The Association of Indian Universities is a 95-years old organisation started in 1925. The prime
aim of constituting AIU is to control and coordinate higher education in India. All types of
universities are members of AIU. Universities of conventional types, Open Universities, Deemed
to be Universities, State Universities, Private Universities and Institutes of national importance
are in this list. Besides Indian universities, AIU has thirteen 13 associate member universities
from countries such as the UK, Thailand, UAE, Nepal, Mauritius, Malaysia, Kazakhstan, Bhutan
AIU was started as per the recommendations of Saddler Commission – 1917. The main
suggestion of the commission was to organise a body to smoothen the association between all the
universities in India. Hence, in 1924, the viceroy of India called the meeting of vice chancellors
of all the universities in India, and the final shape of the board originated in it. In the following
year, IUB (the Indian University Board) came into being. Hence, universities started to share
information and cooperate in the fields of education, culture, sports and many other areas where
cooperation was possible. The board received legal status in 1967. The present name of the board
– The association of Indian University (AIU) was given in 1973.
This age-old institution was organised to coordinate and maintain communications when UGC
was not in existence. Till the establishment of UGC in 1955, AIU was the highest authority to
provide training and regulate everything on higher studies in the country.
The role of AIU was redesigned with the advance of UGC as responsible for degree equivalence
and act as a final authority in deciding the validity of all degrees, including one sitting degree
and qualifications. The most important activity of AIU is Equivalence now. Every 2 years, it
generates two thousand pages on matters regarding the equivalency of degrees in one year and certificates.
In addition to this, the Association of Indian Universities is vested with the duty of
internationalization of higher studies in our country. Hence, it is a member of various
international organisations and delegations. Recently the AIU was invited by the government of
Taiwan to work in the electronics fields jointly. The AIU also has the duty of providing training
to top-level personals in the universities, and they include registrars, directors and deans.
However, recently University Grants Commission has announced that they would do it.
The AIU checks the equivalence of degrees by taking policy framework from the statutory
bodies. The association is not a policy-making body. It only interprets already framed policies.
Hence, its duties can be compared to a court of law. All universities do not need to be a member
of AIU because it is a statutory body. At the same time, all the universities should be willing to
work along with it. Though membership is not compulsory all the universities in India are with
AIU conducts ongoing educational researches. All the newsletters and policy frameworks
include the results of these researches. AIU has research division and it also calls experts from
various fields to be part of the research. The researches help them to approach all the concerning
The Association of Indian Universities provides affiliation to Indian universities constituted by
the state and central governments through various acts. It is the general body that discusses and
amicably solves problems in and between universities. The association implements various
programs and insights that result from the educational researches. It facilitates a platform for vice
chancellors from all universities to come together and discuss the various problems they face in
The prime objective of the Association of Indian Universities is to be an inter-university
organization. It is the statutory body facilitating coordination, communication and collaboration
between and among universities in India.
AIU also acts as a mediator between the government of India and various universities. It also
acts as a representative of Indian universities outside of India.
The Association of Indian Universities involves in matters such as a library, medium of
instruction, exams, text books, research etc. It has the power to put hands on everything that is
connected to the propagation of knowledge through universities.
The Association of Indian Universities in its power helps universities to exchange their facilities
and infrastructure, including staff, and help universities to undertake joint ventures like projects,
publications etc. It also helps universities to maintain their autonomous aspect at all levels.
Hence, they can run various courses, including one sitting degree programs.
It is the AIU that works towards the recognition of courses that various universities offer for
students. All the courses should be equivalent so that the students can take up higher studies
The AIU organizes and maintains sports entities among universities to promote good
relationships among them
The Association of Indian Universities takes up programs such as adult education, cultural
activities, youth promotion activities etc.
The Association of Indian Universities play the role of service agency, hence universities receive
everything that is prescribed and required.
All type of universities, including traditional universities, open universities, state universities,
central universities, private universities, agricultural universities, institutions of national
importance, deemed universities etc. accept the dominance of the Association of Indian
Universities. The association is an important organization in India dedicated to the improvement
and development facilities for higher studies in universities.
The AIU has great importance in shaping higher education in India. Students coming from
universities outside of India require equivalency certificates to pursue their studies in India. It is
mandatory to prove that the board from which they studied abroad is equivalent to courses
offered in India. Such students have to approach AIU for equivalency certificates. The AIU
provides it after verifying through proper sources. The candidates applying for jobs in India also
require producing equivalency certificate. Such candidates have to approach AIU for the same.
AIU is a well-organised body directly linked to all the universities in India as all universities
agree with the dominance of it.