MBZUAI
Mohamed Bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence Mohamed Bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence

Admissions

At MBZUAI, we offer an array of graduate programs designed for the pursuit of advanced specialized knowledge and skills in artificial intelligence. Our dedicated faculty and staff provide encouragement and guidance to enable you to make the right choices. Applicants must satisfy the following minimum requirements to apply for the MBZUAI programs.

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Admission
Deadlines

MSc & PhD Programs

Fall 2021 Intake (August 2021)
Admission Deadline
Applications for Computer Science and Machine Learning programs
15th April 2021
Applications for Natural Language Processing programs
15th May 2021

Admission Requirements

MSc Programs

  • Completed Degree

    Bachelor’s degree in a S.T.E.M field such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and other relevant Science and Engineering majors, from a university accredited or recognized by the UAE Ministry of Education. Students should have a minimum CGPA of 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale) or equivalent.

    Applicants must provide their completed degree certificates and transcripts (in English) when submitting their application. Senior-level students can apply initially with a copy of their transcript and expected graduation letter and upon admission must submit official completed degree certificate and transcript. A degree attestation (for degrees from the UAE) or an equivalency certificate (for degrees acquired outside the UAE) should also be furnished within their first semester at the university.

  • English Language Proficiency (for applications submitted from Fall 2021 intake onwards): Each applicant has to show proof of English language ability by providing valid certificate copies of either of the following:
    • Standard TOEFL iBT with a minimum total score of 90 
    • IELTS Academic with a minimum overall score of 6.5
    • EmSAT English with a minimum score of 1550

     

    TOEFL iBT and IELTS Academic certificates are valid for two (2) years from the date of the exam while EmSAT results are valid for eighteen (18) months.

    Waiver requests from eligible applicants who are citizens (by passport or nationality) of UK, USA, Australia, and New Zealand who completed their studies from K-12 until Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree (if applicable) from those same countries will be processed. They need to submit notarized copies of their documents during the application stage and attested documents upon admission. Waiver decisions will be given within seven days after receiving all requirements.

  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

    General Test certificate is optional and submitting one will be considered a plus during the evaluation.

  • Statement of Purpose: In an 800-word essay, please explain why you would like to pursue a graduate degree at MBZUAI and include the following information:
    • Motivation for applying to the university
    • Personal and academic background and how it makes you suitable for the program you are applying for
    • Stand-out achievements, e.g., awards, distinction, etc.
    • Goals as a prospective student
    • Preferred career path and plans after graduation
    • Any other details that will support the application
  • Entry Exam: Selected applicants will be invited to participate in an entry exam that will include questions related to the following topics:

    Math: basic Math questions related to calculus, probability theory, linear algebra and optimisation

    You are recommended to read about these topics especially on how they are related to Machine Learning. You can find tons of materials online. For instance, you can search “linear algebra for machine learning” on YouTube and get to see many video lectures. In addition, you can find courses on sites like Coursera, Udemy, and many others. 

    Machine Learning

    MSc applicants: No previous background is needed

    Programming

    MSc applicants: You will be asked basic programming questions. Most questions are in Python but the specific language is not a problem since the questions are algorithmic rather than language-specific. Basic understanding about different data structures such as Arrays, Stacks, Queues, etc is important. In addition, It is also important to read about different programming algorithms such as sorting and searching algorithms, and complexity. You will be asked questions which require finding the output of a piece of code, finding the problem/error in a short code, and finding the code which performs a specific task.

    The exam instructions are available through this link.

  • Admission Interview

PhD Programs

  • Completed Degree

    Bachelor’s degree in a S.T.E.M field such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and other relevant Science and Engineering majors, from a university accredited or recognized by the UAE Ministry of Education (MoE) which demonstrates academic distinction in a discipline appropriate for the doctoral degree. Students should have a minimum CGPA of 3.5 (on a 4.0 scale) or equivalent.

    OR

    Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in S.T.E.M fields such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and other relevant Science and Engineering majors, from a university accredited or recognized by the UAE Ministry of Education (MoE). Students should have a minimum CGPA of 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale) or equivalent.

    Applicants must provide their completed degree certificates and transcripts (in English) when submitting their application. Senior-level students can apply initially with a copy of their transcript and expected graduation letter and upon admission must submit official completed degree certificate and transcript. A degree attestation (for degrees from the UAE) or an equivalency certificate (for degrees acquired outside the UAE) should also be furnished within their first semester at the university

  • English Language Proficiency (for applications submitted from Fall 2021 intake onwards. Each applicant has to show proof of English language ability by providing valid certificate copies of either of the following:
    • Standard TOEFL iBT with a minimum total score of 90
    • IELTS Academic with a minimum overall score of 6.5
    • EmSAT English with a minimum score of 1550

     

    TOEFL iBT and IELTS Academic certificates are valid for two (2) years from the date of the exam while EmSAT results are valid for eighteen (18) months.

    Waiver requests from eligible applicants who are citizens (by passport or nationality) of UK, USA, Australia, and New Zealand who completed their studies from K-12 until Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree (if applicable) from those same countries will be processed. They need to submit notarized copies of their documents during the application stage and attested documents upon admission. Waiver decisions will be given within seven days after receiving all requirements.

  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE)

    A valid Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test certificate with the following minimum scores is mandatory for applicants applying with only a Bachelor’s degree:

    • 150 in Verbal Reasoning
    • 150 in Quantitative Reasoning
    • 3.0 in Analytical Writing

    It is optional for applicants with both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees and submitting one will be considered a plus during the evaluation.

  • Statement of Purpose: In an 800-word essay, please explain why you would like to pursue a graduate degree at MBZUAI and include the following information:
    • Motivation for applying to the university
    • Personal and academic background and how it makes you suitable for the program you are applying for
    • Stand-out achievements, e.g., awards, distinction, etc.
    • Goals as a prospective student
    • Preferred career path and plans after graduation
    • Any other details that will support the application
  • Research Statement: The Research Statement should summarize the potential research project an applicant is interested in working on and clearly justify the research gap which the applicant would like to fill in over the course of his/her study. It must be presented in the context of currently existing literature and provide an overview of how the applicant aims to investigate the underlying research project as well as predict  the expected outcomes. It should mention the relevance and suitability of the applicant’s background and experience to the project and highlight the project’s scientific and commercial significance. The research statement should include the following details:
    • Title
    • Problem definition
    • Literature review
    • Proposed research/methods/solution (optional)
    • Study timeline (a table, figure or a small paragraph presenting your plans for the 4 years in the PhD program)
    • List of references
    Applicants are expected to write the research statement independently. MBZUAI faculty will NOT help write it for the purpose of the application. The MBZUAI selection team will review the submitted document and use it as one of the measures to gauge and assess applicants’ skills.
  • Entry Exam: Selected applicants will be invited to participate in an entry exam that will include questions related to the following topics:


    Math: basic Math questions related to calculus, probability theory, linear algebra and optimisation

    You are recommended to read about these topics especially on how they are related to Machine Learning. You can find tons of materials online. For instance, you can search “linear algebra for machine learning” on YouTube and get to see many video lectures. In addition, you can find courses on sites like Coursera, Udemy, and many others.

    Machine Learning

    PhD applicants: Basic understanding of different machine learning algorithms and concepts such as linear regression, decision trees, loss functions, support vector machines, classification, regression, clustering, convolutional neural networks, etc is important. You don’t have to master these concepts but you need to have basic knowledge especially PhD applicants. They are a lot of online courses and tutorial to get you prepared. You will find video lectures on YouTube, Coursera, Udemy, and many others.

    Programming

    PhD applicants: Strong programming background is important. You will be asked programming questions. Most questions are in Python but the specific language is not a problem since the questions are algorithmic rather than language-specific. Therefore, it is important to read about different data structures such as Arrays, Stacks, Queues, etc. It is also important to read about different programming algorithms such as sorting and searching algorithms, and complexity. You will be asked questions which require finding the output of a piece of code, finding the problem/error in a short code, and finding the code which performs a specific task.

    The exam instructions are available through this link.

  • Admission Interview

Target Applicants

MSc Programs: MBZUAI accepts applicants from all nationalities who hold a Bachelor’s degree in S.T.E.M fields, such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and other relevant Engineering majors, without the need of prior working experience.

PhD Programs: MBZUAI accepts applicants from all nationalities who hold a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in S.T.E.M fields, such as Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Mathematics, Physics and other relevant Engineering majors, without the need of prior working experience. Having programming and coding skills are preferable.

Admission Process

To apply for any of the MSc programs offered by the University, each applicant must submit a complete application. More details available once registered, in the personal dashboard.

Program Tuition fees

All admitted students on full-time basis are granted upon acceptance the privilege to complete their study with a full scholarship including 100% tuition fees, accommodation , health insurance and other benefits.

Stipend

A monthly allowance will be provided to all admitted students during their study period at MBZUAI. However, and in order to maintain their scholarships, stipends and other benefits, students are expected to maintain high academic standing, comply with the University code of conduct and fulfill certain requirements during their study tenure.

Part-time Students

Part-time studies are available subject to tuition fees and approval by the admission committee. Part-time students are subject to the same admission requirements.

Scholarship

All admitted students on full-time basis are granted  the privilege to complete their study with a full scholarship, including 100% tuition, a monthly stipend and many more benefits. However, and in order to maintain their scholarships, stipends and other benefits, students are expected to maintain high academic standing, comply with the University code of conduct and fulfill certain requirements during their study tenure.

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Students

Applicants are welcome from all countries and nationalities. Admission and acceptance to the programs will be based on high academic standing, and based on merit. 
MBZUAI aims to create a campus environment that values and promotes a culture of inclusion and development.

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Transfer Students

MBZUAI will be accepting transfer students for its programs, who meet the following guidelines:

Dot Students transferring from a federal or licensed institution in the UAE, or a foreign institution of higher learning based outside the UAE and accredited in its home country, are eligible for transfer admission.
Dot Students must meet the English language proficiency requirements for the program to which they seek to transfer.
Dot Students will only be allowed to transfer to MBZUAI only if they meet the MBZUAI unconditional admission requirements.
Dot All entering transfer students to present certification (TOEFL or IELTS) demonstrating the required scores for full admission as per the admission guidelines.
Dot The submission of official transcripts showing all academic work work attempted at all institutions attended.
Dot Transfers will only be permitted for students who are in good academic standing and who are eligible to return to their current or former institution.
Dot The limit for the number of transfer credits which may be accepted for a specific degree program is 6 Credit Hours for MSc, and 9 Credit Hours to PhD.
Dot Transfer only credits which were offered at the appropriate graduate level, and which have learning outcomes comparable to those of MBZUAI programs.
Dot Transferable credits which would be considered are credits which were offered at the appropriate graduate level, and have learning outcomes comparable to those of MBZUAI programs.
Dot MBZUAI will accept the transfer of credits only for courses relevant to the degree that provide equivalent learning outcomes and in which the student earned a grade of B (3.0 on a 4.0 scale) or better.
Dot MBZUAI will not accept to credit the same course (or substantially the same course) taken at two different institutions twice.
MBZUAI Admission Committee will have the ultimate right to reject the transfer requests for any student.

Office of Admissions

We welcome our applicant's queries and encourage you to visit and contact us.

Where to find us

Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence
Building 1B, Masdar City
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
24°25'57.4"N 54°37'07.3"E

Contact Information

Email: admission@mbzuai.ac.ae
Office: +971 2 811 3331
Mobile: +971 54 581 4450

Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence
Masdar City, Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates

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