Top universities in Saudi Arabia: A list of the 10 top Saudi Universities

December 9, 2020

Where do you find the best universities in the world? In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, you can find the top universities in Saudi Arabia that are ranked globally next to the top international universities names. According to the 2018 report, Saudi Arabia’s higher education system is one of the fastest-growing education systems in the Arab region, ranking 36th on the list of the world’s best higher education systems. Now, what are the top Saudi universities? This is what we will learn about in this article.


Top Universities in Saudi Arabia

The Kingdom has invested in education since its inception, through its interest in the educational aspect, as it has the best universities that are distinguished by the high educational and entertainment level. According to international standards, Saudi universities are ranked among the best in the world. There are several higher education options in the Kingdom, from public universities to list of private universities in Saudi Arabia, where there are the top universities in Saudi Arabia for engineering, the top medical universities in Saudi Arabia, and the best law faculties, as well as offering bachelor, master’s and doctoral programs, which makes it difficult for you to choose when registering in Saudi universities. So what are the top universities in Saudi Arabia? Choose from the following Universities:


King Abdulaziz University (KAU)

King Abdulaziz University, located in Jeddah, was established in 1967. The University consistently ranked among the top 300 universities in the world list, and KAU is the first in the Arab ranking. This university is free for Saudi students, as the university has more than 82,000 students, with separate campuses for men and women. Faculties at King Abdulaziz University include the faculty of Art and Design, Humanities, Sciences, Medicine, Pharmacy, Business, Law, and Dentistry. In addition to offering a variety of officially recognized undergraduate and graduate programs on campus, King Abdulaziz University also teaches a distance learning program.


Alfaisal University

Alfaisal University was founded in 2002 in Riyadh at the initiative of the King Faisal Foundation and is one of the first private, non-profit universities in the Kingdom. Alfaisal University consists of five faculties, which include the Faculties of Business Administration, Engineering, Medicine, Science, and Pharmacy. The university also offers world-class educational programs for undergraduate and graduate students. The total student number is now 2,500 students. The university gives Saudis and non-Saudis the opportunity to join it. Al-Faisal University in Riyadh is ranked among the top 350 international universities.


King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFU)

King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals was established in 1963, and it is a non-profit educational institution providing a high standard educational level in the fields of petroleum and minerals, as the university ranked first among the top 50 universities in the world specializing in mineral and mining engineering, in addition to the fields of engineering, science, and business. It is located in Dhahran city, in the eastern region of the Kingdom, which is considered a significant hub for the country’s oil industry. The number of students currently registered at the university is more than 7,000 students, and female students are not permitted to join. The university is ranked among the top 3 universities in the Arab world and among the top universities in Saudi Arabia, in addition to the ranking of this university according to the Webometrics 811 ranking in the world and the fourth in Saudi Arabia.


King Saud University (KSU)

King Saud University is considered the best in the Arab world. It was established in 1957 and is considered the first university to be set up in the Kingdom and one of the best universities in Saudi Arabia. King Saud University which is located in Riyadh, is a non-profit government educational institution with a total of 51 thousand students, and 24 different facilities in their specializations including engineering, agriculture, and pharmacy. The admission rate ranges between 70% and 80% making the Saudi higher education institution a selective institution. According to the Webometrics ranking, this university is ranked 415 globally and first in Saudi Arabia.


King Khalid University (KKU)

Although it is a relatively new university, it has witnessed rapid growth and development, making it one of the top universities in Saudi Arabia. King Khalid University is located in the city of Abha, southwest of Saudi Arabia. The university has several faculties, including the faculty of Sharia and Fundamentals of Religion, Medicine, Education, and Arabic Language, Social and Administrative Sciences. It is one of the biggest learning centers in the Arabian Peninsula and has a large number of local and foreign students.


Umm Al Qura University (UQU)

Umm Al-Qura University is one of the best and oldest universities in Saudi Arabia, and it is a governmental Islamic university that was established to be the College of Sharia, and then several new colleges with various specializations in scientific research, business administration, engineering, technology, medicine, education, and so on. Umm Al-Qura University is located on Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Road in Makkah.


King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST)

King Abdullah University of Science and Technology which was established in 2009, is a private and international research university located an hour away from Jeddah. The university is dedicated to advancing science and technology through research and innovation.


Jazan University

Jazan University is a public research university founded in 2006, and it is the only university in the region and one of the largest public, non-profit higher education institutions in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It includes several faculties such as medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, engineering, computer, and information technology, applied medical sciences, science, business administration, and these colleges are granted a bachelor’s degree in several subjects.


Imam Abdul Rahman bin Faisal University (IAU)

Imam Abdul Rahman bin Faisal public University is among the top 1000 world universities according to the “Times” ranking, and according to the QS classification, it is the 581st globally and 51st in the Arab world. The university is based in Dammam and offers a large number of specializations for bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs.


Al Qassim University (QU)

Al Qassim University is one of the top universities in Saudi Arabia. It is a public university that was established in 2004 jointly by King Saud University and Imam Muhammad bin Saud Islamic University. The university has many faculties with various subjects, including medicine, engineering, information technology, agriculture, management and economics, art, and design. Al-Qassim University is located in Al-Buraydah, Al-Qassim City, north of Prince Nayef Airport.

Requirements for the admission of foreign students at Saudi universities

The requirements for foreign students vary from one university to another in Saudi Arabia, but in general:

  • The student must submit documents to prove his previous academic qualifications.
  • The student must prove his proficiency in English and sometimes Arabic in some programs and specializations.
  • The student must present his official papers and his own passport.
  • The student must obtain a scholarship from a university in Saudi Arabia in order to obtain a study visa from the Saudi embassies.
  • When the student arrives in Saudi Arabia, he can receive a free residence for the duration of the study, and this is done based on a letter from the university that offered him the scholarship.

Government scholarships for non-Saudi students

The Saudi government is offering grants to non-Saudis residing outside the Kingdom, and the conditions for these grants are:

  • The minimum age for a student is 17 years, with a limit of 25 years to join the university.
  • This student should not have previously obtained a scholarship from a Saudi university.
  • For the student to authenticate certificates and documents from all the competent authorities in his country, and also from the embassy.
  • To have a certificate that he does not have any security precedents in his country.
  • The student passes the medical examination.

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