Study and Research Opportunities in Saudi Arabia

Long and short-term academic programs are available in Saudi Arabia across many universities and educational centers. International students and researchers may apply to BA, MA, Ph.D., and postdoctoral research programs in Saudi Arabia. Moreover, summer schools and conferences are other excellent academic activities that make Saudi Arabia an attractive destination for scholars and scientists. Many programs also come with fully-funded scholarships and fellowships as well as travel grants and financial aid, thus every student, researcher, and professor can always find a suitable program in Saudi Arabia and apply.

Scholarships in Saudi Arabia

Fellowships in Saudi Arabia

Grants & Awards in Saudi Arabia

Summer programs in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia as an academic destination

Saudi Arabia is among the major countries in the Middle East, both for its religious prominence, natural resources, and economic organization. International students usually choose Saudi Arabia for the role it occupies in the world. As the country has many natural resources and high development rates, there are more chances to receive quality education and post-doctoral working opportunities there. Saudi Arabia is also considered the born country of Islam. Locals live with strong adherence to their religious traditions and culture. 

Universities of Saudi Arabia

Twenty-nine Saudi Arabian Universities are included in the QS Ranking. The higher education system has a large portion of governmental support. As a result, it’s one of the leading educational hubs in Asia, which is primarily famous for STEM subjects. Generally, Saudi Arabia’s universities are considered the best ones in the whole Arab region. 

The first University in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was founded in 1957 by King Saud bin Abdulaziz. The University took the name of its founder: King Saud University and focused on the areas such as natural sciences and humanities. The University operates up to current times and is included in the top universities of the country. Below is the list of the ten best educational institutions in Saudi Arabia. 

  1. King Abdulaziz University
  2. King Abdullah University of Science & Technology
  3. King Saud University
  4. King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM)
  5. King Saud bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences
  6. Taibah University
  7. King Khalid University
  8. Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University
  9. Taif University
  10. Umm Al-Qura University

Saudi Arabia is one of the countries with the strictest religion and culture. This is especially useful to consider for female international students wishing to apply to Saudi Arabia. There are limited options for women admissions in higher educational institutions, or they can apply to women-only universities and colleges. 

The majority of Saudi Arabian Universities are public—there 28 public and ten private universities in the country. The majority of the research funding opportunities are applied to students of public universities. 

Education in Saudi Arabia universities is primarily similar to that of EU universities. There are two semesters around the academic year. Bachelor’s degrees usually take 4, and Master’s degrees usually 2years. Ph.D. projects can and generally last from 2.5 to 5 years. The good news for Ph.D. students is that the government fully funds the Ph.D. program in most cases. 

International student expenses in Saudi Arabia

Tuition fees for universities in Saudi Arabia do not belong to a particular range, as it largely depends on what University you choose to study at. However, there are options for scholarships and financial aid in case of having excellent academic performance. Saudi Arabia, as mentioned above, invests many financial resources in the higher education of the country. Therefore there are universities where you can experience no or low tuition costs due to the state funding. 

As for the accommodation expenses, almost all the universities in Saudi Arabia provide students with university dormitories. Otherwise, if you are going to rent an individual accommodation, the monthly living costs can reach up to 1,500$. 

Post-graduate opportunities in Saudi Arabia

If you plan to try career opportunities in Saudi Arabia after studies, you might choose to apply for education programs that prepare the most demanded specialists in the country. Saudi Arabia is rich in petroleum, and Petroleum Engineers are among the highest paying job positions in the country. 

The other fields, which also have wide popularity in the country, include Banking, IT, Surgeons, Project Management, Media, PR, etc. Also, many students with advanced knowledge of English or other internationally famous language stay and work in the country as a language tutor for the locals. 

To stay and work in Saudi Arabia, you will need to acquire an employment visa, which is granted when the student has a sponsor, usually the employer. There are many multinational companies located in the country that can grant you potential employment opportunities. For example, you can apply for employment in Nestle, Cisco Systems, Procter & Gamble, Siemens, etc. 

There are big chances to find a job in Saudi Arabia, as the country predominantly practices the employment of foreign nationals. The general insights into the country’s employment market show that more than half of the employees in the country are from foreign countries. Also, there is a clear division between the spheres where locals and foreigners work. Saudis usually are employed in governmental organizations, while foreigners work in private sectors. 

Saudi Arabia does not come first to mind as another popular study abroad destinations do, such as the US, UK, Germany, Australia, etc. However, it has much to offer to those who want to experience the educational culture of one of the most religious countries in the world. We hope this section of ARMACAD will help you successfully construct your academic and career path in Saudi Arabia.