Business Administration Department - T.E.I. of Piraeus
University of the West of Scotland

The merger last year of the University of Paisley and Bell College, Hamilton, has created the new University of the West of Scotland, an institution with the regional reach implied by its name. With about 19,500 full- and part-time students, UWS is the largest modern (post-1992) university in Scotland, spread across four campuses in Paisley, Hamilton, Ayr and Dumfries.


Paisley had been pulling away from the foot of our league table and the new institution should continue making similar progress, but as merged data for UWS is not yet available we have withdrawn the new university from our league table this year. Not that UWS will ultimately measure its achievements by league table ranking. Its agenda is broader, close to the top of which is giving opportunities to study that might be denied elsewhere.


Almost half the intake are mature returners to education, many of whom benefit from summer schools, modules completed at the university’s lifelong learning centre and other introductory programmes. UWS is also working hard to keep students in higher education once they arrive. The aim is to rein in a dropout rate which at one point at Paisley threatened to undermine all the good done by providing opportunities to study not available elsewhere.


A “buddy project” provides mentoring of new arrivals by current students. More rigorous tracking of students through attendance monitoring identifies those at risk of dropping out, while personal tutors and improved counselling and support should help those in difficulty.

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