Undergraduate Admissions

VCUQatar is accepting applications for admission for entry in Fall 2016.

Prospective applicants are able to access the application portal starting October 20, 2015. The application deadline is Monday, 1 February, 2016.

  • Undergraduate admission is highly competitive.
  • Applications are reviewed holistically by an Admissions Committee comprised of faculty and staff.
  • Only completed applications are reviewed for admission consideration. 
  • Only Fall 2016 applications are accepted at this time.

VCUQatar offers the following undergraduate programs:

  • Bachelor in Fine Art (BFA) programs in Fashion Design
  • Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) in Graphic Design
  • Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) in Interior Design
  • Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) in Painting & Printmaking
  • Bachelor of Art (BA) in Art History 

Art Foundation Program

  • While applicants indicate their program of interest in their online applications, BFA applicants start their respective program with the Art Foundation program.
  • The Art Foundation program is the first-year experience and is designed to give students a broad range of hands-on experiences in a variety of historic and contemporary media.
  • Through studio-practice, the Art Foundation program helps students to refine their intellectual dexterity and develop a diverse skills set.
  • Through the Art Foundation curriculum, students experience a myriad of ideas and mediums, and develop intellectual skills through observation, studio techniques, and peer interaction.
  • Art Foundation students thus develop a basis for self-criticism which will serve them throughout their academic experience and their professional life. 
  • BA applicants do not complete the Art Foundation program. BA applicants are admitted directly to the Art History major. 

Want to visit VCUQatar before applying?

  • We'll be happy to meet with you. We have open admissions counseling during business hours, Sundays-Thursdays between 8:00am and 4:00pm.   
  • We offer a VCUQatar Campus Introduction and Tour on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 2:30pm, though by appointment only. Please reserve your seat. Space on tours is limited. Please contact us at vcuqadmissions@vcu.edu.
  • We look forward to meeting you!
Call us
+974 4402 0530

Office of Admissions
Education City
Al-Luqta Street
Office Hours
Sunday - Thursday
8am - 4:00pm

Social Media
Snapchat: @vcuqadmissions
Instagram: @vcuqadmissions

How to Apply

Go to the online admissions system (This portal will be available ONLY from October 20, 2015 till February 1, 2016.)

If you are applying to VCUQatar for the first time, you will be asked to create an account within the admissions application system. If you already have an account, please sign in with your existing login credentials.

Please note: 

  • You must submit your application for admission via the VCUQatar online application system.
  • VCUQatar does NOT charge an application fee. 
  • You must upload supporting application materials into your application record using the VCUQatar online application system, This includes your Personal Statement, the identification page(s) of your passport, your Letter of Recommendation, as well as your Art Portfolio (if BFA applicant) or your Essay (if BA applicant).
  • If you choose to submit your Letter or Recommendation in hard copy format directly to the Office of Admissions, you must ensure that at least the name and contact details of your recommender are submitted online. 
  • You must submit your English language proficiency test scores (TOEFL or IELTS), your official high school transcripts, as well as your official Transcripts of Grades (IB, AP, CIE, etc.) in person or via courier to the Office of Admissions at VCUQatar.

All required applications materials must be submitted by the stated application deadline dates. Only completed applications are reviewed for admission consideration. 

Admissions checklist

The following application items are required for ALL undergraduate (Bachelor) programs:

  • Official academic transcripts, including high school transcripts; transcripts of grades from IB, AP, CIE, or other test bodies; and college/university transcripts, if any. 
  • English language proficiency test scores. TOEFL or IELTS scores are accepted
  • Personal statement
  • Letter of recommendation
  • Copy of Passport

If you are applying to one of our BFA programs, you must also submit:

  • Art portfolio

If you are applying to our BA program, you must also submit:

  • Essay

In addition to the above, applicants may also be invited for an in-person interview as part of the application process. 

Supporting Documentation

The following application materials are required to apply to a Bachelor's (undergraduate) program. Please note that once application materials are submitted to the Office of Admissions, they become the property of VCUQatar and will not be returned to the applicant.

Official High School Transcripts

  • You must submit official academic transcripts from all secondary schools you attended. "Official" means that they must bear an original stamp or seal, issued by your school. 
  • Secondary school transcripts must list all the courses you have completed and all grades earned, from at least the last three 3 years of coursework.
  • Official transcripts must be submitted in a sealed envelope, in person or by courier, to the Office of Admissions.
  • Transcripts issued in a language other than English must be accompanied by a certified English translation.
  • You must also submit official Transcripts of Grades if you have completed the IB, AP, CIE, etc. programs/exams.
  • Generally, 85% or higher on the Qatari Thanawiyya System, or at least 3 AS Levels on the British Systen, or a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) on the U.S. system, are considered competitive academic grades. 
  • If admitted, applicants will be required to submit final transcripts to VCUQatar, which included their final grades, prior to the start of their first term of enrollment at VCUQatar.

Official College/University Transcripts, if any

  • In addition to the above, students who have attended and/or completed any college/university (tertiary) level course work, must submit college/university transcripts as well. 
  • If admitted, applicants will be required to submit final transcripts to VCUQatar, which include their final grades, prior to the start of their first enrollment term at VCUQatar.

English Language Proficiency Test Scores

  • With the exception of students who hold US, UK, or Australian citizenship, all applicants must provide evidence of English language proficiency by either taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS).
  • Generally, 80 or higher on TOEFL-ibt (internet based test) or 6.00 overall band score on IELTS are considered competitive English proficiency scores.
  • TOEFL and IELTS can be taken at the Qatar Foundation QF Test Center in Education City.

Personal Statement:

  • A personal statement is a piece of original writing - written by you, the applicant, personally.
  • In the personal statement, please describe an experience, or a significant person, that influenced your decision to become a designer or artist. 

Recommendation Letter

  • You must ask one referee to submit a letter or recommendation. The referee should be your art teacher, your guicance counselor, or your employer.
  • You must submit the name and contact information of your referee in the online application system as part of your applicaton for admission. There, you will also have the option to send the electronic recommendation form to your referee, for him/her to complete and submit online in turn. 
  • While the Office of Admissions prefers to receive the recommendation online via the application system, we recognize that some referees prefer to provide you with a printed letter of recommendation instead. In that case, please deliver the printed letter in person, or by courier, to the Office of Admission. 
  • A template of the recommendation form is available here: Recommendation Letter

​Copy of Passport Identification Page (or Qatar ID Card)

  • All applicants are required to upload a legible copy of their passport or Qatar ID Card in the the online application system. 

Art Portfolio - Required ONLY of applicants applying to a BFA program

Essay - Required ONLY of applicants applying to the BA program

  • The essay serves as a sample of your writing.
  • Instructions on the topic and length of the essay is provided within the online application system/process.
  • The essay is required in addition to the personal statement.

Accepting an Offer

Admission decisions for the VCUQatar 2016-2017 academic year will be announced by May 2016.

  • Applicants will be notified by email whether they were admitted or waitlisted, or whether their applications were rejected.
  • Please check your email regularly at this time, including your spam/quarantine folders. 

Applicants who were admitted must confirm their intention to attend the university. This includes:

  • Confirming your intention to enroll by the stated deadline date to reserve your seat in the program. Students who do not confirm their intention to enroll by the stated deadline data are presumed to have forfeited their seat, whereby their seat will be awarded to another deserving student.
  • Paying a confirmation deposit
  • Preparing to submit scholarship (for Qatar citizens) and financial aid (for Qatar residents and international students) formalities. Please check in with the Higher Education Institute (HEI) at the Supreme Education Council (SEC) (for Qatar citizens), or with the Hamad Bin Khalifa University (HBKU) Office of Student Financial Services (for Qatar residents and international students) directly for further details. 
  • Preparing to submit applications for on-campus housing. Please check in with VCUQatar's Office of Student Affairs for further details. 
  • Obtaining required immunizations and submit the completed Immunization Form. The Immunization Form will be inlcuded in the Admissions packet. The completed Immunization Form must be submitted to the VCUQatar Office of Student Affairs. All VCUQatar students must have tuberculosis screening. International students (i.e. students whose visas/residency permit are sponsored by QF) must undertake all medical tests and screenings as required by Qatari law. 
  • See: Student Immunization Form in English + Arabic (PDF)
  • Map to Mesaimeer Health Clinic (JPG)


Some students may be awarded credit at VCUQatar for academic or studio work completed at another university or from other educational programs. Please consider the following if you wish to be considered for transfer credit at VCUQatar. 

For transfer credit at VCUQatar for work completed at other Universities. Students wishing to receive a transfer credit for academic or studio classes must present:

  • Official transcripts of all work completed at all colleges/universities attended. Transcripts must list all work completed and grades earned.
  • Course portfolios for all studio courses completed.
  • Course descriptions of all course completed.
  • Certified English translations of transcripts and course descriptions if issued in a language other than English.
  • Foreign Credential Evaluation (Course-by-Course Evaluation) by World Education Services or another NACES-accredited Foreign Credential Evaluation service. For more information on how to obtain a Foreign Credential Evaluation, please see http://wes.org.
  • Be in good standing at the institution you previously attended.
  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.25 (U.S. scale) on all courses completed at institutions of higher education you previously attended
  • Applicants with fewer than 30 semester (or 45 quarter) hours will also be assessed for admission on the basis of their high school performance.
  • Note that only courses with a 2.00 grade (U.S. scale) or its equivalent, are eligible for transfer credit.
  • No credit can be awarded for English language courses completed at universities in countries where English is not the official/primary language.

For credit at VCUQatar for exams of special high school programs. VCUQatar may award credit for the following:

  • International Baccalaureate (IB)
  • Advanced Level Placement Test of the College Entrance Examination Board (AP)
  • Cambridge International Examinations
  • Maturitatszeugnis (German Speaking)
  • Certificat de Maturite (French Speaking except Vaud)
  • Baccalaureat (Vaud)
  • Attestato di Maturita (Italian Speaking)
  • British System of Education - A levels (13 years)
  • Germany - Zeugnis der Allgemeinen Hochschulreife - Abitur (13 years)
  • Finland - Ylioppilastutkinoto/Studentexamen (13 years)
  • Czech Republic - Maturini Vysvedceni (13 years)
  • Iceland - Studentsprof (13 years)
  • Ireland - Ardteistmeireacht - Leaving Certificates (13 years)
  • Italy - Diploma conseguito con l'Esame di Stato - Diploma di Maturita (13 years)
  • Netherlands - Diploma Voorbereidend Wetenschappelijik Onderwijis (13 years)
  • New Zealand - Seventh Form certificate (13 years)
  • Slovakia - Maturitna Suska/Maturita (13 years)
  • Switzerland - Federally recognized Cantonal Maturity Certificates (13 years)

The Office of Records and Registration at VCUQatar and VCU Richmond, in consultation with the faculty, determine whether or not transfer credit is awarded. Either way, all applicants must follow the university application guidelines for freshman applicants. 

Returning applicants

At VCUQatar, students are considered "returning students", if they:  

  • Left VCUQatar in good academic standing from a degree program but have not attended for three or more successive fall and spring semesters (excluding summer sessions).
  • Obtained their first degree from VCUQatar and wish to pursue a second bachelor’s degree.
  • Were academically suspended from VCUQatar.
  • Attended another college or university since attending VCUQatar and wish to return after the allowable absence period as stated above.

To be considered for admissions, Returning Applicants must:

  • Reapply for admission by submitting a Readmission Application Form. (This form is for "returning students" only. Please see definition of "returning student" above.
  • Submit their application by March 15 for admission to the subsequent Fall term; or by November 1 for the subsequent Spring term.
  • Submit all stated application requirements. 
  • Applications will be reviewed when all required materials have been received by the Office of Admissions.

Returning applicants checklist

Returning applicants must submit the following application materials:

  • Essay
  • Art Portfolio. Only for art/design students. Art Portfolio must include their design work improvements (with process) and/or design work accomplished since leaving VCUQatar.
  • In-person interviews may be requested.
  • Official academic transcripts of all institutions of higher education attended since leaving VCUQatar.
  • English language proficiency test exam scores. Only for those reapplying to VCUQatar after having been suspensed, or after having been away from VCUQatar for more than three years. 

Tuition Fees & Financial Aid

Fees for the 2015-2016 Academic Year

Undergraduate tuition (annual)

QAR 86,355 or $ 23,724

Undergraduate tuition per credit

QAR 3,356 or $ 921

Mandatory book fee (annual)

QAR 3,258 or $ 895

Late payment fee

QAR 100 or $ 28

* There is no application fee for undergraduate applicants. 

* Fees may increase for the 2016-2017 Academic Year


Accomodation Costs in Qatar Foundation Student Residences

Boarding / shared accomodation (annual)

             QAR 21,280

Accomodation refundable deposit

             QAR 2,000

* These figures are approximate - please contact QF Housing for the latest costs.


Financial Aid - for Qatar Citizens, Qatar Residents, and International Students

  • Financial aid given to students through this program is in the form of loans, and based on financial need. 
  • Financial aid is made possible by the Qatar Foundation through the Hamad Bin Khalifa (HBKU) University Financial Aid Program.
  • All students, including residents of Qatar and international students, are eligible to apply for Financial Aid through the HBKU Office of Student Financial Services.
  • Upon graduation, students are expected to repay the full amount of the loan according to a repayment plan, or by participating in a paid service program at  Qatar Foundation approved organization. Please see Qatar Foundation financial assistance website for further information.

Qatar Scholarships - for Qatar citizens only

  • Scholarships are awarded based on merit.
  • Scholarship are not repaid.
  • Students who hold Qatar citizenship may contact the Higher Education Institute (HEI) / Supreme Education Council (SEC) directly for further information.

Other Scholarships

  • VCUQatar, through HBKU Financial Services offers two Creative Innovation Grants (scholarsips).
  • All applicants to VCUQatar are considered for this scholarship.
  • The Creative Innovation Grants are awarded to the TOP 2 incoming students.  

Installment Payment Plan

  • Students may choose one of three payment plans, provided they are funding their own tuition and fees.  Please contact the Office of Financial Services at VCUQatar for further details. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have any installment payment plans? Yes, students may choose one of three payment plans provided they are funding their own tuition and fees.
What is the difference between a financial aid loan and a scholarship? A financial aid loan is a need-based loan awarded to students who demonstrate financial need. The loan is to the amount owing to Qatar Foundation, which should be reimbursed after a student leaves Education City.
A scholarship is an award, usually based on merit that is not repaid.
What is the application deadline? February 1. Undergraduate applicants must submit their online application by February 1 along with their Art Portfolio (if BFA applicant) or Essay (if BA applicant) by February 1. All remaining application materials, including official transcripts and test scores must be submitted by March 1 to be considered for admission.
What is the required IELTS or TOEFL score? TOEFL: Undergraduate applicants: 80 or higher; graduate applicants: 88 or higher

IELTS: Undergraduate applicants: overall band score of 6.0 or higher; graduate applicants: overall band score of 6.5 or higher
What are VCUQatar's TOEFL and IELTS Test Center codes? TOEFL Code: 8753
IELTS does not operate on the code system