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|Motto||With courage and faith|
|Chancellor||Governor of Tamil Nadu|
|Affiliations||UGC; Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)|
Annamalai University is a state university located in Annamalai Nagar, Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu, India. The university is spread across 950 acres (3.8 km2) in Chidambaram and offers courses of higher education in Arts, Science, Engineering, Medical, Management (MBA), Humanities, Agriculture, and Physical Education. The university was founded in 1929 by the entrepreneur Annamalai Chettiyar in the aftermath of the Montagu-Chelmsford Reforms. In the early 1920s, to serve the downtrodden and to promote Tamil Literature, Rajah Sir S. R. M. Annamalai Chettiar founded Sri Minakshi College, Sri Minakshi Tamil College and Sri Minakshi Sanskrit College in a rural setup at Chidambaram. In 1928, Rajah Sir S. R. M. Annamalai Chettiar agreed with the local Government to handover the above said institution for establishing a University. Thus, on 01.01.1929 Annamalai University was established as per Annamalai University Act 1928 (Tamil Nadu Act 1 of 1929). The most significant development is the enactment of the Annamalai University Act, 2013 (Tamil Nadu Act 20 of 2013), which has come into force from September 25, 2013, after obtaining the assent of His Excellency, the President of India. 
The university also provides more than 500 courses through distance education. The Directorate of Distance Education (DDE) of Annamalai University offers education to those people who are unable to attend the campus but who desire to study. It is credited with the largest enrollment in India and is well equipped with computers and other infrastructure, separate teaching faculty and administration, study centers, and computer training centers to serve its students. It was the first institution in India to offer postgraduate degree programmes in Applied Psychology, Physics, Chemistry, Zoology, Botany, Bioinformatics and Law, Business Administration and Management (MBA) through distance education. The Directorate of Distance Education also offers programmes in Fashion Design, Textile Design, Interior Design, Hotel Management and Catering Technology, Retail Management, Twinning, Health Science, a Commonwealth Youth Programme, Yoga, Music, Fire and Safety, Pharmaceutical and Taxation.
|University and college rankings|
|General – international|
|Times (World) (2018)||801–1000|
|Times (Asia) (2018)||251–300|
|General – India|
|NIRF (Overall) (2018)||101–150|
|NIRF (Universities) (2018)||101–150|
|Pharmacy – India|
Annamalai University was ranked 801–1000 in the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings of 2018 and 251–300 in Asia. It was ranked in the 101–150 band overall in India by the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) for 2018 and in the 101–150 band among universities. NIRF also ranked it 20 in its pharmacy ranking in 2018.
The university has ten faculties, namely Agriculture, arts (including management studies), dentistry, education, engineering and technology, fine arts, Indian languages, marine sciences, Rajah Muthiah Medical College (medicine) and science.
Directorate of Distance Education was established in 1979 which now offers more than 500 courses including MBA.All the programmes of study offered have the approval of the Distance Education Council. B.Ed. programme is approved by the National Council for Teacher Education.
Scholarships and awards
A total of 356 scholarships and awards are given to eligible candidates every year.
In 2006, Annamalai University opened its first Study Center in Toronto, Canada, offering programs in music, dance, Tamil and yoga. Other overseas centres include the Al Mihad Institute, Dubai, OUR international (Dhafir Institute) Abu Dhabi and the Al Hilal Education Centre, as well as Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates the Al Noor Education Centre in Muscat, Oman. In 2017,dance, music and yoga were offered through Naku Nachhilfe und Kulturschule in Switzerland.
- P. C. Alexander, Indian Administrative Service officer, former Governor of Tamil Nadu and Governor of Maharashtra
- K. Anbazhagan, former Finance Minister of Tamil Nadu, MLA (Park Town constituency) and General Secretary of DMK
- Subbiah Arunachalam
- C. Sylendra Babu, renowned Indian Police Service officer of Tamil Nadu cadre
- K. Balachander, Indian director, producer, writer, actor, playwright, stage conductor, and comedian who worked mainly in the Tamil film industry; graduated in Zoology
- Bala V. Balachandran, founder and Dean, Great Lakes Institute of Management, Chennai, India
- K. Balakrishnan (CPI-M), politician
- R. K. Baliga, the father of the Electronics City in Bangalore, India.
- T. K. Doraiswamy, poet and novelist
- Ere. Elamvazhuthi, MLA for Cuddalore constituency of Tamil Nadu from 1967 to 1970 representing Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK)
- Kulandei Francis, activist, social worker, recipient of the Magsaysay Award in 2012
- R Gandhi, retired deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of India
- A. S. Gnanasambandan, Tamil writer, scholar and literary critic from Tamil Nadu, India
- Ravi Gomatam, quantum physicist, director of Bhaktivedanta Institute and Institute for Semantic Information Sciences and Technology, Berkeley, and Mumbai
- Vijay Govindarajan, a NYT and WSJ Best Selling Author, Coxe Distinguished Professor at Tuck School at Dartmouth
- Narayanaswamy Jayaraman, organic chemist and Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar laureate
- D. R. Karthikeyan, Indian Police Service officer from Tamil Nadu
- G. Nammalvar, agriculturist, scientist
- V. Narayanasamy, politician, Chief Minister of Puducherry
- Venniradai Moorthy, Tamil comedy actor
- N. S. Satya Murthy – physicist, Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar laureate
- G. Balakrish Nair, Indian microbiologist
- K. S. Narayanaswamy, Carnatic veena exponent of the Thanjavur style
- Nedumaran, Tamil politician from the state of Tamil Nadu, South India
- V. R. Nedunchezhiyan, former chief minister of Tamil Nadu
- K. Ponmudi, former state minister
- Vijaya T. Rajendar, Tamil actor, singer, director and politician
- Panruti S. Ramachandran
- Sujatha Ramdorai, professor of mathematics and Canada Research Chair at University of British Columbia
- Savitha Reddy, dubbing artist in the southern India film industry
- Sethu, dermatologist and actor
- V. T. Sambanthan, fifth President of Malaysian Indian Congress and one of the founding fathers of Malaysia
- E. V. Sampathkumaran, condensed matter physicist, Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar laureate
- Narayanasami Sathyamurthy, scientist
- Pakkiriswamy Chandra Sekharan, forensic expert and Padma Bhushan recipient
- S. S. Sivasankar, MLA (Kunnam (State Assembly Constituency))
- S. D. Somasundaram, former cabinet minister
- S. Srinivasan, aerospace scientist and Padma Bhushan recipient
- Vijayalakshmy Subramaniam, Carnatic music vocalist
- M. Swaraj, MLA Kerala
- Ramanuja Vijayaraghavan, Indian physicist
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