Making the Right Choice for Your Future: Higher Education in Dubai

Deciding where to pursue higher education is a very important choice in a person’s life. Students will inevitably consider a range of factors when making such a choice: personal interests, familial obligations, geography and professional ambition to name just a few.


Higher education in Dubai offers students the chance to study amongst one of the most diverse and multicultural populations in the world.

Going to university in Dubai is a once in a lifetime experience but a decision that needs to be thoroughly researched.


One of the most common reasons for students leaving or dropping out of university or college relates to a choice of institution that doesn’t suit the student’s needs or interests. This comes from a variety of factors including lack of research ahead of time about specific programs, faculty and student life.


Prospective students should make the most of the wealth of information available online about universities and colleges and when possible, get in touch with faculty members or administration staff directly to discuss specific opportunities. Comparing online reviews and thoroughly researching various institutions allows students to make informed and appropriate decisions about their future and their education.


With 52 separate higher education institutions in Dubai, the need for proper research into programmes and student culture is paramount. The

52 institutions themselves fall into various categories including federal institutions, branch campuses of international universities, and private UAE universities.


Federal Institutions cater primarily to Emirati students while others are composed primarily of expatriate populations. Dubai has also seen an increase in international students enrolling in higher education institutions in recent years thanks to the increased number of programmes being offered.


Today there are more than 43,000 students enrolled in higher education programmes in Dubai ranging from diploma level courses to doctoral level research degrees. The majority of the student population in Dubai is enrolled in bachelor’s programmes with about 20% of students pursuing masters level coursework. The most popular areas of study in Dubai are business, law IT, engineering and religion.


Another important area to research is the international qualification available to graduates. Branch campuses are popular among both Emirati and expat populations because they offer internationally recognised qualifications which in turn allow graduates to pursue work further afield.


Cost is another important consideration for prospective students when comparing educational facilities. Typical of the Gulf region generally, citizens have access to free education in relatively sophisticated facilities. Many Emirati students are faced with the decision to take advantage of free university education provided by the state or to enrol in private institutions.


For international students, research should examine the cost implications of various institutions and the perceived value to the student and the global community. Students should be aware of the international reputation of branch campuses and ensure the quality of the education offered is the same if not better than the original institution.


As the price of higher education reaches records levels, students are encouraged to make informed and appropriate decisions about their future. Conducting thorough research into every facet of a potential university or college equips students with the tools necessary to make the right choice. Dubai is an incredible place to live and to study and as the Emirate continues to build a robust educational community, students are guaranteed to get the very best from their chosen institution.



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