Universities in Poland
Why Study in Poland?
Education in Poland costs much less than most European countries and cost of living is much lower. Many courses are offered in English.
Poland - Overview
Located at the center of the Northern European plain, Poland is the cultural crossroad between Eastern and Western Europe. Since the founding of Poland over 1,000 years ago and throughout its turbulent history, the culture and identity of the Polish people has remained strong. Today, Poland is growing nation, rich with history and importance as both the largest former Eastern bloc nation and one of the most populated nations (38 million people) in the European Union. The capital of Poland is the ancient city of Warsaw with over 2 million inhabitants. For students interested in experiencing the best of Eastern and Western Europe, Poland is an ideal destination, with Russia and the rest of Europe easily accessible by train or plane. In 2007, Poland joined the Schengen Zone. This means that students may travel freely within the 24 member countries of Europe without additional visas or passport checks at the border (Russia is not included in this agreement. Check with entrance requirements before booking any travel from Poland to Russia.)
Poland also boasts a strong, growing economy with a relatively low cost of living. The Polish economy is the sixth largest in the European Union, however the currency remains the Polish zloty - not the Euro - which is very helpful in keeping prices down. But don’t confuse it’s low cost of living with poor living standards. The truth is quite the contrary. Poland is much safer than most European countries. Even the Nordic countries, widely considered as very safe, have much higher crime rate than Poland. International students will find the Polish people to be temperate, open-minded, and welcoming of all newcomers regardless of race, religion, or nationality.
Poland culture is a mix of east and west. Similarly, the influences from traditional folk and modern art intertwine to create a rich cultural landscape. Ancient Gothic architecture in the form of castles, town halls, churches, and city gates can be found in every major city. Krakow is particularly famous for its architecture spanning from the Gothic era into the Polish Renaissance. The Sigmunt Chapel in the Wawel Cathedral is known as “The Pearl of the Polish Renaissance.” Polish paintings of 18th century were heavily influenced by European art, especially Italian and French. However, many of the great masterpieces have been lost and the artists in Poland were heavily oppressed during the 20th century. The Second World War devastated all of the divisions of Polish culture, including the arts. Any attempts to continue artistic activities after the Second World War were quickly suppressed by the communist state. The work that remains on display in the museums of Poland are true national treasures.
Poland’s strong academic tradition dates back to 14th century, and some of Europe’s oldest universities can be found here. The Polish Higher Education system is divided into three stages: Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctor (Ph.D.). This system applies to all fields of education except Law, Pharmacy, Psychology, Veterinary Medicine, Medicine and Dentistry, which are still based on two-stage system (Master and Doctor) - the equivalent of a Bachelor’s and Professional Degree (J.D., M.D., D.D.S.) in the States. There are two types of Bachelor’s degrees awarded: Bachelor of Arts (Licencjat) and Bachelor of Science (Inżynier). These degrees take three years to earn.
Students wishing to pursue a Master’s degree have two options. The first option is to begin a Master’s program after already completing a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field at another university. The second option is to complete a five-year combination program where, upon graduation, the student has earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree. Doctoral programs are three years in length and require students to complete serious research in their field of study and publish a dissertation on a unique topic within their area of expertise.
The academic year is divided into two parts: the fall semester (October-mid February), and the spring semester (mid February-June). Each of them ends with the examination period. Teaching is given in the form of lectures, classes, seminars, laboratory classes and discussion groups. It is also possible to attend university in Poland without first speaking the language. There are over 400 degree programs in Poland that are taught exclusively in English. And with over 36,000 international students studying in Poland every year, you will be in good company, even if your Polish is a little rusty or non-existent.
International Student Admissions
If you would like to study in Poland, you need to fulfill certain requirements. First, you must have a secondary education diploma. For student from the U.S., this is simply a high school diploma. Second, you must have proof that you are eligible to enroll in a higher education program in your country of origin. In order to best understand how to meet this particular requirement, students from the United States should consult with an admissions counselor at their Polish university of choice.
Similarly, in order to be accepted for the postgraduate studies, international students must present an undergraduate diploma that has been legally recognized by Poland. In order to have your diploma legally recognized, you have to go through the legal process called nostrafication. Again, consult with an admissions counselor for information on how to go about this.
Top Universities of Poland
Warsaw University of Technology, MSc in Electrical and Computer Engineering
- Jagiellonian University
- Warsaw University of Technology
- Warsaw School of Economics
Offers excellent MS program in English. Tuition fees is ..
EU citizens: 5000 PLN/year
Non-EU citizens: 5000 EUR/year
International Student Tuition and Expenses
While higher education is free for Polish and EU citizens, all other international students are required to pay tuition. However, the tuition rates in Poland are commensurate with the rates in most other European countries. Generally, students can expect their annual fees to be:
- $2500 per year for Bachelor’s and combined Bachelor’s/Master’s programs
- $3500 per year for doctoral, postgraduate and medical postgraduate internships as well as scientific, arts, specialist and post-doctoral internships,
- $3500 per year for vocational courses and apprenticeships,
The cost of living in Poland is still significantly lower than most of the other EU countries. A total amount of $300-$500 per month is enough to cover basic cost associated with accommodation, food and transportation. Entertainment costs are also much lower and student discount programs are common.
It is mandatory for international students to carry health insurance while they are studying in Poland. Citizens of other countries may either purchase a commercial insurance policy or pay for a voluntary policy in Polish National Healthcare Fund. The policy cost ranges from $10 to $75 per month, depending on the level of coverage. To get a policy, students must present their university certificate of enrollment, student ID card, the temporary residence certificate and passport with valid visa or residence permit.
International Student Visa
The student visa requirements are typical of what an international student would expect when preparing to study abroad. Your visa application packet will include:
- Completed Application
- Valid passport
- Official letter of acceptance to a school in Poland
- A short CV
- Your school certificates and diplomas
- Evidence of proficiency in the language in which you wish to study
- Confirmation of having the funds for studying and living in Poland
- Health insurance
- A passport photo
These documents must be submitted in person to a Polish embassy or consulate in your country of origin.