Academical status


Faculties of the university
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Arts
  • Faculty of Social Sciences
  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Medicine
  • Faculty of Life and Earth Science
  • Faculty of Agriculture
  • Faculty of Business Studies
The university's 47 departments are organized into nine faculties: Engineering, Arts, Law, Science, Medicine, Business Studies, Social Sciences, Life and Earth Sciences, and Agriculture. The Arts and the Law faculties are the oldest in the university, both established in 1953, closely followed by the Faculty of Science (1956) and newly the Faculty of Engineering (2009). The university's departments represent the traditional studies in arts, commerce, sciences and engineering through programs in History, Languages and Linguistics, Economics, Business studies, Mathematics, Applied Mathematics (est.2002), Physics, Computer Science & Engineering, Chemistry, Statistics, Geology & Mining, Geography, Psychology, Zoology, Botany, etc. The university is increasingly emphasizing on more specialized programs such as Pharmacy, Biochemistry, Information and Communication Engineering (ICE)(est. 2000) or Genetics and breeding (est. 1996).
The Faculty of Engineering includes departments in Information and Communication Engineering (ICE)(est. 2000), Computer Science & Engineering, Applied Physics & Electronic Engineering, and Applied Chemistry & Chemical Engineering. In the late 1990 and 2000s, programs in computer engineering and communication engineering were introduced.The university used to have a separate engineering program through BIT (Bangladesh Institute of Technology) Rajshahi, which has become an independent university being renamed Rajshahi University of Engineering & Technology in 2002.
The Faculty of Arts includes departments in languages and linguistics (Bengali, English, Arabic), historical studies (history, Islamic history and culture), philosophy and fine arts. In the late 1990s, programs in theater, music and folklore studies were introduced.
The Faculty of Social Science has programs in sociology, social work, anthropology, economics, political science and media-related studies.
The Faculty of Law consists only of the department of law, while the departments of finance and banking, management, marketing and accounting make up the Faculty of Business Studies. All facilities of these three faculties are located in the three arts buildings.
The four science buildings house the Faculty of Engineering, Science and the Faculty of Life and Earth Science. The former has programs in physics, applied physics & electronics, mathematics, statistics, computer science, chemistry, psychology, applied chemistry, material science, biochemistry, and information & communication engineering.
Prominent departments in the faculty of Life and Earth Sciences include zoology, botany, geography, pharmacy, and genetics & breeding; these are all housed in the third science building. Department of geology & mining is situated in the second science building.
Founded in 2000, the Faculty of Agriculture is the newest addition to the university, and was formed when a local agricultural college was absorbed into the university. The Faculty has programs in fishery, genetic engineering, agronomy and veterinary sciences.
Faculty of Medicine is organized differently from other disciplines. Medical education is provided by seven medical colleges located around the Rajshahi Division. Though these colleges are autonomous to a large extent, the degrees are conferred by Rajshahi University. Rajshahi Medical College is the oldest medical college under administration of the university and is located a few miles west of the university campus along with a highly equipped large hospital.

Education and research

Undergraduates enroll for a four-year program through a highly competitive written admission test (on an average, 50 students compete for 1 seat). Students are assigned to a major when they enter the university, and cannot change it after the enrollment process. Most programs are organized by yearly semesters, though the business programs use two semesters a year, and others have been following suit. Classes can be quite large in departments like history or accounting, due to a high student-to-teacher ratio (1:27).
Most departments offer masters programs that are one or two years in duration, and are of two types- Masters with thesis, and Masters by coursework. Research in the university is conducted in specialised institutes as well as individual departments, with offering of Master of Philosophy (MPhil) and Doctoral (PhD) programs. As in other universities across the country, research plays second fiddle to education. The university has a research program related to the arsenic problem in Bangladesh. The Institute of Bangladesh Studies is a noted research institute that publishes the Journal of IBS. The Journal provides the Institute faculty as well as fellow academicians elsewhere an opportunity to publish research and review articles in English. The university is also home to Centre for Social Science Research (CSSR), an independent organisation conducting empirical and qualitative research in many fields. Much research work also centres around Varendra Research Museum.

Institutes, library and press

The university is home to five institutions. The oldest, established in 1974, is the Institute of Bangladesh Studies (IBS). Housed in the eastern end of the main campus, IBS was established by the Parliament of Bangladesh for research in Bangladesh-related topics. The institute conducts research and education at the postgraduate level, and has awarded 153 PhD degrees and 71 MPhil degrees in the humanities, social sciences and non-experimental sciences to date. The Institute of Biological Sciences (established in 1989) is another research institute focused on genetics and biological sciences, and was established through collaboration with the National Planning Commission. Three newer institutes have been established since: the Institute of Business Administration, the Institute of Environmental Sciences and the Institute of Education and Research. As of 2006, the establishment of two more institutes, an Institute of English Language and a post-graduate Institute of Information Technology was under way.The latter was established during a drive by the Bangladesh government to promote education in Information Technology (IT), when it provided Rajshahi University and 4 other major universities 3 crore taka each towards establishment of an IT institute.
The central library was established in 1955. Initially located at Bara Kuthi it was later shifted to its present location in the centre of the university campus. This modern library has a collection of 300,000 books and 2,000 journal titles besides huge range of digital subscriptions. Students are found studying both in the reading rooms of the library and on the spacious corridors encircling the library on the ground floor. In addition to the central library, there are seminar libraries in all institutes, departments and residential halls. Rajshahi University Press publishes scholarly books on many topics, and Rajshahi University Studies Journals for various disciplines mostly written by the members of the university teaching staff.