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Study Abroad in Egypt: All you need to know

Everyone knows of Egypt as one of the oldest civilizations on the planet and the home of the pyramids, but do you know that it is also fast emerging as a study destination for International students? The rapidly developing education system of Egypt is one of the largest in North Africa and the Middle East.

Home to 20 public universities and 23 private institutions offering undergraduate and graduate programs, Egypt also has many foreign universities setting up satellite campuses in the country.

The increased focus on attracting international students to their courses has resulted in Egypt being ranked as one of the top 20 destinations for international students in the world by UNESCO. Egypt hosts almost 50,000 students from various countries around the world.


Egypt might seem a surprising choice for studying abroad, but there are many reasons you should choose the home of the pyramids:

  1. Well-respected Universities – Top Egyptian universities routinely feature in the QS World University Rankings and are considered some of the best in Africa and the World. Egypt’s capital city of Cairo, too, features as one of the best cities for International students as per the QS Best Student Cities in the world rankings.
  2. Low Costs – Living costs are relatively low in Egypt, especially compared to Western study destinations. Tuition fees are also quite affordable – they are charged on a per-credit-hour basis, with an average cost of USD 500 per-credit-hour, or around USD 10,000 on average for the entire course.
  3. Culture – Studying in Egypt is also a chance to explore Egypt’s culture – a unique fusion of Africa, Middle East and the Mediterranean. The prospect of exploring some of the world’s most renowned historic sites, including the Great Pyramids, the Temples of Karnak and the Valley of the Kings itself constitutes as one of the main reasons for international students to consider Egypt.


  1. American University in Cairo – Ranked 365th in the world rankings and 5th in the Arab region, the American University in Cairo also features in the top 100 for development studies, as well as the top 200 for modern languages in the QS World University Ranking by Subject.
  2. Cairo University – One of Egypt’s oldest universities, Cairo University is ranked 551-600 in the world and 10th in the Arab region. The university also appears in the rankings by subject eight times, with a position in the worldwide top 150 for pharmacy and pharmacology.
  3. Ain Shams University – Ranked 12th in the Arab region, Ain Shams has a five-star rating for teaching in the QS Stars university rating system, and also ranks within the top 400 universities in the world to study medicine.
  4. Alexandria University – Ranked 14th in the Arab region, Alexandria University is quite large with over 150,000 students enrolled in various courses and disciplines.


Most of the top universities in Egypt conduct courses in English. If you are a non-native speaker, you will need to submit your TOEFL or IELTS scores to provide proof of English proficiency. In general, you will require the following documents to apply to a university in Egypt:

  1. Photocopy of passport
  2. A recent medical report showing your physical and mental capability of completing university-level work
  3. A bank statement showing you or your sponsor has sufficient funds to cover tuition fees and living costs, or proof that you’ve received a scholarship
  4. Original mark-sheets and certificates


Unlike other countries, you cannot apply for a student visa at a consulate in your home country. No consulate outside of Egypt is authorised to issue student visas, so you will have to enter Egypt on a tourist visa and then upgrade to a student visa once within the country.

Once you’re in Egypt, you will need to demonstrate the following:

  1. You have a confirmed place on a course at a recognised education institution
  2. You have sufficient funds in place to support yourself during your studies
  3. You have registered with your local police station with seven days of your arrival
  4. You have started your student visa application within 30 days of arriving in Egypt

International students cannot work in Egypt for the duration of their stay.


Many Egyptian universities offer scholarships to international students on the basis of merit or need. American University in Cairo, for example, offers both need-based and merit-based scholarships to non-Egyptian students who have been admitted to the university.

Apart from scholarships by Egyptian Universities, you may also apply for other international scholarships for Indian students to study anywhere outside India.

Abhishek Saluja

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