Foreign students choose Lithuania
Experts in laser technologies, medicine, information and biotechnologies, architects and artists have been promoting Lithuania abroad for quite some time now. Many professionals have accumulated their knowledge in the higher education institutions of our country. Lithuania is a crossroad between Western and Eastern Europe, and despite its complicated history, has developed a unique culture, which encompasses both deep respect for traditions and a robust wish to learn and innovate. The population of foreign students keeps rising – in 2015, 12% more students came to study in Lithuania (4652 in total). Another few thousand students come to study under various student Exchange programmes. According to surveys, 94.2% of foreign students would recommend studying in Lithuania to their friends. Currently there are students from 95 different countries of the world studying in Lithuania. The majority of foreign students choose the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences. Presently as many as 734 foreign students study in this university, the majority of them from Sweden (116) and Israel (111). Many foreign students choose Kaunas University of Technology (549), Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, (445), Vilnius university (415), Mykolas Romeris University (364) and European Humanities University where the majority of foreigners come from Belarus. In 2015, as in previous years, medicine was the most popular study programme. Other study programs such as engineering, management and social work are also popular among foreign students.
Higher Education System
The higher education institutions are of two types: universities and colleges (non-university higher education institutions). Studies are organised in three cycles: bachelor studies (in universities) or professional bachelor studies (in colleges), post-graduate studies and doctoral studies.
Full-time and part-time studies are available.
College studies (non-university higher education) are oriented towards training for professional activities. The duration of full-time studies in colleges is usually three years and for part-time studies – four years. Practical training covers at least one third of the study programme. Graduates are awarded with a professional bachelor degree. Students with practical experience can complete additional studies (the duration of which is set by each higher education institution) to continue post-graduate studies in universities. College studies are offered by public and private colleges.
University studies provide a universal academic education, theoretical training and the highest level of professional excellence. The form of university studies can be continuous, for example, in medicine the first and the second cycles are connected. The duration of full-time studies in universities is four years and for part-time studies it is often five years. Graduates are awarded with a bachelor degree. They can continue their studies in post-graduate studies that last one and a half to 2 years. Those who want to dedicate themselves to academic activities after post-graduate studies can study for a doctoral degree (the duration of studies is four years). University studies are offered by universities, academies and seminaries.
22 colleges (including 10 independent) and 21 universities (including 8 independent) offer study programmes in Lithuania.
Average tuition fees in higher education institutions depend on the field of study and the study cycle. On average, the cost of studies at higher education institutions is approximately between 1.000 – 5.300 EUR per year for bachelor studies, from 2.200 to 6.500 EUR per year for master studies and from 7.100 to 8.500 EUR per year for doctoral studies.
With higher education being notoriously expensive in most parts of the world, more than three-fourths of international students in Lithuania agree they are getting a bang for their buck – with reasonable tuition fees for the highest quality of studies and generous scholarship schemes for top quality education.
There are various scholarship opportunities in Lithuania. Scholarships are offered by the state, higher education institutions and International Scholarship Programs. Each higher education institution also has its own scholarship funds and financing schemes based on which one-time awards or other type of awards are given to the students meeting certain requirements from institution’s funds. Lithuanians living abroad and expatriates (children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren of expatriates who had lived abroad for more than three years and started studying in at least in the ninth grade in Lithuania ). This scholarship is granted for one semester, including holidays.
Most foreign students say that 350-400 EUR is enough to live off for a month (minus the tuition fees). It really depends on how much you want to travel and go out, but our night clubs, pubs, museums and other attractions are less expensive than the ones found elsewhere in Europe. A day menu at most restaurants will cost from 3 to 5 EUR, a cinema ticket – up to 6 EUR, ten minutes at a local carting track – 10-12 EUR.
Recognition of foreign qualifications
Candidates to Lithuanian higher education institutions who have received their secondary or higher education abroad should arrange for the academic recognition of foreign qualifications. Academic recognition means determining the value of the qualifications, i. e. if these qualifications generally meet with the requirements of relevant qualifications in Lithuania from the academic point of view. Academic recognition of foreign qualifications is undertaken by the centre of Quality Assessment in Higher Education (SKVC) and higher education institutions holding the authorisation of the Minister of Education and Science in Lithuania.