Since its establishment, King Abdulaziz University (KAU) has been working to establish good graduate programs. This goal coincides with its foundational regulations which states in its first article, “KAU should provide all the necessary measures for undergraduate and graduate studies in arts, science, and other specialized fields of knowledge.” The Regulations of Saudi Universities explicitly emphasize the importance of giving full attention to graduate studies. Furthermore, the cabinet resolution (779 on 16/9/1389 AH) asked all universities to provide graduate studies to all distinguished graduates in all majors whenever possible.
Graduate studies at KAU began in 1396AH. The Deanship of Graduate Studies (DGS) was established in 1419AH with the purpose of providing a more active and efficient supervisory and coordinating system for graduate studies at KAU. Since that time, DGS has expanded and its programs have varied. That is why the number of male and female graduates and the amount of approved research has been increasing.
Graduate studies started at the Faculty of Arts and Humanities (FAH) in 1396AH. Gradually, MA programs at FAH included the majors of Library Science and Information, History, Sociology, Geography, and European Languages. In addition, PhD programs included majors in Library Science and Information, History, and Sociology.
In the academic year 1397/1398AH, graduate studies began at the Faculty of Economics and Administration by offering MA programs for Business Administration and Accounting majors. Later on, MA programs in Public Administration, Economics, and Political Science were added.
In 1398 H, the Faculty of Earth Science (FES) was established to replace the Institute of Applied Geology which was affiliated to KAU in 1396 AH. The Institute offered MA and PhD programs since its establishment in 1390 AH. The FES continued to offer these graduate programs. Currently, the FES offers MA and PhD programs in Metal Resources and Rocks, Petroleum Geology and Sedimentation, Construction Geology and Remote Sensing, Geophysics, Water Geology, and Engineering and Environmental Geology.
In the academic year 1400/1401 AH, the Faculty of Meteorology and Environment started admitting MA students in Meteorology, Environmental Sciences, Arid Land Cultivation, Management and Sciences of Water Resources. Furthermore, a PhD Program in Arid Land Cultivation has been added.
The Faculty of Sciences (FS) began the MA program INChemistry and Biology majors in 1401 AH. Then, other majors were added. Currently, FS offers MA degrees in Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Statistics, Biochemistry, and Astronomy. In addition, it offers PhD degrees in Biology and Statistics.
The Academic year 1401/1402 AH witnessed the launching of graduate studies programs in the Faculty of Engineering. Currently, it offers master’s degrees in Civil Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering (this includes Electric Power, Electronics, and Computer Engineering), Production, Design of Mechanical Systems, Thermal Engineering, Water Sweetening/Distillation Technology, Nuclear Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Metallurgy, and Aviation Engineering.
The Faculty of Marine Sciences began an MA program at the Marine Biology Department in 1401/1402 AH. MA programs in Marine Physics, Marine Chemistry, and Marine Biology soon followed.
The Faculty of Medicine (FM) started its graduate programs in 1405/1406 AH with career fellowships. These fellowships now include the Fellowship of the Irish Royal Surgeon College (FIRSC) in surgery,and the Fellowship of the Arab board for Medical Professions in all clinical specializations. Furthermore, the exam for the British Royal College for Gynecology & Obstetrics is administered in the Faculty of Medicine (FM). Additionally, the FM has completed the preparation for launching its master’s degrees in Anatomy, Clinical Biochemistry, Physiology, Medical Microbiology, and Diagnostic Radiography. The FM has also established master’s programs in Community Medicine and Pharmacology.
The Department of Home Economics at the Women’s Campus offer master’s degrees in Home Economics in the following majors: Food and Nutrition, Clothing and Weaving, Housing and Home Management, Children Studies, Educational Islamic Arts, and Educational Home Economics.
The master’s degree program at the Faculty of Environmental Design started in 1417 AH at the Department of Regional and Urban Planning.
In 1422 AH, the Faculty of Dentistry started its master’s programs in Pediatric Dentistry. Now, the Faculty of Computer and Information Technology offers its master’s in Computer Science.
The Education College program offers diplomas in the following five majors: Educational Management, Educational Guidance and Advising, Educational Assessment and Evaluation, and Educational Aids and Educational Technology. Also, MA programs in Educational Technology and Educational Management are offered.