From a geographical point of view, Slovakia lies exactly in the middle of Europe. The small parliamentary republic came into being with the end of Czechoslovakia in 1993 and its split into the Czech and Slovak Republics. Slovakia has been part of the European Union since 2004 and a member of the European Monetary Union since 2009.
The Slovak state area extends strongly east-west to around 49,000 square kilometers. Austria, Hungary, Ukraine, Poland and the Czech Republic surround the country. The capital is Bratislava, which is located in the far west of the country. Around half a million of the 5.5 million Slovaks live here.
Facts about the Slovak Republic
The climate is typically continental, with dry, hot summers and cold, humid winters. Much of the country consists of forests and mountains. Rivers such as the Danube, the Waag, the March and the Gran run through Slovakia. The mountainous nature reserves with the High Tatras, the Carpathian Mountains and the Slovak Ore Mountains as well as the country’s idyllic towns and villages are very popular with tourists.
The Slovak population is shaped by the long Stalinist and Soviet rule. Nevertheless, the Slovaks are considered open-minded, friendly and cosmopolitan. Relations with Germany are good and they often speak a little German.
The economy is traditionally characterized by heavy industry with the metal industry, automobile production, supplier industry and the chemical industry. The service sector is becoming increasingly important.
Universities of Slovakia
According to topmbadirectory, there are around 23 public and 10 private higher education institutions in Slovakia. In addition to universities, this includes academies with both university and non-university study programs. Most of the universities under public law are financed by the state, but they are self-administered. There are also purely state universities for the military, police and medicine.
The privately financed universities also mostly specialize in a certain subject area. There are also numerous colleges that provide practical training. The Slovak Ministry of Education (Ministerstvo skolstva) centrally monitors the provision of education and the quality of research and teaching.
The Slovak study program is broad-based, and depending on the subject, theoretical or practical knowledge is imparted to a different extent. In some areas, for example, courses similar to a technical college, i.e. very practical, can be taken. Some universities also have English-language courses in their programs that are internationally popular. For example, German applicants like to come to Slovakia to study medicine and thus avoid long waiting times for a study place in Germany.
Study system of Slovakia
The academic year in Slovakia is divided into a winter semester from September to December and a summer semester from February to May.
Recognition of achievements after studying abroad in Slovakia
At the end of each semester, exams are taken in the individual course. Their achievements are calculated according to the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). An equivalence agreement has existed between Germany and Slovakia since 2003/2004, which ensures the mutual recognition of qualifications.
The undergraduate degree in Slovakia: the Bakalár
There are some study variants that differ according to the duration and intensity of the study: The first professional qualification is the bakalár, which corresponds to the German bachelor’s degree. The bachelor’s degree usually comprises three, and in some subjects, four years of study. The conclusion takes place with a written thesis and its oral defense.
Postgraduate courses: The Magister and the Inzinier
Building on this, a magister course can be added in the humanities, social and natural sciences, which is similar to the German master’s course. It lasts from one to a maximum of three years. The final state examination consists of a written paper and its oral defense.
A variant in the technical, economic and agricultural subjects is the inzinier (engineer title), which corresponds to the former German diploma course.
Doctoral studies: Doctor Filozofie
Successful graduates of a magister or incinier degree can do a doctorate in filozofie in a further three to five years. The doctoral program is also possible as a part-time study. State examination with the dissertation and its defense decided. Graduates from artistic doctoral programs acquire the doktor umenia, i.e. the degree of Doctor of Art.
The medical subjects deviate from the courses described above. In it are so-called professional doctorates are awarded. The first two years consist of theoretical training, after which the students take clinical courses and visit the various departments of the university clinics.
The last year consists of an internship in a specific department, such as gynecology, internal medicine, etc. The course ends with a state examination and the qualification doktor medicíny (MUDr.), Which corresponds to a state examination in medicine. In veterinary medicine it is the doctor veterinárskej medicíny (MVDr.).
Study requirements of Slovakia
Basic requirements for studying in Slovakia are a minimum age of 17 years and a school leaving certificate after 12 or 13 years, which corresponds to the German Abitur. Application forms include copies of high school diplomas and birth certificates, a résumé, passport photos and a health certificate.
In addition, there are usually further entry requirements of the respective university, such as written or oral tests. The application deadlines and language requirements are often different. You should inform yourself in good time at the relevant student’s office.
Admission to further courses of study or to a doctorate
A successfully completed bakalár degree is a prerequisite for further studies. In the case of a doctoral degree, it is again a magister or staging degree. When applying, all published and unpublished scientific papers must be listed and two letters of recommendation from professors in the chosen field of study must be enclosed.
Proof of foreign language skills
The language requirements vary depending on whether you want to study in Slovak or English. Sufficient knowledge of Slovak to ensure understanding and participation in the events can be proven through a Slovakicum.
For the English-language subjects, such evidence corresponds to the standardized tests such as TOEFL or IELTS. If an entrance examination is one of the admission requirements, language skills are often tested in parallel, so that further language tests can be omitted.
Costs and financing of studying abroad in Slovakia
The state universities that teach in the Slovak language are free of charge for both local and foreign students. The situation is different, however, with state universities that offer English-language programs. They incur tuition fees of around EUR 1,000–10,000 per year.
However, the cost of living in Slovakia is generally low. Depending on the lifestyle and location, they are between EUR 300–1,000 per month, with the highest price level for the Slovak capital, Bratislava.
Many students choose a single or multi-bed room in one of the Slovak student dormitories as a cheap accommodation option. This costs around EUR 100–270 per month, depending on the level of comfort desired. A private one-room apartment sometimes costs less than EUR 200 per month. Otherwise hostels or host families offer accommodation. You can also form shared apartments with other students.
Government funding, scholarships and student loans
Funding also includes the Federal Foreign BAföG. Tuition fees of up to EUR 4,600 for the first year of study are subsidized by the foreign student loan. In addition, there are grants for travel expenses and living expenses, which can be paid for the entire course. This funding is independent of the domestic BAföG, as the assessment rates are different.
There are also partial or full scholarships from various political, cultural and economic organizations. Some universities also offer their own scholarship programs. In addition, student loans can also be considered as a financing option.
Visa and entry requirements for Slovakia
Citizens of an EU member state only need a valid identity card to enter Slovakia. If you want to stay in Slovakia for more than three months due to your studies in Slovakia, you have to register with the police authorities.