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Higher Colleges of Technology

Sunday 18 March 2018 (UAE)   

Higher Colleges of Technology in Abu Dhabi

College name Higher Colleges of Technology
Director's name Mohammad Hassan Omran Al Shamsi (Chancellor)
Executive body or owner UAE Federal Institute
Date founded 1992
Number of students (approx) 17,000
Number of staff (approx)
Type of institute government non-profit college
College location / area (no map)
Postal address PO Box 25026, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Telephone +971-2-6814600
Fax +971-2-6815833
Website www.hct.ac.ae (new window)
Curriculum UAE
College fees
Instructor salary range 12,000-22,000 dhs per month (2008-2009)
Student satisfaction rating
2 stars from 216 votes.    
Parent satisfaction rating
1 star from 53 votes.    
Instructor job satisfaction rating
(by instructors, not about instructors)
1.5 stars from 77 votes.    

Higher Colleges of Technology admissions, reviews, notes

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Higher Colleges of Technology profile
  • The Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) is a UAE federal system of business and technical vocational tertiary colleges established for for Emirati students, with colleges in most large cities in the UAE.
  • Teaching (except for Arabic) is in English with multinational teaching staff.
  • Education is free although there are occasionally costs for items such as laptop computers - depending on which emirate the college is in.
  • Funding comes from the federal government, and the government of each emirate will contribute to a greater or lesser extent to local colleges.
  • Colleges are segregated for male and female students but staff of both sexes teach at either male or female colleges.
  • There are HCT campuses in the cities and towns of Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, Dubai, Fujairah, Khalifa City, Madinat Zayed, Ras Al Khaimah, Ruwais, and Sharjah.
  • Subjects include Aviation, Business, Ecommerce, Engineering, Finance, IT, Nursing, Tourism - not all subjects are offered at all colleges.
  • PO Box in contact details is for Central Services in Abu Dhabi. Each college has their own contact details on the relevant information pages.
  • Total of 20,000 students enrolled at 18 branches of the HCT in 2010 (which started with 200 students in 1989). Total number of graduates - 48,000. Total teaching staff 3,000 with about 1.8% Emiratis (2.2% in 2009, 2.4% in 2008) (Khaleej Times 03 November 2010).
HCT budget
  • 2011-2012 HCT budget allowance of AED 900 million, expenditure reportedly AED 1.1 billion or more (The National 07 September 2011).
  • 2007-2010 - HCT budget frozen at AED 736 million since 2007 with costs increasing to AED 928 million by 2009 (The National 03 November 2010).
  • Staff salaries, housing and services accounted for 83% of the HCT budget for 2010.
Teaching jobs at the Higher Colleges of Technology
  • For teachers, the HCT is one of the better educational institutes in the UAE to seek employment, although there are significant variations between colleges, with some directors getting rather more criticism than you'd normally expect management to receive.
  • Dubai Men's College and the Abu Dhabi Colleges have a good reputation (update: how things can change depending on who's in charge - ADWC sounds like a dire place to work if comments made in 2009 and 2010 are to be believed).
  • Dubai Women's College is good if you are competent and efficient.
  • Sharjah seems to be the source of the most grumbling - usually directed at the director.
  • Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah have mixed reports, possibly good places if you like to be off the beaten track.
  • Madinat Zayed is relatively new, comments in the forum are welcomed from anyone there, or any of the other colleges.
  • Or search through one of the online TESOL/EFL teacher forums like Daves ESL Cafe for comments from unhappy teachers with an axe to grind.
Lecturer, instructor, teacher salaries at HCT
  • 2012 - merit pay increase of 2% and 4% cost of living increase awarded in May 2012? Reported in The National 18 May 2012.
  • 2011-2012 cost of living pay increase of 4% abolished due to budget cuts according to a report in The National 07 September 2011.
  • 2011-2012 average teacher salary about AED 20,000 per month (The National 07 September 2011)?
  • 2010-2011 merit pay increases of 2% abolished (The National 13 May 2010).
List of HCT campuses in the UAE
College Founded PO Box Telephone Fax
Academic Services   32092 +971-2-6815654 +971-2-6812637
Central Services   25026 +971-2-6814600 +971-2-6815833
CERT   5464 +971-2-4433955 +971-2-4462050

Abu Dhabi Men's College ADM 1988 25035 +971-2-4451514 +971-2-4451571
Abu Dhabi Women's College ADW 1988 41012 +971-2-6413839 +971-2-6413456
Al Ain Men's College AAM 1988 17155 +971-3-7820888 +971-3-7820099
Al Ain Women's College AAW 1988 17258 +971-3-7820777 +971-3-7820066
Dubai Men's College DBM 1989 15825 +971-4-3260333 +971-4-3260303
Dubai Women's College DBW 1989 16062 +971-4-2672929 +971-4-2673939
Fujairah Men's College FJM 2004 4114 +971-9-2222112 +971-9-2222113
Fujairah Women's College FJW 1999 1626 +971-9-2281212 +971-9-2281313
Khalifa City Women's College 2009 41012³ +971-2-6578000 +971-2-6578140
Madinat Zayed Men's College MZM 2007 58855 +971-2-8943700 +971-2-8849081
Madinat Zayed Women's College MZW 2007 58855 +971-2-8943700 +971-2-8849081
Ras Al Khaimah Men's RKM 1993 4793 +971-7-2212999¹ +971-7-2211611¹
Ras Al Khaimah Women's RKW 1993 4792 +971-7-2210550 +971-7-2210660
Ruwais Men's College RUM 2007 58855² +971-2-8943800 +971-2-8778158
Ruwais Women's College RUW        
Sharjah Men's College SJM 1998 7946 +971-6-5585222 +971-6-5585252
Sharjah Women's College SJW 1997 7947 +971-6-5585333 +971-6-5585353
  1. RKM website has tel 07-2212999 but map has 07-2462999 and fax 07-2461611 which might be for old location.
  2. Ruwais Men's and Women's colleges postal address is PO Box 58855, Madinat Zayed, UAE.
  3. Postal address is PO Box for ADW in Abu Dhabi.
  4. Al Ain Women's College fax number also seen as +971-3-7820766 (might be a typo)?
HCT Accreditation
  • 18 Nov 2010 (WAM) - The Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology - Technology Accreditation Commission (ABET-TAC) in the USA accredited the Civil Engineering Technology Higher Diploma and Bachelor of Applied Science programs for six years. Presumably from 2010-2016, and unclear if only for Abu Dhabi Men's College and Dubai Men's College (where the programs are currently offered), or all HCT colleges if programs are offered in other locations. The WAM report quoted HCT Dean of the Engineering Technology Division, Dr Shakib Farhat, as saying "... HCT will be seeking accreditation from ABET-TAC for the other engineering technology programs this year."
HCT Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) and agreements signed
  • The Department of Economic Development (DED) in Abu Dhabi, has signed a joint cooperation agreement with the Higher Colleges of Technology to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the field of training and development of students and graduates to prepare them for the labor market (WAM news 11 January 2012).
  • Azim Premji University (APU), Bangalore, and HCT signed a cooperation agreement to develop the performance of teachers and professional educators (WAM news 08 December 2011).
  • Pearson Education and HCT signed an MoU to "form a strategic partnership to implement a holistic program to combine a digital placement test, diagnostic assessment and remediation tools, learning analytics and reporting, teacher professional development, and all the required technical infrastructure and integrations" (press release 09 April 2011). Say what?
  • Professor Philip Kotler (an international marketing expert) MOU announced 13 October 2010 (WAM) - to establish an annual World Marketing Forum - Abu Dhabi (WMF), the creation of the Kotler Research Centre (KRC) at CERT in Abu Dhabi, the establishment of the Kotler Chair of Marketing at HCT, and possibly the creation of the WMF Hall of Fame for Excellence in Marketing.
  • University of Plymouth and HCT signed an MOU to develop maritime sciences programs, in particular a degree in Applied Maritime Science. They will also collaborate to develop applied marine research related to the UAE (news release 15 June 2011).
22 July 2012
  • Minimum CEPA high school exam score required for entry raised to 150 from 140 in 2011. Prior to 2011, no minimum entry requirement.
  • Annual budget frozen at AED 735 million until 2013.
22 February 2011 - Masters of Engineering program collaboration with John Hopkins University (press release)
  • Dr Tayeb Kamali, HCT Vice Chancellor announced at IDEX 2011 the launch of a Systems Engineering specialization in its Masters of Engineering program, with a module to be delivered by Johns Hopkins University, as a result of discussions with Raytheon. the defence contractor.
27 May 2010 - HCT Innovation City project design
  • The Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT) is going to develop an HCT Innovation City in Abu Dhabi, which will house a new Abu Dhabi Men's College with capacity for 5,000 students, CERT, and HCT Central Services, according to a media release from Studio Daniel Libeskind (SDL) 27 May 2010.
  • An agreement was signed with architects Studio Daniel Libeskind of New York, USA, and Siemens AG, to design and build the new HCT Innovation City, with project completion date intended for 2014.
  • Siemens will develop building automation and security systems, smart grid, students and faculty processes, e-Learning, connectivity, and potential green energy generation.
13 May 2010
  • The National newspaper had a headline "Pay frozen and job losses loom as UAE universities feel the pinch" referring to Zayed University, UAE University, and the HCT, which seemed rather generous given that the HCT is more of a vocational training institute than a university.
  • Nevertheless, The National was reporting on freezes on staff salaries, a sudden cancellation of merit pay increases (2%) at HCT, a cutting in half of the annual 4% HCT pay rise, and no change in the UAE school fees allowance for children of lecturers instructors which has been a maximum of AED 80,000 for up to 2 children for the past 10 or more years.
  • The thrust of the article seemed to be that such actions would result in greater difficulty in recruiting quality staff, and increased staff turnover. But then, disgruntled teachers have been saying similar things about the HCT ever since the colleges were established in the 1990s, and gruntled teachers have happily continued working there until becoming ungruntled by management de-gruntling policies, or fired. So it's probably a case of steady as she goes Gunga Din, and just remember to keep the students happy.
08 May 2010
  • HCT Abu Dhabi might go into partnership with the Cold Spring Harbour Laboratory (CSHL) in New York, USA to establish a laboratory based genetic research and DNA training center according to a report in the Gulf News 08 May 2010.
  • Dr Bruce Stillman, President of the CSHL, was reported as saying "There are a number of things we are interested in doing and we’ve been talking to the HCT about the idea of boosting science education through a programme CSHL runs called the DNA Learning Centre,"
  • There are CSHL DNA Learning Center branches in Australia, Europe, and Singapore.
16 January 2010
  • Dr Mark Drummond appointed as Provost, and Chief Academic Officer of the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT). Date of appointment September / October 2010? Previously Dr Drummond was Chancellor of the Los Angeles Community College District (from 2007-2009).
  • Dr Tayab Kamali is still Vice-Chancellor of the HCT.
05 November 2009 press release
  • Durham University in the UK and the HCT signed a Memorandum of Understanding on 01 November 2009 with a view to "exploring opportunities for cooperation" including Islamic Finance teaching and research, and possible staff and student exchanges.
25 August 2009
  • A new HCT Khalifa Bin Zayed City HCT opened for female students.
  • Operational head of the HCT is Dr Tayeb Kamali, the Vice-Chancellor, appointed in 2005?
01 December 2005 - large number of HCT management resignations
  • The Khaleej Times reported that a significant number of senior HCT staff had resigned after the appointment of the new Vice-Chancellor, Dr Tayeb Kamali. The KT seemed to think there was a link between the two events, but Dr Kamali apparently said there wasn't, although he did point out it was normal at HCT for a number of people to be "fired for non-performance" every year, which some might argue reflects poorly on HCT management and supervisors (encouraging poor performance via an autocratic leadership style) and the recruitment system (not employing the most suitable teachers for HCT students in the first place).
  • KT reported that Some 25 officials ranking from directors, supervisors and heads of departments primarily from the directorates of Central Services and Academics at HCT, have put in their papers for various reasons, prominent being the alleged change in policy after the new Vice-Chancellor, Dr Taiyeb Kamali, took charge in June this year.
  • Dr Kamali said "Every year, a certain number of people either resign for personal reasons, complete their contract period with HCT, or are fired for non-performance. This is very normal, ... HCT is known for its high performance and high standards in all areas of operations and staff with poor work output cannot continue in their jobs, ... With leadership there is bound to be some changes in the policy and working styles, but this is nothing out of the ordinary,"
  • Some anonymous staff were reported as saying "There is rampant mismanagement at the HCT. The entire Community Relations and Services Department has resigned, in addition to staff from other central and academic services." and "Shaikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Education and Chancellor of HCT, had recently urged for restructuring and reorganising of the HCT. But it is being applied incorrectly,"
  • Sounds like it's tough at the top ... which is nothing new at the HCT. It can be tough at the bottom too in case you were wondering, especially if you get a dud supervisor. Hopefully some of them will have been culled in the latest round of resignations.
Last update 27 July 2013
General comments - might not apply to Higher Colleges of Technology
  • Fees, facilities, education quality varies widely. Allow extra fees for visa, transport, accommodation.
  • Salaries, accommodation, other benefits for lecturer jobs vary substantially. Check contracts carefully for medical, housing, flight allowances, etc.
Related pages
Related websites (new window)


Abu Dhabi AUH ABD ADB, Ajman AJM, Al Ain AAN, Dubai DXB, Fujairah FUJ, Ras Al Khaimah RAK, Sharjah SHJ, Umm Al Quwain UAQ

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