The American University in Dubai is a private, non-sectarian institution of higher learning founded in 1995. AUD's enrollment in 2012-2013 averaged 2,600 students. In Spring 2013, over one hundred nationalities were represented in the AUD student body.
AUD offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees and a Certificate in Middle Eastern Studies.
In addition to courses in their chosen program/major, undergraduate students in all disciplines must follow a curriculum in Arts and Sciences. This is in fulfillment of the general education portion of their degree requirements.
Through its Center for English Proficiency (CfEP), the university also conducts Intensive English programs designed to develop university-level English language skills in students requiring additional language study before commencing university.
The university's faculty possess appropriate academic credentials. Furthermore, many are or have been practicing professionals of note. In terms of faculty composition, North Americans have the highest representation of any national group.
AUD's multi-complex facility has been conceived with the objective of supporting the university's programs (both academic and extra-curricular) to an American standard. The campus surroundings include Dubai Internet City and Media City.
AUD as an American institution of higher learning
It is widely believed that American education is synonymous with “quality”. This belief is particularly prevalent with regards to American education at the university level. Several factors are judged to explain this excellence: a curriculum that imparts general knowledge but allows for significant specialization; faculty who frequently contribute to scholarship in addition to exercising their classroom duties; teaching methods that develop in students strong skills in critical reasoning and accurate and persuasive self-expression; the maintenance of high academic standards via clear and consistent policies; and instilling in students an appreciation for life-long learning.
The American University in Dubai seeks to duplicate this American recipe for success. Syllabi and textbooks are often the same as those used in similar courses taught in the United States. In addition, the predominance of American and American-trained faculty further ensures that the university be American in substance as well as in name. Expectations of academic performance either match or exceed those prevailing on a “typical” American campus.
But as with any institution of higher learning, The American University in Dubai – although working within an American framework – has developed a character of its own. This is in large part inspired by its sensitivity to the needs of the student populace of the Middle Eastern terrain in which it operates. While the university’s faculty tend to be more teaching- than research-oriented, they often enjoy a professional status uncommon among academics.
AUD’s curricula across its degree-granting disciplines are skill-directed and career-oriented. Everything, from academic advising to the approach to faculty-student interaction in- and outside the classroom, in addition to career counseling, is implemented with attention to the needs of the individual student. It is for this reason that class sizes are relatively small, and all faculty follow an “open door” policy with regard to consultation. Finally, the globalization of business and communications makes it imperative that the university’s educational programs be delivered with an international perspective and that a tolerance for cultural diversity be promoted through both curricular and extra-curricular activities.
The American University in Dubai remains convinced that since its opening in 1995, it has made great strides towards developing a culture of excellence by combining the heritage of traditional American education with those perspectives it has matured locally. The university looks forward to further collaboration with the local community in its continuous search for relevant educational programs delivered to global standards.