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The university



Brief history

Sixty-seven years have passed since the University was established in Thessaloniki. During that period, the University has played an essential role in the moulding of the intellectual image not only of the city itself but also in the whole of Northern Greece. Its creative history is demonstrated in the wealth of graduates it has trained, in the organization of an integrated university town with considerable facilities in terms of buildings and equipment, in its scientific, cultural and social participation both in Greek and international current events, and last but not least in its substantial contribution of the creation of two new Greek Universities, those of Epirus and Thrace.

The dynamism behind that tradition is today directed with special sensitivity towards the development of an interuniversity cooperation within the framework of the Greek and international community. Every year, new agreements are put into action with the realisation of scientific exchanges with universities of various countries of the East and West. Moreover, international scientific congresses are held in the city of Thessaloniki, drawing leading scholars from all over the world. In an era such as ours, when the boundary is the world and not the nation, the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki is taking its place in the international scientific community, and is ready to play a responsible role, committed to the growth of scientific knowledge to serving Greek society, and to the mutual bringing together of researchers of the whole world.

The Aristotle University of Thessaloniki is a state institution established in 1925, under the First Greek Democracy, under decree no. 3341/14.6.1925 and passed by the Fourth National Assembly, having been earlier proposed by Alexander Papanastasiou. Four faculties were initially set up; those of Theology, Philosophy, Legal and Economic Sciences, Physics and Mathematics. Since then many new faculties have been created and are in operation, covering a wide range of the humanities and applied sciences.

Approximately 65,000 students study in the University's 41 schools, many of which, indeed, are unique in Greece. The teaching and research staff (professors, associate professors, assistant professors, lecturers and assistants) number approximately 2,368, and the special educational staff come to about 187, the remaining teaching staff number 224 persons and the special postgraduate scholarship students about 200. To these figures we can add about 727 persons who work as special administrative-technical staff and 571 working as administrative staff.

The University Campus covers 429 metric acres and lies in a central location of Thessaloniki. Some Faculty laboratories and other facilities are situated off campus (such as the clinics of the Veterinary School, the University Farm School at Sedes, the Centre for Byzantine Research, etc.), as well as some independent educational or research units connected to the AUTH (e.g. the University forests at Pertouli and Taxiarchis, which provide areas for students' practical training and forestry research). In total, these cover some 93,000 acres.

Offshoots of the University are the Experimental School (a model primary and secondary education unit), the School of Modern Greek Language (with courses in Modern Greek running throughout the academic year, as well as intensive summer courses), the Institute of Modern Greek Studies - The Manolis Triantafillidis Institute (which aims at the scientific cultivation and advance of Demotic Greek and Modern Greek literature), the centre for Byzantine Research and the Telloglou Institute (a very rich and remarkable collection of works of art).

 

Scientific research

About 1,200 research programmes are currently in progress at the AUTH, with research subjects covering many scientific fields and a total budget of about 12 million euros. Research is funded from a number of sources both public and private, national and international. In that frame are grown the links between science, technology, and the country's economy and society. The EEC is currently funding 150 of the programmes in progress with a total budget of 7,5 million euros. More details about the research programmes are available from the Research Committee Office of the University of Thessaloniki.

 

Library

The Library constitutes one of the largest in Balkans, with approximately two million titles in the Central and School libraries, each of which holds books relative to the field of study it covers. It is a subscriber to 3,800 periodicals from all over the world, in relation to which it issues a special catalogue. It provides a reading area for a thousand students, open from early morning to late at night. Each year, the library buys approximately 20,000 new books. It is a member of the international Federation of Library Associations and lends to/borrows from libraries all over the world. It is linked on line with the O.C.L.C. Europe (On-line Computer Library Center) through HELLASPAC.

 

European Educational Programmes

The University of Thessaloniki has participated in the Erasmus programme since the first year of its operation. This participation, the rate of which is increasing, is considered today to be the most important compared to all other Greek universities. For the academic year 1996-1997 , the AUTH has co-ordinated eighteen Erasmus programmes now called Socrates, five Lingua programmes and one Comett programme (Macedonia UETP). It has also participated in sixty one Erasmus programmes, six Lingua programmes, thirteen Tempus programmes, four Comett programmes and two Jean Monnet programmes as co-operating partner. Within this framework, both students and teaching personnel from the University of Thessaloniki have visited universities of other community countries, and correspondingly, students and teaching staff of other European universities have come to the AUTH.