American University in Dubai

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 offers them an American-style education.

American University in Dubai
MottoWhere potential is turned into success
Established1 October 1995 [1]
ChairmanMr. Justin Cooper
PresidentDr. David A. Schmidt [2]
Vice-presidentMr Elias Bou Saab
ProvostDr. Sabrina Joseph
Academic staff
181 (Fall 2018)[3]
Administrative staff
Students2,624 (Fall 2018)[3]
Colors  Blue
MascotAUD Knights

AUD is accredited regionally by the UAE Ministry of Education and by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools in the United States. Ranked 3rd as the world's most diverse university, AUD offers UAE nationals and international students an American-style education in one of the most vibrant and important cities in the world.

2019–2020 enrollment was around 2,000 students and over 110 nationalities are represented in the student body. AUD has a diverse faculty of over 120.[3] AUD's curriculum is based on the US model of a liberal education that prepares students for successful careers and meaningful lives.[5]


The American University in Dubai is situated next to Dubai Media City, Dubai Internet City, and the Palm Islands.

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.[6]


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
    • Department of International Studies
    • Department of Psychology
    • Middle Eastern Studies
  • School of Business Administration
    • Department of Business and Economics
    • 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.[7]


The American University in Dubai (AUD) is accredited to grant bachelor's and master's degrees by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), one of seven regional accrediting bodies in the United States. 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.[8]

AUD is approved to operate by the State of Georgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission (NPEC).[9] AUD's undergraduate majors in Marketing Communications and Advertising have been accredited by the International Advertising Association (IAA) in New York.[10]

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.[11]

The Mohammed Bin Rashid School for Communication is accredited by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC).

Founding and historyEdit

Following the Gulf War in 1991, a team led by Elias Bou Saab from the American Intercontinental University (AIU) 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.[citation needed]

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 Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai. To this day, he 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 Intercontinental University, a multinational educational institution currently 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,[12] 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.[13]

In December 2007, and for the third time since its opening in 1995, The American University in Dubai achieved independent accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), one of America's seven regional accrediting commissions.

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.[14][15]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "HISTORY | American University in Dubai (AUD)".
  2. ^ "Dr. David A. Schmidt | American University in Dubai (AUD)".
  3. ^ a b c [1] Archived April 8, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ American University in Dubai profile,, August 8, 2008.
  5. ^ "Uniandi: American University in Dubai (AUD)". Uniandi. Archived from the original on 4 November 2013. Retrieved 5 April 2013.
  6. ^ [2] Archived January 7, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "AUD Centers". Archived from the original on 2015-05-06. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  8. ^ "CAA". Archived from the original on 2015-05-13. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  9. ^ [3] Archived April 15, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ "Accredited Institutes" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-05-12. Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  11. ^ "IACBE Membership Status" (PDF). Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  12. ^ [4] Archived May 9, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 24 June 2014. Retrieved 26 January 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ "United Arab Emirates - AUD Dubai Exchange Program | Office of International Education". Retrieved 2015-04-23.
  15. ^ [5] Archived March 5, 2014, at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 25°5′27″N 55°9′23″E / 25.09083°N 55.15639°E / 25.09083; 55.15639