ONE of Scotland's newer universities has beaten its older rivals to come top in a new poll that measures student satisfaction.

Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, founded in 1966, topped the 2012 National Student Survey ahead of institutions such as St Andrews, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

The university, which came third last year, had an overall satisfaction rating of 91%, just behind prestigious institutions such as Cambridge and Oxford, which both had a 92% rating.

The figures also show the popularity of the Open University in Scotland, which topped the poll with a satisfaction rating of 94%.

Dr James Miller, director of the Open University in Scotland, said: "Once again we are overwhelmed by the positive feedback from our students."

Overall, Scottish universities performed well in the survey, recording a higher rate of student satisfaction than universities in England and Wales. Students at Scotland's universities rated their overall satisfaction at 86%, compared to an 84% satisfaction rating for English and Welsh universities.

The survey, which asked students to rate six categories including the quality of academic support and personal development, also showed Scottish universities had either maintained or improved their performance compared to last year.

Student satisfaction levels at Scottish universities:

Heriot-Watt, Edinburgh – 91%

Dundee – 90%

St Andrews – 90%

Aberdeen – 89%

Glasgow – 89%

Strathclyde, Glasgow – 89%

Robert Gordon, Aberdeen – 87%

Stirling – 87%

Glasgow Caledonian – 85%

West of Scotland, Paisley – 85%

Edinburgh – 83%

QMU, Edinburgh – 83%

Edinburgh Napier – 82%

Glasgow School of Art – 77%

Abertay, Dundee – N/A