Established in 1949 as a Technical School and commissioned in 1957 as Accra Technical Institute, Accra Technical University then (Accra Technical Institute) became the first Technical University to be established. In 1963 the Institute assumed a new name as Accra Polytechnic under the directions of President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah to be a key driver of the country’s industrialization process. Following the operationalization of the PNDC Law of 1992 (PNDC 321) in 1993/1994, the Polytechnic gained tertiary recognition.
The elevation provided that the University under the Higher Education Council was vest with the autonomy to award Higher National Diploma (HND) through the National Board for Professional and Technical Examination (NABPTEX).
With the coming into force of the Polytechnic Act (Act 745) in 2007, the PNDC Law 321 of 1992 was repealed to allow polytechnics the autonomy to award Higher National Diplomas (HND), Diplomas, Certificates and other degrees that the Polytechnic may deem appropriate, all accredited by the National Accreditation Board.
The Technical University Act, 2016, (Act 922) converted together with 8 other Polytechnics, Accra Polytechnic to Accra Technical University, given it a Technical University status. The elevation was aimed at enhancing technical training with emphasis on producing world-class graduates molded in excellence and professionalism in diverse technical programmes in theory and in practice.
Currently, the University has 5 faculties – Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Built Environment, Faculty of Applied Sciences, Faculty of Applied Arts, and Faculty of Business – and 16 departments.