Ardhi Institute Morogoro had its beginning in early 1958 when it started as a Survey Training Centre for the purpose of training land surveying technicians for the duration of six months for each intake. By then, the location of the centre was at Mgulani area Dar es Salaam city. In 1966, the course was restructured to one – year theory and one year in industrial training. The entry qualification was form four. The re-structuring changed the location from Mgulani to Observation Hill/Makongo area where the Ardhi University (ARU) is presently situated.
Following the McKinsey report of 1972 which noted inter alia that Land Ministry cadres especially in the regions were seriously under strength, and poorly staffed; and following the pronouncement of policies of decentralization and establishment of permanent villages in rural areas, it became necessary to launch a training programme that would produce sub-professional personnel who would serve in the various areas of physical land development.
In October 1972, therefore, the former Survey Training Centre was renamed Ardhi Institute, ‘Ardhi’ being a Kiswahili word for ‘Land’. The change of the name was meant to underline the change of status of the Institution in raising the training from the former technician level in the areas of land surveying to the sub-professional diploma level in the area of land management and valuation, land surveying and urban and rural planning. The certificate course was stopped during the introduction of these sub-professional courses.
In 1976, the Ardhi Institute and Ministry of Lands found it necessary to re-establish the land surveying certificate technician course that has been earlier conducted by the defunct Survey Training Centre. Due to lack of space at Ardhi Institute Dar-Es-Salaam, it was decided in July 1978 to transfer this course to Morogoro at the premises where upgrading courses were being conducted. The upgrading courses were in turn transferred to Tabora and placed under the academic umbrella of Ardhi Institute Tabora. This marked the birth of Ardhi Institute Morogoro.