Higher education

There are two types of studies in the Serbian system of higher education:

academic studies, organised mainly at universities, and
applied studies, organised either at colleges of applied studies or at universities.

Serbia joined the Bologna Process in 2003 and thus initiated a gradual reform process, which received its legal support in 2005 by the adoption of a new Law on Higher Education. This law formally introduced the European Credit Transfer System, three-cycle system of study and diploma supplement. From 2007/08 all new students study under the new reformed study programmes at all higher education institutions.

Academic studies

The three-cycle system of academic studies includes:

Bachelor studies, which usually last 4 years with 240 ECTS, although 3-year/180 ECTS Bachelor programmes are also available,
Master studies lasting 1-2 years with 60 to 120 ECTS, and
Doctoral studies (PhD) with a minimum of three years of study or 180 ECTS.

In the field of medical science (the studies of medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine) studies are organized through integrated studies that last 6 years and must carry a minimum of 360 ECTS. Also, integrated pharmacy studies with 300 ECTS have been introduced.

In addition, the second cycle of academic studies includes specialist academic studies with the minimum duration of one year with 60 ECTS if a student has achieved a total of 300 ECTS in previous studies.

Applied studies

The two-cycle applied (vocational) studies consists of:

Bachelor applied studies, which last three years and have 180 ECTS,
Specialist applied studies, which carry 60 ECTS and last one year, and
Master applied studies, which last two years and carry 120 ECTS.

All higher education institutions must be accredited in order to obtain a license issued by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development. Private higher education institutions (not founded by the state) have the same status as public ones.


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