The Jordanian Higher Education System

The Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research is responsible for tertiary education in Jordan.  Higher education in Jordan is provided by the universities and community colleges. 

Jordanian Higher Education History

University Education

Tertiary education in Jordan began in 1951 with the establishment of several teachers’ colleges. In 1962, the University of Jordan was established. In 1976, Yarmouk University was established, along with 6 more public universities in different parts of the country.  In 1990, the first private university- Amman University was set up and since then, many private universities have been established in Jordan.

Non-University Education

Non-university education in Jordan is provided in community colleges. Community colleges in Jordan were established in 1981. 

Jordan Higher Education Statistics

  • No. of private universities: 19
  • No. of public universities: 10
Source: Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

Higher Education Institutions

Higher education institutions in Jordan are of two types:
  • Universities
  • Community colleges
There are public as well as private higher education institutions in Jordan


In Jordan, there are both public and private universities. Universities in Jordan offer a wide range of study programmes. Classes in Arabic as well as English are offered in many universities in Jordan. 

Community Colleges

This type of higher education institution provides career-oriented specialized education and training, and prepares pupils for middle-level professional work. Community colleges in Jordan offer 2-year intermediate-level courses of study in the following fields: engineering, academic, meteorological, administrative, social work, hotel management, computer, paramedical, agriculture, educational, and applied arts. 

All community colleges in Jordan are overseen and affiliated to Al- Balqa Applied University. Al-Balqa/University of Balqa is a public university in Jordan. 

Types of Community Colleges

There are five types of community colleges:
  • Eighteen governmental community colleges that are under the umbrella of the University of Balqa in all aspects- administratively, financially and academically 
  • Twenty one private community colleges that are administered by the private sector under the supervision of the University of Balqa Applied art. 
  • Four Jordanian Applied Health colleges and departments of the University of Balqa
  • Five Jordanian military colleges supervised by the University of Balqa
  • Community colleges that falls under the umbrella of the United Nations Relief and Work Agency for Palestinians Refugees (UNRWA) administratively, academically and financially; and supervised by a technical university.

Higher Education Qualifications

Undergraduate Level

Bachelor’s Degree

This is the first level degree offered by the higher education institutions in Jordan. 
  • Admission requisite: Students must hold a “General secondary education certificate”.
  • Duration: 4 years (For dentistry, engineering and pharmacy- 5 years; and for medicine-6 years) 
  • Credit hours: 126-257

Postgraduate Level

Master’s Degree

The master’s degree can be obtained by one of the following ways:
  • Completion of a coursework and a thesis, or
  • Completion of a coursework and a comprehensive examination
If done by coursework and a thesis, it requires 24 credit hours of courses and 9 credit hours of research; and if done by coursework and comprehensive examination, it requires 33 credit hours. 
  • Duration: 1-2 years
  • Admission requisite: Students must hold a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent qualification

Doctorate Degree

This is the highest degree obtained by the universities in Jordan. Students are required to prepare and submit an original research dissertation. 
  • No. of credit hours required: Coursework-24; Research-24
  • Admission requisite: Students must hold a master’s degree in a related study. 
  • Duration: 3 to 5 years, depending upon the field of study

Admission Requirements

To enter the university-level studies in Jordan, students must have a general secondary education certificate. Specific admission requirements vary from university to university. 

For more details on the admission requirements for higher education institutions in Jordan, read the post “Admission requirements for higher education”.
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