Founded in 2014 as a non-profit institution of higher learning by Masrour Barzani, the American University of Kurdistan is dedicated to preparing future generations of leaders through curricular and co-curricular excellence in an American style education focusing on transformative knowledge, innovative research, ethical community service, respect for inclusion and diversity, global connectedness, and life-long learning, all aiming to ensure economic, environmental, social and political advancement- regionally, nationally and globally.
The American University of Kurdistan will be recognized as a premier institution in the Middle East and beyond by cultivating academic excellence, fostering creativity, and engaging in highest caliber of applied research.
The Institutional Mission of the American University of Kurdistan focuses on the holistic development of its students who after graduation shall become the future leaders and change agents of Kurdistan. This development occurs within and outside the classroom with the University supporting students both academically and personally. The University defines “student success” as the student/individual’s achievement in academics, level of engagement, contribution to campus activities, acquisition of skills and professional dispositions, persistence to graduation, and post-graduate performance.
As the institution constantly aligns its academic programs with workforce needs and the economic development of the nation, upon graduation students are equipped with knowledge of the latest technologies and global trends ensuring their employability and/or ready entry to graduate programs at universities around the world. While at AUK, students are tracked for persistence to graduation, academic standing, and satisfaction of their respective programs’ student learning outcomes. After graduation, alumni are tracked for their job attainment rates, promotion history, and the realization of their career ambitions. The attainment of graduate degrees and certificates evidences the alumni’s desire for further professional development as well as adoption of the principle of life-long learning.
In respect to the contribution of AUK’s co-curricular and extra-curricular programming, student engagement levels in student government, clubs, sports, leadership roles, and campus/community volunteerism are measured. These activities support the students’ soft skills development, including communication, problem solving, creativity, collaboration, and leadership.
- Careers and Future Job Preparedness
- AUK offers a values-based, American style liberal arts education devoted to the overall development of students to ready them for careers both professionally and socially.
- Exposure to practical project-based learning, internships and commercial projects
- Development of students’ personal soft skills including independent and critical thinking, communication, tech fluency, creative problem solving and teamwork to ensure their success in future jobs.
- Employing American best practices in teaching and instructional design to produce graduates capable of adapting to global changes.
- Globally aware and prepared in the academic and professional realms
- Encourage entrepreneurship and the creation of business startups through the university 'innovation hub' that links students with mentors from industry.
- Promotion of freedom of thought and creative expression.
- Nurturing student innovation by providing resources and support.
- State-of-the-art classrooms and computer labs with courses that integrate latest technologies.
- Iconic building dedicated to Mustafa Barzani
- Preparing Kurdistan’s next generation of leaders by nurturing a culture of community service and social responsibility.
- Foster an ethos of inclusion, diversity and tolerance rooted in respect for and understanding of all individuals and perspectives.
- Support the local community through institutional outreach in health, IT, school education, environmental and urban planning sectors.
Institutional Learning Goals
The American University of Kurdistan’s Institutional Learning Goals reflect the mission of the University though a focus on four areas of student learning. The Division of Academic Affairs, the Colleges and Office of Student Affairs provide opportunities, as appropriate, for students to attain the skills and dispositions identified below.
Students will become proficient in communication, quantitative reasoning, technology fluency, and information literacy. Students will be expected to:
- demonstrate proficiency in English-language written and oral communication skills;
- understand and apply mathematical reasoning to solve quantitative problems;
- use information resources to access and identify relevant information; and
- demonstrate proficiency in the usage of information technologies.
Liberal Knowledge and Skills of Inquiry, Critical Thinking, and Synthesis
Through courses across areas of the General Education Program, students will acquire breadth across the disciplines fundamental to a liberal arts education. Students will be expected to:
- apply scientific reasoning to address issues in the natural sciences;
- demonstrate a level of proficiency in critical thinking and creative problem solving;
- apply interdisciplinary models of enquiry to address complex social and environmental issues; and
- commit to life-long learning and the understanding that education and intellectual growth is never-ending.
Acquisition and Application of Specialized Knowledge
Students will gain knowledge and skills appropriate both for their disciplinary program in preparation for employment or continued study in graduate education. Students will be expected to:
- demonstrate technical and analytic skills appropriate to the program of study;
- demonstrate research skills for innovative problem-solving; and
- apply classroom learning in both reflective practice and experiential opportunities.
Values and Social Responsibility
Students will critically explore, evaluate, and define their values and become a responsible and global citizen through their curricular and co-curricular programs. Students will be expected to:
- demonstrate the values of inclusion and diversity and their role in advancing society;
- participate in ethical community service as a demonstration of their awareness of their own personal civic responsibility; and
- assume roles in shared governance and in various venues on- and off-campus to better appreciate the leadership model.
- The AUK embraces a diverse learning community free from discrimination, and actively promotes respect for and understanding of all individuals and perspectives.
- The AUK is a dynamic educational institution that holds all faculty, staff and students accountable for adhering to its values, promoting excellence in teaching, research, and service with enduring benefit to the region and world.
- The AUK encourages freedom of thought that allows for the highest caliber of creative expression.
- The AUK requires that all faculty, staff and students act with dignity and honesty, adhering consistently to the University’s code of ethics.
- The AUK is committed to the development and implementation of new research initiatives, teaching methodologies, and innovative curricula that enhance educational opportunities for all students, thereby deepening their understanding of global issues and events.