The educational system in Cyprus consists of compulsory and optional education. For all children it is mandatory to attend a preschool for 1 year before entering the elementary school that lasts for 6 years, and is followed by another 3 years of high school. Instead of lyceum, young people can choose to attend a technical college and get a professional education. The secondary education can also be obtained in private schools.
Cyprus offers excellent opportunities for getting high quality education according to the UK national school curriculum. In all major cities of Cyprus, there are English schools that provide a full cycle of primary and secondary education. Limassol has the biggest number of English schools.
Usually children start school at the age of five. Primary education lasts 6 years, secondary – 7 years. At the end of high school, students take exams and receive a General Certificate of Secondary Education – GCSE. The last two years of secondary school are dedicated to preparation for entering university. At the end of the school, pupils take exams and their results are the basis for admission to British universities.
There are also several Russian schools in Cyprus. Education takes 11 years and is based on the Russian state educational programs. School graduates receive a Russian diploma.
The modern system of higher education in Cyprus has its own unique features and characteristics. Universities are following the European model of education, but the students can obtain three diplomas:
- after the first two years of study, the student receives a certificate, named “associative” diploma;
- the following two years of study will receive a Bachelor’s degree;
- after six years of study, the graduate receives a master’s degree.
Lectures are conducted in English and Greek. Almost all universities are accredited in Europe and the United States, so students have an excellent chance to become participants of exchange programs and study at the best universities of the world.
Academic year in Cyprus is divided into three semesters: September to January, February to May, June to July. The last summer semester is not compulsory for students, because thanks to the flexible and well-designed education students in Cyprus can choose whether they want to study in the summer and according to that to choose the intensity of the lectures and subjects.
In the Republic of Cyprus, there are seven universities.
Three State Universities:
- The Cyprus State University;
- Open University of Cyprus;
- Technological University of Cyprus.
Four private universities:
- University Of Nicosia;
- University Of “Frederick”;
- European University Cyprus;
- University Of “Neapolis”.
Finally, as an important fact to mention, branches of the famous British universities started to operate in Cyprus. In the suburbs of Larnaca – UcLan Cyprus university – a branch of the famous University of Central Lancashire. In downtown of Larnaca itself, a faculty of University of the West of England is located.
To become a student in Cyprus is easy. University entrant-alien must arrive in Cyprus couple of weeks before the start of classes. He must register in the right University and present a certificate of proficiency in English or will be required to take the English Placement Test (EPT) before registering for classes. It is important to note that, students may begin their studies in September or February.
The yearly tuition and fees varies from 4 to 8.5 thousand euros. The University offers different scholarships and financial aid to full-time students, in the form of merit scholarships, need-based assistance, athletics scholarships, and on-campus work-study programs. The scholarships will be awarded according to the student’s performance at the University. Both the tuition and scholarships/discounts range from 10% to 50% per academic year.