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Heriot-Watt University

Edinburgh View All Courses


Heriot-Watt University


EH14 4AS


0131 449 5111


0131 451 3630



[email protected]


Heriot Watt has a spacious, rural campus located eight miles to the west of Edinburgh. Having previously been based in the centre of Edinburgh, the current campus was purpose-built during the 1970s, though it retains some of the feel of the estate of Riccarton House on which it was built. The University also has specialist campuses in Galashiels, Orkney, Dubai and Malaysia, though the vast majority of courses are based at the Edinburgh campus.  

Background and History

Heriot-Watt prides itself on being the UK's eighth-oldest university due to its founding in 1821 as the School of Arts of Edinburgh, though the institution only received university status in 1966. Offering mainly professional and vocational courses, Heriot-Watt is a small but close-knit community of just over 10,000 students. Although relatively small, Heriot-Watt punches above its weight in the university league tables, consistently beating many Russell Group members in both the Guardian and Times Higher Education rankings.

Location and Accessibility

Rail: The campus is about eight miles from the central railway stations, but is within walking distance of Curriehill rail station.

Road: Leave the M8 at Junction 1 and take the A71 westbound, on which you will almost immediately find a roundabout with a turnoff for the campus.

Bus: Numbers 25 and 34 go from the city centre to the campus approximately every fifteen minutes.

Disabled access: university buildings have access ramps and other facilities for disabled students. The university provides a detailed breakdown of its disabled facilities on

What's on Offer

BA, BSc, BEng, MPhys, BEng, MEng, MSc, MBA, MPhil, PhD, DBA, PgCert, PgDip.

Entry Requirements

Admission to Heriot-Watt University is based on individual assessment and takes both formal qualifications and practical experience into account. For more detailed information, contact the recruitment and admissions office.  


University Accommodation

With on-campus accommodation for 1,600 students, freshers are guaranteed a place to stay provided that they send off the relevant forms on time. All the on-campus accommodation is self-catered, and comes in the form of both flats and halls of residence. Prices vary depending upon the accommodation type.

Private Accommodation

One of the drawbacks of Heriot-Watt is its distance from the centre of Edinburgh, which can make the daily journey into uni a little longer than most students would like. That said, some students choose to live in nearby suburbs such as Currie.

Courses and Fees

Faculties and Departments

Heriot-Watt is made up of seven different faculties and schools: Edinburgh Business School, The School of the Built Environment, The School of Engineering and Physical Sciences, The School of Life Sciences, The School of Management and Languages, The School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences and The School of Textiles and Design.  

Academic Strengths and Research Profile

The university has a prestigious reputation in several different areas of research, including Chemistry, Mathematics, Engineering and Computer Science, and is also an internationally known centre for training linguists. Heriot-Watt also scores highly for its teaching, more or less across the board.

Tuition Fees

Undergraduate and Postgraduate tuition fees vary depending upon the course of study and are subject to change. It is therefore advisable to contact the university directly or visit their website for more information.

Financial Support

The university has introduced a range of bursaries to help students from England, Wales and Northern Ireland meet the rising cost of tuition fees, on top of its already healthy selection of scholarships and bursaries on offer.


Academic Facilities

The on-campus library has over 700 study spaces, an ample amount for a university of Heriot-Watt's size. In addition to each School having its own computer labs, the library and many buildings on campus offer wi-fi access.  

Other on-site Amenities

Sports facilities provided by the Centre for Sports and Exercise are some of the best in Scotland, and with memberships for students working out at less than 20p per day, the Centre also represents excellent value. As a campus university, Heriot-Watt also provides essential everyday facilities for students, such as a bank, shops, cafes and canteens. The students' union has two bars and a nightclub venue.  

Medical and Social Care

The campus has its own medical and dental centre, as well as a multi-faith chaplaincy and a counselling service.

What's on in the Area

The area around the campus is largely fields, but a short bus or train ride into Edinburgh opens up a world of entertainment possibilities. The city is great for students, offering an excellent selection of scruffy pubs, hip bars and many, many clubs. The city also offers an unrivalled selection of museums, galleries and historical sites.  

Moving On

The university has an excellent careers service with a wide selection of resources at its disposal to help students make informed career choices. The service has active partnerships with a range of recruiters.

Did you know?

The Edinburgh campus of the university has its own loch. The university is named after James Watt, whose steam engine designs helped to kick off the Industrial Revolution, and seventeenth-century philanthropist George Heriot. Heriot clearly left a lot of goodwill behind in Edinburgh when he died in 1624. In addition to the university, there is also a private school, a pub and a couple of streets named after him.

Is Heriot-Watt University the place for you?

Heriot-Watt should be on the shortlist of anyone who is either looking for a university that has a close and friendly campus community, or already has clear career ambitions in an area in which the university offers courses. People who like the convenience of having both town and university in the same place should look to places such as Edinburgh or Dundee.
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