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Scotland has a tradition of excellence in education. Its 13 universities, nine specialist higher education institutions and 47 further education colleges help Scotland to produce the highest number of graduates per capita overall in the EU, exceeded only by Norway and the USA.

Five of the United Kingdom's top 20 medical teaching schools are in Scotland: in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and St Andrews. And eight of Scotland's 13 universities have campus science parks for companies engaged in research and development.

Glasgow Caledonian University has the United Kingdom's largest and most comprehensive health faculty. Glasgow University has the largest research centre in the United Kingdom for the study of cancer-causing viruses.

Edinburgh University boasts one of the world's largest concentrations of experts in reproductive biology, and the second oldest veterinary school in the United Kingdom. It also houses the United Kingdom's leading research centre for animal genetics.

In 1998/99 the number of students in higher education in Scotland was 172,923. That year 40,013 students successfully completed a full-time higher education course.

Scotland produces one in every four United Kingdom medical graduates, and almost one in five PhDs in biotechnology.

The number of people in further education in Scotland has grown by 43% in the last five years.

Population split throughout the UK

Percentage of UK medicine and dentistry graduates

Percentage split of UK Biotechnology PhDs

Percentage split for UK engineering and technology graduates

Percentage split of UK further computing science graduates