United Arab Emirates

„Masterminds Program“

United Arab Emirates
  • Established since: 2017
  • Website: Official website
  • Website language: English & Arabic

Contact data

Country coordinator

Skills Development Specialist Abdallah El Marhoune

Hosting institution

Ministry of Education
Al Nahda Rd, Near Al Qusais Metro Station – Dubai-

Al Nahda Rd
United Arab Emirates


Appointing institution

Ministry Of Education - UAE

Activities and Care Sector 


Al Nahda Rd, Near Al Qusais Metro Station – Dubai-


Organization & structure

Based on the vision of preparing the students to be leaders in all fields including the scientific fields, huge efforts have been made recently to develop the Emirati schools’ curriculum. These efforts are paid in order to keep the Emirati students up with the rapid technological and scientific revolution all over the world. Having us living the period of the fourth industrial revolution needs us to prepare our students with the necessary tools to possess their deserved position amongst the nations. As a matter of fact, an important method for the students to measure their knowledge and abilities gained is by having them associating with all other students around the world. This can be done through the international competitions organized in all different scientific fields, named the International Olympiads.

The Activities and Care Sector in the Ministry of Education noted this necessity, hence, the Sector launched the initiative of Masterminds in February 2018 to fulfill this need. The Masterminds initiative is a sustainable program that trains the students on scientific topics in depth. These fields are but not limited to Science, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Economics, Informatics, and the Arabic Language. The students who are enrolled in this program are expected to gain the necessary knowledge to overcome their peers in these fields during their school studies as well as their university studies. This is done by having them trained on a weekly basis by professional trainers and university lecturers. These training sessions are held in internal camps and external camps where the students spend most of their time practicing and developing their knowledge and skills.

Number of students in first round

The first Mastermind Qualifiers

In November 2020, 585 students from public and private schools took the Qualification exam. A total number of five hundred and eighty-five students took the exam from all over UAE. The following table shows the number of the students who participated in each subject from grades :



Ten: 173

Eleven: 171

Twelve: 241

Total: 585


The Mastermind Qualification Exams prepared by our Scientific committee (basically are multiple choices and essay) This year 2020 all our tests were online due to the situation of the pandemic


Mastermind National Teams

As the Mastermind National Teams have been formed, a training program was needed for them to boost their skills and abilities to meet the International Olympiads Standards-aligned within the IBO regulation

After the qualification round the students started their training with the first stage of having alternating weeks for each subject to make the students able to follow their senior colleagues. And then having weakly training to catch up with the international standards and in line with IBO's regulations

Stage 1

The students from grades 8 and 9 took separate intensive classes to follow up with their senior colleagues who are in grade 10 in the subjects of Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Biology. This stage continued for four weeks.

Stage 2

The students from grades 8 and 9 are joining the students in grade 10 as they are almost having close knowledge of the targeted subjects. The training took place on an alternating weeks basis

Stage 3

Informing the national teams who are participating this year in the International Olympiads that their training will be on a weekly basis. This includes the Physics, Mathematics, and Chemistry National Teams.

Stage 4

The students who are forming the Mastermind National teams will be involved in an abroad training camp in the UAE University, more precisely in Al Ain to be trained by the best university lecturers who have immersed Olympiads knowledge. This will take place during the first week of April

Stage 5

The students will have a closed internal training camp in June to revise and prepare themselves for international participation during the summertime in July and August.

Study materials

All our Training material are developed by the Local Academic Committee ( University Professors ) in collaboration with Olympiad Experts

Awards & prizes

Medals for the Students who performed well and Certificates issued with a number of training hours for all students 


Type of students

Grade 8,9,10,11 and 12 from public and private Shools

School year

August till June

Biology hours/week

minimum of 2 hours

Hours of Classes/week

2 to 3 sessions / Week

Public Relations

Statistics over the years
  • 2020: 585 students from 55 schools (41% of eligible schools)
  • 2019: 483 students from 50 schools (40.5% of eligible schools)
  • 2018: 411 students from 45 schools (40% of eligible schools)

% of schools = the percentage of students from different schools during the qualification round 

Media coverage

National TV & Social Media Newspapers


Logo of Masterminds Program [JPG, 47.6 KB] Download Poster of Masterminds Program [PNG, 454.7 KB] Download Leaflet of Masterminds Program [JPG, 552.9 KB] Download
Description of attached files:

Masterminds Biology

National Competition