University of Salamanca
Region: Southern Europe
Country/Region: Spain
Found Year: 1218
Address: Patio Escuelas Menores 1

The University of Salamanca was founded in 1218. It is the oldest founded university in Spain and the fourth oldest European university, besides being considered the alma mater of Latin American universities, for their intense relationship at the beginning of higher education in Latin America. The University of Salamanca is of medium size made up of 9 teaching and administrative campuses offering 68 official degrees, and 25 double degrees in all branches of knowledge. It has around 25,000 registered undergraduate students. If we add to this figure the number of registered students in the 75 University Masters, 41 doctorate programmes and other studies, the figure is about 30,000 students. The University of Salamanca has always prided itself on its ability to attract students from outside of "its natural market". It is the second university in the country to attract a higher number of students from outside its region. This characteristic of the university has become more pronounced in recent years. Also worth noting is our capacity to attract foreign students from Europe and from the rest of the world. These figures are also rising steadily in our doctorate programmes where 14% of students are of European origin and 35% from the rest of the world, especially from Latin America. The University of Salamanca is the European university with the ninth largest number of incoming Erasmus students and ranks number five among Spanish Universities. However if we consider the importance of Erasmus students in relation to the size of our university, they represent 4.75% of the total number of students, this is in fact, the highest percentage among medium to large public universities. Each year, the University receives more than 10,000 foreign students, including those who come to learn Spanish, Erasmus students, and Graduate and Postgraduate students with a non-Spanish mother tongue, what makes the city internationally renowned for its university atmosphere. The academic institution main research fields of knowledge are Biosciences and Spanish courses for non-native speakers. In 2010, received the accreditation of Campus of International Excellence by the Ministry of Education for these areas. There are also other significant fields such as Art and Humanities, ICT, Mathematics, Physics, Geology, Law, Economy, Education or Psychology. The University of Salamanca has institutes and research groups in the field of the Biosciences that are European and global references in their area: The Institute for Cell and Molecular Biology of Cancer – Centre for Cancer Research (IBMCC-CIC) ( is particularly important owing to the leading international role of some of its teams and the acknowledgement it has received from other professionals, with several prestigious national and international awards. The Institute of Functional and Genomic Biology (IBFG) CSIC-University of Salamanca ( has gained international recognition in the field of mycology. The Institute of Neurosciences of Castile and Leon – INCYL ( carries out important activities in national and international projects in the field of basic and applied neurosciences. The DNA Bank participates in the Human Genome Project, and is a worldwide recognized technological platform created to support biomedical research. In the area of agro-biotechnology, the Spanish-Portuguese Centre for Agricultural Research – CIALE ( is carrying out research in agro-biotechnology, biodiversity, genetic improvement, plant production, plant health, etc. The Centre for Ultra-fast Ultra-intense Pulsed Lasers – CLPU ( is a singular scientific infrastructure created as a consortium between the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitivity, the Regional Government of Castile and Leon and the University. One of the main assets of the University is the pursuit of excellence in the field of Spanish Language. In order to achieve this goal, the University builds on the collaboration of the most prestigious national and international teams and productions. There are many data that attest to this: It has more than 600 researchers in Spanish Language. The teaching of Spanish as a Foreign Language at the University of Salamanca began in 1929 and the Department of Spanish Language wrote the first communicative teaching manuals of the Spanish Language. Another force that drives the University is related to the assessment and certification of the Spanish Language. In this field, the University of Salamanca has researchers and teams of experts in the calibration and preparation of tests, the training of testers, and a team of more than 120 test markers, as well as technical staff and all the computer programmes and equipment required. In 1990, the University of Salamanca and the Spanish Ministry of Education signed a Cooperation Agreement that gave birth to the DELE certificates (Diploma of Spanish as a Foreign Language), official Spanish language exams. The “Instituto Cervantes” joined us in this task in 1992, after the establishment of agreements with the other two institutions. In 1990, the University of Salamanca and the University of Cambridge founded the Association of Language Testers in Europe (ALTE), a reference agency in Europe for the research, development and practice of examinations and tests in European languages. This association is currently made up of 31 members, representing 26 European languages. Since February 2008, the University of Salamanca has been part of the consortium controlling the project of indicators of Language Competences in the European Union (SURVEYLANG), together with the University of Cambridge, the Goethe-Institut, the Instituto Cervantes, CITO, the Alliance Française, the Università per Stranieri di Perugia and the Gallup Institute. The University of Salamanca is a member of the EPSO project (European Personnel Selection Office), which develops tests in 24 languages for the selection of translators for the European Union. The University of Salamanca together with the "Instituto Cervantes", the National Autonomous University of Mexico, and the University of Buenos Aires, has developed the first digital certificate of Spanish Language (SIELE) in the world. All these initiatives underscore the leading position of the University of Salamanca in the certification and assessment of the Spanish Language, together with its prospect of becoming a Campus of International Excellence. The University of Salamanca, together with the rest of the university community, celebrated its eighth centenary in 2018.

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