Arden University

Arden University
Former name
Resource Development International
Type Private, for-profit university
Established 1990 (1990)
Location Coventry, UK
Owner Global University Systems

Arden University is a private university, offering diverse programs in the United Kingdom. The school offers traditional, blended and online delivery options for more than 30 programs. The head office of Arden University is in Coventry, England. Formerly established as Resource Development International in 1990, it was later awarded university status by the British government. Since August 2016 it has been owned by Global University Systems.


Arden University started in 1990, trading under the name of RDI. In 2011, it became part of Capella Education Company. After gaining taught degree awarding powers in April 2014 and being awarded university status, Arden University was re-launched in August 2015 under its current title. It is the only specialist distance learning university to launch in the UK since the founding of the Open University in 1969.[1] In August 2016, Capella Education sold the university to the Netherlands-based company Global University Systems, which also owns the University of Law, St Patrick's College, London and the London School of Business and Finance in the UK.[2]

Academic profile

As of 2016, Arden University has taught over 50,000 students over 25 years,[3] from more than 150 countries.[4] It provides taught higher education qualifications via both blended learning (a combination of face-to-face seminars with online work) and fully online instruction.

Teaching methods

Arden University adopts a variety of methods for teaching and delivery, including a virtual learning platform "ilearn" designed by the in-house technology development team.[5]

With four intakes a year, access to learning materials 24/7 and the ability to study as fast or as slow as their commitments allow, 90% of students with Arden University work while studying.[6]

Quality and teaching standards

Arden University was classed as making commendable progress in the educational oversight monitoring visit by the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education (QAA) in 2016. In 2013 Arden's review stated that the QAA has "Confidence in how the provider manages its stated responsibilities for the standards of the programmes it offers on behalf of its awarding bodies. Confidence in how the provider manages its stated responsibilities for the quality and enhancement of the learning opportunities it offers on behalf of its awarding bodies. Reliance can be placed on the information that the provider produces for its intended audiences about the learning opportunities it offers."[7][8]


Arden University's head office is based in Middlemarch Park, Coventry. Arden currently has three London based study centres (one at Ealing, one at Tower Hill and third at Holborn) whereby a blended learning schedule is delivered to students, combining both on-line studying with face-to-face seminars. The university has two further study centres in Manchester and Birmingham.


Arden offers a range of higher education courses, some endorsed by professional bodies, including the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Chartered Management Institute, British Psychological Society, Association for Project Management as well as a qualifying law degree.[9]


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