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Students through the Ages

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Students through the age’s #1

Education & Technology

The human desire to be taught new skills has never changed, yet the way it is relayed to students has markedly evolved through time. Here's a potted history of how the demographic have been educated throughout the years.

50th – 40th Century BC



  • Sharp stones to carve drawings into cave walls
  • Paints created from powdered minerals, animal blood and fat
  • Stone knives and flint spearheads for practical tests in the field


Every member of population is a hunter-gatherer.

Oral ed.

Skills such as cookery, hunting, tool-making and survival are taught between families by word of mouth, from generation to generation.


Music was on the Neanderthal curriculum - many believe their language was based on this rather than words.

5th - 4th Century BC

Ancient Greece


  • Wooden stylus on a waxed tablet
  • Abacus


Most schooling was private, aside from two years of military training.


Richest students returned to study with intellectual, learning learn rhetoric, logic, geography, natural history and maths.


Ancient Greeks are believed to be the inventors of mathematics due to their understanding of theoretical discipline.

11th - 15th Century AD

Medieval England


  • Extremely expensive books
  • Bone/ivory stylus on wooden tablets with green/black wax coating
  • Abacus

Male dominated

Women from noble families taught at home, but only on how to maintain the household for their prospective partner.

14 & 15yr olds

Some scholars would attend university in major cities around Europe. Oxford was created in 1096. Cambridge followed in 1209.

Poor digs

Student accommodation was very basic. Fires were not allowed in teaching rooms or bedrooms; colleges did not have windows until the 1300s.

1800 - 1900



  • Mechanical calculator became commercially successful in 1851
  • The first commercially produced typewriter became available in 1870
  • Ink wells and steel-nibbed pens for writing
  • Blackboard and chalk


Most children received some form of schooling during the era, though it would not be free until 1891.


Attending school because necessary for all children by 1880, up to the age of ten. This was raised to 12 in 1889.


Girls were finally given the same basic education opportunities. Girton College was established as first university college for women in 1870.

1950s - 1970s

Mid 20th Century


  • First vacuum tube-based computers introduced in 1946
  • Nibbed pens still popular
  • First electronic calculators
  • Microprocessors led computing boom


The foundations of a curriculum governed education among younger children.

Uni boom

A government report recommended the expansion of universities to boost economic growth around the UK. Public grants offered to 70% of students.

1 in 20

One in 20 people found themselves in full-time higher education - this equated to around 100,000 students.




  • Four out of five students own laptops; others use desktop PCs and tablets
  • Internet-based study from home on cloud networks
  • Mobile platforms supported, utilising phones


Nearly two million are in university, with 45% of young people going. 49% of women move into this higher education, as do 38% of men.

600,000+ Applicants

Before the fee increase, a record number of university hopefuls applied to start university in 2011.


Over 300 universities or accredited institutions exist in the UK, offering all manner of vocations - even golf management and surf science.

This infographic was produced by: Misco

Misco/Epiphany Solutions accepts no liability for any inaccuracies or the incompleteness of any information contained on this page.