satisfaction. Dundee ranks seventh overall in the UK and second in Scotland for both teaching quality and student experience.
St Andrew's University Principal Professor Sally Mapstone said: "St Andrews stands for quality across the board. Our staff and students are our greatest assets. This is a ringing endorsement of all they do to advance learning and understanding.''
She added: "Our teaching quality benefits from some of the unique strengths that define us: a small but inclusive community where students are encouraged to think freely and widely; and a faculty built of the best scholars and teachers from around the world.
"We have a centuries-old tradition of bringing the brightest minds around the world to share their ideas. Here, as nowhere else, curious students can meet with great teachers and crucially find the thinking space to question what they are taught.''
Prof Mapstone continued: "We have long been recognised for our unique blend of research-led teaching. It is my mission to ensure St Andrews continues to perform nationally and internationally at the highest levels.''
Alastair McCall, editor of The Sunday Times Good University Guide, said: "There are few things as certain in life as the perennial excellence of the University of St Andrews.
"It stands in our league table this year behind only Oxbridge and out of sight of all of its rivals in Scotland, helping it to runner-up spot in our UK University of the Year award.
"No university in the country can touch St Andrews, however, when it comes to combining a high ranking in our table with a high ranking in the annual National Student Survey.
"St Andrews' success here with outstanding scores from its students for both the quality of the teaching they receive and their wider student experience shows it is possible to have able, demanding undergraduates and meet their academic expectations.
"St Andrews had no rivals for our University of the Year for Teaching Quality award.''