The University of Florida (commonly referred to as Florida, UF or U of F) is an American public land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant research university located on a 2,000-acre (8.1 km2) campus in Gainesville, Florida. The university traces its historical origins to 1853, and has operated continuously on its present Gainesville campus since September 1906. The University of Florida is ranked 17th overall among all public national universities in the current 2013 U.S. News & World Report rankings, and consistently ranks within the top 100 universities worldwide. The University of Florida was also described as a "Public Ivy" in the book "The Public Ivies: America's Flagship Public Universities."
The University of Florida is an elected member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), an organization composed of sixty-one American and Canadian research universities. Due to its very high research activity, the University has been classified as an RU/VH Research University, the highest level in the Carnegie Classification. The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).
It is the second largest Florida university by student population, and is the seventh largest single-campus university in the United States with 49,589 students enrolled for the fall 2011 semester. The University of Florida is home to sixteen academic colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes. It offers multiple graduate professional programs—including business administration, engineering, law and medicine—on one contiguous campus, and administers 123 master's degree programs and seventy-six doctoral degree programs in eighty-seven schools and departments. As of fall 2012, Florida ranked fourteenth among all institutions in the number of new National Merit Scholars enrolled.
The University of Florida's intercollegiate sports teams, commonly known by their "Florida Gators" nickname, compete in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I and the Southeastern Conference (SEC). In their 107-year history, the university's varsity sports teams have won thirty national team championships, twenty-five of which are NCAA titles, and Gator athletes have won 253 individual national championships.
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