See below for some quick facts and figures, and also for links to our published Facts and Figures documents and to our Statement of Accounts.

Key student statistics (19/20 academic year)

8665 students (including 3387 studying via our partners overseas)

41.3% are from Scotland;

6.4% are from the UK outside of Scotland;

38.0 % are from Europe;

14.4% are from outside Europe.

We are in the top three in Scotland for employment of undergraduate leavers: 97.1% are in employment or further study six months after graduation, placing us third in Scotland on this measure (HESA, 2018).

Student satisfaction

  • In the National Student Survey 2020, our score for overall satisfaction is 83%. For responses to the statements within the teaching category of the survey, our scores are above the sector average, most notably for ‘Staff have made the subject interesting’ at 87% compared to 82% (UK average). The strong sense of community within QMU is reflected in the results – positive responses to the statement ‘I feel part of a community of staff and students’ are above both the Scottish and UK average. 


Ranked in the top 68% of universities worldwide in the QS World University Rankings 2021.

Other interesting facts

  • We were established in 1875. Throughout our history, we have focused on serving the community and improving the quality of life through education and research which is relevant to society’s needs.
  • We offer the broadest range of allied health professional degrees in Scotland including nursing, dietetics, occupational therapy, physiotherapy, podiatry, radiography, audiology, art psychotherapy, music therapy, and speech and language therapy.
  • We have won the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for our work in speech science.
  • In the most recent nationwide audit of research in universities, Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), over 58% of QMU’s overall research was rated as world leading or internationally excellent.  Amongst the highlights was our success in Speech and Language Sciences, with 92% of our research in this field classed as internationally excellent or world leading.  Times Higher Education singled us out as a ‘notable riser’ in terms of REF performance.
  • Through collaborative agreements, students are studying for our degrees in India, Nepal, Greece, Egypt and other countries.
  • We have flagship areas of specialism in health and rehabilitation, creativity and culture and sustainable business.

Our alumni include:

  • Michael Matheson, MSP and Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity in the Scottish Government
  • Matt Baker, TV presenter (formerly ‘Blue Peter’, currently ‘The One Show’ and ‘Countryfile’)
  • Ashley Jensen, actor (US hit TV series ‘Ugly Betty’)
  • Edith Bowman, Scottish music critic, radio DJ and TV presenter (BBC Radio 1)
  • Kevin McKidd, actor (‘Trainspotting’, TV hit series ‘Rome’, Grey’s Anatomy’)

Economic impact

  • According to research by the University of Strathclyde, QMU is worth £77 million to the economy (2009)
  • Employment attributable to the University represents 3% of all East Lothian employment
  • Students from outside Scotland who come to study at QMU generate an estimated £11 of economic output each year

Our Strategic Plan 2020-2025 demonstrates how we will contribute to society’s recovery and recalibration following COVID-19. It sets out how we will help create a better society through teaching, learning and innovation. It shows how we will nurture our distinctive person-centred approach to learning, and how we will build on our unique academic portfolio. Promoting creativity, agility, resilience and collaboration, the strategy holds true to the ethos of social justice on which this institution was founded.

Find out more about our strategy in our Strategic Plan

Our Outcome Agreement sets out a number of objectives across the range of SFC funded activity, namely, teaching,research and innovation. For more information see our Outcome Agreement 2017-2020: April 2019 Update

Facts and Figures 2020

Full PDF Poster

QMU is ranked in the top 68% of universities worldwide in the QS World University Rankings 2021

National Student Survey 2020

Top in Scotland and joint top in the UK for student satisfaction in Nursing

In the top 2 in Scotland for student satisfaction in Tourism, Transport and Travel (includes QMU's International Hospitality and Tourism Management, and Public Relations, Marketing and Events courses)

In the top 2 in the UK for student satisfaction in Healthcare Science (Hearing Aid Audiology)

Acting for Stage and Screen: 100% satisfaction

Drama: 97% satisfaction

International Hospitality & Tourism Management: 96% satisfaction

Student numbers

(2019-20: including overseas collaborations)

8665 total students

3387 QMU students are studying for a QMU degree through our overseas collaborations

78.6% Undergraduate

21.4% Postgraduate

Health Sciences students: 4746 (54.8%)

Arts, Social Sciences and Management students: 3919 (45.2%)


Undergraduate leavers in employment or further study: 97.1% (HE sector average: 94.6%)

Source: HESA 2018


3rd in Scotland for employment of undergraduate leavers

Source: HESA 2018

Age of students

37.7% are below 21 years

22.6% are 30 years and over

Student distribution by origin (2018-19)

41.3% Scotland

6.4% Other UK

38.0% Europe

14.4% Outside Europe

QMU Staff

264 Academic

228 Professional Services

66.5% Female

33.5% Male

Income (2019-20)

Total income: £40.4m

Sources of income (2019-20)

Scottish Funding Council: £17.2m (42.6%)

Student tuition fees: £13.9m (34.4%)

Research grants and contracts: £2.4m (5.9%)

Other income: £6.9m (17.1%)

Research excellence

(REF 2014)

92% of our research in Speech and Language is classed as internationally excellent or world leading

50%+ of our research profile in Global Health and Development is classed as internationally excellent or world leading

77%+ of our research publications in Media and Communications are classed as internationally excellent or world leading

40%+ of our research publications in Allied Health are classed as internationally excellent or world leading

QMU has 6 research centres and 3 knowledge exchange centres


58 graduate start-ups created through our Business Innovation Zone

1st Scottish university to host a Business Gateway on campus

Our flagships

  • Health and rehabilitation
  • Creativity and culture
  • Sustainable business

For more full information on our student numbers, annual turnover, and other statistical information, see below for our facts and figures publications and statement of accounts for recent years.

QMU Facts and Figures 2020 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2019 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2018 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2016 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2015 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2014 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2013 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2012 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2011 (PDF version)

QMU Facts and Figures 2010 (PDF version)

More information can be found via our Statement of Accounts which can be found in our Finance web section


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