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The Belarus Higher Education System

The Ministry of Education manages the higher education system in Belarus. Higher education in Belarus is offered by public and private higher education institutions- universities, institutes, academies and colleges. 

Main Laws Regulating Belarus Higher Education

Law: Law on Education in Belarus 
Year: 1991
Deals with All institutions of higher education

Law: Concept of the Development of Higher Education in Belarus 
Year: 1998
Deals with: All institutions of higher education

Law: Law about the Studies of Foreign Citizens in Belarus 
Year: 1993
Deals with: All institutions of higher education

Law: Law on Education in Belarus 
Year: 2001
Concerns: All institutions of higher education

Law: Regulation on Certification and Accreditation of Educational Institutions
Year: 1994
Deals with: All educational institutions

Law: Regulation on the Multi-level System of Higher Education in Belarus
Year: 1994
Deals with: All institutions of higher education

Higher Education Statistics

Total higher education institutions in Belarus are 57, out of which: 
  • State higher education institutions: 45
  • Private higher education institutions: 12
State-owned higher education institutions comprises of 30 universities, 7 academies and 4 colleges. All private educational institutions are institutes.

All Belarusian higher education institutions offer education in 15 study areas/educational profiles, including 367 specialties and 1333 specialisations. 

Source: Ministry of Education of the Republic of Belarus

Belarus Higher Education Profile

Higher education in Belarus is offered in the following fields:
  • Environmental Sciences
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Humanities
  • Pedagogy and Vocational Education
  • Art and Design
  • Natural Sciences
  • Security Services
  • Social Protection
  • Communications, Economics, Law, Management
  • Economics and Industrial Engineering
  • Health Care
  • Forestry and Agriculture
  • Tourism and Hospitality
  • Architecture and Construction
  • Consumer Services and Catering

Higher Education Qualifications

Higher/tertiary education in Belarus is divided into 2 stages:

First stage- Bachelor’s Degree/ Bakalavr: This stage allows the pupils to get a specialist’s diploma in a certain field of expertise and specialisation (Diplomirovannyj Specialist). 
  • Duration: 4 to 5 years (Higher education for future pilots, artists, doctors, architectors and nuclear physicists is of 5.5 to 6 years duration)
Second stage- Magistr (Master)/ Specialist Diploma: This stage of tertiary education is research or professional oriented master’s studies. It provides knowledge and skills in research, pedagogical and scientific studies.
  • Duration: 1 to 2 years
This stage concludes with graduation with master’s degree, and obtaining master’s diploma. At this higher education level, students are required to present and defend of a thesis. 

The Specialist Diploma (Diplom o Vyshem Obrazovanii) is a professional qualification given after the completion of 1 year of study. Students who hold bachelor’s degree are eligible for specialist diploma programme. 
Students who hold this qualification are eligible for postgraduate studies. 

Postgraduate Education

Postgraduate education in Belarus can be regarded as the third stage of higher education. This stage has 2 degree levels: The first level is Candidate of Sciences and the second level is Doctor of Sciences.

Candidate of Science: This degree requires students to complete and publicly defend a thesis and also appear for special exams.
  • Duration: 3 years
  • Qualifications awarded: Candidate of Sciences (Kandidat Nauk)
Doctor of Sciences: Students who hold Candidate of Science degree can go for this qualification studies. After completion of the research studies, students are awarded the degree of Doctor of Science (Doktor Nauk). This is the highest scientific qualification in Belarus. Students are required to publicly defend a doctorate thesis.

Higher Education Institutions

Belarus has public as well as private higher education institutions. Public universities in Belarus receive state funding, while private universities are run by income from their sponsors and founders, and payments by pupils. 
In Belarus, there are 4 types of higher education institutions:

Classical universities (Universitet): This type of higher education institutions offers the first two stages of higher education, as well as postgraduate education in a wide range of education profiles. .

Profile universities or Academies (Academy, Akademia): This type of higher education offers first two stages of higher education as well as postgraduate education in a few main educational profiles. These universities also focus on conducting fundamental and applied research.

Institutes (Institut): These offer two-stage higher education as well as research in one or two fields.

Higher Colleges (Vysshyj colledg): These institutions offer first stage education along with specialised secondary education in a few fields of expertise. 

To get the list of higher education institutions in Belarus, click here.

Admission Requirements

All Belarusian nationals and nationals of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan can study without paying tuition fees in public higher education institutions. Nationals of other countries study in Belarus on payment basis. 
To enter the first stage of higher education in Belarus, students must have completed secondary education. For master’s level, the first stage of higher education must be completed, and for postgraduate studies in Belarus students must hold a master’s degree. To know more about the admission requirements for higher education in Belarus, click here
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