Summary UAO

The Universidad Autónoma de Occidente was founded in 1969 as a non-profit private institution. The current president is Dr. Luis H. Pérez; [email protected]
The University is located in the city of Cali, Capital of the Department of Valle del Cauca. With a population of 2'370.000 this modern tropical city, nestled in a rich valley at the foot of the majestic Andes Mountains, ranks as one of the most important cities in Colombia. Being the main Industrial and Service Center in the country, Cali is considered a municipality of rapid sound growth towards the future.
Valle de Cauca's notable proximity to the Pacific Ocean gives it an added advantage as the most important corridor of international trade. Due to its infrastructure and modern commercial platform, it has attracted a remarkable segment of foreign investment, with some of the largest multinational companies headquartered in Valle del Cauca.


The Universidad Autónoma de Occidente is a private higher education institution. Its mission is to integrate the intrinsic functions of teaching along with investigation and social projection into the process of generating knowledge, thus contributing to the forming of individuals. Moreover, it is concerned with problem solving issues at regional, national and worldwide scales, all from an international perspective.

Our educational project

First and foremost, Universidad Autónoma de Occidente strives to offer teaching without political, ethnical or any other kind of limitations and to promote scientific research directed towards finding solutions to the Colombian problems.


  • Corporativeness
  • Autonomy
  • Universality
  • Excellence
  • Creativity
  • Ethics
  • Pluralism
  • Responsibility
  • Belonging
  • Tolerance
  • Honesty

Academic Research

The Vice President's Office for Research promotes and develops scientific, technological and socioeconomic investigation of the highest quality to answer the needs of the Institution, the region and the country.
It is our central objective to generate a scientific spirit within the University community.

Student Welfare

Welfare Policies are implemented in a nice way by all University dependencies that are in charge of promoting integral health, culture, human development and management actions, leadership, recreation and sports, among others.

Areas of service :

  • Cultural affairs
  • University Pastoral
  • Human Development
  • Student Information Services - CASA-
  • Physical and Mental Health Services
  • Recreation and sports

Academic Support Services


The Library facilitates investigative work by students. It offers documentary resources issued in text, audiovisual, and electronic data means. It also allows access to bibliographical material in all areas of knowledge through services such as interlibrary loans, and consulting of collective catalogues or databases via national and international networks.

Languages Institute

The Languages Institute supports the second language learning process of the students of the University by offering a communicative approach in the teaching of languages, focusing on the acquisition of speaking, reading, writing, listening and thinking abilities. Students have access to a state-of-the-art multimedia laboratory for language studies. A five-semester English language program makes up a part of the curricular requirement for all undergraduate degree candidates.


With over ten thousand square meters, the labs support hands-on experience for teaching, investigating and experimenting in areas of all Faculties. The labs allow for simulation practices and computer-assisted design, as well as for the transmission of remote data and the performance of field tasks.
Due to the well-equipped laboratories UAO has gained wide recognition from academic and entrepreneurial circles in the region and worldwide.

  • Audio Communications Laboratory
  • Audiovisual Editing Laboratory
  • Automation Laboratory
  • Bioinstrumentation Laboratory
  • Biomedical Science Laboratory
  • Biotechnology Laboratory
  • Chemistry Laboratory
  • Circuit and electronics laboratory
  • Design and Print Media Laboratory
  • Electrical Engineering Laboratory
  • Environmental Sciences Laboratory
  • Facilities Planning Laboratory
  • Flexible Assembly Cell Laboratory
  • Fluids Mechanics Laboratory
  • Geographic Information Systems
  • Gesell Chamber - Beam splitter/High-reflective coatings
  • Graphic Design Laboratory
  • Hard-wired Logic Circuits Laboratory
  • Industrial Processes Laboratory
  • IT Laboratory
  • Laboratory for Manufacturing and Productivity
  • Logic Digital Systems Laboratory
  • Manufacturing Systems Laboratory
  • Mechanical Systems and Photoelasticity Laboratory
  • Mechatronics and Robotics Laboratory
  • Methods and Work Measurement Laboratory
  • Microprocessors Laboratory
  • Occupational Health Laboratory
  • Photography Laboratory
  • Physics Laboratory
  • Quality Control Laboratory
  • Soft-wired Logic Circuits Laboratory
  • Solid Mechanics and Materials Laboratory
  • Telecommunication Laboratory
  • Telematics Laboratory
  • Television Production and Broadcasting Facilities
  • Thermo Sciences Laboratory
  • 3D Simulation Laboratory


The AUTONOMA VIRTUAL at the University leads and supervises processes that incorporate new technologies into information procedures and communication within the educational milieu. The AUTONOMA VIRTUAL works simultaneously on teacher-training procedures and on the redesigning of courses at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Social Projection

FUNDAUTONOMA is a social service company that seeks to improve the quality of life of deprived communities in Cali. By the means of interinstitutional agreements, they endeavor to launch social, cultural, ecological, recreation and sports, health, professional training, employment provision, and human development programs

COMUNITEC is an alliance of 10 municipal and regional institutions that joined forces in the effort of creating a Higher Education Community Center.
Its objective is to simplify the access to quality higher education that is fair and dedicated to young people in impoverished neighborhoods in order to skill them through short-term technical study programs that prepare them for the job market.


In Alliance with recognized regional institutions, it is a natural leisure park that converges citizen's initiatives in order to project the environmental and cultural future of Cali. Its major programs are Investigation of Biodiversity and Ecosystems, Environmental Education and Citizen Awareness, Horticulture, as well as Environmental Design and Landscape Architecture.

Extension and Continuing Education

It is the Extended University to the community in order to provide a permanent education.
By the means of continuing education, entrepreneurial consultants and coordination of the relations to the different sectors of the society, it develops courses and programs that contribute to the improvement of the community's productivity and competitiveness.