SFC news published since 2018. See SFC archived content for earlier news articles.

Universities and Higher Education institutions we fund

Colleges we fund

Our funding

The contributions of Scotland’s colleges and universities to rebuilding the economy and supporting communities in their recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic are illustrated in a new report published by the Scottish Funding Council (SFC).

Featuring over 80 case studies from across every region of the country, the report highlights the fundamental impact of colleges and universities on the life of the nation. Amongst the areas covered by the case studies are mental health, equality, medical research, the climate emergency and support for business and industry.

The report demonstrates how colleges have adapted to the demands of the pandemic in terms of combatting the ongoing effects on learners. One set of case studies shows how colleges used £3.4 million of special funding from SFC to address digital poverty. They also demonstrate the continuing benefits of £5 million of capital funding provided by SFC to support digital connectivity.

The report also provides examples of the response of university research departments to COVID-19 and describes new work to combat the threat of further pandemics. One such example is the Pandemic Science Hub at the University of Edinburgh which will develop and test new treatments for lung infections.

The effect of the pandemic on student’s mental health is shown by reference to a survey carried out at New College Lanarkshire in 2021. The report praises the part that Students Associations played, and continue to play, in responding to the challenges of mental health and wellbeing. It also gives examples of measures being taken to promote positive mental health such as the Man Cave project at West Lothian College, and the Student Mental Health Agreement introduced by the University of Aberdeen.

Commenting on the report James Dunphy, SFC’s Director of Access, Learning and Outcomes, said:

“We continue to work through unprecedented and uncertain times – something that creates both challenge and opportunity.

“This report shows Scotland’s colleges and universities are able to respond quickly and decisively to events in ways that both overcome the challenges and make the most of any opportunities. The benefits of this extend far beyond college and university campuses and into the economy, public services and everyday lives.”

Delivering Economic and Social Benefit through Tertiary Education and Research – College and University Case Studies 2021-22 [PDF] is now  available.