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The City of Guelph, Ontario, Canada
School of Scottish Studies
Introduction


North America’s Largest Scottish Studies Program

Did you know that the University of Guelph has the oldest program in Scottish Studies in North America? Created because of the strong Scottish influence that helped develop south-western Ontario this program draws students from around the world through on-campus graduate degrees and distance education courses (www.uoguelph.ca/history/scotstudy).

Drawing on academic influences from History, English, Music, Philosophy, Art History, Land Resource Science and Geography teaching in the program focuses on Scottish history from the 14th to the early 20th century, Scottish migrations and settlement in Canada, and Scottish and Scottish-Canadian literature. Faculty researchers are investigating medieval and early modern history, Scottish-Canadian and migrant literature, literature of Renaissance Scotland, political and social history of the 18th to the early 20th century, women in medieval and modern Scotland, patterns of settlement in Canada, particularly Ontario, and nationalism and literature.

The greatest treasure of the program is the Scottish Studies library collection, the largest one outside of Scotland. Regarded by the Canadian Government as a collection of national importance, it is particularly strong in local history and immigrant letters and diaries. With over 30,000 volumes of monographs, serials, music, maps and archives, the collection is housed on the ground and third floor of the university’s Maclaughlin Library Considered to have North America’s premiere genealogical materials, the collection attracts scholars from around the world.

The program benefits from collaborative teaching and research agreements with the Scottish Universities of Glasgow; Strathclyde, Aberdeen; Edinburgh and St. Andrews. This Scottish university link is also enhanced through collaborative efforts with the Scottish Record Office, the National Library of Scotland, the School of Scottish Studies and the National Museums of Scotland.

Guelph’s Scottish Studies Program has also benefited from a strong relationship with the Toronto based Scottish Studies Foundation (www.scottishstudies.ca). The foundation was created in 1985 by a group of first and second generation Canadian Scots to commemorate the contribution of Scots in Canada and to preserve Scottish heritage through education. Based in Toronto, the foundation runs select events, supports a colloquium and a journal and runs an annual Tartan Day dinner.

The Scottish Studies program and Scottish Studies Foundation are collaborating on a campaign to raise $2 million to establish the first North American academic chair in Scottish Studies at the University of Guelph. Income from the endowment will support the teaching, research and outreach of an outstanding scholar. The chair will have minimal teaching responsibilities so as to focus on community outreach teaching and lectures across North America.

For more information about the Scottish Studies program or the Scottish Studies Foundation please contact Kevin James at the University of Guelph at (519) 824-4120 ext. 52122 or at kjames@uoguelph.ca


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