American Elementary through High School
UAS provides a challenging, inquiry-based American and international education that empowers students to be caring individuals, critical thinkers, and responsible global citizens.Universal American School provides a co-educational program of instruction based upon an American model of education and offers International Baccalaureate Diploma programme in Grades 11 and 12. English is the language of instruction.
UAS is located in Festival City, Dubai.
Is this a non-profit school?
What facilities does it offer?
The UAS campus is among the finest in the Middle East. It was expertly designed by THA architects, a leading American firm specializing in campus design. The campus includes:
- indoor gymnasium
- olympic size track and soccer field
- vocal and instrumental music rooms
- art rooms
- computer and science laboratories
- swimming pool
Gymnasium: Students in grades KG2 to 12 participate in PE classes in the gym and have the opportunity to participate in extra-curricular sports teams ragning from basketball to volleyball.
Libraries: Both the elementary and secondary libraries offer a wide range of books, materials, and resources in English and in Arabic. They also include PC workstations to access ProQuest (the online library database).
Swimming Pool: Outdoor shaded swimming pool with learning pool are used during physical education (PE), after school activities, and by school teams (U14, Junior Varsity, and Varsity).
Olympic size track and soccer field: The field and track are used during physical education (PE), after school activities, and by school teams (U14, Junior Varsity, and Varsity).
Classrooms: SMART boards and projectors enhance each classroom, offering excellent technology integration into teaching and learning.
What is the school’s philosophy?
The school website says that “The learning environment at UAS is free from discrimination. The significance of the student’s own cultural heritage is valued in the context of the place of the individual in a multi-cultural society. A holistic education is provided that encourages high standards of academic achievement, collaboration, personal development, and the freedom to create and explore. Learning explicitly addresses intercultural understanding, approaches to learning, communication, guided inquiry, trans-disciplinary themes, skills and strategies, attitudes, and behavior that support continuous learning.”
Elementary School (from the UAS website):
More than 620 bright, curious students from over 70 nations spend their school days here. From Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 6, students are investigating, solving problems, playing, writing, creating, developing friendships, and challenging themselves to go a little further, higher, or deeper everyday. In the hallways, you will see motivated students engaged in learning and working together in a safe, positive environment. We encourage and develop the natural curiosity that exists in all children, helping them become successful students and life-long learners.
Teachers are the guides. UAS teachers go to great lengths to develop the whole child and to foster intellectual, social, emotional, and physical growth in each of our students. Our teachers build relationships with students and target each student’s individual needs.
The core subjects of Math, Reading, Writing, Science, and Social Studies are taught by grade level homeroom teachers. Students in KGII-Grade 6 also attend special classes for art, music, technology, physical education, journalism, Arabic, and Islamic Studies. In addition, English Language Learner (ELL) teachers and specialists in the Learning Support Center (LSC) work closely with the classroom teachers to provide assistance where needed.
UAS teachers focus on developing respectful and responsible students. UAS is proud to be using the International Baccalaureate Primary Years Programme (PYP), which is centered on inquiry-based pedagogy and the teaching of inter-disciplinary concepts and skills (for more information about the IB PYP, please visitwww.ibo.org).
Analytical thinking, caring, taking calculated risks, communicating, keeping an open mind, seeking knowledge, and being a balanced, inquiring, reflective thinker, are the traits that make up the learner profile for the PYP. These are all developed as part of daily lessons in the UAS Elementary School.
Secondary School (from the UAS website):
The UAS community should be very proud of what has been achieved in the relatively short time since the doors of the school were first opened in September 2005. The dedicated teachers have created a curriculum that is designed to develop students who are critical thinkers and internationally-minded. The teachers foster a culture of life-long learning. Our teaching and learning model reflects best practice and prepares students for the models used in modern accredited universities throughout the world. At all grade levels we develop in our students the UAS/IB Student Learner Profile attributes.
In Grades 7-9 our curriculum is inquiry-based and reflects the New York Standards. Units are developed with concepts and ‘big questions’ in mind. In all academic subjects a wide variety of resources are used to enrich the learning experience, along with textbooks and ICT integration for support. Within the classroom students solve difficult challenges, apply new information, complete difficult processes and justify positions they take. The students’ learning involves active, interactive, purposeful and meaningful engagement within a supportive context.
We promote project and problem-based learning. Inquiry-based learning approaches require students to think, collaborate, problem solve, and build new knowledge to promote student inquiry, discussions, teamwork and an understanding of multidisciplinary concepts. They also appeal to the adolescent brain’s need for emotional engagement, assistance and extension, and intellectual stimulation.
Our Grade 10 program is designed as a preparatory year for the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme (IBDP) of grades 11-12.
At UAS we aim to develop the intellectual, physical, and social wellbeing of students. Our curriculum is wide, and we offer a variety of extra
Our students have many opportunities for leadership through Student Council, fundraising events, sporting teams, and the creative arts. Our Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) is very active and works tirelessly to support our school community.
Grades 7 – 10 Departments:
- The Arts
- Computer Studies
- Foreign Languages
- Islamic Education
- Physical Education
- Social Studies
The IB Diploma Programme (IBDP) and the IB Certificate Programme (IBCP) provide two pathways for UAS students to achieve graduation. Those students successfully completing either the IBDP or IBCP will also receive the UAS Diploma, which is an accredited American diploma. In effect, students will achieve a high school diploma plus either the IB Diploma or IB Certificate(s).
The first consideration of students in their last two years at UAS must be the accumulation of credits toward graduation. By taking and passing one course from each section of the IB Curriculum Hexagon (please see theIB Diploma/Certificate section for more information), students acquire a necessary balance of courses in their last two years contributing to their attainment of the UAS Diploma and high school graduation.
The requirement to maintain studies in all six sections of the IB Curriculum Hexagon ensures the breadth of curriculum required by some national university systems. The choice of appropriate higher level (HL) subjects enables students to obtain the degree of specialization required for university entrance. Higher level subjects should be selected to complement previously demonstrated academic strengths as well as possible prerequisite courses for future university study.
A new student applying for admission to UAS must submit the following documents to the admissions office:
- A completed application form (via email, by fax, or in person)
- A photocopy of the student’s birth certificate (in English or Arabic)
- A photocopy of the student’s passport and his/her parents’ passport
- Photocopies of academic reports for the previous three years (in English)
- 6 recent photos in color of the student – passport size
- Admission testing fee
Once all documentation has been received, the applicant is given an appointment for an assessment test or interview. Students applying for PreKG, KGI, and KGII must interview with a KG teacher. Students applying for Grades 1 to 12 must take an assessment test in Math and English. All files will be reviewed based on previous school reports and assessment test results by the admissions committee.
Families are notified, usually within a few days of testing, whether the applicant meets admission standards. Upon acceptance, a one-time non refundable registration is due within seven days to reserve a place for the following school year. The first tuition must also be received prior to the deadline to avoid losing the place.
If admission is granted but no place is available, the registration fee can be paid to place the student’s name on the waiting list. Once a place becomes available, UAS will contact the family.
Please note that enrollment is always conditional upon a student successfully completing the school year (or term) at their current school and submitting final grades. Prior to the first day of school, the student file must be complete. The additional documents to submit upon acceptance are:
- A photocopy of the final report card (current academic year)
- A photocopy of the student’s residency visa and his/her parents and guardian(s) residency visa
- Original transfer certificate (sample transfer certificate)
- A photocopy of the student’s vaccination records
- Completed UAS health form
Athletics at UAS
The Athletics program at UAS is designed to encourage young athletes to participate in sport, pursue good sportsmanship, and work toward achieving their athletic potential. We believe that participating in sport helps create balanced individuals, leading to a healthy mind, body, and soul. Positive attitude, discipline, time management, and healthy competition help foster successful individuals. The opportunity to participate in athletics is a privilege and comes with the responsibility that each student maintains a high standard of behavior as well as achieving academically to their highest potential.
The UAS Scorpions (as we call our budding athletes) have the opportunity to participate in: Football, Volleyball, Basketball, Cross-Country, Badminton, Track and Field, Swimming, Rugby and Softball .
We offer a wide variety of individual and team sports at UAS within three age categories:
- Middle School (under 14 as of September 1st of current school year)
- Junior Varsity (under 16 as of September 1st of current school year)
- Varsity (under 20 as of September 1st of current school year)
The coaching staff at UAS is comprised of coaches who are dedicated, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable. Our coaches are passionate about their sports and want to share their appreciation for the love of sport, be a part of the athletic development of students, and help athletes to fulfill their potential.
Conferences and Tournaments
UAS participates in 2 athletics conferences. Emirates Coastal Conference (ECC) is a local league, comprised of schools from Dubai and Abu Dhabi. International School Activities Conference (ISAC) is an international league comprised of schools from Egypt, UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, as well as other International schools from the region. This year our school will participate in various ISAC tournaments in Jordan, Oman and Kuwait.
From musical theater to the visual arts, UAS strives to provide a variety of artistic opportunities for students of all ages and ability levels. Beginning in elementary school, students have two art classes and two music classes each week. Through these classes students begin to learn how to express themselves creatively. They learn basic skills and are enfused with appreciation and enthusiasm for the arts. By Grade 3, students can join the Musical Chorus and Drama.
In Grades 7-10, students begin preparing for the rigors of IB Music, Visual Art, or Drama while also enjoying the performance opportunitiesoffered through the multiple musical, dramatic and visual displays that happen each year. In addition to regularly scheduled music classes, students aged 5 and older interested in a specific musical instrument can take private lessons offered here at UAS through theInstrumental and Vocal Music Program. In conjunction with the PYP and IB programmes, UAS encourages students to nurture their creativity and aesthetic sensitivity through the Arts.
Good (as of 2012)