In the late 1940s, the United Baptist Convention became concerned about the young people who were leaving Atlantic Canada for a Bible college education. In spite of the fact that the denomination had a University in Wolfville, NS, there was an area of Christian education which some thoughts was not being covered. In 1949, the United Baptist Bible Training School was founded in Moncton as both a Bible College and a high school. For the next two decades, young people came from all over Atlantic Canada to study in a Christian context and to live in a Christian community.

    Academic excellence very quickly became a hallmark of the new school, and many people gave sacrificially to expand the facilities and the programs. Dr. Myron Brinton left a successful pastorate to guide the fledgling institution for most of its first decade. His sense of family and Christian commitment set the stage for much of its tradition.

    By 1968, the School was in transition as the emphasis changed to a post high school program. It became a Bible College and a Christian Junior Liberal Arts College. In 1970, the name was changed to Atlantic Baptist College to reflect the new programs. Throughout this period, the President, Dr. Stuart E. Murray, sought to build a strong faculty and to provide a broadened selection of courses.

    In 1983, the New Brunswick Legislature passed a charter granting Atlantic Baptist College, the right to offer baccalaureate degrees. Over a decade later, in 1996, the original Act of the Legislature was amended to change the name to Atlantic Baptist University. This was done to reflect the continued growth and development of the University as evidenced by the granting of degrees in a variety of disciplines, including Arts, Science, Business, and Education.

    In 2008, and in 2010, slight amendments to the Act were made, first to extend the provision of degrees beyond the baccalaureate level, and second to change the name to Crandall University in honour of Joseph Crandall, who founded several Baptist churches in the greater Moncton area during the late 1800s. This new name was also presented as a way to more clearly offer an invitation to Christian students and supporters who were not from a Baptist tradition.