The University of Development Alternative (UODA) started its journey with the noble mission of creating a new generation of skilled youths, self-reliant, forward looking, vibrant individuals, with indomitable energy and self-confidence. Our lofty mission also aims at giving our youths a strong moral grounding so that their lives may be balanced, sober, just and content. In the university, we consistently strive to instill in our students the kind of education that leads to the creation of professional expertise, by providing the right kind of technical education on one hand, and developing a balanced human resource through teaching intellectual skill and moral values, on the other. We want them to be experts in their fields, and be ethical human beings at the same time. The courses and curricula we have designed in the university reflect these intentions. 

This idea was founded and initiated by the President of UODA, Professor Mujib Khan. A group of visionary educationist, industrialist, social workers & professionals led by him, started to bring about a qualitative change in the educational system of the country. It was their belief that an 'alternative education' system needs to be developed in consideration of the country's needs, as well as building a platform towards meeting the challenges of global realities more effectively.

Having that vision, a non-profit social organisation, called the Student Welfare Organisation of Bangladesh (SWOB), was formed in 1978 with the aim of guiding the youth. To achieve SWOB's mission, the College of Development Alternative (CODA) was founded in 1992 and the School of Development Alternative (SODA) in 1996. Within a very short time, these two organisations evolved into leading academic institutions of the country with a different vision and strategy. Continuing that tradition, the University of Development Alternative (UODA) was established in 2002. Cumulatively, the three institutions embody the original vision of a system of Complete Education for Alternative Development (CEFAD), also known as the CEFAD concept, founded by Professor Mujib Khan. The concept is infiltritated in the institutions through a three-tiered system-school, college and university, imparting formal education, as well as social and moral education at three stages of a student's life.

To understand UODA, it is importnant to consider the above concept. UODA is to be perceived as not just an institution where the development of the 'human knowledge' is prioritised, but also as one where the develpoment of the 'human conscience' is an important aim. Such that it can nurture each individual as a social and ethical resource, contributing to the betterment of the country and the society as a whole. The word 'alternative' in the institution's name, embodies this spirit. 

In the year 2002 the Government of Bangladesh approved the University of Development Alternative (UODA), and now under 6 faculties, UODA offers undergraduate courses in over 14 subjects. The students can also achieve their Masters degree in their respective subjects after their respective 4 years undergraduate programmes.