Does your university as a body provide accessible facilities for people with disabilities?

Special Needs Services

Canadian University Dubai pledges to provide an inclusive learning environment and to support the cognitive, emotional and creative development of students with special needs. Canadian University Dubai ensures that reasonable effort is made to accommodate students with special needs such that their program learning objectives are met. Special Needs Services are provided equally through programs and services.

Our Health Services

Canadian University Dubai Health Center provides primary healthcare services and supports the safety and wellness of students, faculty and staff on campus.

Professional, licensed nurses are available to offer first aid and medical care for minor illnesses and injuries, provide health education and promote disease prevention.

The Health Center services are free of charge and available on a walk-in basis or by appointment for doctor's consultation. Information regarding the health insurance benefits, coverage and networks is also available.

The Center is equipped with a range of equipment to help maintain and monitor your health. Emergency cases are referred to the ambulance service.

The Health Center regularly collaborates with community organizations to conduct awareness raising activities such as no smoking campaigns, cancer awareness events and blood donation drives.

Students with medical needs or disabilities who require regular assistance on the campus may submit a medical report from their physician stating their health condition and special requirements.

All health records, forms and documentations are securely stored. The release or transfer of medical Information requires patient's approval, unless legally authorized, or in a life-threatening situation.

Health Insurance

Health Insurance is mandatory for all students under a Canadian University Dubai visa. Students not under a Canadian University Dubai visa who wish to apply for the health insurance are welcome to do so, please visit the Health Centre, or

email healthcenter@cud.ac.ae for additional information.

Location & Operating Hours

The Health Centre is located adjacent to the Hall B parking area. It operates the following schedule:

Weekdays: 8:00 am – 10:00 pm

Weekends: 9:00 am – 9:00 pm


The newly launch Potential Adaptive Child Education (PACE) Centre has quickly established itself as an alternative to traditional Special Education Needs (SEN) provision as it sets out to celebrate and nurture the unique talents of every student in its care.

The Centre, located in Umm Suqeim, is part of the Dubai Education portfolio that also includes Canadian University Dubai (CUD). Set in a colorfully engaging physical environment, students are challenged to learn to comfortably transition between academic classes and their special classes, which might include art, music, play therapy, computer science, and physical education, so that staff can tap into and nurture their individual skills and abilities.

Director Dr. Jaclyn Fowler reveals, “Our mission is to serve young people with special needs by creating opportunities for all our students to live their fullest, most joyous lives. We do this by operating within a systems approach where, for example, therapy and learning are combined in a seamless whole, not in isolation one from the other, so that therapy and learning inform and enhance one another.”

The Centre bring together teachers, therapists, learning support professionals, parents, and the wider community to play a collective role in creating a program that provides safe and outward-looking circles of care and life opportunities for students.

Launched at the start of the 2016-17 academic year, the Centre is characterized by its small, intimate setting, and is already cultivating the talents of special needs students who have demonstrated uniquely outstanding flair in disciplines such as music, sport, languages and numerical reasoning.

While relatively new to the Dubai SEN community, the Centre is making its mark by pursuing partnerships that aim to provide a pathway for students to explore their future educational opportunities and develop a map for emerging life choices.

Dr. Fowler says, “The philosophy of PACE is characterized by a sense of service. This service is focused not only on our own SEN community but also on the greater Dubai SEN community. We believe that we make the world a more open and accepting place for our own students when we are open enough to engage in the wider community.”

Sharing the CUD philosophy of inspiring minds, transforming lives, the ultimate goal of the PACE Centre is to ensure that each student receives an Individualized Education Program (IEP) that is based on their unique abilities and adapted to meet their varying needs. As Dr. Fowler concludes, “Here at PACE, we envision a time when every child in the UAE receives a customized learning program that leads to a full and happy life.”

Two groups of students from Canadian University Dubai (CUD) are working on the development of unique initiatives aimed at transforming city life, as part of this year’s Ericsson Innovation Awards.

Architecture students Craig Muyambo, Faisal UK, Suleiman Gerawa, and Omar Sherif are developing a platform that will help meet the infrastructure requirements of future cities. Known as Architecture Revival Kit (ARK), the platform will connect architecture students with professionals, to share their projects, receive feedback on their work, and build their understanding of the needs for future city life.

Meanwhile, the multidisciplinary team of Master exchange student Nérimel Bessa, Telecommunications Engineering student Ali Ahmad, and Advertising student Omar Zain Faruki, is working on the development of an application that will support city residents with disabilities and special needs to navigate their daily lives. Known as ABLE, the app will combine information on community services, facilities and transportation to support the engagement of disabled people in city life.

The Ericsson Innovation Awards is a global competition, exclusively for students, offering unrivaled career development opportunities as well as cash prizes for the ultimate winners. The two CUD teams are now in the process of developing the prototype of their innovations and gathering support for their entries, which will be subject to a public vote to reach the next stage of the contest.

To find out more about ARK and to support the entry in the public vote, visit http://arkbetatest.businesscatalyst.com/

To discover more about ABLE and to vote for the application, visit http://www.ericsson.com/thecompany/events/ericsson-innovation-awards/competition/#/submission/18306

Public voting closes on December 17th 2015, after which the competition semi-finalists will be announced.

Canadian University Dubai Chancellor discusses actions for inclusion

May 16th, 2019: Following the successful gala event, 'Music is our Voice', which brought together people of determination and the local school community in a spectacular celebration of music, Canadian University Dubai (CUD) Chancellor, Mr. Buti Saeed Al Ghandi, has spoken to Edarabia about the institution's actions towards promoting inclusion.

Why did CUD organize a music gala for people of determination? Would this be a yearly event?


The event was organized as part of the University’s ongoing endeavors to promote inclusion, understanding and coexistence, in the spirit of the UAE Year of Tolerance. Since 2017 we have seen the Canadian University Dubai EnSEmble grow and flourish into an extraordinary realization of individual and collective talent. We wanted to share that talent with our local community to mark Autism Awareness month.

We know from our work with people of determination that awareness and inclusion across wider society remain among the biggest challenges they face in everyday life. Canadian University Dubai wanted to bring people together in an inclusive celebration of music to help further advance the conversation about autism in the UAE; to change the discourse into concrete action and progress across every aspect of society – from education and employment to cultural and social interactions. The gala was also hosted as a fundraising event, to help support therapy, care and community initiatives for children affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder. We have been delighted by the response and similar future events.

Studies suggest that sports are associated not only with social inclusion, but also with physical wellbeing and the enhancement of self-esteem. Does music have the same effect?


Absolutely, music is by definition inclusive, without boundaries, music does not discriminate against anyone. Numerous studies have shown that the effect of music on confidence levels and self-esteem is significant. For instance, music has helped young people in conflict areas to cope with stress. In other contexts, music has given young refugees a voice allowing them to be active participants in society. Music has had, over the history of mankind, an incredible unifying and healing power.

How does CUD cater to students of determination?


Canadian University Dubai was among the first universities in the UAE to welcome students with special educational needs, and has supported more than 100 determined students facing a range of personal challenges, from visual impairment to autism.

The University has a number of formal support structures in place, such as scholarships for individuals with special needs, tutoring programs that offer one-on-one academic support, and a dedicated student counsellor to offer pastoral care throughout the students’ studies. However, the essence of our approach is to tailor our support to the specific needs of each individual and to work with families to achieve this, not only from the practical perspective of delivering an education, but also to ensure that we support their social, cognitive and emotional development to achieve success.

Are schools equipped to meet the needs of gifted students in the regular education (inclusion) classroom?


Canadian University Dubai is able to provide a learning environment that meets the needs of students of all backgrounds. This means creating inclusive classrooms and providing the supplementary support measures to those students with special education needs, from additional academic tutoring or personal counseling, to extracurricular activities that provide an outlet for personal creative expression.

How does CUD equip its students with the right skills to enter the workforce? Are any special measures taken to prepare students of determination for the same?


All of our academic programs are industry-driven and are designed to develop the employability of our students. As market needs are constantly evolving, we regularly talk to our advisory boards, alumni and employers of our graduates to gauge if our courses match their specific current and future needs.

What we’ve learnt from this is that employers are increasingly looking for qualities and skills that transcend typical sector boundaries. Competencies such as teamwork, leadership, reasoning, responsiveness and ethics are the skills that will help the future workforce to navigate the rapid pace of change. These are the skills that students develop through their practical work, which includes course-related internships, but also through special initiatives like the Canadian University Dubai EnSEmble.

Our Health Services

Canadian University Dubai Health Center provides primary healthcare services and supports the safety and wellness of students, faculty and staff on campus.

Professional, licensed nurses are available to offer first aid and medical care for minor illnesses and injuries, provide health education and promote disease prevention.

The Health Center services are free of charge and available on a walk-in basis or by appointment for doctor's consultation. Information regarding the health insurance benefits, coverage and networks is also available.

The Center is equipped with a range of equipment to help maintain and monitor your health. Emergency cases are referred to the ambulance service.

The Health Center regularly collaborates with community organizations to conduct awareness raising activities such as no smoking campaigns, cancer awareness events and blood donation drives.

Students with medical needs or disabilities who require regular assistance on the campus may submit a medical report from their physician stating their health condition and special requirements.

All health records, forms and documentations are securely stored. The release or transfer of medical Information requires patient's approval, unless legally authorized, or in a life-threatening situation.

Health Insurance

Health Insurance is mandatory for all students under a Canadian University Dubai visa. Students not under a Canadian University Dubai visa who wish to apply for the health insurance are welcome to do so, please visit the Health Centre, or

email healthcenter@cud.ac.ae for additional information.

Location & Operating Hours

The Health Centre is located adjacent to the Hall B parking area. It operates the following schedule:

  • Weekdays: 8:00 am – 10:00 pm

  • Weekends: 9:00 am – 9:00 pm

Determined Ones Continue to Demonstrate their Skills

September 27, 2018; Dubai EnSENble is the UAE’s first choir for the ‘Determined Ones’ are now based in CUD.

The choir was founded by Mr. Rivaan Mager, Music Coordinator and Mr. Dusan Popovic, Sports Coordinator both employers at CUD. They have a passion for working with the people with determination and try to help their various challenges through their shared love of music.

There are also many volunteers who help out, some of them being ‘speech therapists or behavior therapists, all giving freely of their time to ensure the success of the choir.

The choir started in September 2017 and hosted their inaugural concert on November 24th 2017. This saw a full house at the CUD Red Theatre. The concert was the first of its kind in the UAE, and also featured the UAE Philharmonic Orchestra. The concert was a huge success and generated great emotion from the audience.

The choir has performed at various venues, including Global Village, MENA Special Needs Olympics in Abu Dhabi and they even had the opportunity to collaborate with leading schools in Dubai.

This year the choir has many events planned over the next 10 months, they will host their annual gala concert on 23rd November 2018 at 5pm at the Canadian University Dubai. The UAE Philharmonic will once again perform at this prestigious concert. There will also be guest performers from the “Which School Advisor” musician of the year competition and choirs from schools around Dubai.

The choir will also be performing at the Special Olympics World Games held in Abu Dhabi in 2019.

The Canadian University Dubai has been an integral part of the choir’s success, and they support the choir fully and have dedicated a ‘music studio’ for the choir to rehearse weekly. The university also has a passion towards inclusion through music.

The choir is free to join and is always welcoming new members to be part of this choir family. Through our passion for music, we want to show the UAE community that music unites everyone irrespective of our personal challenges in life. The choir rehearses every Thursday at the Canadian University Dubai from 4:30pm-5:30pm.

In addition to coordinating music in CUD, Mr. Rivaan also undertakes peripatetic work in other schools with Determined Ones among their pupils.

Music is our Voice

April being the international month of Autism Awareness, Canadian University Dubai is taking the opportunity to play its part in the awareness-raising efforts of this important global campaign.

Having a very special group of talented musicians, we feel it is only fair to give back and share the joy that our choir brings; Canadian University Dubai presents ‘Music is Our Voice’, a concert highlighting the musical talents of people of determination.

We are proud to present this event in the amazing Dubai Opera on Wednesday April 17, where we can share this extraordinary night with parents, guests and fans, while giving these superstars the prestigious stage they deserve.

Students Take on Social Responsibility Challenge

November 30th, 2015: A team of students from Canadian University Dubai (CUD) is working to unite the deaf and non-deaf communities in the UAE through the creation of an innovative mobile application, as part of an initative to promote social responsibility.

The app, known as Efhamni – ‘understand me’ in English – aims to help deaf people of all ages to communicate, by teaching them the fundamentals of Emirati sign language. The project was conceived in response to research by the team, which found that families with deaf children tend to adopt more informal methods of communication that might limit the child’s potential to engage with wider society.

The team plans to create a simple interface with seven symbols representing basic topics including food, clothing, sport and places, each with a selection of video tutorials for sign-language that relates to the theme.

Team member Hira Abdul Bari explained, “Our ultimate aim is to spread awareness of sign-language by creating a simple app that helps deaf people communicate about the routines of everyday life. We have collaborated with sign-language professionals to help ensure that the app will make a real difference and hopefully contribute to a better future for members of the deaf community.”

The app is being developed as part of the Ripples of Happiness Program – a region-wide community initiative. The program is delivered by the Coca-Cola Foundation and INJAZ UAE, a member of the Junior Achievement Worldwide initiative, and brings in mentors from the local business community to support the students in their project development.

Currently involving universities from six countries – the UAE, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia – the initiative seeks to foster social responsibility, entrepreneurial skills, financial literacy, and workplace readiness among students.

The CUD team will be demonstrating their prototype app to members of the deaf community as well as University students, faculty and staff at a special presentation on December 15th from 6pm in CUD’s Red Theatre.

Gallery

The students behind the new Emirati sign-language app, Efhamni, have received a major boost in their plan to support the UAE deaf community, with a $7,000 award to scale their social enterprise from the Coca-Cola Foundation and INJAZ Al-Arab. The award follows the recent announcement of winners in the Ripples of Happiness university competition, a community initiative under which the innovation was developed.

The team of students from Canadian University Dubai (CUD) was the only group to represent the UAE in the region-wide initiative, and secured second place overall in the six-week program, attracting funding equivalent to more than AED 25,000 to help further develop and mainstream their app.

The technology was created in association with the UAE Deaf Association and the Kalimati Speech and Communication Center. It specifically aims to support Emiratization among hearing impaired citizens, helping them to access better education and employment opportunities by teaching them, their family, friends and colleagues, how to communicate effectively through Emirati sign language.

The app was unveiled to over 100 stakeholders at a recent public launch event. Speaking at the event, member of the Efhamni project management team, Craig Muyambo, said, “Our aim is to contribute to the UAE in two ways: by preserving its history through the Emirati language, heritage and dialect, and by building its future by engaging all sectors of society in a single community, connected by a common language.”

The financial boost comes as a result of the interest and impact the team generated for the app during the Ripples of Happiness competition. Sulaf Saleh Al Zu’bi, CEO of INJAZ UAE, said, “It was an inspiring journey giving students the opportunity to create and discover their talents applied in this program and remarkable software application. The Efhamni app can touch many hearts, helping engage people with hearing disabilities more easily, and making the use of sign language for the community around them more mainstream.”

Facilitated by Mr. Mohsin Harris of INJAZ UAE, the team received intensive mentoring support from two volunteers from the business community. Ms. Sveccha Kumar and Mr. Youshey Zakiuddin brought their experience of corporate social responsibility initiatives at telecoms firm, du, to help the students to identify and address a distinct community need.

The team also benefitted from the ongoing support of CUD Assistant Professor, Jeanette Teh, who said, “I am extremely proud of how much the students have accomplished in a short amount of time and how hard they have worked. Through this project, they have learned the importance of teamwork, planning, research, communication, and even diplomacy, all of which will help them in their future careers. It has been an incredible journey, full of challenging lessons, not just for the students, but also for us the mentors.

“I would like to thank INJAZ Al Arab and Coca-Cola Foundation for organizing this wonderful competition, which has taught our students so much about launching a socially responsible business, but perhaps, more importantly, that they can make a difference.”

The team has already held discussions with the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research around how the app can help in promoting access to education among the deaf community. Nérimel Bessa, another member of the Efhamni project management team said, “We are excited to embark upon this social enterprise and with the award from the Coca-Cola Foundation and INJAZ Al Arab, we can start to empower the deaf community by employing members to support in the ongoing development of the app.”

In addition to the community benefits that the app is expected to generate, the process has also been a rewarding experience for the entire team involved, and for the student behind the technology itself, engineering major, Omar Sharif Zakaria, it has opened the door to an exciting new project.

Omar said, “Based on my work on Efhamni I have been approached by one of Dubai’s leading real estate developers to work on the creation of an app that will give them a new platform to engage with their customers.”

Omar plans to take on the new project, while continuing to offer his free time to support the continual development of Efhamni. As for the enterprise itself, Nérimel concluded, “We know that we will need a lot more support along the way – both technically and financially – but this award has given us a great platform to move forward with our aim to make Emirati sign-language a mainstream form of communication for citizens and residents of the UAE, and also to provide a gateway for visitors to the country to learn the Arabic language.”