The Scottish University Lodge Scheme was created by the Grand Master Mason; initially for a five-year pilot period. The scheme is managed by the Provincial Grand Master of Edinburgh with Lodge St David (University Lodge) as the pilot lodge.

The scheme provides dispensations for the Lodge to accept applications from those who do not meet the normal age or residency requirements and to reduce joining fees by 50% for those applicants in full-time education, thereby making it easier for undergraduates and graduates to enter Freemasonry whilst away from home studying.

England has a similar, very successful, scheme run by the United Grand Lodge of England, which now includes more than 65 lodges. The Scottish University Lodge Scheme organizers have worked closely with their English counterparts, consequently forging very close links between them.