The University of the Highlands and Islands is one of the most famous tertiary universities and a non-profit public institution constituted by Academic Partners. This unique institution shows its’ excellence in academic fields and cherishes its autonomy.

It is the only university situated in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland and one of only a few in Europe. Students are lucky enough to get to experience something different as well as special. The university undertakes the motto ‘University-level study in the Highlands and Islands’.

The university comprises thirteen independent research institutions and colleges that operate together as one entity. The university provides fundamental English language learning programmes for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, along with world-leading research activities.

The distinctive research and curriculum, along with expert tutors, catch the eye of everyone. The reputation of the university opens the door to an innovative student learning experience in light of Scottish culture, communities, people, natural environment, economy, culture, and heritage.


The origin of the University of the Highlands and Islands was founded in 1992. The institution was given full university status by the Privy Council in February 2011, while in 2012, Anne, Princess Royal, became the Chancellor of the University of the Highlands and Islands Court. The academic partners of the institution are located gradually in Perth, Elgin, the Isle of Skye, Fort William, Shetland, Orkney, and the Western Isles.

The central hub was founded in the former Royal Northern Infirmary building in Inverness. As the UHI network is a very strong and unique one, it consists of multi-campus institutions connected one after another via technology. In April 2001, it appeared as a UHI Millennium Institute when the Scottish Parliament awarded it a Higher Education Institute.

Every three faculties have separately experienced full-time deans, appointed in 2004. Moreover, before getting taught degree awarding powers (LDAP), the Open University Validation Service, the University of Strathclyde, and the University of Aberdeen gave authenticity to the university degrees. The Scottish Qualifications Authority awarded the Higher National Certificate and Higher National Diploma courses.

Ranking and Achievements

The University of the Highlands and Islands rankings comprise 69% of degrees that are available on more than two campuses.

UK rankings

  • The University is positioned in the Top 10 most affordable UK universities in the UK (Complete University Guide)
  • It secured the 89th position in the National Ranking of the University of the Highlands and Islands.

World rankings

  • The institute secured 848th place in the World University Ranking.
  • It positioned 510 in the ARWU Ranking.
  • 100% achievement of the Orkney College UHI rating.


The University of the Highlands and Islands consists of 13 colleges and research centres, along with more than 70 local learning centres. The levels of courses are divided into degree, HNs, postgraduate, professional, and vocational. The subject areas are given below:

  • Business, leisure, and tourism
  • Computing and IT
  • Creative industries
  • Education and childcare
  • Energy, engineering, and construction
  • Gaelic medium studies
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • Science and environment


Fees & Scholarships

The University of the Highlands and Islands fees

The international tuition fee is £7,980 – £15,360

The University of the Highlands and Islands Scholarships

  • The Canadian Centennial Scholarship is applicable to exceptionally good students from Canada (postgraduate).
  • The Chevening Scholarship is applicable to students from a Chevening country (Masters).
  • The Commonwealth Scholarship is applicable to students from a Commonwealth country.
  • The Marshall Scholarship is applicable to American students (under 26).
  • Master’s Funding for International Students
  • D. Funding for International Students
  • The Saltire Scholarship is applicable to students from Canada, China, India, Japan, Pakistan, and the USA.
  • South Asian Subcontinent Scholarship


  • RUK Bursary
  • Student Development Fund
  • The University Scholarship Fund
  • Winter Covid Hardship Fund
  • Discretionary funds
  • Higher Education Discretionary (Hardship) Fund
  • Higher Education Childcare Fund
  • Lone Parent Childcare Grant
  • Nursing and Midwifery Discretionary Fund
  • UHI Nursing Assistance Fund

Other internal and external funds:

  • The British Federation of Women Graduates is applicable for a doctorate (commence on the 3rd year or part-time equivalent).
  • Daniel McLean Memorial Fund
  • European Funding Guide for Students
  • FindAMasters Scholarships
  • FindAPhD Scholarships
  • Fulbright Scholarships
  • Highland Children’s Trust is applicable for students in the Highland area (under 25).
  • The ICAS Foundation is applicable for students studying accounting or finance with a low household income.
  • The ILF Transitions Fund is applicable for a recognised disability (for students aged 16–25).
  • The Royal Caledonian Education Trust is applicable for students who belong to a parent who has served in the Armed Forces.
  • The Sidney Black Memorial Engineering Award is applicable to female undergraduate students (extraordinary merit in BEng year).
  • Studying a Master’s in Europe is applicable for a postgraduate degree (commenced in September 2021).
  • Sutherland Trust is applicable for Scottish-born or ordinarily resident students (law, art, or science).
  • The Carnegie Trust Fee Assistance Scheme
  • The Highland Society of London Award
  • The Neil MacKenzie Trust
  • The Royal Society of Edinburgh Enterprise Fellowships are for innovative science- or tech-based business ideas.
  • The Scholarship Hub is for UK and EU students.
  • UHI Liam Colgan Music Student Awards for (skill-based songwriting and production twice a year),
  • The Willie Printie Prize is applicable for engineering excellence

Student Statistics

  • Female-62%
  • Male-37%
  • Other-0%
  • UK Students-96%
  • EU Students-3%
  • International-2%
  • Full-time-61%
  • Part-time-39%
  • First year-48%
  • Other years-52%
  • Postgraduate-14%
  • Undergraduate-86%

Facilities and Services

  • Students get evening, full-time, online, and part-time study mode facilities.
  • The on-campus facility, along with Student Route visa sponsorship,
  • Online study facility from the student’s own country,
  • Stunning, environment-friendly study spaces,
  • Students get internationally respected degrees,
  • Students benefit from job-ready skills,
  • Several career and employability services are available. The university provides post-study work opportunities in the UK.
  • The overseas students get individualised and personable support from the approved university representatives.
  • The virtual learning environment provides interactive online learning materials and submits assessments.
  • UHI’s world-class video conferencing facilities have expert tutors.
  • A well-equipped library with the latest IT facilities along with administrative services.

Student Life

Highlands and Islands Students Association (HISA), the only students’ association in Scotland, is a mouthpiece of students. The association focuses on both local and regional representation and ensures the best student experience.

Students are an indispensable part of clubs and societies so they have the opportunity to meet new people as well as try something new. It helps to enrich students’ CVs in the process of developing their skills.

Therefore, the association organises many events where students can put ideas into practice in larger venues. The UHI prioritises mental health issues. It is very important to remain physically and mentally healthy during university life.

UHI’s online student community provides excellent online learning support. Wherever students want to study in their own time, they can participate in online discussion sessions, workshops, and tutorials.

The university provides a UHI 24-hour help desk service and a UHI online learning community named Mahara. Both online and residential students get the opportunity to learn, mix, and socialise on the social media platform. Inverness is a city of scenic beauty as well as arts and culture.

The shores of the Moray Firth and the River Ness always attract people from all over the world. Therefore, The Eden Court Theatre, the region for plays, films, concerts, and ballet, restaurants, Hootenanny Ceilidh Cafe Bar, and shopping malls provide amusements at all times. The city offers attractive inward investment with land as well as well-educated working areas.


The university belongs to dedicated halls of residence in Dornoch, Elgin, Fort William, and Inverness.

Some campuses have private accommodations:

  • Inverness College, UHI
  • Lews Castle College, UHI
  • Moray College, UHI
  • North Highland College, UHI
  • Perth College, UHI
  • Sabhal Mòr Ostaig UHI
  • Scottish Association for Marine Science, UHI
  • West Highland College, UHI

Apart from them, other campuses are:

  • Argyll College, UHI
  • Highland Theological College, UHI
  • NAFC Marine Centre UHI
  • Orkney College, UHI
  • Shetland College, UHI


The Scottish Government takes necessary initiatives for the development of the transport system in collaboration with Transport Scotland, transport operators, HIE, and stakeholders between the routes to the north of Scotland and the Highlands and Islands. The Highlands and Islands Transport Partnership (HITRANS) has settled down for the Regional Transport Partnership.

Therefore, the public transport network, like buses, rail, island ferries, and air services, is available. Bus services like long-distance coaches, urban services, tourist coaches, taxi services, and post buses make it easy to travel from one place to another.

The rail service is an alternative to the car as well as flying. The railway services are available on the amazing West Highland and Kyle lines that represent the tourist attractions. Nine major Highlands and Islands airports handle 1 million terminal passengers annually.


Is University of Highlands and Islands good?

The University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) attained a student satisfaction rating of 81% in the 2023 National Student Survey, surpassing the Scottish sector average of 77% by four percentage points.

How much does University of the Highlands and Islands cost for international students?

The tuition expenses for non-EU/EEA international students amount to a range of £7,980 to £15,360.

What is Highlands University known for?

The Highlands institution is renowned for its diverse student population encompassing multiple ethnicities, as well as its emphasis on small class sizes, research endeavours, notable accomplishments by both students and staff, and the provision of opportunity for students to integrate academic study with practical, real-world experiences.

What is the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) known for?

The University of the Highlands and Islands is known for its unique federation of colleges and research institutions, providing a distinctive educational experience in the beautiful and diverse landscapes of the Scottish Highlands and Islands.

How many colleges are part of the University of the Highlands and Islands?

The University of the Highlands and Islands comprises 13 colleges and research institutions, working together to offer a wide range of courses and programmes.

What makes the University of the Highlands and Islands special?

The university stands out for its focus on accessible, high-quality education tailored to the needs of the local communities and its commitment to research addressing the challenges and opportunities in the Highlands and Islands region.

Can students at UHI take advantage of the unique environment of the Highlands and Islands?

Absolutely! UHI offers students the chance to study in a stunning natural environment, providing opportunities for outdoor activities, research, and a truly immersive educational experience.

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