About the Award

The Edinburgh Award is a programme that students can undertake alongside a particular activity. The Award aims to recognise student involvement in these activities and enhance these experiences.

Why it matters

Students at the Edinburgh Award reception 2017
Students attending the Edinburgh Award reception 2017 in Playfair Library.

We know that many students are involved in activities alongside their studies such as volunteering, part-time work, and getting involved in the University community.

To help you use these activities to stand out from the crowd, the University has established the Edinburgh Award - a programme that wraps around these activities and allows you to get official recognition for your involvement while helping you get the most out of your experiences.

Regardless of what profession you choose to join into after your degree, employers want university graduates who are ready for work. They will be investing in you and they want to know they will get a return on that investment.

Employers seek graduates who:

  • are self-aware
  • capitalise on their strengths
  • will have impact wherever they work
  • are committed to personal development and life-long learning
  • can confidently provide evidence for these claims

And that's where the Edinburgh Award comes in.

Students talk

Please watch the video below of some students who were interviewed at an Edinburgh Award reception. They were asked what they felt the main benefits of completing an Edinburgh Award were:



The development I’ve achieved while representing students and working towards the Award are crucial in my future career. The skills I gained or improved during this are really important to employers I’m interested in – things like managing peoples’ emotions, cultural awareness, communicating clearly with others, being goal focussed and managing time.

Edinburgh Award (EUSA: Representing Students)

The Award Programme as a whole gave me a good bird’s-eye perspective of my entire academic and social interaction at university. This was one of the greatest things I have learnt from this programme."

Edinburgh Award (Global Citizenship: on-campus)

Completing the Award alongside my legal placement has helped me feel much more focused and confident in my own abilities, and in my thinking about future career choices. It has helped me both in terms of future employment and other parts of my life.”

Edinburgh Award (Legal Placements)

Through my time as a Student Ambassador and the Edinburgh Award I’ve learned about employability and graduate attributes and realising what I hoped to gain from my university experience; I have felt better prepared to go out and seek new opportunities. I only wish that more students at the University accessed the information and skills that the Edinburgh Award promotes!”

Edinburgh Award (SRA Student Ambassadors)