The Educational Institute of Scotland was established in September 1847, with the aim of improving the conditions and efficiency of teachers, and the standards of education in Scotland. It was the first national association of teachers covering the whole profession in Scotland, though earlier associations had existed locally, including the Glasgow Society of Teachers, whose minutes, 1794-1836, are preserved with the Institute records. (54/1). The records of the Institute also include material from a number of other teachers' organisations which merged with it at local or national level. (50-61). Much of the business of the Institute is conducted by its various statutory standing committees which deal with particular areas of policy. (8-25). Its membership is divided into local associations which cover all teachers, (26-45) and there are also district groups which cover particular spheres of education. (46-49).