It is a both residential and an affiliating university. In conceiving the future course of the University, the objectives enshrined in the Act 1969 , emphasised that the new university would make provision for imparting education and promoting research in the humanities, learned professions, sciences, especially of applied nature and technology. Studies and research on the life and teachings of Guru Nanak, in addition to working towards the promotion of Punjabi language and spreading education among educationally backward classes and communities were the other commitments.
Guru Nanak Dev University campus is spread over 500 acres (2 km²) near village of Kot Khalsa, some eight kilometer west of the Amritsar City on Amritsar - Lahore highway, next to Khalsa College, Amritsar. G.N.D.U. presents a picture of modern architecture. Traditional red brick geometrical blocks represent its regard for time-honoured values and commitment to scientific advancement. Making its humble beginning in an annexe of the adjoining Khalsa College, the University today boasts of thirty seven academic departments, two regional centres, two colleges and a score of support service departments besides several administrative offices.
In addition to the academics, the University has also created necessary facilities for recreation and all round development of students and faculty in the form of Department of Youth Services, National Service Scheme, a 900 seat all purpose auditorium, half a dozen seminar and conference halls, a modern hi-tech sports complex, sports hostel, faculty club, students' centre, health centre, day care centre, two separate holiday homes at Dalhousie for teachers and students, working women hostel, Baba Buddha College Bhawan along with on campus residential facilities for a large number of students, teachers and administrative staff. The Campus with its lush green grounds, swaying fields, blossom laden tree lined lanes provides a most conducive physical environment for work and progress. The University takes pride in the fact that its community over the years has developed a great participative work culture.
The University has won Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Trophy seventeen times and inter-varsity youth festival championship four times consecutively. UGC has granted the University Centre for Excellence in Sports Sciences.
National Assessment and Accreditation Council accredited the University at the Five Star Level.  Being rated at such a high level will inspire its community to make strides ahead still faster and stronger with academic excellence and commitment to social upliftment as the core ideals.
Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar has 36 Departments listed that offer various academic courses.
Scholarships are grant-in-aid to a student who wants to pursue education at Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar