Annamalai University, one of the largest Universities in terms of disciplinary diversity and student enrolment, is also one of the oldest universities in South India. Sprawling over a vast and sylvan campus of 1000 acres, the University houses about
campus of 1000 acres, the University houses about 50 Departments of Study under Eight Faculties. Founded by the legendary philanthropist and farsighted visionary, Rajah Sir Annamalai Chettiar in 1929, Annamalai University has played a key role in social, cultural, and economic uplift of the people across the rungs of society for nearly a century. Annamalainagar, the University Town, is located just to the east of Chidambaram, the Abode of the Cosmic Dancer, Lord Nataraja.
To serve the downtrodden and to promote Tamil Language and Literature, Rajah Sir S. RM. Annamalai Chettiar founded Sri Minakshi College, Sri Minakshi Tamil College and Sri Minakshi Sanskrit College at Chidambaram in the early 1920s. In 1928, Rajah Sir S. RM. Annamalai Chettiar agreed with the local Government to handover the above said institutions for establishing a University. Thus, on 01.01.1929 Annamalai University came into existence as the first-ever to have been founded by a private philanthropist. Ever since its establishment, Annamalai University has played an incredible role in the lives of the people near and far. Until 2013, the University was governed by the Annamalai University Act, 1928. In 2013, the Annamalai University Act, 2013 (Tamil Nadu Act 20 of 2013), was passed and has come into force from September 25, 2013. The University, which remained “unitary” in status until 2021, was made an “affiliating” one with Mayiladuthurai, Cuddalore, Villuppuram, and Kallakurichi districts as its jurisdiction and 81 colleges are affiliated to the University now.
Annamalai University, a “university” in the true sense of the term, has been sustaining a unified ecosystem of education by offering diverse programmes under one roof. Being multi-faculty institution, Annamalai University has evolved as a time-tested system of administration to ensure the ceaseless transaction of teaching-learning, boundless expansion of research and innovation, and selfless extension of service to the society. Availability of diverse disciplines of study along with sports pavilion, gymnasiums, libraries, yoga/meditation halls, the University ensures a fertile ground and favourable climate for learners to become all rounded and competent individuals rather than mere “programmed specialists”
Annamalai University has also been a forerunner in making education accessible to countless citizens through distance education mode. All the programmes offered in by the Directorate of Distance education (DDE) are approved and accredited by the Distance Education Board (DEB). The on-campus programmes are duly approved/accredited by the competent bodies such as NAAC, NBA, AICTE, NCTE, ICAR, etc. In 2022, the University is accredited with ‘A+’ Grade by NAAC in the fourth cycle of accreditation.