Situated in the center of Europe, Poland is among the largest and most populous countries in the region – ninth largest in Europe by area, and sixth in the European Union (EU) by population. Poland has enjoyed strong economic growth in recent years, particularly since joining the EU in 2004; in the midst of the economic crisis of 2009, Poland was the only European nation to report economic expansion.
With a history dating back for over a thousand years, Poland’s cultural heritage is incredibly rich. This includes its longstanding traditions in the higher education sector, with the first university in Poland founded in the 14th century. Today, Poland is becoming an increasingly popular study destination, with about 72,000 international students choosing to study there in 2017/18.
For many of those who choose to study in Poland, the country’s appeal is augmented by its relatively low living costs, which remain below those of most EU members. University fees are likewise relatively affordable, typically no more than US$4,180 at public universities, and US$6,600 at private institutions.
Click on the tabs below to learn more about the top universities in Poland, popular cities for students, applications, visas and more.
Applying to study in Poland
Polish higher education lasts for three years at undergraduate (bachelor’s) level and one and a half or two years at master’s level. In order to apply, you need to provide proof of having successfully completed the previous level of studies, along with proof of English language proficiency (unless you are a native speaker). Some courses may require that you sit an entrance exam or present a portfolio of work. You can also choose to study in Polish, in which case you’ll either need to submit proof of proficiency in the language or enroll in a year-long language course to prepare.
Visas to study in Poland
Students who are residents of the countries within the European Union do not need a visa to study in Poland. However, upon arrival in the country, EU citizens need to apply for a temporary residence permit. International students from non-EU countries will need to obtain a student visa before arrival. On arrival, they will also need to apply for a residence permit, which will be valid for a maximum period of three years. For further assistance and information contact the Polish embassy in your country or visit the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ website.
Fees and funding
Higher education in Poland is free for Polish citizens. If you wish to benefit from this as well, you will need to sit the same entrance exams as Polish students and study a course taught in the Polish language. Otherwise, international students are required to pay tuition fees, which are typically in the range of US$2,230-4,180 per year at public universities in Poland. Fees at private universities in Poland will be slightly higher; depending on your course and the institution, the fees could be up to US$6,600 a year. Universities in Poland have recently stopped charging these fees in full up-front, in order to ensure that fees do not present too much of a barrier for international students.https://tpc.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
Note that there are relatively few scholarships available for foreign students, so it’s likely that you’ll need to cover your own costs. However, it may be worth checking with the universities to which you are applying, to see whether any funding opportunities are available.
Costs of living in Poland are relatively low, though the amount of money you need will vary depending on your lifestyle and the city you’re based in. You will probably need at least 2,500 PLN (~US$650) per month to cover living costs, including accommodation. Accommodation in student halls of residence is usually cheaper at around 250-340 PLN (~US$60-90) per month for a shared room, and between 430-640 PLN (~US$110-160) for a single room. Alternatively, a shared rented flat could cost around 640 to 850 PLN (~US$160-220) per month, whereas a very small one-room single apartment could start from around 1,280 PLN (~US$330).
Health insurance is compulsory for all students for the entire length of their stay in Poland. Students from the EU are eligible for free or discounted health care if they can present a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), while it’s recommended that non-EU students buy health insurance either before or as soon as possible after their arrival in Poland.
Geologically Poland is in middle of the Europe.That implies while study in Poland you have easy access to all the EU nations.
Poland follows Bologna principle in it’s education system. In this principle there are 3 stages of reviewing higher education system. Since Poland is a part of EU, Poland follows European standerds, which involves constant checking and improving the education process.Poland has some very good internationally recognised institutions such as
Warsaw University of Technology
Wroclaw University of Technology
AGH University of Technology
Poznan University of Technology
Gdansk University of Technology
>Cost of living
One of the main criteria you should consider while choosing the country for higher education is cost of living of the Country. Most of the students will complete their higher education using their loans from bank, after completing education these loans might haunt you. Poland has least cost of living in Europe, Cost of living in Poland is same as Srilanka.
According to official figures you need 24 Euros a day to survive in Poland.
To know cost of each daily used prodcts in different cities Click here
>>>Cost of tuition
Tuition cost is reasonably fair, many students compare it to German University tuition fees which is free ” for not all but most of the Universities”, even though there is no tuition fees cost of living is really high in Germany.In figures approximately you need 12500$ to complete your degree. Cost includes your tuition fees and return ticket fee, living cost for 2 years.Tuition fee varies from 1500 euros to 4000 euros.
Cost of Tuition depends on Course and university applied.
If you have completed your degree from any Poland University you have access to EU labour market. As we know getting work is difficult in all part of the world, as a international student it will be little more difficult, but there are many students who have successfully got jobs and settled in EU countries. Your degree certificate is accepted in EU regions. Poland is home to many MNCs which prefer international students.
>Heritage and landscape
Poland has rich heritage and culture and there are very beautiful landscape. Weather in Poland is cold but People have very warm heart in welcoming internationals in their country. There will be ample opportunity to mingle with the locals in college and in pubs.Polish people love to talk about other cultures.
Every year Poland receives students from all around the world, Gives you opportunity to mingle with other country students know their culture, and behavior.This will make you truly a international student.
Studying abroad is making you a broad minded person by knowing other cultures and people.Which will surely benefit you in your personal or work life.
Europe has a lot to offer from an academic point of view. It is a cradle of higher education, there are whole cities built and organised around prestigious universities, and finally, it offers huge cultural diversity. Therefore, if you choose to study in Europe, it is worth the extra effort to select not only a high-ranking university but also a nice place to live, with friendly people, interesting history and a vibrant society. This is why Culture.pl wants to present to you eight reasons to study in Poland.
1. High-quality universities
Poland has more than 450 HEIs (Higher Education institutions). The best three of them are widely recognised as regional academic centres. There are also highly specialised universities which enable the formation of outstanding experts from a wide spectrum of fields. The annual ranking of Polish universities gave the top three places to the following institutions:
- University of Warsaw
- Polish: Uniwersytet Warszawski, often called just UW (ooh-voo)
- Notable Alumni: Fryderyk Chopin, Julian Tuwim, Witold Gombrowicz
The largest university in Poland, established in 1816. The university offers some 37 different fields of study, and over 100 specialisations in humanities, as well as in natural sciences. Its main campus neighbours Warsaw’s Old Town, while some of the faculties are scattered around other beautiful districts of the city.
- Jagiellonian University in Kraków
- Polish: Uniwersytet Jagielloński, often called just UJ (ooh-yote)
- Notable Alumni: Krzysztof Zanussi, Stanisław Lem, Wisława Szymborska
Founded in 1364 by Casimir III the Great in Kazimierz (a district of Kraków since 1791), UJ is the oldest university in Poland, the second oldest university in Central Europe (after Charles University in Prague) and one of the oldest universities in the world. The right place to study law or literature, but also one of the only places in Poland where you can take up film studies.
- Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań
- Polish: Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu, a.k.a. UAM
- Notable Alumni: Jan A. P. Kaczmarek (Oscar winner) & the mathematicians who broke the code of the Enigma encrypting machine during WWII
The youngest of the big three, this university is located in the city of Poznań (western Poland). Founded in 1919, it remains the third power in the Polish academic universe. It is best known for its faculties of Law and History.
Beside those venerable universities, Poland has to offer a selection of world renowned schools with more specialised approaches. To name but a few:
- Łódź Film School – one of the oldest film schools in the world. Alma mater of all the classics of Polish cinema: Andrzej Wajda, Roman Polański, Jerzy Skolimowski, Zbigniew Rybczyński and many others. The Łódź Film School was a centre of what is called the Polish Film School.
- College of Europe Natolin (Warsaw) – Campus in Natolin is the only campus of Bruges’ College of Europe located abroad, and the most prestigious choice for those who dream of becoming high-level EU officials.
- Polish-Japanese Institute of Information Technology – A very innovative and up-to-date university that offers unconventional programmes blending art, design and management with new media and information technology.
- The Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw – the oldest and largest music school in Poland, and one of the largest in Europe. To date, it remains an important point on the map of the classical music world and is a destination for thousands of students from all over the globe.
A content-rich curriculum, promising employment prospects, distinguished professors – these are usually the criteria used by high-school graduates to choose a college or university. What if they chose their schools guided purely by aesthetic values? Find out which Polish campuses make the cut.Read morego to the#architecturetopic pagego to the#lifestyle & opiniontopic pageRead more
Studying in Poland is cheaper than doing so in other parts of Europe. Tuition fees start from less than 1500 EUR per year and rarely go higher than 3000 EUR. Compared to the average fees of private universities in France, Germany, the UK or Scandinavia, this might mean big savings at the start of your studies. For example, according to studyineurope.eu, Northern European countries ask students to pay approximately 10 000 EUR per year while in France tuition fees range from 2000 to 7000 EUR.
But where the real economising comes into play is in the cost of living. A shared flat in the city centre for 100-150 EUR or a room in a student dormitory for 100 EUR? No problem. What’s more, a monthly public transport ticket costs only 25 EUR per month, and during the warmer half of the year you can use public bikes which are quite cheap. After a few weeks in Poland, you’ll certainly learn how to get a cinema ticket for 3 EUR or a tasty lunch for less than 5 EUR. Poland is the promised land for the thrifty.
Universities around the world share characteristics, but experiences vary – especially when looking at Poland and the United States. Culture.pl’s US intern Elizabeth Lawrence compares her own experiences and interviews three Polish students to examine the differences.Read morego to the#lifestyle & opiniontopic pagego to the#travel in polandtopic pageRead more
3. Vibrant student & cultural life
As we all know, being a student is much more than only studying. University is only as important as the other components of higher education: partying, sports, music festivals, film festivals, hanging out with friends, going out of town for the weekends, etc. This is why you’ll never regret choosing Poland. Thanks to our rapid economic growth in the last two decades, the cultural offerings of Poland are comparable to any other European country, but with its own character.
Poland is visited each summer by the world’s biggest music stars. Young Poles are true lovers of alternative culture so they attend in droves festivals like Open’er (jokingly called the Polish Coachella, the European Festival Awards named Open’er the Best Major European Festival of 2009, 2010 and 2019) or OFF Festival (chosen as the best medium-sized music festival in Europe in 2011, while Pitchfork considered it one of the 20 most important summer festivals in the world!).
Also, every year, each university organises its own ‘carnival’ called Juwenalia. During Juwenalia, all classes are cancelled so that everybody has time to party. There are plenty of things to watch/listen to/get involved in every day in the biggest cities, so you will find no time for boredom.
Culture.pl’s intrepid intern Matt Harmon dives into Warsaw’s music scene and comes up for air with his comprehensive guide to making the most of the Polish capital’s concert cornucopia.Read morego to the#travel in polandtopic pagego to the#musictopic pageRead more
4. Poland is a Part of the Socrates–Erasmus Programme
Since 1998, Poland has been part of the Socrates–Erasmus programme, and today, more than 300 Polish HEIs participate. In 2013 alone, around 10,000 students from all over Europe came to Poland, mostly choosing universities in Warsaw, Poznań, Kraków, Wrocław and Łódź. The other good news is that if your country is in the Socrates–Erasmus network, you most probably won’t need a visa to come to Poland.
History is made of controversies. And Polish history in particular. Here are 15 peculiar facts from Poland’s past that really make Poland stand out and may also help explain the country’s unique place in the world.Read morego to the#language & literaturetopic pagego to the#heritagetopic pageRead more
5. Scholarships for Non-EU Students
If your country does not belong to the Socrates-Erasmus network, there are still a handful of opportunities. Each year, a considerable number of scholarships for non-EU foreign students are launched. Most of them are dedicated to students from Eastern European Partnership countries: Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine, but almost everybody can find a scholarship for which he or she is eligible. The best way to find out is to contact the Polish embassy in your country, as they usually coordinate bilateral student exchange programmes.
Poland has long been a destination for international travellers. This collection highlights books written by foreigners about their time in Poland, ranging from witty memoirs to scrumptious cookbooks to insightful histories.Read morego to the#language & literaturetopic pageRead more
6. Affordable & delicious cuisine
Polish cuisine is mostly known for its comforting and fulfilling dishes like pierogi and kiełbasa. For the health conscious, it is also good to know that Poland is at the forefront of non-GMO, bio, and organic food trends. The culture of eating healthily and carefully choosing organic products is very popular nowadays in Poland. Since we have a straightforward capitalist system, this demand has produced a large supply. There are occasional fairs of organic food organised in every district of bigger cities as well as lots of restaurants for aware consumers. What’s more, the price of organic food is affordable, only slightly higher than for products available in supermarkets. No more need to pay four times the price only not to drink milk that never spoils or an evergreen apple!
7. Polish hospitality
Extraordinary hospitality is deeply rooted in Polish culture. You can expect every casual invitation for a dinner or a supper to end up as a three-course feast. Polish grandmas will always give you seconds even if you beg her not to. Poles won’t hesitate to offer you their flat for a night or two if you have problems with arranging accommodation and they always care to make your stay in Poland comfortable and interesting.
Poles are well-known for their exceptional hospitality. An old saying has it that ‘a guest at home is God at home’, thus if you stay in Poland for at least a few days and make friends with somebody, expect to be invited to a Polish dinner. If you want your new friendship to last for more than one evening be warned that Polish customs can be very tricky!Read morego to the#travel in polandtopic pagego to the#culturetopic pageRead more
8. Polish sense of humour
All Poles have one thing in common – a very specific, tart sense of humour that has a very solid foundation. For many years, throughout the communist period, speaking the truth about certain things was forbidden. Censorship effectively banned any sign of political incorrectness. Poles then turned to constructing a whole linguistic system of jokes, metaphors and figurative expressions that looked innocent but in fact conveyed encrypted criticism of communist realities – usually in a very funny way. Even though communism is over, the Polish love for tricky jokes lives on. Witty comebacks are always highly appreciated and even lecturers always prepare a joke or two to appeal for their audience’s sympathy and attention.
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