Khazar University

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Khazar University
Xəzər Universitəsi
Motto “Always leading the way”
Type Private
Chairman Professor Hamlet Isakhanli
President Dr. Hassan Niknafs
Academic staff
Students 2500
Location Baku, Azerbaijan
Language English
Khazar University seal.png

Khazar University (Azerbaijani: Xəzər Universiteti), which directly translates as Caspian University is a private university located in Baku, Azerbaijan.[1]


Khazar University owns three campuses in the city of Baku.

  • Neftchilar Campus – located near the Neftchilar metro station. Address: 41 Mahsati St, AZ 1096
  • Downtown Campus – located in downtown Baku near the Nizami metro station. Address: 122 Bashir Seferoghlu St., AZ 1009
  • Binagadi Campus – New education complex for “Dunya” School, also Khazar University School of Education`s Internship Center, Sports Center, Dormitory and Technopark

Background information[edit]

Founder of Khazar University, Hamlet Isakhanli

Founded in 1991 by Prof. Hamlet Isakhanli ([1]), the University became one of the first private universities in Eastern Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia and the first in Azerbaijan to introduce Western-style, research-oriented higher education. Isakhanli formed Khazar in the interest of reforming the previous, sometimes corrupt system of higher education under Soviet rule.[2][3][4] For more information on education system in Azerbaijan, read:

1. Hamlet Isakhanli. In Search of Khazar. Khazar University Press, Baku, 2006.[5]

2. Hamlet Isakhanli. Education System in Transition Economy: A View from Azerbaijan. Khazar University Press, Baku, 2007.[6]

Academic information[edit]

In Azerbaijan, Khazar University is recognized for providing innovative Western-style education on all levels: undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral.[7] It also runs a lab school (Dunya School) with programs on kindergarten, elementary and secondary school levels.

Khazar University has a faculty of about 250 lecturers, many of whom were educated and/or trained in Europe or the United States. Khazar University is the pioneer in Azerbaijan of a flexible student-centered credit accumulation system. Khazar’s curricula aim to meet the standards of top universities in advanced industrialized democracies. The primary language of instruction at Khazar is English. These factors aim to increase the academic and professional opportunities for the students and train them to work in a globalizing international environment.

There are four schools (colleges) operating within Khazar University:
1 School of Engineering and Applied Science
2 School of Economics and Management
3 School of Humanities and Social Science
4 School of Education

The schools offer undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degree programs in the following broad fields of study:

School of Engineering and Applied Science[edit]

Majors available within the school:
1 Civil Engineering (BS)
2 Computer Engineering (BS, MS)
3 Computer Science (BS, MS, PhD)
4 Electronics and Telecommunications (BS, MS)
5 Petroleum and Gas Engineering (BS, MS)
6 Chemical Engineering (BS)
7 Bio-medical Engineering (BS, MS)
8 Mechanical Engineering (BS)
9 Design (BS)
10 Functional analysis (PhD)
11 Systematic analysis, management and information processing (PhD)
12 Differential equations (PhD)

School of Economics and Management[edit]

Majors available within the school:
1 Business Administration (BBA, MBA)
2 Economics (BS, MS, PhD in General Economics or World Economics)
3 Marketing (BBA, MBA)
4 Finance (BBA, MBA, PhD)
5 Accounting and Audit (BBA, MBA)
6 Management (BBA, MBA, PhD)
7 International Economics (MBA)
8 Project Management (MBA)
9 Domestic fiscal policy and public finance (PhD)

School of Humanities and Social Sciences[edit]

Majors available within the school:
1 English Language and Literature (BA)
2 Area Studies (BA, MA)
3 International Relations (BA, MA, PhD)
4 Political Science (BA, MA, PhD)
5 Journalism (MA)
6 International Journalism (MA)
7 Translation Studies(BA, MA)
8 Psychology (BA, MS)
9 English Language (MA)
10 Azerbaijani Literature (PhD)
11 History of Philosophy (PhD)
12 History of Azerbaijan (PhD)
13 World History (PhD)
14 Germanic languages (English)(PhD)

School of Education[edit]

Majors available within the school:
1 Elementary Education (BS)
2 Mathematics and Computer Education (BS)
3 Chemistry Education (BS)
4 Biology Education (BS)
5 History Education (BA)
6 Geography Education (BA)
7 Physics Education (BA)
8 Azerbaijani Language and Literature (BA)
9 Azerbaijani Language and Literature Education (BA)
10 Azerbaijani Language(MA)
11 Azerbaijani Literature (MA, PhD)
12 English Language Education (BA)
13 Theory and History of Education (MA, PhD)
14 Educational Administration (MA, PhD)

Academic Departments[edit]

1 Azerbaijani Language and Literature
2 Biological Sciences
3 Chemistry
4 Civil Engineering
5 Computer Science
6 Economics and Management
7 Education
8 Electronics and Telecommunications
9 English Language and Literature
10 Geography and Environment
11 History and Archaeology
12 Journalism
13 Law
14 Languages and Cultures
15 Mathematics
16 Music and Fine Arts
17 Petroleum Engineering
18 Philosophy and Sociology
19 Politics and International Relation s
20 Psychology

Dunya School[edit]

Dunya school students

The Dunya School was founded in September 1998 under the auspices of Khazar University and consists of a preschool, primary and secondary school levels. In 2009 it was accredited by International Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO) and school students graduate with the globally recognized International Baccalaureate diploma.

The School provides a well-rounded program of instruction using the best educational practices appropriate to the intellectual, social and cultural needs of the students through the programs that help each child to explore his/her creativeness and talents. The classes are taught in Azerbaijani, English or Russian, choosing one as a main language of instruction and learning others as well.

The School states that it strives to help all children to feel valued and to have respect for other people and the world in which they live, and to develop moral, social and academic skills to make valuable input to their society.

Institutes and centers[edit]

Alongside the academic departments at Khazar University, there are many acting institutes and centers carrying out international and regional programs, performing research, and working on issues related to the country and greater region in academic, economic, political and other fields.

1 Division of Graduate Studies and Research
2 Khazar University Library Information Center
3 Assembly of Science and Art
4 Khazar Training Center
5 Caucasus Research Resource Center
6 Development Center
7 Center for International Students and Scholars
8 Migration Competence Center
9 Area Studies Centers
10 Institute of Education Policy
11 Career Development Center
12 Legal Education Center
13 Khazar Translation Studies Center
14 Eurasia Extractive Industries Knowledge Hub
15 E-Learning Center
16 Quality Assurance Center
17 School of Project Management
18 Khazar Internet Institute
19 E-Media
20 Khazar University Innovation Center
21 Khazar University Technopark
22 Psychological Counseling and Psychotherapy Center

Division of Graduate Studies and Research[edit]

The division coordinates all of the master’s and doctorate students. It is one-stop center where students can apply for graduate-level classes, get assigned to academic advisors and/or dissertation supervisors, obtain approval for research topics, discuss publication ideas, and more. The Division guides students through the process of graduate studies, all the way from applying for acceptance into graduate programs to receiving their diplomas. It also maintains relationships with graduate students and presents them with opportunities to participate in conferences, symposiums and other events as they arise.

Khazar University Library Information Center[edit]

Khazar University holds the largest library collection among private universities in Azerbaijan and also the largest collection in the English language – making up approximately 75% of all the library materials.

Neftchilar Campus Library and Information Center

The LIC has an active branch on each of Khazar’s campuses. The main branch comprises the entire 5th and 6th floors of the new academic building on the Neftchilar campus (11 Mehseti Street). This library maintains a collection of over 200,000 volumes, including international books and textbooks from all fields of study.

The Library and Information Center (LIC) also collects printed and electronic materials in modern European and Eastern languages in the fields of Business Studies, Economics and Management, Mathematics and Sciences, Engineering and Applied Sciences, Education, Social Sciences, Political Science and International Relations, Legal Studies, Language Studies, etc. Textbooks and monographs published all over the world, as well as publications of Khazar University Press, are widely represented in the library.

The LIC is involved in a wide range of Open Access-related activities such as: • encouraging the university academic community to publish their papers in accordance with open access principles • supporting online access to the university’s scholarly journals in order to maintain standards of quality assurance and good scientific practice • providing open access to Khazar University Institutional Repository.

To make the notion of Open Access an integral part of the university’s community, the Center disseminates information, organizes Open Access Weeks and presentations, and translates key documents into the Azerbaijani language. Administrated by Library and Information Center, the Khazar University Institutional Repository showcases the research outputs of University staff.

Assembly of Science and Art[edit]

Assembly of Science and Art

This collaborative, open group was initiated in 2006 by the university founder, Professor Hamlet Isakhanli. The Assembly gathers honorable experts and specialists of science and art for academic seminars on diverse areas of humanities, social sciences, history of science and culture, new technologies, etc. Specialists and experts are invited to the Assembly not only from Azerbaijan, but also from abroad. The collections of the speeches and discussions held at the Assembly of Science and Art are published by Khazar University Press.

Khazar Training Center[edit]

Khazar Training Center helps the community fulfill their lifelong learning needs by providing non-degree courses and training upon request for various age groups. It provides preparatory courses that have been designed to meet the requirements of the State Students’ Admission Commission and give trainees a solid foundation in selected subjects. The courses demand regular attendance and home assignments, and the classes are delivered throughout the academic year. The Training Center also offers courses in foreign languages and computer science for the wider public. It provides services on preparation for TOEFL, IELTS, GMAT, GRI, and SAT exams, etc.

Caucasus Research Resource Center (CRRC)[edit]

The CRRC has the goal of strengthening social science research and public policy analysis in Azerbaijan. Since it opened in 2003, CRRC has become a nexus of activity for the social science community by providing professional training for researchers and open access to fundamental literature, data and statistics. The center makes it easier for analysts to pursue original work, to base their research on actual transition data, and to participate in the growing domestic policy research community.

The center runs the Caucasus Barometer annual survey to obtain comparable data on household composition, social and political attitudes, and practices in the country. The Center is a program of the Eurasia Foundation funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York City.

Development Center[edit]

The Center was established to support continuous development of the university. The center maintains active and productive relationships with board members, donors, alumni and administration. The Development Center designs, implements and manages all fundraising activities including annual giving, endowment and capital campaigns and special projects. The staff of the center develops strategies and manages activities for attracting donors and sponsors. The Center is also responsible for developing grant proposals for foundations and corporations.

Center for International Students and Scholars[edit]

International students at Khazar

The mission of CISS is to coordinate, encourage and contribute the internationalization of the Khazar University. CISS provides full-time support services for the internationals visiting the University for studying, Research, teaching or other purposes.

Migration Competence Center[edit]


The Migration Competence Center is a part of the Regional Research Network which was established within the framework of the EU’s Tempus project and UNIMIG project, aims to foster and conduct academic research, train academicians, researchers, students, and practitioners; disseminate research results conducted under its auspices; and raise public awareness through seminars, conferences, publications, the internet, and the mass media. The center provides a migration-related database on national, regional and international levels. It is also committed to actively collaborating with other academic institutions, government and non-government organizations, and the local community.

Area Studies Centers[edit]

Korean Center

Several centers – EU Studies, Iranian Studies, Korean Studies, and Chinese Studies are housed on Neftchilar campus and support advanced studies and research in the chosen area. Currently, the University is in the process of establishing the Islamic World Studies Center.

The EU Study Center was established within a framework of EU’s TEMPUS project. It is a workplace for students and academics to carry out research in the field of EU studies. The partnership with leading European Universities and the continuous exchange of new ideas with practitioners and scholars allow the Center to strengthen its research goals and produce a high-level combination of conceptual and practical expertise on all major EU policies.

The Iranian Studies Center operates as a focal point for the students and researchers who are willing to strengthen their knowledge about Iran and the Persian world. It offers language classes as well as short sessions on cultural and historical issues. The Korean Center was founded in 2012 with the support of the Embassy of the Republic of Korea to Azerbaijan and is run by native Korean speakers. It offers Korean language classes for students and hosts seminars, lectures and workshops on the history, politics, economics and culture of Korea.

Opening ceremony of Khazar University Confucius Institute

Likewise, the Confucius Institute branch was opened in 2013 with the support of the Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to Azerbaijan. It is a hub for Chinese language, culture, history and philosophy studies, and it offers Chinese classes to Khazar University students, staff, and the general public.

Institute of Education Policy[edit]

The Institute’s goal is to increase the quality of education, and to conduct its objective evaluation through sharing worldwide experience in the field of education. The Institute examines problems and trends of modern education as well as history and philosophy of education. It investigates methods for developing the education system and policy in Azerbaijan according to the Bologna Process, and it offers methodological support to other interested parties to adapt to this process. The Institute regularly organizes conferences, seminars, and workshops related to various issues of education, and it is also engaged in policy analysis and preparation of recommendations for stakeholders.

Career Development Center[edit]

Career Development Center holds career fair in Khazar courtyard

This center was opened with the support of the Eurasia Fund (USA). Its main aim is to assist upper-class students and graduates in successfully establishing their careers. The center maintains working relationships with international and local organizations and companies, keeping students informed about work vacancies. It coordinates direct relationships among students seeking jobs and potential employers. The center also coordinates discussions, seminars, and training sessions for students to help them improve their employability and skills.

Legal Education Center[edit]

Legal Education Center

The Center was established with the support of Azerbaijan Lawyers Confederation and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) within the “Azerbaijan Rights Consortium” project in January 2013.

The center conducts regular, high-quality curriculum-based trainings for young lawyers to strengthen their theoretical and practical skills. It also develops legal publications covering a broad range of legal areas. To ensure reputability and the quality of its services, the center attracts outstanding legal professionals and practitioners to teach the courses. It is also envisioned that young lawyers and law students will be accompanying professional lawyers during strategic litigations, court hearings, rendering legal advice and consultations.

Khazar Translation Studies Center[edit]

The Center’s objective is to create unique research opportunities, giving rise to collaboration between scholars who have worked in distinct fields of research. It conducts translations of academic papers, fiction, and philosophical and technical works into and from the Azerbaijani language. By attracting experienced professionals as well as young specialists to its activities, the Center holds conferences and symposiums on various issues concerning translation and organizes discussion sessions on Lexicology, Literary Translation, Translation of Poetry, Theories and Techniques of Translation, etc. One of the most challenging ongoing projects of the Center is the development and publishing of the Khazar English-Azerbaijani Comprehensive Dictionary in 6 volumes.

The Center closely cooperates with other academic departments and research centers of the University, who add their expertise on commercial and legal translations.

Eurasia Extractive Industries Knowledge Hub[edit]

The Eurasia Extractive Industries Knowledge Hub was established in September 2010, in collaboration between Revenue Watch Institute, New York, and Khazar University.

The Hub aims to assist sub-national level government officials in Central Asia/Caucasus to exert their influence on the governance of the extractive sector, seeking to mainstream existing knowledge and new concepts and innovative approaches. By being closer to the ground, the Hub is able to offer a concerted, regionally relevant approach to facilitate analysis, auditing, and prudent decision making at national and sub-national levels for all stakeholders.

E-Learning Center[edit]

E-Learning Room at Khazar University

The E-Learning Center reflects the University's vision of a learning environment where information technology and electronic communication facilitate teaching and learning process. The center trains instructors in effective use of ICT in education. It also provides workshops for faculty staff on how to plan, design, develop, and update online courses.

The Center uses the Moodle learning management system to deliver e-learning courses and track student progress. The classes are held in the e-learning room, which was established with the support of Azercell Telecom Company.

Quality Assurance Center[edit]

The Center is committed to the university’s mission to enhance learning through ongoing improvement of teaching. It has the sound internal quality assurance framework in place to provide:

• Support for the development of university policy and procedures regarding the quality of teaching and learning • Support and advice on learning and teaching issues • Assistance and facilitation of the best practice for the course design • Annual monitoring and periodic review of the degree programs • Involvement of students in the university quality process • Analysis of feedback from employers and graduates

Furthermore, the Center has 15 years of successful experience in participation in a number of the EU’s Tempus projects dedicated to quality assurance. The most recent one, Documentation for Quality Assurance of Study Programs, started in 2011 and aims to define and implement the online documentation system for the quality assurance of study programs consistent with the European Standards and Guidelines for internal quality assurance.

School of Project Management[edit]

The School of Project Management is financially supported by BP and the BP-operated oil and gas consortium, while is implemented by Khazar University and ESI International to develop local project management expertise and capability within Azerbaijan. The School is open to participants from leading private, public and international organizations as well as local businesses.

The School of Project Management offers top to middle managers of various organizations a training curriculum composed of seven courses delivered by ESI's qualified instructors. The School is the only place in Azerbaijan where professionals can take PMP® Exam.

Khazar Internet Institute[edit]

The Institute’s goal is to promote the notion of digital culture among university staff and students. It carries out various web projects for the university and organizes and participates in different contests and competitions; for example, it supported the Android Era 1 and 2 competitions organized by Google Technology Users Groups by providing space. The Institute plans to open a laboratory for writing, testing and deployment of mobile applications.


Media Center

Since 2009, Khazar University has been broadcasting from the Voice of Khazar internet radio and TV. Its 24-hour, world-wide broadcasts present programs on news, national and classical music, discussions and interviews, poetry, etc. This is Azerbaijan’s first university radio station. DJs are students of Khazar University.

The Media Center deals with audio, video and photo materials of Khazar University. Its goal is to establish an archive of photo and video materials.

The main activities of the center are: - shooting photo and video about Khazar University and its events - editing videos and producing various PR products (clips, films, etc.)

Khazar University Innovation Center[edit]

The main purpose of the Innovation Center is to provide an environment for interactions between technology-based businesses and the university's research community for collaborative research and easy access to the university’s library, labs, equipment, services, and other resources. The Center enriches the academic mission by acting as a “living laboratory” where ideas generated in classrooms and labs are tested in a real‐world environment. It helps to attract and retain the best faculty and students.

The Innovation Center has a Business Incubator, which transforms knowledge and new ideas of technology-based businesses into useful products and services to enrich human lives and spur economic development. The Incubator develops promising research and technology projects and transforms them into viable startups. It also assists young companies by providing a variety of services including training, business advice, financial and technology support, physical space and networking.

Khazar University Technopark[edit]

The Technopark, founded in 2013, is a brand-new establishment of the university that aims to increase university-industry relations and to provide a physical space where cutting edge technological developments can overlap with university research and training. The Technopark will be housed in the new Binagadi campus. It is run by the Khazar University Innovation Center, which provides business incubation and support for startups. The main focus areas include but are not limited to ICT, Film and Animation, Energy, Biotech, Electronics, Civil Engineering, Multimedia, Robotics and other industries.

Psychological Counseling and Psychotherapy Center[edit]

The Center offers a variety of services to the Khazar community, from individual/group counseling to campus-wide educational programs that contribute not only to the growth and health of individual students, but also to academic programs in related fields, campus life, and the educational/cultural life of the university.

Student support[edit]

Khazar students are well cared for through a number of university services, offices and institutions created for them.

Career fair at Khazar
  • Career Center: This center conducts individual and group career consulting and assessment sessions to assist students in preparing job applications, resume/CVs and cover letters, evaluating career opportunities and making strategic decisions. It also helps students find employment opportunities by organizing company tours and on-campus presentations, internships, summer jobs, volunteer services, and job fairs.
Health Center
  • Student Union: The Student Union is a link between academic and student communities of the university. It is an elected student body governed by students for students in accordance with its own policy. The Student Senate is composed of the President, Vice-President and leaders of 10 Committees: Education; Culture; Sports; Law; Media; Public Relations; International Relations; Foreign Students; Grant Research; and Debate. These committees deal with students’ needs, gather opinions, and materialize their creative ideas.
  • Health Care Center: an on-campus clinic provides free basic medical services for all students, academic faculty and staff, including
    • primary ambulatory medical care
    • immunizations
    • first aid
  • Housing: the university supports students and staff in finding accommodation for reasonable prices before their arrival in Baku. Another option for accommodation is to live with host families, which are selected by the university and monitored by the staff. Currently, the dormitory of Khazar University is under construction. When finished, it will house local and international students.
    Khazar University's Neftchilar campus canteen
  • Canteen: facilities are located on all campuses of the university. They serve a variety of national and international dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and are open from Monday through Saturday. In addition to nutritious meals, the dining facilities prepare food for special events and holiday celebrations.
E-learning seminar at Khazar
  • Library: In the library, students have access to wireless high-speed Internet, photocopiers, printers, and group and individual study areas. Extra copies of cutting-edge textbooks are available for loan, and students can check the availability of books by accessing the online catalogue at
  • IT facilities: The university is committed to providing excellent IT facilities including 10 computer labs, which are available for faculty, staff and students of the university during working hours. The student-to-computer ratio is about 3 to 1, which is one of the highest among higher education institutions in Azerbaijan and in the broader region. In addition, across all campuses, Khazar University provides free high speed internet access and Wi-Fi service.
Dance ensemble in concert
  • Scholarships: Different types of scholarships are offered at Khazar University.
    • Merit-based scholarships for students with highest entrance scores, siblings of students, and children of Khazar employees
    • Talent scholarships
    • Industry-based scholarships in related fields of study
    • Research and teaching assistantships for PhD students
Choir and vocalists performing in concert
  • Extracurricular Activities: while studying at Khazar, students may participate in musical, dance, theater groups and other activities in order to supplement their academic endeavors. Students can also choose carpet-making, jewelry art and other applied arts as electives within culture classes.
    International students at Apple Festival
  • Athletics: students also participate in many different competitive sports and clubs at the university such as football, volleyball, basketball,[8] chess, extreme sports and different kinds of fighting forms including karate, judo, and kung fu.

International relations and projects[edit]


International cooperation is a prerequisite for ensuring the sustainability and quality of teaching and research at a university. Khazar University aims to be an attractive place to study both for full-time and exchange international students. Many visiting professors are involved in the study process and the faculty is active in involving more and more visiting fellows in the university.

The University is engaged in:

  • Partnerships with over 100 universities and organizations all over the world.
  • International and local projects
  • International programs – TEMPUS, Erasmus Mundus, World Bank, JFDP, Fulbright, IREX, DAAD, UNESCO, BP Explore, Schlumberger, British Council, Governments and Foundations in Europe, Asia and America, etc.

Consortiums of universities:

  • Eurasia University Union
  • Black Sea University association
  • Caspian University Association
  • Alliance of Universities for Democracy
  • International Information and Security Research Consortium
  • and Caucasus International Consortium for Academic Cooperation

Student body[edit]

Khazar students demonstrate Azerbaijani dress and culture

Currently, about 2500 students are enrolled in Khazar University. Around 10% of the total enrollment consists of international students, including citizens of Turkey, Iran, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Georgia, Iraq, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Libya, USA, UK, Canada, Denmark, Norway, South Korea, Russia, the Central Asian republics and many other countries studying in different schools of the University.

Khazar University Museums and Cultural Centers[edit]

National Cultural Center

Center of National Costumes[edit]

This center maintains a collection of national dress from Azerbaijan, the Caucasus and other nations. Students make the majority of these costumes themselves as part of a student “sewing circle.” Students enrolled in the “sewing circle” may earn credit for their Azerbaijani Culture class. The center is run by specialists of national costume design. The costumes are also used by the Khazar University dance and theater ensembles in their performances.

Carpet Museum[edit]

Azerbaijan is one of the oldest centers of carpet-making. Since medieval times, there have been four major geographic-regional centers of carpet-making in Azerbaijan: Guba-Shirvan, Garabagh, Tabriz, and Ganja-Gazakh. Each of these schools is distinguished by its style and patterns as well as manufacturing technique. Khazar University’s carpet museum serves both as a museum and as a workshop. Here professional carpet-makers teach students fine arts courses.

Jewelry Center[edit]

Jewelry center

The Khazar University jewelry center mainly works with silver, another traditional Azerbaijani art. This is both a museum and a workshop. Students enrolled in the Jewelry Art elective course learn practical jeweler skills.

String quartet performance Cultural Center

National Cultural Center[edit]

In 2013, a new National Cultural Center was established on the university's Neftchilar campus to showcase Azerbaijani fine arts and as a venue for cultural events. The center holds carpet-making looms, musical instruments, samples of national dress and jewelry, batik works and carpet designs created by faculty members of the Department of Music and Fine Arts, paintings, framed poetry, and book collections.

Choir performance in National Cultural Center

Doll Museum[edit]

The doll museum is located in Dunya School. It is a collection of national Azerbaijani dolls, as well as dolls from around the world, provided by Tahira Isgandarova, a children’s writer and journalist.

Notable alumni[edit]


The university is a member of the Caucasus University Association.[9]


External links[edit]