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Slovakia has many opportunities for international students to study at its many universities due to its relatively cheap and plentiful universities, such as the Comenius University or the Technical University of Kosice (TUKE). Almost all universities offer programs in English for foreigners.
The average tuition for international students is around 1000-3000 euros a year. Living costs in Slovakia are low since students can work up to 20 hours a week while attending school. To study in Slovakia, you need to apply for a Schengen Visa and Temporary Residence in Slovakia, and you can stay here after you graduate.
In this article, we are covering a complete guide on how to navigate through Slovakia’s higher education system and also listing off the best and cheapest universities you can attend here.
If you want to buy Slovak gifts or useful Slovak products, you can find them by clicking here (Amazon link).
Is Slovakia Good for International Students
There are many international students throughout Slovakia studying at different universities. Because of the lower price of good universities, Slovakia is a magnet for students worldwide.
If you ask yourself if Slovakia is a good place for international students, the answer is definitely yes. Foreigners are welcome in Slovakia, especially if you are a student or a tourist.
Most Slovaks speak English, so you do not have to worry about not understanding someone or getting lost in the country.
Our little big country also offers lots of opportunities for recreational activities you can do in your free time besides studies.
There are many unique restaurants, parks, castles, mountains, and much more to see and visit in Slovakia. So you are not going to be bored. Besides, international students can work part-time or even full-time in Slovakia.
Why Should I Study in Slovakia
Slovakia is heavily invested in higher education. This means that it has quite a lot of tremendous and decent universities. Even though Slovakia has a developed economy, the fees for studying in its universities are pretty low compared to the rest of Europe.
Slovakia is home to excellent schools:
- Comenius University, the country’s oldest university, in Bratislava,
- The University of Economics Bratislava,
- Bratislava International School of Liberal Arts.
Slovakia also boasts some good specialized schools, for example:
- The Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra,
- The Constantine the Philosopher University, also in Nitra,
- And the Technical University of Kosice.
Slovakia has a long history of academic excellence and remains one of the most competitive nations for higher learning. Universities offer a variety of degree programs, and the most popular ones are Biology, Chemistry, Engineering, European Studies, Computer Science, and Business Studies.
Tuition fees are free for citizens of European Union countries while very affordable to those outside the EU.
There are three levels of education, while the first two levels can be joined and form a single unit. This unit lasts for 5 to 6 years.
The first level is the Bachelor’s study program which lasts 3 to 4 years.
The second-level study programs and study programs consisting of the first two levels of education have the following names:
- Master study programs
- Engineer Study Programmes
- Doctor Study Programmes
Third-level study programs are called doctoral study programs (=Ph.D.).
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Is Education Free in Slovakia for International Students
The cost of higher education in Slovakia differs by a few factors. If you are an international student wishing to study at university in our little big country, it might come as a surprise that, under certain conditions, you can study almost entirely for free.
Higher education in Slovakia is free (or at least partially free) if you take courses in the Slovak language. If you know Slovak, all the tuition fees will be significantly lower than if you choose to study in English.
The related tuition fees also depend on if you are studying externally (part-time studies) or if you have a daily form of study (full-time studies).
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- Slovakia Flag
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- T-shirt with Slovakia Flag
- Slovakia Shot Glass
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How Much Does It Cost to Study in Slovakia
Slovak Universities will make you pay tuition to study every year. The academic year lasts for two semesters – the winter semester lasts from September to January, and the summer semester lasts from February to June.
The amount of tuition you will have to pay varies wildly based on which university you want to attend and which faculty you choose.
To give you a better example of how tuition works in Slovakia, we have prepared tables containing tuition fees for the academic year of 2022/2023 from both the Technical University of Košice (TUKE) and Comenius University in Bratislava.
If you wish to check these yourself, the sources are provided here – Tuition fees for the Technical University of Košice and Comenius University.
Technical University of Košice (TUKE) tuition fees for the academic year 2022/2023:
|Faculty||Part-time studies||Full-time studies||Part-time studies in Slovak|
|Faculty of Mining, Ecology, Process Control, and Geotechnologies||1 460 EUR||5 000 EUR||600 EUR|
|Faculty of Materials, Metallurgy, and Recycling||1 310 EUR||5 000 EUR||500 EUR|
|Faculty of Mechanical Engineering||–||5 000 EUR||600 EUR|
|Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Informatics||1 200 EUR||5 000 EUR||600 EUR|
|Faculty of Civil Engineering||–||5 000 EUR||500 EUR|
|Faculty of Economics||1 610 EUR||5 000 EUR||570 EUR|
|Faculty of Manufacturing Technologies||1 300 EUR||5 000 EUR||500 EUR|
|Faculty of Arts||–||5 000 EUR||600 EUR|
|Faculty of Aeronautics||1 100 EUR||5 000 EUR||550 EUR|
Comenius University in Bratislava tuition fees for the academic year 2022/2023:
|Faculty||Part-time studies||Full-time studies||Full-time studies in Slovak|
|Faculty of Medicine||9 500 – 11 000 EUR||–||2 000 EUR|
|Faculty of Law||2 990 EUR||–||899 EUR|
|Faculty of Natural Sciences||1 000 EUR||1 000 EUR||1 000 EUR|
|Faculty of Education||570 – 600 EUR||–||570 – 600 EUR|
|Faculty of Pharmacy||3 500 EUR||7 500 EUR||300 EUR|
|Faculty of Physical Education and Sport||850 EUR||–||850 EUR|
|Jessenius Faculty of Medicine||490 EUR||10 900 EUR||10 900 EUR|
|Faculty of Mathematics, Physics, and Informatics||–||2 000 EUR||700 EUR|
|Faculty of Roman-Catholic Theology||–||600 EUR||600 EUR|
|Evangelical Lutheran Theological Faculty||–||4 000 EUR||390 EUR|
|Faculty of Management||3 290 EUR||1 990 EUR||1 100 EUR|
|Faculty of Social and Economic Sciences||–||3 000 EUR||1 500 EUR|
As you can see above, the tuition price varies significantly between the languages in which you will study. However, Slovakia’s Universities are still relatively cheap compared to the rest of the European Union. And there are many cheaper Slovak Universities out there.
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Cheapest Universities in Slovakia for International Students
Slovakia has many universities, most of which are pretty cheap, even for international students. Here are some of the cheapest universities you can attend in Slovakia as an international student.
The University of Economics in Bratislava
- Tuition fee for foreign undergraduate students: EUR 1,500 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign graduate students: EUR 2,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign Ph.D. students: EUR 3,000 a year
The University of Economics in Bratislava is probably one of Europe’s best and cheapest places to study economics-related disciplines. Today, it has got about 9,000 students that study in eight different faculties.
Seven of them are in Bratislava, and the Faculty of Business Administration is in Kosice. Each of these faculties has a website with the most popular graduate and postgraduate programs in the respective field listed in English.
Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica
- Tuition fee for foreign undergraduate students: EUR 900 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign graduate students: EUR 1,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign Ph.D. students: EUR 2,500 a year
Matej Bel University in Banská Bystrica is the cheapest university on this list. It has about 15,000 students annually.
The university attracts international students annually with its unique graduate and postgraduate programs. This university also offers several Ph.D. programs in English, including one in Tourism and another in Public Economics and Policy.
University of Žilina
- Tuition fee for foreign undergraduate students: EUR 4,500 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign graduate students: EUR 5,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign Ph.D. students: EUR 6,000 a year
The University of Žilina was established in 1953 in then-communist Czechoslovakia as the University of Railway Transport.
Today, this cheap university in Slovakia has more than 8,000 full-time students annually, most of them studying in transport-related graduate and post-graduate programs. The University of Žilina currently has eight faculties, six of which are Engineering-related.
Pavol Jozef Safárik University in Kosice
- Tuition fee for General Medicine: EUR 10,500 a year
- Tuition fee for Dental Medicine: EUR 11,000 a year
Pavol Jozef Safárik University in Kosice is probably one of the best places to study General Medicine and Dentistry in Europe.
Its tuition fees may seem a bit high compared to other Slovakia universities. Still, they are pretty affordable if you compare them to the fees of most medical schools in Western Europe and even some Central European schools.
This cheap university in Slovakia was established in 1959 and now has five different faculties. They train about 1,250 full-time students in various graduate and undergraduate programs.
The Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra
- Tuition fee for foreign undergraduate students: EUR 1,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign graduate students: EUR 1,200 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign Ph.D. students: EUR 3,500 a year
The Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra is for those who’d like to pursue a degree in the fields of Agriculture and Farming. Its main campus is in Slovakia’s rural Nitra, which produces most food products to support its urban population.
Today, this cheap university in Slovakia has just over 6,000 students trained in six faculties. These faculties provide ninety different graduate and undergraduate programs, but only 12 are taught in English.
The Technical University of Kosice
- Tuition fee for foreign undergraduate students: EUR 5,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign graduate students: EUR 6,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign Ph.D. students: EUR 7,000 a year
The Technical University of Kosice is the second most expensive candidate we have included in this list. TUKE, as this higher education provider is also known, was established in 1952.
Today, the university has got about 10,000 full-time students. It’s got seven faculties in the field of Engineering, as well as a Faculty of Economics and a Faculty of Arts.
This school is in the second-largest city in Slovakia and is a well-known school not only in Slovakia but also abroad.
The Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava
- Tuition fee for foreign undergraduate students: EUR 1,500 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign graduate students: EUR 3,000 a year
- Tuition fee for foreign Ph.D. students: EUR 3,500 a year
Slovak University of Technology (STU) in Bratislava is the best technical school in the capital of Slovakia and the most affordable one. In 2012, it was ranked the 150th-best university in the world for Computer Science.
Today, this cheap university in Slovakia got over 18,500 students who study and seven different faculties and two institutes.
Eight are in Bratislava, and the Faculty of Materials Science and Technology is in Trnava. STU is famous across Europe for its graduate and undergraduate programs in Food Technology.
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Cost of Living in Slovakia for International Students
Slovakia’s cost of living is much cheaper than Austria, Germany, or France’s. Depending on which city you are studying in, the cost of living changes quite a lot.
If you want to study in Bratislava or Kosice, the cost of living will be higher than in smaller cities in the rest of Slovakia. Bratislava is by far the most expensive Slovak city to live in.
According to numbeo.com, the average cost of living in Bratislava for a single person is 661 € without monthly rent. For a student, this might seem like a lot. With rent, it can get up to 1 200 € or more.
This is why we highly advise you to check in to student dorms. This will make your monthly expenses significantly cheaper, as the most significant chunk of your monthly spending would otherwise be spent on paying rent.
Based on the information from numbeo.com, Žilina, a city with one of the cheapest universities in Slovakia, also has a 15% smaller cost of living than Bratislava or Košice. Coming in at around 538 € a month without rent.
Regardless of where you are in Slovakia, necessities such as groceries are not expensive at all. They will eat up around 150 € a month out of your budget on average for a single student.
If you live in student dorms, some of them also offer food in the canteen for a few euros a month, which is a good deal.
You can also work up to 20 hours a week as a student, so you can look for work on the side while studying to have extra cash to spend. You can read more about the work later in the article.
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How Can I Get Student Visa for Slovakia
After being accepted into a University in Slovakia, you need to apply for a Student Visa (i.e., Schengen Visa) and a temporary residence permit. You can visit the nearest Slovak embassy or consulate for the visa application procedure. Documents required for the whole process are:
- A valid passport
- Passport-size photographs
- Acceptance letter from the institution
- Proof of payment to the university
- Evidence of sufficient funds to support yourself during studies in Slovakia
- Onward or return ticket
- Proof of accommodation
- Medical insurance
- Visa fee payment
- Certificate of good conduct
Students from third countries to stay in Slovakia for more than 90 days must apply for a temporary residence permit for the study. Apply for the permit personally at your nearest Slovak embassy or consulate or the respective foreign policy in the Slovak Republic.
If your application is accepted, a written notice mentioning the start and expiry date of the permit will be given, along with the temporary residence permit.
The following documents must be submitted for a temporary residence permit:
- Application form
- A valid passport and two passport-size photographs
- Unconditional Admission Letter from the University
- Proof of Slovak language
- Evidence of adequate financial means
- Certificate of good conduct: Must be issued from your country of origin or countries you have stayed in for more than 90 days
- Proof of accommodation in Slovakia
After successfully applying for a temporary residence permit, the Slovak embassy will conduct an interview. Later, the embassy would send its decision on granting the permit along with the record to the police department.
Once the police receive the application, it issues a decision within 30 days. If the police grant the application, it gives written notice of granting the temporary residence permit. It will be issued in the form of a residence card.
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Can a Foreign Student Work in Slovakia
EU/EEA/Swiss nationals and their family members can be employed in the territory of the Slovak Republic on the same terms as Slovak nationals. The applicant must meet the employer’s requirements, e.g., education, language skills, work experience, etc.
For information related to employment, all mobile workers from the EU/EEA/Switzerland can consult the website of EURES (European Information Services – information network facilitating the mobility of workers within the Member States of the European Union and the European Free Trade Association) www.eures.sk and http://ec.europa.eu/eures.
If you are not an EU/EEA/Swiss national, you can generally work only if granted temporary or permanent residence. Nevertheless, some exceptions apply to Ph.D. students, university teachers, or researchers.
This information has been gathered from SAIA – Slovak Academic Information Agency.
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Can I Stay in Slovakia after Graduation
Slovakia is very open about letting students work here after graduation. You are welcome to stay in Slovakia and work when you finish your studies.
Students who completed their university education in Slovakia (full degree studies) can apply for the renewal of their temporary residence after completing their studies, for job seeking, or starting a business.
In this case, it can be prolonged for nine months. Once you find a job, you can ask for a residence permit for employment. This permit is valid for a maximum period of two years.
Slovakia is an excellent place for international students, with cheap but quality Universities. The overall tuition fees for international students here are meager compared to the rest of the European Union at around 1000-3000 euros a year on average.
Students can work in Slovakia while they are studying, and they can work up to 20 hours a week. Depending on which city your university is located in, you will have ranging costs of living. But it is nothing to be afraid of, and with the ability to work, you will be okay financially.
Foreigners need a Schengen Visa and a temporary residence permit to study in Slovakia. You can apply for them in your local Slovak embassy or online.
After graduation, you can stay, work, and live in Slovakia, as the country welcomes a new workforce, especially highly educated professionals.
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