STRUCTURE OF STUDIES
Poland's traditions of academic education go back to 1364.The Cracow Academy, one of the oldest in the world, took after academies in Bologna and Padua, and was the second university in Central Europe after the school in Prague. Today, the Polish higher education system is developing dynamically. After the United Kingdom, Germany and France, Poland holds the fourth place in Europe in terms of the number of people enrolled in higher education. Higher education institutions in Poland provide study programmes in accordance with the National Qualifications Framework for Higher Education. Students obtain qualifications at three levels and two profiles (academic and practical). Higher education institutions run full-time, extramural, evening and external courses. Full-time courses are defined as the basic type of studies.
The Higher Education Institutions in Poland are divided into state (public) and private (non-public) institutions. There are two main categories of higher education institutions: university-type and non-university institutions. The degree system based on the three-cycle structure has been successfully implemented together with the European Credit which is known as "Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS)". The European standard in higher education makes it easier for students to obtain recognition of their qualifications in other countries.
First-cycle studies leading to the professional title of a "licencjat or inzynier". Bachelor's degree programmes, at least 6 semesters, leading to the professional title of "licencjat" or at least 7 semesters, leading to the professional title of "inzynier". This is the Polish equivalent of the Bachelor's degree. These are focused on preparing students for future employment, or for continued education within Master's degree programmes. To obtain this degree, students must earn at least 180 ECTS (Transfer and Accumulation System) credits. The duration of this course is 3 to 4 Years.
Second-cycle studies - Called as "Master's degree programme" (1.5 to 2 years) following the first cycle studies and leading to the professional title of Master. These are focused on theoretical knowledge as well as application and development of creative skills. Master's degree holders may enter a doctoral programme (third-cycle studies). To obtain this degree, students must earn 90-120(Transfer and Acumulation System ) ECTS credits. The duration of the course is 1.5 to 2 years.
Long cycle studies
It is also known as the Single long-cycle studies. These study program basically based on an integrated study program, which contains both basic studies and in-depth specialization. The Master's degree programmes which consist 10 to 12 semesters leading to the professional title of "magister" or an equivalent degree. Its depends on the study course profile. To obtain this degree, students must earn at least 300 ECTS credits (10-semesters studies) or at least 360 ECTS credits (12-semesters studies).
3rd cycle studies
3RD Cycle Studies are also called as "Doctoral degree programmes". The total duration of these Programmes is 6 to 8 semesters. These Programmes are accessible to graduates of the Master's degree and leading to the PhD degree. These Programmes are offered by the university-type schools as well as some research institutions which belongs to the departments of the Polish Academy of Sciences, along with research and development institutions. The PhD degree is awarded to candidates who submit and successfully defend a doctoral dissertation before the thesis committee, and who pass the doctoral examination.