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American University in Dubai

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American University in Dubai

American University in Dubai
Campus of the American University in Dubai
Established 1995
Type Private
Endowment n/a
President Dr Lance E. de Masi
Location Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Colors Blue
Mascot AUD Knights

The American University in Dubai (AUD) (Arabic: الجامعة الأمريكية في دبي‎) is a private, non-sectarian institution of higher learning in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, founded in 1995. AUD is accredited regionally as a separate unit by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. AUD serves UAE nationals and international students from all over the world and offer them an American-style education.

The University has both US and UAE accreditation for all of its programs. AUD is the only university outside the United States and Latin America to be directly accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, although it is not the only US-accredited university in the Persian Gulf region (others are accredited by the U.S. Middle States Commission on Higher Education). American University in Dubai is not affiliated with American University in Washington, D.C.

2012–2013 enrollment was around 3,000 and over 100 nationalities are represented in the student body. AUD has a diverse faculty of over 180.[1] AUD's curricula is skill-directed and career-oriented.[2]

The University is organized into Schools:

  • School of Architecture, Art and Design
    • Department of Architecture
    • Department of Interior Design
    • Department of Visual Communication
  • School of Arts and Sciences
    • Middle Eastern Studies
  • School of Business Administration
    • Department of Business and Economics, launched in July 2012[3]
    • Department of Finance and Accounting
    • Department of Management
    • Department of Marketing and Marketing Communications
  • Mohammed bin Rashid School for Communication
  • School of Education
  • School of Engineering
    • Department of Civil Engineering
    • Department of Computer and Electrical Engineering
    • Department of Mechanical Engineering

Serving the Community at large as a source of expertise from within the AUD faculty members, AUD’s different centers offer services ranging from training and consultancy to research projects within their respective sectors.[4]

The campus

The American University in Dubai is situated next to Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, and the Palm Islands. It is 15 minutes from the heart of Dubai's financial and commercial centre and 25 minutes from Dubai International Airport.

AUD's multi-complex facility is situated on grounds of approximately 1,300,000 sq ft (120,000 m2). and encompasses three academic buildings, a Student Center, an administration building, residence halls, a cafeteria area, and an open air sports facilities.[5]


The American University in Dubai (AUD) is accredited to grant US degrees by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), one of America's seven regional accrediting bodies. AUD remains the only institution of higher learning outside the US and Latin America to be granted this accreditation by SACSCOC.[6]

The announcement of the re-affirmation of AUD's accreditation was made at the largest annual SACSCOC meeting in history, held in Dallas, Texas on December 8–11, 2012.[7] The re-affirmation represents the culmination of a rigorous two-year process of inspection and evaluation, including a visit to the university in March 2012 by a SACSCOC Reaffirmation Committee – at the conclusion of which the university was found to be in compliance with all 81 standards and all 11 US federal requirements.[8]

The American University in Dubai is officially licensed by the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research of the United Arab Emirates. The Ministry has accredited all the university’s programs.[9]

AUD is approved to operate by the State of Georgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission (NPEC).[10]

The Civil, Computer and Electrical Engineering programs of AUD’s School of Engineering are accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. The Bachelor of Science in Computer and Information Technology (B.S.C.I.T.) program is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET.[11]

AUD's undergraduate majors in Marketing Communications and Advertising have been accredited by the International Advertising Association (IAA) in New York.[12]

The American University in Dubai has received specialized accreditation for its business programs through the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE), located in Olathe, Kansas. The business programs in the following degrees are accredited by the IACBE: Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.), with majors in Accounting, Economics, Finance, Management, Marketing and Marketing Communications; and the Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.), with concentrations in Finance and Marketing.[13]

Founding and History

Following the Gulf War in 1991, a team led by Elias Bou Saab from the American College visited the Persian Gulf to establish relationships with various ministries of higher education as well as the region’s schools.

The lack of quality private education at the university level, coupled with an appreciation of the American model of higher education, led them to conduct a feasibility study on the prospects of establishing an American university in the Persian Gulf. The results confirmed the high level of interest and desire for a campus offering an American-accredited educational curriculum.

It also became quickly apparent that the Emirate of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates, would be an ideal place to locate such an institution. Dubai was found to be a politically stable, cosmopolitan and outward-looking principality whose nearly non-existent private sector in higher education was just beginning to draw some attention.

The guiding principle underlying the university’s establishment was bringing the American educational system to the region without interfering with or challenging the culture or values of the local community. The institution achieved this goal and sees it as a key to its success.

Elias Bou Saab moved to Dubai in 1995 in order to officially establish the American University in Dubai, which in turn would not have been possible without the commitment and support from the outset of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai. To this day, His Highness continues his unlimited support for higher education in general and to the university in particular.

The American University in Dubai opened its doors in October 1995 as a branch campus of the American College, based in Atlanta, Georgia.

AUD’s initial enrollment was 165 students, over half of which were females. By the time former Secretary of State and Treasury James Baker gave the Keynote at AUD’s first commencement in 1998,[14] enrollment had climbed to 499; and the Dubai government, as an expression of confidence, had decided to build a campus of 1,400,000 square feet for use by the university. AUD moved out of its initial premises to occupy this new, spacious, fully equipped campus in January 2000. Its enrollment at that time was 687.

The year 2000 was also significant because it was in that year that the university was officially licensed by the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MOHE). The private sector for higher education had grown considerably since AUD’s founding, and the Ministry saw fit to establish a formal licensure and (subsequently) accreditation process. It was in 2000 that AUD’s largest academic department – Business Administration – was organizationally designated as a School. In 2001, a memorandum of understanding was signed between the American University in Dubai (AUD) and the Georgia Institute of Technology of Atlanta, GA to establish a School of Engineering. Representatives from Georgia Tech, including six senior faculty and administrative officers, visited AUD to finalize the adaptation of curricula to the requirements of the UAE.[15]

In December 2007, and for the third time since its opening in 1995, The American University in Dubai received independent accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), one of America's seven regional accrediting commissions. AUD is the first and only institution outside of the US and Latin America to be granted this honor by SACS. AUD is now a fully independent institution.

The American University in Dubai also maintains an exchange program with the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, GA. Students from both institutions can take courses and receive credit through the exchange program.[16][17]

Today, The American University in Dubai, although still very young, is a vibrant institution, which serves as a point of reference for higher education within the Persian Gulf Region and greater Middle East.[18]


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  2. ^ "Uniandi: American University in Dubai (AUD)". Uniandi. Retrieved 5 April 2013. 
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Commencement Speakers

See also


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  6. ^ "Commencement: 2009". American University in Dubai. 2009-05-19. Archived from the original on 2 June 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-25. 
  7. ^ "Commencement: 2008". American University in Dubai. 2008-05-19. Archived from the original on 7 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  8. ^ "Commencement: 2007". American University in Dubai. 2007-05-09. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  9. ^ "Commencement: 2006". American University in Dubai. 2006-05-13. Archived from the original on 20 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  10. ^ "Speech: 2005". USAToday. 2005-11-16. Retrieved 2009-01-17. 
  11. ^ "Commencement: 2005". American University in Dubai. 2005-06-04. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  12. ^ "Commencement: 2004". American University in Dubai. 2004-05-31. Archived from the original on 1 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  13. ^ "Commencement: 2003". American University in Dubai. 2003-06-02. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  14. ^ "Commencement: 2002". American University in Dubai. 2002-06-11. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  15. ^ "Commencement: 2001". American University in Dubai. 2001-06-05. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  16. ^ "Commencement: 2000". American University in Dubai. 2000-05-27. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  17. ^ "Commencement: 1999". American University in Dubai. 1999-05-30. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  18. ^ "Commencement: 1998". American University in Dubai. 1998-06-10. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 

External links

  • American University in Dubai
  • American University in Dubai] — TEN Education
  • Dubai universities — list
  • American University in Dubai Student Reviews

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