Founded in 1937, the University of Travancore was the first in the state of Kerala, and was renamed the University of Kerala (UoK) in 1954, when the unified state of Kerala came into existence.
UoK, based in the city of Trivandrum, has 16 faculties and 41 departments of teaching and research spread over three campuses. It also comprises 150 affiliated colleges. Its strengths lie in its computer science, bioinformatics and biotechnology courses, however it offers courses in a range of vocational, arts and science subjects.
Through a series of study centres, the university also offers specialised courses in Kerala Studies, bioinformatics, learning difficulties, Gandhian Studies and Nano-technology.
Set up in 1942, the Kerala University Library is the oldest and largest university library in Kerala and its manuscript library houses 65,000 works of palm leaf manuscripts. Many of these originate from Burma, Malaysia, Indonesia and Nepal, 80 per cent of which are in Sanskrit.
It is also home to one of the oldest observatories in India – the Thiruvananthapuram Observatory (established in 1837) is 200 feet above sea level and boasts a stunning view of the land surrounding UoK.
UoK students, researchers and academic staff can study at foreign universities such as the University of Valladolid, Spain and Claremont Graduate University, California through the Erasmus Mundus scheme and individual agreements.
The city of Trivandrum (population approximately: 900,000) is distinguished by its British colonial architecture and students can visit the Kuthira Malika (or Puthen Malika) Palace, known for its imposing carved horses.