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safeguarding standards and improving the quality of UK higher education

United Arab Emirates: Country report

Date 23/05/2017

In the first of a new series of country reports, QAA has published a profile of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). These reports are designed to offer providers an insight into the higher education and regulatory landscape of key countries for UK transnational (TNE) education.

The UAE higher education sector currently comprises over 100 providers enrolling approximately 140,000 students, with tertiary enrolments steadily growing year on year.

Over 17,000 students are currently studying for a UK award in the UAE: an increase of 10 per cent from last year, and of about 58 per cent over the past five years. UK TNE is expected to continue to grow, with two new UK higher education providers to open branch campuses in Dubai in the next year or so.

This report provides comprehensive information about higher education and TNE in the UAE in the context of the political, economic and demographic backdrop. QAA will produce further reports this year on Pakistan, China and the Republic of Ireland.

In producing these reports, QAA will liaise with local regulators and quality assurance agencies, and other UK sector bodies with relevant expertise such as the British Council and Universities UK International. QAA has a number of strategic partnerships with counterpart agencies in key countries for UK TNE. These are a source of intelligence and direct access to up-to-date information about local regulatory developments. UK providers are welcome to contact QAA with any queries they might have about operating environments in these countries.