The education system through secondary level is monitored by the Ministry of Education in all emirates except Abu Dhabi, where it falls under the authority of the Abu Dhabi Education Council. It consists of primary schools, middle schools and high schools. The public schools are government-funded and the curriculum is created to match the United Arab Emirates development’s goals and values. The medium of instruction in the public school is Arabic with emphasis on English as a second language. There are also many private schools which are internationally accredited. Public schools in the country are free for citizens of the UAE, while the fees for private schools vary.
The higher education system is monitored by the Ministry of Higher Education. The ministry also is responsible for admitting students to its undergraduate institutions.
The literacy rate in 2007 was 91%. Currently there are thousands of nationals pursuing formal learning at 86 adult education centres spread across the country.
The UAE has shown a strong interest in improving education and research. Enterprises include the establishment of the CERT Research Centers and the Masdar Institute of Science and Technology and Institute for Enterprise Development.
According to the Webometrics Ranking of World Universities, the top-ranking universities in the country are the United Arab Emirates University (1217th worldwide), the American University of Sharjah (2833th) and University of Sharjah (3046th).