Frequently asked Questions

General Education:

Students:

How can I use ministry portal ?
A student can benefit from services offered through electronic portal like viewing exam results and more by logging into student services and selecting the required service.

How can I find useful links on the portal?
All services that student can use are to be found on student services page.

What are the pages that were designed for me and how can I reach them?
Student services page lists all services designed for students and also Noor system services made for students.

How can I reach my school site on the portal?
School information is published in the general services page.

Teachers:

How can a teacher view their personal information?
They can view all their personal or teaching role information by logging into Noor System and clicking on Personal Information. It is also possible to use Teachers Portal to know the services offered by ministry available to them by opening teacher services page.

How can I get my teaching schedule?
You can view your schedule from homepage > from the main menu select teaching schedule. It will show the schedule and present daily and weekly views of your classes.

Can a teacher track a student progress?
Yes. Once teacher is authorized by school headmaster, this service enables tracking a given student on class level, view students registered in a class and track their discipline and behavior profile.

How can a teacher enter marks or skill assessments for classes they teach?
They can do so from the homepage > from the main menu select marks > select the course and marks duration as in the following table.

How can teacher enter homework for students registered in their class?
They can do it in Homework section.
Homepage > main menu then select Homework. For example, they can enter: exercise number + page number + delivered by day, as shown in the following table.

How can a teacher know absence and lateness information?
They can view it by authorization of school headmaster. See the example following table.

Parents and Guardians:

How can I use ministry portal?
Parents can benefit from services offered through the electronic portal by logging into parent services page and selecting the required service.

How can I find useful links on the portal?
All services that parent can use are to be found on parents services page.

How can I track my children through the portal?
Parents can track all matters related to their children through student services page and the relevant links in Noor System.

How can I contact the school through the portal?
School information is published in the general services page.

What are the links that are relevant to parents in ministry portal? 
Links to Noor System.

Are there maps to help me reach a school? 
School information is published in the general services page.

Higher Education:

The Custodian of the two Holy Mosques' Scholarship Program:

How can one get a scholarship to study abroad?
One can get a scholarship through the following:
  • The Custodian of two Holy Mosques' Scholarship Program 
  • Joining scholarship program

I am a scholarship student, scholarship duration ended but my studies didn't, can I extend the scholarship?
You can extend scholarship through submission of a scholarship extension request to the Saudi cultural mission in the study host country.

When does student disbursement starts?
It starts from their date of arrival to the study host country.

How can I find universities that are recommended to enroll at?
Ministry have prepared a website that present all recommended universities worldwide. You can view them in Jameaa Services.

How can I apply at the scholarship program?
  • National newspapers announce the scholarship program application dates, schedule and the terms of application. 
  • Applicants files are reviewed. 
  • Accepted applicants are announced. 
  • Ministry starts communication with universities for student admission and enrollment.

What is the next step after accepted applicants are announced?
All accepted applicants will be notified with the date of a forum where they get academic, awareness and cultural orientation sessions and receive their study acceptance letters.

What shall I do if I didn't receive the acceptance letter at the forum?
You should wait until notified by mobile text message or email. If you did not receive an acceptance letter during this period you should contact the ministry, some delays might happen due to differences of study calendars and commencement dates from a country to another.

What is the procedure after accepted applicants are announced?
The procedure goes as follows:
  • Applicant apply for entry visa at the embassy of the study host country. 
  • Complete scholarship decision requirements and submit them to the scholarship program for the decision to be issued. 
  • Apply for an embarkation order at the budget department. 
  • Get travel tickets from Al Tayyar travel agency at the scholarship department in Al Ghadeer district, Riyadh.

What are scholarship decision issuance requirements?
The requirements are :
  • A copy of the language program acceptance letter from university or institute.
  • Copy of the travel passport and the entry visa.
  • Copy of National ID card or Family Register for female students.
  • Copy of travel passport, entry visa and National ID card for guardian whom is companion with the female student.
  • Copy of the graduation document and the marks transcript, or equivalency letter for the certificate if it was issued from non-Saudi institution.
  • Copy of student General Aptitude Test (GAT) score report for secondary school students.
  • Filling out and signing of female student obligation form.
  • For brother companions, they shall submit a power of attorney document of his father allowing him to accompany his sister.
  • Copy of the good character and conduct letter.

How can I get the entry visa?
Applicant may need to visit the embassy of the country one plan to study in.

Do I need a financial guarantee letter or a letter from the ministry?
  • The scholarship department may issue the financial guarantee or the request letter if the embassy request such.
  • Applicant shall make available a copy of their travel passport, copies of companions' passports if there are companions, university conditional acceptance letter, medical checkup report for countries requesting such and the criminal record certificate for countries requesting so.
  • The 2007 batch of scholarship applicants to Australia, United Kingdom, New Zealand and USA need no prior letter to embassies of these countries.

How can I get the student obligations form (for both genders)?
Applicants can get this form by visiting ministry headquarters or find it at ministry website.

What are the requirements of embarkation order?
Embarkation order requires:
  • Original passports of applicant and their companions, if any. 
  • Copy of the passport.
  • Copy of the scholarship decision.
  • Copy of entry visas of applicant and companions if any for countries requesting entry visas from Saudi nationals. 
  • copy of National ID from single applicants and Family Card for companions if any.

Can one transfer from a university or language institute to another?
In general, students are not allowed to transfer. In cases of strict necessity a student shall write a letter pointing reasons for the transfer, to be reviewed by a committee and decide upon.

Is it permitted for applicant to postpone their scholarship, What is the maximum postponement duration?
Scholarship postponement is not permitted, given that the scholarship program is annual and has set deadlines and schedules.

What are the hospitals or health centers to get the medical check report required for visa issuance?
Embassies that require medical reports have health centers that they approve of, check with the embassy.

What is the criminal record? How can I get it?
Some host countries require a criminal record or a clear one to grant entry visa for studying. In this case, student should visit ministry and give a letter to the Criminal Evidence Division to request the record, obtain it and submit it to the embassy of the country which asked for such record.

If ministry have made available the language institute program acceptance and not the university program acceptance, should the student, male or female alike, look for a university program acceptance?
It is necessary to get a university program acceptance and submit it to the culture mission to proceed with study during the language studies period in the country.

How can I update my personal information like any update on my passport, national ID, guardian or my e-Mail account?
You have to visit the ministry and update your information with aid of a staff member.

What to do if there is a difference in my first or last name between the passport and the certificate?
All your official documents shall refer to same and exact information.

My name was misspelled in the acceptance letter, what shall I do?
Please refer to answer 14 on updating your information.

What are the financial allotments for scholarship students?
The financial allotments are in the following table.

Is it allowed for the companion of a student to study? What is the process to do so?
Saudi companions may apply to join the scholarship program after arrival in the host country by submitting a university acceptance letter and a scholarship program application to the cultural mission.

What is the minimum age of the guardian?
The accepted minimum age of a guardian is 18 years.

Are there any requirements from the Non-Saudi guardian? Is one entitled for any allotments?
Non-Saudi guardians are not entitled to financial allotments.

Is it allowed for a guardian to receive the travel embarkation order?
Yes it is.

Is it necessary for the guardian to accompany the student all of the study duration? Can the guardian accompany the student until host country arrival, leave student and return later just when it is necessary?
It is required for the companion guardian to be in the study country all along the scholarship duration. Failure to do so will harm the allotments of student and guardian and risk cancellation of the scholarship.

Is the companion allowed to work in the study host country?
Student and their companion are not allowed to work in the study host country as per the immigration laws of the host country.

If the applying companion is on the job in government, are there any requirements for him?
After the student scholarship decision is issued, she can get a letter from the scholarship department stating that she is to study abroad and that her companion (e.g. her father, brother or husband) will accompany her, so that the companion can submit this letter to his employer.

Are there travel requirements for scholarship applicants who were born in USA?
Students and companions who were born in United States do not need an entry visa from USA embassy.

Will ministry guarantee education of my children?
Ministry guarantee the education of student children of six years and up, in accordance with the mandatory education system of the host country.

When is a student stipend paid?
Disbursement on student starts from the date they arrive at the host country. It is required that student enters the country within one month duration before study commencement.

Certificate Equivalency:

What does certificate equivalency' mean?
Certificate equivalency is an academic process that aims to provide comprehensive evaluation of an academic qualification, which entails comparisons of academic levels, prerequisites and other conditions as well. Please click here for more information.

What are the terms and regulations of certificate equivalency?
Complete terms and regulations can be found here.

What are the certificate equivalency process requirements?
Equivalency process requirements are available here.

What are the aims of equivalency?
Aims of the Equivalency:
  • Equivalency aims to issue a decision whether the certificate considered is equivalent to an academic certificate of the approved academic certificate ladder of Saudi Arabia.
  • Recognition of the academic certificate entails recognizing it as equivalent to its corresponding national certificate and let holder acquire the same rights and privileges that the corresponding national certificate provides.

What are the goals of equivalency?
Goals of Equivalency:
  • Seeking admission into a higher academic level than the one completed by the certificate.
  • Finding a job in a government office or a government-owned corporation. Getting a job promotion.
  • Practicing a certain profession and providing consultation services.
  • Acquisition of citizenship by naturalization.

Is residency in the study host country a mandatory requirement for certificate equivalency?
Yes. Being regular full time student and residency in study hosting country is a requirement for equivalency, particularly in associate, bachelors and high diploma levels. Nevertheless, residency in the whole duration of studying for Masters or Doctorate levels is not required, as described in the following:

1. University level:

Mode of the study of the Bachelor program, or equivalent, or of the previous levels, should require regularity, full time and residency of students.

2. Graduate and Post Graduate levels:

  • In essence, students at graduate and post-graduate levels should conduct their study as regular, fulltime and resident students.
  • Student may study for Master level above Bachelor part-time in the country of study for the minimal period of one academic year, as long as that this period is continuous and dedicated for the Master study.
  • Student may study for Doctorate level part-time in the country of study for the minimal period of two academic years, as long as that each year of this period is continuous and both years are dedicated for the requirements of the Doctorate program.
  • Student may study for Doctorate level above Bachelor (not preceded by Master degree) part-time in the country of study for the minimal period of three academic years, as long as that each year of this period is continuous and all years are dedicated for the requirements of the Doctorate program.
  • Committee may review the cases short of the minimum regularity, full-time and residency requirements stipulated in paragraphs (A), (B) if they meet the following criteria:

  1. Studying as regular and fulltime student residing in the host country for a duration not less than an academic semester for Masters or equal for Doctorate programs preceded by Masters, as long as each of these semesters is continuous ( a minimum of fifteen weeks constitute a semester).
  2. Proof of frequency of student visits to the host country of a semester for Masters and three semesters for Doctorate programs that are preceded by Masters.
  3. Publishing or acceptance of an academic paper for Masters or two papers for Doctorate students, extracted from the thesis or dissertation submitted in pursuance of the degree sought, in specialty academic reviewed journal or in a specialty academic conference of peer review. For the doctorate equivalency applications, any of the two papers might not be extracted from the dissertation.
  4. Program must be accredited academically or professionally by a national, regional or international agency.
  5. Applicant must be holder of bachelor’s degree graded 'good' at least.
  6. The equivalency decision shall include the statement (evaluating how academically and vocationally efficient the degree holder is left to the organization seeking to employ the person).
  7. This decision is effective from HE Minister approval date. It is also retroactively applied to those who acquired their qualifications five years before this approval date (Decision no. 1427/52/1 dated 12-12-2006).

What are the general requirements concerning equivalency of educational qualification certificates?
There is a number of requirements stated in the operational rules of the certificate equivalency bylaw, here are some requirements:
  • The educational institution and the program one enrolled in have to be recommended by the ministry.
  • Previous degrees have to be granted from Saudi Arabia or equalized by the certificate equivalency committee.
  • Programs are regularly consecutive and that there is no high overlapping between any of them.
  • Completion of study credit hours or duration requirements for granting the educational qualification or academic degree under evaluation.
  • Completing required academic curricula and coursework, both theoretical and practical, for granting the educational qualification or academic degree.
  • Also meeting of relevant evaluation systems and program admission requirements at the educational institution granting the certificate. Meeting full time, regularity and residency at the study host country requirements.
  • Receiving sufficient research training and supervision, especially for graduate study levels' students.
  • Conformity with bases and regulations detailed in the educational system and ladder of Saudi Arabia, which will later be substituted by the national qualifications framework administered by Education and Training Evaluation Commission after attaining approval of competent authorities.

On what bases university gives recommendation?
  1. Ministry have formulated a set of criteria through which it is possible to assess the quality level of certain educational institution among individual countries and based on this a recommendation status is reached.
  2. Extensive institutional information items are sourced from several references, reviewed and assessed against aforementioned criteria to bring forth a list of universities and institutions recommended in a given country.
Most prominent of these criteria are:
  • National, regional or international reputation of the institution.
  • Institutional accreditation status by the national (host country) accreditation agencies.
  • Program-level accreditation status by the national (host country) accreditation agencies.
  • Professional accreditation or recognition of academic programs in the professional specialties the institution provides by relevant associations and professional accreditation agencies in the country and abroad.
  • Academic structure and technical infrastructure.
  • Admission requirements and degree awarding prerequisites.
  • Number of faculty members, their academic qualifications and degrees and ratios to number of students.

What are the information sources that are referenced?
Although the educational system and ladder of Saudi Arabia is considered the basic reference for conducting the equalization, there is a number of sources referenced to figure more on the education systems worldwide. These include:

General higher education references:
Several international and regional organizations publish references in the form of books and volumes that contain higher education systems and institution lists of all Arab and foreign countries. Example organizations are UNESCO and Association of Arab Universities.

National higher education references:
These are periodic publications, directories or references published by a country that enlists the recognized educational institutions and the academic ladder of the country.

Information available on the internet:
Some educational institutions provide detailed information on its establishment history, their colleges and degrees they award. They also publish full program information on their websites.

Recently, there is an increase of published information on higher education topics in general and nation-specific higher education data. These come as free to access resources and in subscription-based specialized databases.

Equalization decisions of other countries:
These are issued by other Arab and foreign countries and is considered an important source as they contain the evaluation decision and details released by the competent authorities issuing these certificates.

It should be noted that committee is not dedicated to literal adherence to these equalization decisions but, instead, they are considered helpful at identification of the nations' view of such academic certificate.

What are the types of certificates that could be equalized by the ministry?

Academic Certificates:
University certificate equivalency committee reviews the several certificates awarded by non-Saudi tertiary education institutions, these include diplomas, bachelors, masters, doctorates, their likes, degrees in-between and other academic qualifications as well.

Professional or Vocational Certificates:
Some professional or vocational certificates of which there is no competent equalization organization to review are reviewed by the committee.

What are the types of certificates that are not reviewed for the purpose of equalization by the ministry?
University certificate equivalency committee does not review the following cases:
  • Secondary certificates or below, these fall within the competency of Ministry of Education.
  • Training courses and workshops and experience certificates.
  • Equalization of subspecialty, fellowship and membership certificates in medical science since these fall within the competency of Saudi Commission for Health Specialties.
  • Education not leading to a qualification.

Could non-academic certificates for educational engagements from 1 to 3 years, such as training courses, conference attendance, completion of habilitation program, English language program provided by institutes, an event participation certificate, could these be equalized to an academic degree to in pursuance of a higher study level?
Non-academic certificates, regardless of their count or study durations are not equalized unless they lead to a certain academic degree. For example, programs for applicants with experience that admits, after other experienced program prerequisites are met, holders of diplomas of 60 accredited credit hours course loads or two academic years (not counting the preparatory or foundation year) to higher education masters, yield degrees that are not equalized by the ministry.

How can student figure out if a ministry recommends, or not, a given institution to study at? What are the approved study disciplines in such institutions?
All students are advised to visit General Department of University Certificate Equivalency at the ministry or the Saudi Cultural Mission in the host country they plan to study in to know educational institutions not recommended and those recommended and approved study disciplines at these institutions. Students can also refer to the recommended universities lists available at ministry website.

Are there study modes ore methods abroad of which their certificates are not equalized by ministry?
Yes. Studying at branches or centers affiliated to universities or colleges in a city other than the headquarters of the original university by a specific teaching method and approach that permits study taking place at such centers or branches and certificate granted by the Alma mater.
  • Study by affiliation (a program that does not require full time attendance or residence).
  • Correspondence program.
  • Study at weekends or holidays.
  • Distance education program.
  • Education programs designed for specific target students.
  • Study through video tapes or cassettes.
  • Programs after agreements with training centers, institutions or universities, inside or outside the kingdom, where some courses are learnt at these centers or institute and the remaining courses are to be learnt at the university granting the certificate.
  • Continuous education programs.
  • Internet-based and email-based education programs.

Other:

How many government universities are there in Saudi Arabia? 
There are 30 government universities in the Kingdom. State Universities page has more details. 

What are the private universities that hold Ministry of Education recognition status? 
Private Higher Education Universities page has a list of all recognized universities. 

What are the licensing procedures of private universities? 
Licensing and Accreditation page provides more information on this topic.
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