Qatar has used its oil money to court six American universities for a project called Education City.

Country Overview

Once one of the poorest countries in the Persian Gulf, Qatar has attained one of the highest levels of per capita income in the world on the strength of oil and gas exports. It was ruled by the al-Thani family for some 150 years before the early 1900s, when it became a British protectorate. In 1971 it gained independence, and in 1995 its emir was bloodlessly deposed by his son, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa, who has since introduced reforms. Women may vote and stand for election in some instances, and a constitution with democratic elements has come into force. The biggest change, though, has come with the creation of Al-Jazeera, a primarily Arabic-language news network whose coverage has irritated leaders of the region’s autocratic states. Foreign workers outnumber natives in Qatar.


The climate is hot and humid from June to September, with daytime temperatures as high as 122 °F (50 °C). The spring and fall months—April, May, October, and November—are temperate, averaging about 63 °F (17 °C), and the winters are slightly cooler. Precipitation is scarce, with less than 3 inches (75 mm) falling annually (generally in winter).

Annual rainfall
Monthly average rainfall: December to March 10-20 mm (.39 - .78 inches); April through November   0-4 mm  (0 to .15 inches);  average annual precipitation is below 75 mm (3 inches) with most of the rainfall occurring during the winter months.





Overview of Higher Education

Historically, education in Qatar was based on the study of the Koran and Islamic law. But in the early 1970s a primarily secular institution was founded that later became the University of Qatar. More than 7,000 students were enrolled in its six colleges in the fall of 2008. The university has a female president, Sheikha Abdulla Al-Misnad.

The standard undergraduate degree is a bachelor’s, while the primary postgraduate degree is a master’s, which traditionally requires an additional year of study. A doctorate is still relatively rare among postgraduate offerings.

Various postgraduate diplomas and certificates, too, are awarded to students who complete two to five semesters of study in subjects such as education, library science, and architectural planning.

(Sources: BBC, The World Factbook, The Europa World of Learning)

Number of Colleges, Universities, Technical Institutes

Number of Colleges, Universities, and Technical Institutes (total): 51

Number of Higher Education Students

Number of students enrolled: 89,000

Number of international students enrolled: 89

Contact Information

Ministry of Education & Higher Education

P.O. Box 80, Doha, State of Qatar. Al-Waqf Tower - Dafna

Web site: http://www.moe.edu.qa/

Phone: +974 4941111