Aberdeen Church of Scotland Training College staff and student photographs, 1881-1893. MS 3793The history of teacher training in Aberdeen and in the north of Scotland is told through the archives of the ‘Aberdeen Colleges of Education’. The ‘Aberdeen Colleges of Education’ is actually a colloquial term for the many different institutions that provided teacher training between 1874 and 2001. The archive also includes records from the Woolmanhill Emergency Physical Training Centre(formerly the Dunfermline College of Hygiene and Physical Education) and the Practising/Demonstration Schools run by the churches and later by the Colleges.

The collection is fully searchable via our online archive collections catalogue and there is additional information on the archive available, here.

One of the composite photos of staff and students of Aberdeen Church of Scotland Training College from a series of photographs taken by George Washington Wilson, Edmund Geering and James Ewing. The Church of Scotland Training College was founded in 1874 and this photograph graphically illustrates the number of female students who attended the College. Men were only admitted from 1887. The College was established specifically to train female students whereas the University of Aberdeen did not admit women until 1892. In the centre of the photograph is Rector Joseph Ogilvie.

Admission Register 1909-1934. MSU 1421/3/1/1/1/1This is an example from the Admission Register of the Demonstration School. The Register includes information on the child’s name andname and address of the parent. The Register also includes the occupations of the parents, shown here: engineer, railway signalman, tinsmith, plumber, joiner, house painter, saddler, compositor and blacksmith. The Demonstration School which had given so much practical teaching experience to so many teachers eventually closed in 1970.

Woolmanhill Phyiscal Education Centre First Course Class photo 1946-1947. MSU 1421/5/2/1During the Second World War Dunfermline College of Hygiene and Physical Education temporarily moved from Fife to Aberdeen and this is one of the class photos from the archive.




Aberdeen Provincial Training Centre student records group photo. All from MSU 1421/4.In 1907 Aberdeen Provincial Training Centre was created beginning a new era for the teaching colleges which continued until 2001 and the merging with the University of Aberdeen. There are very full student records from 1907-1959 (the later student records are still of current use and held by the School of Education) including Registers of Students, Student Photographic Albums, Training Records, Yearbooks and class photographs.