Poland is a country located in the center of Europe. Covering an area of 312.7 thousand square kilometers and having over 38 million inhabitants, Poland is the fifth most populous member state of the European Union (EU) and the sixth largest country by area in the EU. Poland is also a member of the Schengen Area and the European Single Market. Warsaw is the capital city and the largest academic center of Poland. Other major cities include Gdańsk, Kraków, Łódź, Poznań and Wrocław.
There are more than 400 higher education institutions in Poland. They are located in 60 different cities. For example, you can choose from about 70 universities in Warsaw, 20 universities in Kraków, 15 universities in Gdańsk. Jagiellonian University located in Kraków is one of the oldest universities in Europe. It was founded in 1364.
Poland holds 4th place in Europe in terms of number of people enrolled in universities. There are about 1.2 million people studying in higher education in Poland. The level of education is really high. You have to work hard to earn your degree. After graduation, you will surely find employment in a position related to your field of study.
What are the studies like?
Poland is an integral part of European Higher Education Area. Higher education systems in Europe have been harmonized through the Bologna Process, based on a three-cycle hierarchy of degrees. Study programs are divided into bachelor’s programs (first-cycle studies) that usually lasts 3 years and master’s programs of 1.5 to 2 years (second-cycle studies), which can be followed by a doctorate (third-cycle studies). There are also exceptions. Some fields of study, such as medicine, dentistry, law, pharmacy, psychology, offer long-cycle (lasting 4.5 to 6 years) master’s programs only. The European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) makes it easier for students to obtain recognition of their qualifications in other countries.
Cost of living
An important factor influencing the choice of a place to study is cost of living. In large agglomerations such as Warsaw or Kraków, the cost of accommodation and living expenses are higher than in smaller cities. Every student is aware of that. There are dormitories where you can live at an affordable price during your study years. If you have more money at your disposal, you will easily find a studio apartment or room to rent in Poland. Students often live in shared flats and get along well. Thanks to this solution, you will make new friends and check how independent you are.
Polish restaurants offer dishes from all over the world. Italian cuisine is very popular in Poland. Polish people are crazy about pizza and pasta. As long as you do not eat in restaurants every day, the cost of food will not be high. On the other hand, visiting a restaurant or bar from time to time will not hurt you. Polish cuisine is very tasty. Have you heard of Polish dumplings called “pierogi”? You must definitely try them!
If you do not speak Polish, do not worry! It is not an obstacle. In most universities, you will find courses in foreign languages. So, if you want to discover a new language, culture and environment, studying in Poland is something for you.