What is a Dean?

A dean is an administrator in a university or college. Most commonly, a dean leads a school or college within a university. While a dean works with budgets and staffing and other things, the dean’s primary responsibility is for academic oversight.

In smaller colleges, there is typically only one person in this role, who may be called “the academic dean.”

In some institutions, administrators who oversee other areas may also be called “dean,” such as “dean of students” for student life or “dean of enrollment” for admissions.