University of Antioquia

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University of Antioquia
Universidad de Antioquia
Green shield that says University of Antioquia
Seal of the University of Antioquia
Former names
Franciscan College[1]
Type Public
Established 1803 (1803)
Rector Mauricio Alviar Ramírez
Academic staff
1,386 FTE[2]
Administrative staff
Students 30,844[2]
Undergraduates 29,175[2]
Postgraduates 1,669[2]
Location Medellín, Antioquia, Colombia
6°16′03″N 75°34′06″W / 6.267417°N 75.568389°W / 6.267417; -75.568389Coordinates: 6°16′03″N 75°34′06″W / 6.267417°N 75.568389°W / 6.267417; -75.568389
Campus Urban
Colours White and Green         
Nickname UdeA
Affiliations ASCUN, AUIP, Universia
Sports Track, Football

The University of Antioquia (Spanish: Universidad de Antioquia), also called UdeA, is a public, departmental, coeducational, research university located primarily in the city of Medellín, Antioquia, Colombia, with regional campuses in Amalfi, Andes, Caucasia, Carmen de Viboral, Envigado, Puerto Berrío, Santa Fe de Antioquia, Segovia, Sonsón, Turbo and Yarumal.[3] It is the oldest departmental university in Colombia, founded in 1803 by a Royal Decree issued by King Charles IV of Spain under the name Franciscan College (Spanish: Colegio de Franciscanos).[1][4] It is considered one of Colombia's best universities, receiving a high quality accreditation from the Ministry of Education for 9 years. Along with the University of the Andes, the two universities hold the second longest term, behind the National University of Colombia. UdeA and the Tecnológico de Antioquia have the largest number of seats in the department of Antioquia.[5] It is also renowned for its prestigious Faculty of Medicine, which is acknowledged as the top medical school in Colombia.[6]

The university is a member of the Association of Colombian Universities (ASCUN),[7] the Iberoamerican Association of Postgraduate Universities (AUIP),[8] and the network Universia.[9]



Royal Decree of February 9, 1801

The University of Antioquia was preceded by the Franciscan College (Spanish: Colegio de Franciscanos), which was founded in 1803 after King Charles IV of Spain issued the Royal Decree of February 9, 1801, allowing the establishment of a college-convent in Villa de la Candelaria, present day Medellín.[1]

The first classes were held in March 1803, in Latin and philosophy. On June 20, 1803 the council of Medellín bought land for the main building and construction started in August. The structure is known as the San Ignacio building (Spanish: Edificio San Ignacio)[4]

In 1822, once independence from Spain was consolidated, the Vice President of the Republic of Colombia Francisco de Paula Santander promoted the establishment of a new educational plan for the institution and, five years later, president Simón Bolívar allowed instruction in law.[1]

During a great part of the 19th century, the country faced political and armed struggles and the university was closed and occupied by belligerents impeding the institution's development.[1]

20th century[edit]

Once the Thousand Days' War was over, the country experienced stability and the university grew.[4] In the first thirty years the university reorganized its curriculum, redesigned some of the buildings, acquired bibliographic material and employed renowned professors.[1][4]

University City (Spanish: Ciudad Universitaria) was built in the 1960s with debt and international aid. This allowed the increase in the numbers of both students and professors and the creation of new faculties and academic programs.[1]


UdeA started in the mid-1990s a regionalization program to offer higher education in other municipalities within the department of Antioquia, reaching 11 regional campuses outside of Medellín.[3]

In 2004 the university established the University Research Headquarters (Spanish: Sede de Investigación Universitaria (SIU)) an advanced project to promote a qualitative and quantitative transformation of its research system. Through the SIU, the University plans to contribute to society by using research, innovation and technological development for the construction of a fairer and more competitive Colombia.[10]


Central Square, University City
Central Square, University City

The university spreads across Medellín, while University City is the main campus. The other Medellín campuses are the Citadel Robledo and the Health Area. The San Ignacio Building is located in the downtown area. Eleven regional campuses are located outside the city.


University City[edit]

Built in the 1960s with an area of 23.75 hectares (58.7 acres),[2] University City is the main campus of the university. The campus contains eight faculties, three schools, three institutes and the Administrative Building (Spanish: Edificio Administrativo).[11][12] It hosts the University Museum (Spanish: Museo Universitario), the University Theater(Spanish: Teatro Universitario), the Central Library (Spanish: Biblioteca Central) and the Sport Unit (Spanish: Unidad Deportiva).[13]

Institute of Nutrition
Institute of Nutrition, Citadel Robledo

Citadel Robledo[edit]

With an area of 89 hectares (220 acres),[2] Citadel Robledo hosts the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, the School of Nutrition, Veterinary Clinic and the Institute of Physical Education.[11] The campus library is widely known for its collections in veterinary medicine and zootechnics.

It also contains a sport unit with two football pitches, a pool, two basketball/futsal courts and a handball court.[13]

Faculty of Medicine
Faculty of Medicine, Health Area

Health Area[edit]

This area hosts the Nursing, Dentistry, Medicine and Public Health faculties, near the St Vincent de Paul University Hospital (Spanish: Hospital Universitario San Vicente Paúl).[13]

San Ignacio Building[edit]

San Ignacio Building
San Ignacio Building

The historical campus of the university was declared a national monument in 1982.[14] It hosts seven exhibition halls, ten lecture rooms, one movie theater, two computer labs, one restaurant, one multipurpose room and one auditorium.[15]

Regional campuses[edit]

In the 1990s the university started a regionalization plan to increase access to higher education across the department.[16] The university opened campuses in Amalfi, Andes, Caucasia, Carmen de Viboral, Envigado, Puerto Berrío, Santa Fe de Antioquia, Segovia, Sonsón, Turbo and Yarumal,[3] covering all of the subregions of Antioquia.

In 2011, the Ministry of Education gave UdeA the award for the best regionalization experience in higher education.[17]

Subregion Campus[3]
Valle de Aburrá Medellín and Envigado
Bajo Cauca Caucasia
Magdalena Medio Puerto Berrío
Northeastern Antioquia Amalfi and Segovia
Northern Antioquia Yarumal
Western Antioquia Santa Fe de Antioquia
Eastern Antioquia Carmen de Viboral and Sonsón
Southwestern Antioquia Andes
Urabá Turbo


The Superior University Council (Spanish: Consejo Superior Universitario) is the university's governing body. It is formed by the Governor of Antioquia who is the president of the SUC, the Minister of Education or his delegate, a representative of the President of Colombia, a dean elected as the representative of the Academic Council, a representative of the professors, a representative of the students, an alumnus, a representative of the industry, an ex-rector of the university and the rector (non-voting).[18]

The Academic Council (Spanish: Consejo Académico) is the highest academic body of the university. It is formed by the rector, who is the president of the AC; vice-rectors of Investigation, Teaching, Extension and Administration; deans of each faculty; a representative of the professors and a student representative.[19]

The rector is the legal representative and top executive of the university. He is responsible for academic and administrative management. He is not permitted to take another job in the private or public sector. He takes office before the President of the Superior University Council.[20]


The university has 25 academic divisions at its flagship campus:[11]

Faculty of Engineering
The Faculty of Engineering is the largest faculty by enrollment
Academic divisions of the University of Antioquia


  • Faculty of Arts
  • Faculty of Agricultural Sciences
  • Faculty of Economics
  • Faculty of Exact and Natural Sciences
  • Faculty of Communications
  • Faculty of Law and Political Sciences
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Nursing
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Medicine
  • Faculty of Dentistry
  • Faculty of Pharmaceutical and Food Sciences
  • Faculty of Public Health


  • School of Languages
  • Inter-American School of Library Studies
  • School of Microbiology
  • School of Nutrition


  • Institute of Philosophy
  • Institute of Physical Education and Sports
  • Institute of Political Studies
  • Institute of Regional Studies


  • Academic Environmental Corporation
  • Academic Corporation Basic Biomedical Sciences
  • Academic Corporation for the Study of Tropical Pathologies

The university offers 87 undergraduate degrees, 48 specializations, 41 medical specializations, 53 master's degrees and 22 doctoral degrees in Medellín.[2] In the regional campuses, they offer 126 undergraduate degrees and two master's degrees.[2] The UdeA has also a number of international partnerships, offering student exchange programs and some double degrees with foreign institutions, among them: Politecnico di Torino, Universidade de São Paulo, and Politecnico di Milano.[21]


Undergraduate Education[edit]

The undergraduate admission is done through a knowledge test, which is conducted twice a year. The entrance examination is an instrument that measured some basic skills and knowledge that have been obtained is in high school. It is a general aptitude test and as such does not evaluate the applicant regarding the career you want to enter.

The exam consists of two components, Reading Proficiency Test (Spanish) and Logical Reasoning Test (Mathematical Logic) and is equal to the candidates of all programs except for the Faculty of Arts.

To be eligible you must pass a minimum cutoff score and also be within the number of seats available for each academic program. For each semester, the test is often extremely competitive, meaning that the selectivity in admission to each of the academic programs is very high, in some cases presenting the proportion of applicants admitted less than 10%.

Trend of registered persons
Period Academic Program Cutting Points Statistics
Applicants Admits Admit rate
2009-1 Laws 66,76 2.838 149 5.250%
2010-1 Nursing 58,39 5.076 67 1.320%
2012-1 Civil Engineering 72,90 2.389 105 4,395%
2012-1 Medicine 73,98 9.038 144 1.593%
2012-1 45.356 5.660 12.479%
2013-1 44.203 5.166 11.687%

Note: In the admissions process does not lend greater importance to the State Exam (test Saber 11 °) applied by the ICFES, and does not take into account the high school grades.

Postgraduate Education[edit]

In graduate school admission is as complex as in the undergraduate. For general graduate requirements differ depending on the title to obtain and the academic unit in which you want to be done. In general at all levels requires the mastery of a foreign language and there are different requirements such as exams, interviews, proposed work and / or research, undergraduate grades, publications, awards, honors, work experience, research experience, participation in events, presentations, and more.


University Research Headquarters
University Research Headquarters

The University has 228 research groups in the categories established by Colciencias (A1, A, B, C and D).[2] In 2006, the university provided an investment of about $145 billions COP for research.[22]

The majority of the excellence groups (A1, A and B) are concentrated at University Research Headquarters (Spanish: Sede de Investigación Universitaria -SIU-) an advanced project created by the University to promote a qualitative and quantitative transformation of its research system..[citation needed]

The SIU supports currently 36 research groups that are classified by Colciencias as categories A and B, working in diverse areas such as biotechnology, chemistry, materials science, genetics, environment, immunology, infectious and tropical diseases.[10]

Along with providing facilities for the development of scientific and technological projects, the SIU encourages promotes interdepartmental research and cooperation with the larger research community.[10]

Student life[edit]

track and football field
Track and football field

University athletes compete in the West division of ASCUN-Deportes, along with 24 institutions from Antioquia.[23] The games at the division phase qualify teams for national competition.[24] The university offers training and has varsity teams in aikido, chess, track and field, basketball, cycling, climbing, football, futsal, gymnastics, judo, karate, olympic weightlifting, swimming, rugby union, softball, taekwondo, tennis, table tennis, triathlon, ultimate, volleyball and underwater rugby.[25]

The university supports student groups and organizations involved in academic, art, ecological, social and sports activities. Three cultural groups are administered by the university (academic divisions can run their own groups, however). The three are the Folk Dances Group, the Traditional Student Music Group and the Club of Singers.[26]


Former students and professors of the university include former presidents Álvaro Uribe Vélez, Mariano Ospina Pérez, Carlos E. Restrepo, Liborio Mejía and Mariano Ospina Rodríguez; writers Tomás Carrasquilla, Fernando González and Gonzalo Arango; and politicians Carlos Gaviria Díaz and Fabio Valencia Cossio.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Universidad de Antioquia - Historia" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Estadísticas Básicas" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Universidad de Antioquia - Sedes" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Universidad de Antioquia, dos siglos de historia" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  5. ^ "CNA - Consejo Nacional de Acreditación" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Universidades Asociadas - Asociación Colombiana de Universidades ASCUN" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Relación de Instituciones Asociadas a la AUIP por países" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  9. ^ "Universidades iberoamericanas socias de Universia" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  10. ^ a b c "Universidad de Antioquia - University Research Headquarters". Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  11. ^ a b c "Universidad de Antioquia - Unidades Académicas" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  12. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Unidades Administrativas" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  13. ^ a b c "Factor 9: recursos de apoyo académico y planta física" (PDF) (in Spanish). Archived from the original (PDF) on April 26, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  14. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Edificio de San Ignacio (Presentación)" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  15. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Edificio de San Ignacio (Espacios)" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  16. ^ "Plan estratégico de regionalización de la Universidad de Antioquia" (PDF) (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  17. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia: Premio a la mejor experiencia de regionalización de la educación superior" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  18. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Órganos de gobierno (Consejo Superior)" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  19. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Órganos de gobierno (Consejo Académico)" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  20. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Órganos de Gobierno (Rector)" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  21. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Convenios internacionales vigentes" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  22. ^ "La universidad de las luces (revista Semana)" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  23. ^ "ASCUN-Deportes - Región Occidente" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  24. ^ "ASCUN-Deportes - Juegos Deportivos Universitarios" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  25. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Deporte formativo" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 
  26. ^ "Universidad de Antioquia - Grupos culturales" (in Spanish). Retrieved December 19, 2011. 

See also[edit]

External links[edit]