The country where modernity meets tradition, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a popular tourist destination and is home to some of the best universities in the Gulf region. The UAE is the perfect destination for any international student looking for a truly unique study experience.
Since the discovery of oil in the region in the 1950’s, the UAE’s economy has been rapidly changing. Now the country is known for not only oil and gas exportation, but is also improving its recognition in the tourist and construction industries. Located in the cities of the UAE you will find some of the world’s most impressive architectural feats, including the Burj Khalifa.
The higher education system is governed by the Ministry of Higher Education, which is responsible for the admission of students, as well as accrediting degree programmes. You will find 3 of the UAE’s universities in the 2019 QS World University Rankings top 500. The highest ranked is the Khalifa University, which is placed at 315th.
Located in the Middle East, the UAE is divided into seven emirates, all governed by separate rulers. Together, the seven rulers form the Federal Supreme Council. The population of the UAE is made up mostly of expatriates, due to the tourist influx. Sharing land borders with Oman and Saudi Arabia, the UAE has a hot and arid desert climate, with very hot summers.
There is evidence of human occupation in the UAE dating back to 125,000 BCE, with burial sites from the Neolithic Age and Bronze Age. The modern cities blend a rich cultural tradition with the contemporary way of life. There are many world famous attractions located in the country, including the seven-star hotel the Burj Al Arab, the Wild Wadi water park and the indoor ski centre, Ski Dubai.
The country and its policies are influenced by the main religion; Islam. The way of life that many citizens abide by may be a world away from anything you have ever experienced, but is a great lesson in tolerance. There are strict rules defining dress codes and alcohol consumption, something that the authorities take very seriously. If you do choose to study in the UAE, it is important that you are aware of and adhere to the social expectations. Some cities are slightly more relaxed than others, for example Dubai is not as strict as Abu Dhabi.
The UAE is known for being safe, with very low rates of violent crime of any sort. Crimes are treated seriously, and punished accordingly, especially crimes against women. As long as you respect the country’s Islamic culture and customs, you are unlikely to have any trouble.
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