Saarland University, the first to be established after World War II, was founded in November 1948 with the support of the French Government and under the auspices of the University of Nancy.
At the time the Saarland found itself in the special situation of being partly autonomous and linked to France by economic and monetary union. With its combination of the German and French educational traditions and the dual languages of instruction, the university had a European perspective right from the start. Prior to the foundation of the university, clinical training courses for medical students at the state hospital in Homburg, Saarland, had been introduced in January 1946 and the "Centre Universitaire d'Etudes Supérieures de Hombourg" established on 8 May 1947 under the patronage of the University of Nancy. Students in certain disciplines can obtain degree certificates from both universities.
The first president of the independent university in 1948 was Jean Barriol. In the same year the university introduced the first courses in law, philosophy and languages.
In the 1950s Saarland University joined the Association of West-German Universities and accepted a new, more centralized organizational structure. The Europa-Institut is established as a European politics and law think tank.
In 1990 the faculty of technology is established. The university steadily gains leading research status in information technology.