The International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) is the manifestation of one of the major aspirations of Muslim scholars in Malaysia to have an Islamic university in Malaysia to lead the Muslim ummah in all branches of knowledge. The plan to establish IIUM was revealed by Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, the Fourth Prime Minister of Malaysia on 12 January 1982 after deliberating with the Education Minister, senior government officers and senior academics from local universities. The university was officially established on 20 May 1983 by the Government of Malaysia. The philosophy of IIUM was inspired by the outcomes of the 1977 First World Conference on Muslim Education in Makkah.

IIUM was founded under the Companies Act of 1965 that enabled it to use English and Arabic as the medium of instruction and enhance its global orientation. IIUM integrates Islamic values and world-view into its humanities, scientific and technical curricula, befitting its university slogan “The Garden of Virtue and Knowledge”. This is reflected in IIUM educational philosophy and its logo. IIUM aspires to restore the roles of Muslims in education and knowledge creation and acquisition and to contribute to the improvement of quality of life for all mankind.

Befitting the Premier International Islamic Research University (PREMIER) status awarded by ISESCO on 17 December 2014, it provides an extensive, comprehensive learning environment conducive for conducting advanced research in various disciplines.It is the quality of the learning, comparative knowledge and research environments that attracted the high concentration of talent by which IIUM is known for. IIUM off ers various postgraduate, professional and leadership training programmes especially in its niche areas; namely Islamic Services and Islamic Products. In 2015, the University has been recognised as the pioneer in the discipline of Islamic Banking and Finance globally and and is now considered as the global referral point for the discipline.

To ensure delivery of quality tertiary education, IIUM employs accomplished scholars, and committed professionals. As of October 2016, there are 2000 administrative and about 1980 academic staff. More than 80% of the total academic staff are with doctoral qualifications. Many have had prior experience before joining the University. The University has 14 faculties, three institutes and one Centre for Strategic Continuing Education and Training.

In addition to academic excellence, IIUM ensures that the students are trained to be responsible, imbued with good ethics, high moral values and professionalism, lifelong learning, managerial and entrepreneurial skills as well as leadership skills. IIUM gives great emphasis on good character or Budi as part of the education process of its students, ensuring they have good moral values. This is in line with the Islamic teachings which emphasize on developing good moral character.

IIUM is ranked in the top ten of the world’s best varsity debate teams. IIUM English varsity debaters have received many international accolades including becoming champions at the 2016 Asian British Parliamentary (ABP) Debating Championship in Jakarta and the Cambridge Intervarsity Debating Competition 2016. IIUM individual debaters have received.The Asian Best Debater Award and Best Debater Award in Cambridge. The Malay Language Debating Team has also done well. It won the Environmental Debate Competition three years in a row. The IIUM Arabic debaters and orators team have received many recognitions in debate, public speaking, quranic memorization, recitation and tajwid at local and international competitions.

IIUM has several campuses spread across several states of Malaysia; each providing different fields of study. The Gombak campus in Kuala Lumpur houses the university’s administration as well as the Kulliyyahs (Faculties) of Laws, Economics and Management Sciences, lslamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences, Architecture and Environmental Design, Information and Communication Technology, Engineering, Education and Languages and Management. The campus off ers a complete range of facilities including on-campus housing, a mosque, two state-of-the-art sports complexes with olympic-size swimming pools, a fully equipped library with more than two (2) million printed and digital materials supported by online databases, a medical clinic, convenience stores, a post office, and three Malaysian commercial banks.

The other campuses are located in Kuantan, Kuala Lumpur, Petaling Jaya Gambang and Pagoh. The Kuantan Campus is nestled within a valley surrounded by lush greenery. It houses the Science, Medical, Pharmacy, Allied Health Sciences, Nursing and Dentistry faculties. Kuantan has another site, Jalan Hospital campus housing part of the Kulliyyah of Medicine. The Kuala Lumpur Campus at Persiaran Duta now houses the Centre for Strategic Continuing Education and Training (CRESCENT) and the International Institute of Islamic Civilisation and Malay World (ISTAC). The Centre for Foundation Studies is located in Petaling Jaya, south of Kuala Lumpur and Gambang, in the state of Pahang.

The population of IIUM students is 30,649 coming from 117 countries. To date IIUM has 85,854 alumni of which 73,677 are Malaysians and 12,177 International.

Historical Events

Date Event
JAN. 12, 1982 The decision to establish an International Islamic University in Malaysia was made known by the Honorable Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dato' Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad in Kuala Lumpur.
FEB. 12, 1982 The concept paper for the establishment of the International Islamic University Malaysia was approved by the Prime Minister and the Malaysian Cabinet under the supervision of the Minister of Education, Dato' Dr. Sulaiman Daud. A Steering Committee was set up to coordinate the establishment of International Islamic University Malaysia.
1982 Professor Dr. Ariffin Suhaimi of the University of Pertanian was appointed by the Minister of Education to be the coordinator of the project.
AUG. 1982 The 13th O.I.C Islamic Foreign Ministers' meeting held in Niamey, Niger endorsed Malaysia's proposal for the establishment of the International Islamic University in Malaysia.
MAY 1983 Several countries from the Organizations of Islamic Conference (O.I.C) agreed to co-sponsor the establishment of International Islamic University Malaysia.
MAY 10, 1983 The International Islamic University Malaysia was officially established.
MAY 20, 1983 International Islamic University Malaysia obtained its establishment Order from H.M. The King of Malaysia
MAY 27, 1983 International Islamic University Malaysia Board of Governors held its first meeting.
JUL. 1, 1983 HRH The Sultan of Pahang was appointed as the first Constitutional Head of the University.
JUL. 15, 1983 First intake of 153 students.
SEP. 3, 1983 The Right Honourable Tun Hussien Onn was appointed as the first President of the University.
SEP. 16, 1983 University Senate was established
DEC. 1, 1983 Prof. Dr. Abdul Rauf from Egypt was appointed as the first Rector of the University.

The logo captures the philosophy of combining reason and revelation in seeking, internalising and disseminating knowledge in the name of Allah (SWT), the Creator, Cherisher and Sustainer of the universe.

In the centre of the logo is the Qurʼān, the Revelation of Allah (SWT), the knowledge which is absolute and above all human knowledge. The glorious Qurʼān guides and inspires the pursuit of knowledge in the University. 

The symbol of the Qurʼān is surrounded by design of a kaʼbah, also known as the sacred house in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, portraying the principle of tawhīd, the unity of God, of knowledge and of mankind, and the concept of ‘ibādah, obedience and submission. 

The eight domes pointing in eight directions represent the different branches of human knowledge and disciplines and are grounded in the common foundation of tawhīd. 

Finally, the eight outer domes signify the various Islamic development efforts of
man (social life, culture and civilization, etc.) based on the knowledge and disciplines grounded in tawhīd. 

The logo is coloured in gold representing the common principles of tawhīd, ‘ibādah, ‘aqīdah (belief), sharīʿah (Islamic legal system) and akhlāq (ethics). Additionally, the use of gold symbolises excellence and overall prosperity.


Let‘s lead the way
Enlighten the future
Share the wisdom
Through the spirit of Islam
Revelation and Reason
We shall excel, we shall prevail
Merging faith and knowledge
We’re the khalifah
We’ll fulfill the Amanah
We make the world a better place
Expand the culture of Iqra’
Is to realise, the meaning of...
Rahmatan li’l-Alamin
We make the world a better place
Expand the culture of Iqra’
Is to realise, the meaning of...
(Mercy to all the worlds)
For all mankind