Damascus University

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Damascus University
جامعة دمشق
Damascus University.png
Damascus University emblem
Former names
Syrian University (1923-1958)
Motto "وَقُل رَّبِّ زِدْنِي عِلْمًا"
Motto in English
And say: My Lord, increase me in knowledge (Quran, 20:114).
Type Public
Established 1923 (Medical School in 1903)
President Mohammad Hassan Al Kurdi [1]
Administrative staff
2,653 [2]
Students 210,929 [3]
Undergraduates 197,493
Postgraduates 13,436
1,211
Location Damascus, Syria
Campus Urban
Colours      Raspberry [4]
Website damascusuniversity.edu.sy

The University of Damascus (Arabic: جامعة دمشق‎‎, Jāmi‘atu Dimashq) is the largest and oldest university in Syria, located in the capital Damascus and has campuses in other Syrian cities. It was founded in 1923 through the merger of the School of Medicine (established 1903) and the Institute of Law (established 1913). Until 1958 it was named the Syrian University, but the name changed after the founding of the University of Aleppo. There are nine public universities and more than ten private ones in Syria. Damascus University and the entire education system in Syria was degraded dramatically during former President Hafez al-Assad and then Bashar al-Assad reign. It used to be a leading university in the Arab World, but currently its world ranking is 4152 and its Arab World ranking is 114, according to the "Webometrics Ranking of World Universities".

The University of Damascus consists of several faculties, higher Institutes, intermediate institutes and a school of nursing. One of the institutions specializes in teaching the Arabic language to foreigners, which is the largest institution of its kind in the Arab world.[5]

History[edit]

La Caserne Hamidieh - previous headquarter of the Syrian University, is the Faculty of Law building

The history of any university is inseparable from the history of its country, for the events and chronicles of the latter play a large role in the history of the former. Thus Syrian’s modern history left its mark on the journey of Damascus University.

In 1901, the establishment of the Office of the School of Medicine in Damascus was approved and in 1903 this school, which is the nucleus of the University, opened. The school included branches in medicine and pharmacy, and the language of instruction was Turkish.

In 1913, a Law School opened in Beirut, in which most of the teachers were Arabs and the language of instruction was Arabic. Then this school was transferred to Damascus in 1914 just as the School of Medicine moved to Beirut. Then in the last years of the First World War the Law School returned to Beirut.

Following that the Institute of Medicine and the School of Law opened in Damascus, the former at the beginning of January in 1919 and the latter in September of the same year.

In 1923, the School of Law was named the Institute of Law and this institute was linked together with the Institute of Medicine, the Arab Society, and the Center of Arabic Heritage in organization under the name of the Syrian University. Then the Arab Society and the Center of Arabic Heritage separated from the organization in 1926.

In 1928, the School of Higher Literary Studies was established and it immediately connected its administration with the University. In 1929 it became the School of Letters, which closed in 1935/1936.

Then starting in 1946, the University was no longer limited to the Institutes of Medicine and Law, but rather faculties and higher institutions were created in other subjects.

In 1958, a new law was created to regulate the universities in the northern and southern regions of the United Arab Republic. This led to changing the name of “the Syrian University” to “Damascus University” and to the creation of a second northern university called “the University of Aleppo.” [6]

Structure[edit]

Degrees Offered[edit]

Damascus University headquarter in Baramkeh

Damascus University awards graduate (Master, Ph.D. Professional Training and Qualification) and undergraduate (Bachelor) degree programs. The period of study for the bachelor's degree ranges from 4 to 6 years, based on the need for each discipline of study. The Master programs combine course work and research, and require a minimum of two years and a maximum of a three. Under certain circumstances, an additional fourth year may be approved by a decision of the university council based on the recommendation of the faculty council. The Ph.D degree is a fully research program. The period of research is not less than two years and not more than five years by the decision of the university council based on the recommendation of the faculty council.[7]

Faculties[edit]

Damascus University Map

Higher institutes[edit]

  • Higher Institute of Laser Research and Applications
  • Higher Institute of Administrative Development
  • Higher Institute of Seismologic Studies and Research
  • Higher Institute of Languages

The Arabic Language Institute at the University of Damascus is recognized as the best center to study Arabic for non-native speakers in the world. The Center for Arabic Study abroad, the premier U.S. organization for Arabic study, is now opening a second branch at the University. The Arabic Language Institute at the University of Damascus is known for immersion instruction in Arabic, allowing more rapid, natural and comprehensive language acquisition. The Arabic Language Institute’s faculty is committed to classical Arabic instruction, offering an advantage to either Egypt or Jordan where much instruction is conducted in the local dialect.

Technical institutes[edit]

The duration of the study is two years, when they graduate students receive a diploma from the institute itself according to the jurisdiction of their choice.

  • Technical Institute of Business Administration and Marketing: with the following disciplines: Business AdministrationMarketingPublic Relations.
  • Technical Institute of Finance and Banking Sciences: (formerly known as the "Commercial Institute", offers associate degrees in the following disciplines: Accountingfinancial markets – banking studies, The best students are offered the opportunity to continue their education at the Faculty of Economics.)
  • Technical Institute of Medicine
  • Technical Institute of Dentistry
  • Technical Institute of Engineering
  • Technical Institute of Mechanical Engineering and electricity
  • Technical Institute of Computer Science
  • Technical Institute of Agricultural studies

On 13 November 2012, the President Bashar al-Assad issued a decree on establishing a branch for Damascus University in Quneitra, a city in the Syrian Heights.[8]

Open Learning[edit]

The Open Learning Center offers degrees in three majors:

  • Legal studies
  • Computer and informatics
  • Minor and intermediate projects

Library[edit]

The University of Damascus Library began in 1903 (with the establishment of the Medical Bureau).[9] As of 2011 it contains some 169,000 volumes and 3,830 current periodicals.[10]

University hospitals[edit]

The university runs eight hospitals in the city of Damascus:

[edit]

The emblem of Damascus University reflects the importance of science and endless desire of human for knowledge, as well as the privacy of Damascus in development of science and scientists.

The color of raspberry stands for the damascene raspberry which is a fruit found only in Damascus, expressing the uniqueness of the university just like the fruit. The color is adopted for the signature of the president of Damascus University, a property not shared with any president of any university in the world.[citation needed]

The lamb is the symbol of knowledge in different cultures, it radiates the light of knowledge and science, crowned with a verse from the Quran: "say oh my Lord, provide me with knowledge", which is the motto of Damascus University and its non-stop seeking.[11]

Notable alumni[edit]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "President of Damascus University". Damasuniv.edu.sy. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  2. ^ "جامعة دمشق". Mohe.gov.sy. 2012-01-02. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  3. ^ [1] Archived 14 July 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Ř´Řšř§Řą اŮ"Řźř§Ů…Řšřš". Damascusuniversity.edu.sy. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  5. ^ Spender, Tom. "A new 'Mecca of Arabic studies'?". The Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 31 March 2007. 
  6. ^ "Historical Background". Damasuniv.edu.sy. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  7. ^ "Degrees Structure of Studies". Damasuniv.edu.sy. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  8. ^ Nassr, M.; Ghossoun (13 November 2012). "President Bashar al-Assad decrees on establishing branch for Damascus University in Quneitra". Syrian Arab News Agency. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  9. ^ Basima Bezirgan (1994), "Near East since 1920", Encyclopedia of Library History, New York: Garland Pub., ISBN 0824057872, 0824057872 
  10. ^ World Guide to Libraries (25th ed.), De Gruyter Saur, 2011 
  11. ^ "The logo of Damascus University". Damasuniv.edu.sy. Retrieved 2015-08-25. 
  12. ^ [2][dead link]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 33°30′41″N 36°17′29″E / 33.51139°N 36.29139°E / 33.51139; 36.29139