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Mar 22, 2021

Secondary school students can repeat exams 3 times to improve grades

Secondary school students to repeat exams up to three times to improve their grades, says Egypt's Education Minister. This new system will be applied starting from the next academic year on the student who will join the secondary school’s first-grade and will enable students to enroll at the university of their choice.

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Mar 18, 2021

Egypt cancels in-class education, postpones first-term exams amid coronavirus concerns

The cabinet ordered remaining classes in the first semester of the current academic take place only through an online system.

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Mar 1, 2021

Egypt’s Education Ministry: school attendance no longer mandatory amid COVID-19 surge

The education and higher education ministries ordered schools and universities to switch back to online learning in January due to the surge in cases.

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Feb 23, 2021

Thanaweya Amma exams will be held online

Egypt's Thanaweya Amma exams will be held online in 2021 for all regular students, service sector students, and home-based students. Education Minister Shawky hopes that this order will allow to ensure equal opportunity and access for all students.

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Feb 4, 2021

Egypt’s Education Ministry announces regulations for expat students’ exams

Egyptian Minister of Education has approved the procedures and conditions for exams of expatriate students for the 2020/2021 academic year. Exams for expat students will be held on two days in 2021.

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Dec 17, 2020

Egypt’s education ministry defines terms for possible school closures

Education ministry defines terms for school closures amid ongoing Covid-19 pandemic as the 2020-2021 school year is scheduled to start this month.

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Dec 16, 2020

Grades for Egypt's SAT-equivalent exam to be released

The EST was designed after the suspension of the SAT in Egypt until next June over 'test security issues'.

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Dec 16, 2020

Students barred from mixing SAT, EST results

Egypt's Minister of Education and Technical Education Shawky announced that students will not be allowed to mix SAT and the new Egyptian Scholastic Test (EST) exam results to choose the highest score in each subject.

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Oct 20, 2020

ChaoMing Telegram channel founder imprisoned for leaking Thanaweyya Amma exams

Egypt’s Economic Court sentenced, on Saturday, the founder of ChaoMing Telegram channel to three years imprisonment for leaking Egypt’s high school (Thanaweya Amma) exams via the application. This comes after years of social media leaking and anti-cheating screenings.

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Oct 19, 2020

"We want all students in Egypt connected in next period," says Education Minister

Egypt's Minister of Education has "ambitious plans" to ensure that all students are connected to digital learning facilities during the novel Covid-19 period. This huge infrastructural overhaul of methods is pushing teachers to start preparing for electronic exams with paper exams abolished in the near future.

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Oct 17, 2020

Egypt to establish new authority to improve vocational training, technical learning

Egypt is set to establish the National Authority for Accreditation and Quality Insurance in Vocational Training and Technical Learning. Three Egyptian ministries are working to draw up a draft law that organises the new authority’s work and sets its functions.

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Oct 2, 2020

Egypt’s 2020/21 academic year to start on October 17

Egypt's Minister of Education and Technical Education announced their new 2020/2021 academic calendar with the year starting on October 17 with a variety of precautionary measures in place to combat the novel Covid-19 crisis.

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Sep 28, 2020

Egypt abolishes decades-old Thanaweya Amma exam system, unveils new hybrid education model

Egypt's Education Minister Tarek Shawki announced that the decades-old Thanaweya Amma exam system has been removed at the end of the 2019/2020 academic year. The exam will no longer be unified, will have have four versions, and will be taken electronically.

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Sep 25, 2020

Education Ministry to propose solutions to SAT crisis following exam cancellation

Ministry of Education and Technical Education announces that the ministry is looking for solutions to the crisis regarding the 2020 SAT exams. College Board, which administers the SAT tests, cancelled planned tests on 29 August in Egypt until June 2021.

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Sep 3, 2020

Thanaweyya Amma exam results announced with 81.5% success rate

Minister of Education and Technical Education announced on Tuesday that the success rate for this year’s secondary school-leaving (Thanaweyya Amma) exams stands at 81.5%. This comes after a series of changes to precautionary anti-cheating measures and exam safety procedures due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Sep 3, 2020

Egypt gov't, students praise Cambridge for reversing downgrade of IGCSE marks

The Egyptian government and students enrolled in the International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) programme have praised Cambridge’s move to reverse a controversial decision that had downgraded students’ test results. This comes after students expressing outraged over downgraded IGCSE results.

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The Arab Republic of Egypt is located on the northeast Mediterranean coast of Africa. It is bordered by Libya, Sudan, the Red Sea, Israel and Gaza. The population is estimated at 80,335,036 and the literacy rate is 74%. The majority of Egyptians are Sunni Muslim with large Coptic and Christian populations. Arabic is the official language with Berber and Coptic also spoken; English and French is widely spoken among educated Egyptians.

There has been human habitation in Egypt since the Paleolithic area. Egypt became part of the Byzantine empire in the 7th century, but in 639 AD was invaded by Muslim Arabs who introduced Islam and the Arabic language. The Suez Canal was completed in 1869 and Egypt became a world transportation and trading hub. Egypt became a British protectorate in 1882 until it gained full independence after World War II.


Religious authorities have historically provided basic education in the local mosque schools. In 1970, the Higher Islamic studies were founded at the Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo. The oldest university in the world is Al-Azhar University which was founded in 988 AD. The Al-Azhar University provides a network of religious schools which parallels the state educational system. A state educational system for boys was established in 1867 followed an educational system for girls in 1873. Muhammad Ali established the state system for professional, technical, and foreign language schools for boys in the early 1900s.

The Egyptian educational system follows two paths. The secular system is under the Ministry of Education and the Al-Azhar system of Islamic education is under the authority of the Ministry of Al-Azhar Affairs. In the Al-Azhar system, students are segregated by sex at all grade levels. Each group follows the same curriculum and syllabus as those in the MOE schools, with the exception of the study of the Koran. All private institutions fall under the realm of the Ministry of Education and are mandated to follow the curriculum prescribed for the public schools.

In the 1999-2000 academic year, primary school was expanded to 6 years from 5 years and, beginning with the 2005-2006 academic year, primary and secondary education represents 12 years of education.

Primary Education

Compulsory education begins at age 6 and ends at age 14. Primary school, grades 1-6, begins at age 6 and is 6 years long. Upon completion, students are awarded a Shehadet Al-Ibtidaiya and students in the Al-Azhar system are awarded an Shehadet Al-Ibtidaiya Al-Azharia.

Secondary Educaton

Preparatory school (lower secondary) is 3 years long (Grades 7-9) and students are awarded a Shehadet Al-Iadadaiya or an Shehadet Al-Iadadaiya Al-Azharia in the Al-Azhar system. Students are given 2 chances to pass this exam; if they fail a second time, they must repeat Grade 9.

There are several options for upper secondary students. General upper secondary school is 3 years long and students are awarded a Thanaweya a'Amma. There are two types of technical upper secondary schools; one is a 3-year program and students are awarded a Shehadet Thanawiya Zeraiya, Shehadet Thanawiya Togaraiya, or a Shehadet Thanawiya Senaiya, depending on their field of study. A 5-year technical upper secondary school provides more advanced training in a technical field and students are awarded an Advanced Technical Diploma upon completion. In the Al-Azhar system, students follow the same curriculum as the general upper secondary schools, but with more emphasis on the Islamic studies. Upon completion, students are awarded an Shehadet Thanawiya Azharia.

Post-Secondary Education

Post-secondary educational options are offered at institutes and universities. Industrial, commercial and technical institutes offer 2-year programs in accounting, secretarial studies, insurance, computer science, health science, and electronics. Admission requires a Technical Secondary Education Certificate in a commercial, industrial or agricultural field. Upon completion, students are awarded a Diploma. Higher institutes offer 4 to 5-year program for holders of an Advanced Technical Diploma with a grade of 75% or above.

In 1908, Cairo University was established and is Egypt's leading institution for higher education today. There are currently 12 public state universities throughout Egypt that offer programs of engineering, business administration, agriculture and medicine. Each of these 12 institutions is affiliated to the Supreme Council of Universities. There are also currently 4 private universities which do not carry the affiliation to the Supreme Council. Women gained entrance to these institutions in 1962. The American University of Cairo is a private institution and the only one that charges tuition. The American University of Cairo is also accredited by the Middle States Association in the United States. The Institute of Dramatic Arts, Cinema, and Ballet is administered by the Ministry of Culture and is the only higher education institution that offers fine arts programs.

First Cycle

Public and private universities offer programs of study throughout the doctoral level. Admission to a university requires a General Secondary Education Certificate or an Advanced Technical Diploma with a score of 75% or higher. Private universities set their own admission requirements and fees without consulting the Ministry of Higher Education. The Ministry of Higher Education coordinates and supervises post-secondary education, but the Supreme Council of Universities sets the overall policy of higher education and science research in the universities and determines the number of students admitted in each faculty.

Second Cycle

Undergraduate studies are 4-6 years long, depending on the field of study. Medical studies are 6 years long, in additional to a year of practical work. Students are awarded a baccalaureos or a licence upon completion. There are two types of post-graduate study: diploma programs and master's programs. Diploma programs are 1-2 years long and do not require a thesis. They are not considered to be equivalent to master's programs in Egypt; however a holder of two diplomas is considered to be equivalent to a Master's degree. Magistr programs are 2 years long and require a thesis defense. It should be noted that the transcripts on the Magistr programs only show the courses passed during the first year, but typically do not list grades. The second year of a Magistr program is the thesis. The title of the thesis will appear on a transcript if all the requirements have been met.

Third Cycle

Doctoral level programs are 2-5 years long and require a Magistr for admission. Most students take three to four years. Some doctoral programs require coursework beyond the Magistr, but many others do not. No comprehensive exams are required. The entire program, when coursework is not required, is devoted to research in an appropriate topic. Upon successful defense of a dissertation, students are awarded a Doktura. Doktura holders in science who have at least 5 years of substantial research in a field outside of their Magistr or Doktura research may be awarded a Doctor of Science. Doctors of Science is rarely awarded.

Teacher Training

Since 1983, the Ministry of Education has required all primary and secondary education teachers hold a bachelor's degree in education. Previously, primary and secondary education teachers only had to hold a Basic Education Completion Certificate. Students who hold a bachelor's degree in a field other than education can complete a one-year post-graduate diploma course in a Faculty of Education which allows them to teach at the secondary level.

Johnny Johnson
Johnny K. Johnson

Director of Foreign Credentials Evaluation Services of America (FCSA)


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