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Islamic Azad University

Islamic Azad University

دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی

Dāneshgāh-e Āzād-e Eslāmi
Seal of Islamic Azad University
Motto آرمان ایرانی برای جهانی شدن (Persian)
Motto in English
Iranian Aspirations for Globalization
Established 1982
Type Private University System[1]
Endowment 140,955,000 USD[2]
President Hamid Mirzadeh
Vice-president Farhad Hosseinzadeh Lotfi
Academic staff
70,665 (Spring 2015)[2]
Students 1,658,000 (Spring 2015) [2]
Undergraduates 1,136,000
Postgraduates 500,000
Campus 31 State Universities, 100+ campuses, colleges and centers under direct administration
Media Farhikhteghan Newspaper, Afarinesh Newspaper, Azad News Agency (ANA), Isca News Agancy
Colours Dark and light Blue[3]         
Athletics Azad University of Tehran Basketball Club
Azad University of Tehran Cycling Club
Sports Azad University Giant Team
Nickname IAU
Affiliations Islamic Azad University System

The Islamic Azad University (IAU) (Persian: دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی‎‎, Dāneshgāh-e Āzād-e Eslāmi), commonly referred to as Azad University is a private university system in Iran. It is one of the largest comprehensive system of universities, colleges, and community colleges in the world.


  • History 1
    • Endowment controversy 1.1
  • Campuses 2
    • Campuses in City of Tehran 2.1
    • Two-year institutions 2.2
    • Overseas campuses 2.3
  • State University 3
  • Enrollments 4
  • Medical centers and schools 5
  • Rankings 6
  • Gallery 7
  • See also 8
  • References 9
  • External links 10


Headquartered in Tehran, Iran, the Islamic Azad University is the world's third largest university which was approved and ratified by Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution in 1982 and was founded in 1982 and established by Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani,[4] currently has an enrollment of 1.6 million students,.[5][6] Azad University has over 100 branches across the country and also in other countries. It has branches and universities in U.A.E, United Kingdom and Lebanon.[7] Over the years, the university has accumulated assets estimated to be worth between $20–25 billion.[6] Islamic Azad University's activities quickly expanded throughout the country, so that today thousands of students are enrolling every year. Not relying on government funding, it receives charitable donations and charges tuition fees.[6]

The certificates issued by this university are recognized by the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology and Ministry of Health and Medical Education for medical education.[7] Azad University admits students through the National Wide Entrance Examination held by the National (Iranian) Organization of Educational Testing.

Endowment controversy

Iran's Supreme Leader has declared the financial endowment of Islamic Azad University to be "religiously illegitimate and unlawful", prompting a change within the administration of the institution.[8]


The Islamic Azad University has 31 State Universities with over 100 in Iran and 4 branches overseas, covers almost every subject in its curriculam and delivers huge flexibility and choice to its students.

At present, the IAU system officially describes itself as a "100+ campus". These campuses are under the direct control of the Regents and President. Only ten best and famous campuses are listed below. Some campuses are well-known, most distinguished, most highly ranked and most prestigious specially Central Tehran and Science and Research Tehran.

Campus Founded Enrollment Type
Science and Research Tehran 1984 ~ 50,000 Comprehensive
Central Tehran 1982 ~ 40,000 Comprehensive
South Tehran 1985 ~ 35,000 Comprehensive
North Tehran 1985 ~ 20,000 Comprehensive
Medical Tehran 1985 ~ 5,000 Medical Sciences
Karaj 1984 ~ 35,000 Comprehensive
Qazvin 1992 ~ 28,000 Comprehensive
Najafabad 1985 ~ 25,000 [9] Comprehensive
Mashhad 1982 ~ 30,000 Comprehensive
Isfahan 1983 ~ 15,000 Comprehensive

Campuses in City of Tehran

Name System Founded
Islamic Azad University System (Central Organization) Islamic Azad University 1982
Science and Research Tehran Islamic Azad University 1984
Central Tehran Islamic Azad University 1982
South Tehran Islamic Azad University 1985
North Tehran Islamic Azad University 1985
West Tehran Islamic Azad University 1994
East Tehran Islamic Azad University 2001
Medical Tehran Islamic Azad University 1985
Dental Tehran Islamic Azad University 1985
Pharmaceutical Tehran Islamic Azad University 1985
Electronic Islamic Azad University 2007

Two-year institutions

Sama Technical and Vocational Training College

Overseas campuses

Azad University in Oxford (AUO) is one of the IAU overseas campuses located at the outskirts of Oxford city in the UK. It has been established in 2004 to support the IAU international collaboration activities. Through its links with the UK universities and research centres, the AUO provides a number of services to the students and staff of IAU as well as other students and organisations around the world.[10]

State University

Islamic Azad University has 31 state universities (provincial universities) in each province of Iran that are listed below:

  • Islamic Azad University Alborz Province
  • Islamic Azad University Ardabil Province
  • Islamic Azad University Azerbaijan, East Province
  • Islamic Azad University Azerbaijan, West Province
  • Islamic Azad University Bushehr Province
  • Islamic Azad University Chahar Mahaal and Bakhtiari Province
  • Islamic Azad University Fars Province
  • Islamic Azad University Gilan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Golestan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Hamadan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Hormozgan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Ilam Province
  • Islamic Azad University Isfahan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Kerman Province
  • Islamic Azad University Kermanshah Province
  • Islamic Azad University Khorasan, North Province
  • Islamic Azad University Khorasan, Razavi Province
  • Islamic Azad University Khorasan, South Province
  • Islamic Azad University Khuzestan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad Province
  • Islamic Azad University Kurdistan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Lorestan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Markazi Province
  • Islamic Azad University Mazandaran Province
  • Islamic Azad University Qazvin Province
  • Islamic Azad University Qom Province
  • Islamic Azad University Semnan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Sistan and Baluchestan Province
  • Islamic Azad University Tehran Province
  • Islamic Azad University Yazd Province
  • Islamic Azad University Zanjan Province


In Academic Year of 2012-2013

Field of Study Percent
Engineering and Technology 42%
Humanities 37.11%
Art 6.84%
Science 5.68%
Agriculture and Veterinary 4.41%
Medical Science 3.96%
Total[11] 100%

Medical centers and schools

The Islamic Azad University operates ten medical centers throughout the country:

Each medical center serves as the primary teaching site for that campus's medical school.

  • Avicenna Hospital (Tehran)
  • Amiralmomenin Hospital
  • Javaheri Hospital
  • 22 Baham Hospital
  • Aria Hospital
  • Yazd Hospital
  • Najafabad Hospital
  • Khatamalanbia Hospital
  • Rhazes Hospital
  • Katalem Hospital


ISC Rankings

In early 2011, Islamic World Science Citation Database declared the very first official ranking of Higher education and research institutes of Iran,[12] including a ranking of Islamic Azad University Campuses:[13][14]

Top 10 Campuses of Islamic Azad University in 2010
Rank Campus Score
1 Islamic Azad University of Tabriz 4.27
2 Islamic Azad University of Mashhad 3.51
3 Islamic Azad University Central Tehran Branch 3.06
4 Islamic Azad University of Karaj 2.61
5 Islamic Azad University North Tehran Branch 2.48
6 Islamic Azad University of Najafabad 1.37
7 Islamic Azad University of Isfahan 1.35
8 Islamic Azad University of Ghouchan 1.26
9 Islamic Azad University of Shabestar 1.19
10 Islamic Azad University of Ardabil 0.95
Top 10 Campuses of Islamic Azad University in 2011
Rank Campus Score
1 Islamic Azad University, Science and Research Branch, Tehran 100
2 Islamic Azad University of Mashhad 23.75
3 Islamic Azad University of Karaj 18.53
4 Islamic Azad University South Tehran Branch 18.21
5 Islamic Azad University of Isfahan 13.5
6 Islamic Azad University North Tehran Branch NA
7 Islamic Azad University of Najafabad NA
8 Islamic Azad University of Qazvin NA
9 Islamic Azad University Central Tehran Branch NA
10 Islamic Azad University of Yazd NA

SCImago rankings

2013: International rank: 87, National rank: 1, Regional Rank: 1[15]

2012: International rank: 231, National rank: 1, Regional Rank: 2[16]

Leiden Ranking – CWTS Leiden Ranking

2014: World rank: 252, Country rank: 11, Regional Rank: 194[17]

URAP – University Ranking by Academic Performance

2013: World rank: 161, Country rank: 1, Regional Rank: 25[18]

2012: World rank: 226, Country rank: 2, Regional Rank: 34[19]


See also


  1. ^ Ahmad Ashraf, "EDUCATION vii. GENERAL SURVEY OF MODERN EDUCATION," Encyclopaedia Iranica, Online Edition, December 15, 1997, available at
  2. ^ a b c "تسریع در روند جذب هیات علمی در دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی/ معرفی 26 هزار عضو هیات علمی به واحدهای دانشگاهی". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  3. ^ "Islamic Azad University Logotype usage guidelines" (PDF). Islamic Azad University. Retrieved January 26, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Back to the Future in Iran's Election". The National Interest. Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  5. ^ Encyclopaedia Britannica World Almanac, ed. 2004, page 666
  6. ^ a b c
  7. ^ a b Gholamreza Rahimi, Ghader Vazifeh Damirch, "Islamic Azad University Roles in Scientific Developement of Iran", Interdisciplinary Journal of Research in Business, Vol. 1, Issue. 9, (pp. 84–91), September–October 2011, available at
  8. ^ "The battle over Islamic Azad University". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  9. ^ model school-count
  10. ^ [3]
  11. ^ "General Catalog of IAU" (PDF). IAU. Retrieved 7 August 2015. 
  12. ^ "نخستین رتبه‌بندی رسمی دانشگاه‌ها و مراکز تحقیقاتی کشور اعلام شد". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  13. ^ وب سایت رتبه بندی دانشگاه های جهان اسلام
  14. ^ [4]
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ ://
  18. ^ "URAP - University Ranking by Academic Performance". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 
  19. ^ "URAP - University Ranking by Academic Performance". Retrieved 16 July 2015. 

External links

  • Official Website (Persian)
  • Alumni of Islamic Azad University (Persian)

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