The “Greek Othon’s University” was founded in 1837 and consisted of four Schools. The first Rector was Professor of History Konstantinos Schinas. The first Deans were: Michael Apostolidis, Professor of the School of Theology, Anastasios Lefkias, Professor of the School of Medicine, Georgios Rallis, Professor of the School of Law and Neofytos Vamvas, Professor of the School of Philosophy. In 1862, the University was renamed as the “National University”.

In 1911 following the will of the Great benefactor of the University Ioannis Dompolis, the “Kapodistrian University” was founded, including the Schools of Theology, Philosophy and Law. The Schools of Medicine and Sciences belonged to the “National University”.  Although these two institutions had different legal status, property, seal and flag, they had the same administration. In 1932 these two institutions were finally unified to the “National and Kapodistrian University of Athens”, the complete and official name of the “University of Athens”.

The University was first housed in the residence of the architect Stamatis Kleanthis, below Acropolis, in Plaka, 5 Tholou Str. Nowadays this neoclassical building, known as the “Old University”, is the “History Museum of the University of Athens”.

The Central Building of the University of Athens, in the Centre of Athens on Panepistimiou Str. was designed by the Danish architect Christian Hansen and was founded in 1839. Today,  this building is the Central Administrative Unit of the University, housing the Rectorate, the Senate, the Hall of Ceremonies and other central services of the University. Other administrative services of the University (Staff, Financial, School and Legacy Administration) operate in another building in the center of Athens at 6 Christou Lada Str.

In 1963 the Greek State transferred a forest property of approximately 1.550 acres between the Municipalities of Zografou and Kesariani to the University in order to build the University Campus. The first buildings were those of the Student Dormitories, Sports facilities, Technical Services and the School of Theology.

In July 1981 the then new departments of Biology and Geology were housed in the first part of the buildings of the School of Sciences in the University Campus.

In 1988 the School of Philosophy building in the University Campus was inaugurated and started operating.

In 1990 the Departments of Chemistry and Pharmacy moved from the now historical Chemistry building in the center of Athens (Solonos Str.) into the buildings of the School of Sciences in the University Campus. Later, the Departments of Physics and Mathematics also moved into their own buildings in the University Campus. Finally, the School of Sciences Library moved into its own building on the University Campus.