Act of parliament
The University of Skövde was established by an act of parliament in 1977. This decision meant that an interim board was formed for tertiary education in Skövde. This board was then mandated to provide tertiary education with its own budget. In addition, the establishment of a new university was to be prepared. At the start of 1977, 300 full-year places were offered.
Formed the foundations
At the beginning of the 1980s, the board made a number of decisions that formed the foundations of what are still the main areas of study for the University. Previously, it had had a profile as a school of economics, and it was at this point in time that two new areas were added: Engineering and Computer Science. Additional subject areas were added later in the area of the Life Sciences.
The University in Skövde became one of the first Swedish universities to actively develop short courses in engineering. These new subject areas started up in 1982 with the industrial economics programme. At that time too, courses in EDP were developed, and several years later a Computer Economics programme was set up.
By an act of parliament on 1st July 1983, the activity was given university status. At the same time, Lars-Erik Johansson was appointed the first Vice-Chancellor of the University. At that time, the university offered around 600 full-year places. The new places were primarily within the newly established economics programme.
In the mid 1980s, the University experienced strong growth. To cope with this expansion, the premises previously occupied by the T 2 regiment were taken over successively. Kanslihuset (the chancellery), Götasalen, and the big barracks building and what was once the riding school and stables were renovated in stages up until the beginning of the 1990s. The latter buildings are now called Block A, Block B and Block C.
The campus is extended
In the 1990s, additional areas of study were established: humanities and social science and law. To cope with the anticipated expansion, the campus was extended with parts of the Mörke city block south of the Trängen district. Block E was finished during 1993 and 1994. The University’s new library was built in 1997 and today has over 100,000 volumes and is well-equipped to meet the needs of electronic information searching. In 1998, Block D was built to provide space for examination rooms and lecture halls.
New teaching areas
In 1999, an additional subject area was added in that the Hälsohögskolan (Institute of Health Sciences) was integrated into the University. The same year, the University’s biggest building, Block G was opened. Block G is 11,700 square metres and is in the shape of an angle with projecting wings and plate glass walls. Block G houses the main entrance to the University and several of the University’s central functions such as Reception, the switchboard, and Student Services. At that point, the University offered 3000 full-year places.
Donations received in conjunction with the opening of Block G made it possible to add a clock tower (what is called a campanile). Having a campanile on campus is an ancient academic tradition at universities abroad. At the University in Skövde, it is a symbol for all the University’s areas of study and is used as the hub and a meeting point on campus.
In autumn 2001, the University’s current Vice-Chancellor Leif Larsson took up the position. He took over after Lars-Erik Johansson who had been Vice-Chancellor for 18 years. At that time, the University offered 4,000 places and had around 400 staff.
The University restaurant
At the start of term in 2003, a new restaurant was opened on campus – Götasalen. The space housing the restaurant, also called Götasalen, previously was used as a library and gym hall, and was refurbished to cater for 220 guests. An upper floor extension, which can be booked by groups, and an outdoor café area were added during the refurbishment.
During 2003 and 2004, the University underwent a re-organization which meant that the previous nine schools with their faculties and departments were combined by subject area to form three new units. The new units were called the School of Humanities and Informatics, the School of Life Sciences, and the School of Technology and Society.
Focus on cooperation and research
KK Stiftelsen (the Knowledge Foundation of Sweden) granted the University’s application in June 2004 to set up a research facility in the field of information fusion.
The University started cooperation with the Universities of Borås and Trollhättan/Uddevalla based on the Bjertorp Declaration to develop a basic programme of study in the field. This cooperation between these universities in the western Götaland region of Sweden goes under the name of Västra Götalands Högskolor.
In June 2004, the Swedish National Agency for Higher Education (Högskoleverket) granted the University of Skövde the right to issue Teacher’s Certificates.
Cooperation with Halmstad and Örebro
In November 2005, the Vice-Chancellors of the University of Skövde and Halmstad and Örebro Universities signed an agreement to cooperate in the area of science and technology. This cooperation is intended to strengthen the post-graduate research and doctoral programmes at these three seats of learning.