UAE Essentials – Enrolling at university

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Enrolling at university
By Bassma Al Jandaly, Staff Reporter/GULF NEWS Published: August 10, 2007, 23:43

Dubai: The UAE offers a wide-range of courses at its various universities. Academic programmes here include diplomas, degrees as well as post-graduate studies.

A student may also enrol for professional training to gain an internationally recognised certificate. Most of the universities in the UAE are open to both citizens and expatriate residents and foreign students.

Some colleges and universities in the UAE are open only for Emiratis such as the UAE University in Al Ain and the Higher Colleges of Technology. All the other universities, colleges and educational institutions are open to everyone.
Expatriate students can be admitted to universities here if they hold a General Secondary School Certificate and they should obtain required amount of marks in the high school certificate exams for admissions. Universities usually start their academic year in September.

The UAE educational system comprises of a variety of academic institutions and training institutes that offer programmes in various fields.

There are a few government universities and colleges in the country where admission is restricted to Emiratis only.

But the enrolment at many of the several private educational institutions is open to any student of any nationality from any country who meets the admission requirements of that specific university.

Students can also choose any programme and enrol in it. Those programmes are depending on the academic, technical and professional degree the students select.

If one wanted to apply at any university, college or educational institution here, he or she should choose the programmes they are interested in, depending on their marks.

The first step for the student is to be sure that the institution is willing to accept you. The institution will review the student’s academic background to determine if he or she is likely to succeed in its programme.

Each UAE institution sets its own admission standards. Some practices are common to many institutions; however, under-graduate and graduate admissions to the universities may vary from one institution to the other, also from one programme of study to another.

Student’s visa

Students who are living abroad can obtain a student’s visa and study at one of the universities in the country.

To enrol in an university here, the student visa is provided by all colleges and universities and also a few training institutes.

Some institutions may require all admission procedures and fees to be paid before visa issuance procedures can be started. Visa issuance procedure at the naturalisation department normally takes 10 to 30 days.

The administrative expense for a student visa is around Dh1,500 for a 3-year visa.

Some of the open universities
-Zayed University (ZU), which has campuses in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, which was earlier for Emirati women only.
-American University of Sharjah (AUS).
-American University of Dubai (AUD).
-Sharjah University.
-Ajman University of Science and Technology.
-Abu Dhabi University (ADU), which opened its doors in 2003.
-Al Ain University, which accepted its first students for the academic year beginning in September 2006.
-Al Hosn University in Abu Dhabi, opened in 2005. This new private university, which is supported by Abu Dhabi Holding Company (ADHC), will initially be operating from two separate premises for men and women. Starting with three faculties — Engineering, Business and Arts and Social Sciences — Al Hosn University will offer a unique set of disciplines, some of which are being introduced for the first time in the UAE.
-Abu Dhabi chapter of the Sorbonne University established in 2006.
-Dubai multi-university complex in Knowledge Village, established in 2003 in the Dubai Free Zone for Technology and Media, houses more than 200 companies and institutes for training and education. It offers undergraduate, postgraduate, MBA and PhD programmes in fields such as computing, technology, business management, life science, fashion and media.

In addition, there are also several professional and technical institutions such as the Emirates Institute for Banking and Finance, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company Career Development Centre, the Dubai School of Government, and The Emirates Aviation College for Aerospace and Academic Studies.

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