The Arab Open University is a non-profit Arab educational and developmental project operating in nine Arab countries, its aim is to provide all members of all segments of society who hold a secondary education certificate, regardless of their age and gender, the opportunity to continue their education, improve their skills, and enrich the labour market with graduates that enjoy outstanding scientific abilities.
The foundation of the university was given to His Royal Highness Prince Talal Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, where he provided financial and moral support to the university since it was a mere idea until it became a reality in October 2002. In the first phase, the university opened three different branches in the State of Kuwait, the Republic of Lebanon and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. In the second phase, in February 2003, three other branches were opened in the Kingdom of Bahrain, the Arab Republic of Egypt and Saudi Arabia, followed by a seventh branch in the Sultanate of Oman in February 2008. The branch of Sudan was opened in 2013. A new branch was opened in Palestine in 2018. All this represents the embodiment of the national dimension of the university, which aims at having branches in regional centers in all Arab countries.
Though the university was launched not long ago, it has achieved many successes in applying most of its vision, fulfilling its goals and opening new and pioneering horizons for many segments of the Arab community whose conditions have hindered them from enrolling in the traditional universities, especially those who are working, and those with low income. Moreover, the university pays special attention to the people with special needs, to whom all support and assistance are provided along with the distinguished students and the needy ones through the student fund.
In addition, the University has succeeded in establishing a unique experience in integrated education, which is based on high-quality open education, traditional education, and self-learning. The university has also succeeded in meeting the requirements of the official accreditation bodies in the countries hosting its nine branches as well as the conditions and requirements of the British Accreditation Authority, the entity responsible for the accreditation of the programs and certificates of the University graduates. All this is based on the partnership agreement that was settled between the AOU and the Open University of the United Kingdom.