|A Bachelors of Islamic Sciences|
“Salaam alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuh. It is my great pleasure to welcome you Islamically to the Islamic Online University’s learning experience in which the various gates of divinely-revealed knowledge have been thrown open for you. This opportunity has been made possible by the ‘accidental’ invention of the Internet, a human creation resulting from divine intervention.
At a time when Islamic teachings are caught between fossilization and revival, hijacked by modernism and extremism, a chance to promote true Islam in its original unadulterated form was born. Allahu Akbar - surely this is a mercy from Allah. I sincerely hope that you will take full advantage of this unique opportunity to
Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips
ABOUT ISLAMIC ONLINE UNIVERSITY
The Islamic Online University (IOU) is the brainchild of Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips who envisioned an institution of learning that would offer online intensive diploma, undergraduate, and graduate courses in Islamic Studies completely free.
The IOU was launched in 2007 from Qatar offering more than 22 completely free diploma short courses. In 2007 over 1,500 students registered in the diploma program. By the end of 2008, over 4,500 students were registered and 15,000 students from over 160 different countries in 2009. And in 2010, less than 4 years since its inception, its student body has reached over 30,000 from over 177 countries. It is also worth noting that in 2010 the Islamic University of Madeenah, of which Dr Bilal is a graduate, celebrated its fortieth year of operation during which it had taught 30,000 students from various countries.
In March 2010, the IOU broke new ground by launching the world’s first tuition-free, online Bachelor of Arts in Islamic Studies. This path-breaking initiative utilizes the worldwide presence of the Internet and advanced open source online learning technology to bring incredibly low-cost, university level Islamic education within reach of virtually anyone on the planet who has access to a computer and the Internet.
Dr. Bilal Philips – Founder and Dean
Dr Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips is a Jamaican Canadian Islamic Scholar who converted to Islam in the early seventies after journeying politically and intellectually from
After graduation from Madeenah, Dr Bilal became a teacher of Islamic studies for 10 years in an Islamic High School, Manaret Riyadh, and a lecturer of Arabic and Islamic studies in the American University in Dubai, UAE, for another 10 years. During his 10 years in the UAE, he founded and taught at the Islamic Information Center in Dubai, and during his subsequent 7 years in Qatar he has been an Islamic consultant and lecturer for the Islamic Information wing of Sh. Eed Charity.
In 2002 Dr Philips founded and headed the Islamic studies department of Preston University, Ajman, UAE, and in 2007 he founded and headed the Islamic Studies
“Making authentic Islamic knowledge readily available to the world through the medium of the Internet solely for God’s pleasure is a noble goal and a dignified mission worthy of sacrificing one’s energies and means for.” - Dr. Bilal Philips
The Islamic Online University aims to grant global access to quality undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate level Islamic educational programs for students at virtually no cost. Its mission is to be a catalyst for change in the Global Muslim nation (the Ummah) in order to facilitate Islam’s contribution to the progress of human civilization through appropriate education.
The knowledge-related principles upon which the IOU is based are:
The foundation of the information conveyed in IOU is Divinely Revealed knowledge as found in the Qur’aan and the Sunnah (Prophetic Explanations). God said: “Indeed it is only the knowledgeable among His servants who truly fear Allah.” (35:28) Prophet Muhammad said: “Seeking knowledge is obligatory on every Muslim.”
The Islamic Online University provides a golden opportunity for people to access Islamic courses wherever they may be and whenever they wish, without having to travel overseas or even leave the confines of their homes. Its goal is to be “for anyone, in any place, at any time”. The Last Prophet said: “If anyone travels on a road in search of knowledge, Allah will cause him to travel on one of the roads to Paradise.”
The IOU demonstrates its firm commitment to spreading authentic Islamic knowledge by progressing from absolutely free certificate and diploma level Islamic courses to a tuition-free BA in Islamic Studies (BAIS), thereby making graduate Islamic education easily affordable to the world. Free tuition for all students provides equal access to an education previously available to only the few given the opportunity to attend traditional Islamic institutions of higher learning around the world. God said: “Say: Are those who know equal to those who do not know?” (39:9)
No student will be prevented from studying at the Islamic Online University, regardless of his or her religious, ethnic or social background. The IOU affirms that its doors will remain open for all, irrespective of the artificial borders erected in the real world. It has already spawned, in less than four years, a global community of over 30,000 students seeking Islamic knowledge from over 177 countries and sharing their knowledge and concerns in supervised student forums. Furthermore, the members of IOU’s teaching staff come from all corners of the globe. God said: “Cooperate with each other in righteousness and piety…” (5:2)
It is the fundamental belief of the Islamic Online University that the bond between the teacher and student is a sacred one. Therefore, the Muslim teacher and student must be essentially different from teachers and students who merely happen to be Muslim. The Last Prophet stated that “the world and its contents are cursed except the remembrance of Allah and means to do so, the teacher and the student.” Thus, the IOU expects all its students, teaching staff, administrators and volunteers to function as Muslims first and foremost in their respective positions and fields. Doing so will foster and maintain the highest standards of personal integrity, honesty and responsibility, as Prophet Muhammad said: “Indeed, Allah loves from each of you that you work according to the best of your ability.”
Quality and Application
The Islamic Online University is committed to providing a top quality online academic experience, suitable in its scope and depth to convey authentic and practical Islamic knowledge, while at the same time enabling its students to face the contemporary challenges of their era. IOU will assess and re-evaluate every aspect of its Islamic academic model on an ongoing basis and will not only encourage its students to study diligently, but also emphasize that they must strive their utmost to put the knowledge gained into practice. The Last Prophet said, “The best of you is one who learns the Qur’aan and teaches it to others.” He also said, “The best of you is the one most beneficial to people.”
The University recognizes that many of its students may not have studied on the Internet before. Online education is a unique learning experience quite different from traditional classroom-based learning. Therefore, it has produced a variety of demos every step of the way and organized a user-friendly learning environment to help newcomers to the field of online education. It is vital that IOU students are fully prepared for its online teaching methods and that they possess the required level of English to effectively and successfully study in this environment. Consequently, IOU has developed a series of orientation courses that are mandatory for all students as well as English courses (ENG 101 & 102) in the first year to help upgrade their language skills. The global student body learns through watching and listening to video and audio lectures as well as reading PDF format texts with the support of well-trained tutorial assistants. Within IOU’s online study communities, students may share resources, exchange ideas, discuss weekly topics, submit assignments, and take exams.