Professional qualifications acquired in Lithuania are recognized abroad. Besides, Lithuania has signed agreements on academic exchanges with 16 countries around the world. Each year over 1,000 students and teachers leave for studies or internships abroad.
Public schools of higher education use Lithuanian as a language of instruction, but other languages are also possible if a curriculum is linked to another language or if classes are held by foreign teachers, or if studies are carried out under study programs for foreigners or in case of academic exchanges.
The best graduates are offered state-funded places at schools of higher education, in other words, they are not charged for the tuition. The number of the lucky ones by fields of studies or programme is fixed by the Government on annual basis. l the rest may choose among paid studies. Each school of higher education has its own tuition fees.
The state-funded places (50 at universities and 50 at colleges) are also available for the residents of the European Union and the Economic Area, other foreigners with permanent residence in Lithuania, as well as emigrants of Lithuanian descent.
Studies in Lithuania follow degree or non-degree programmes at colleges and universities.
There are three cycles of studies: first, professional Bachelors or Bachelors Degree, second, Masters degree and the third would be the doctorate. Studies may be part-time and full-time.
* College higher education studies are designed to prepare for professional activities. Full-time studies as a rule take three years, while part-time studies four years. At least one quarter of study programme is taken by practical training. Graduates are awarded Professional Bachelors Degree. Practical work experience and additional studies (their duration is established by each school individually) provide for the possibility of continuing studies in Masters Degree programme. College studies are provided by public and private colleges.
* University studies are designed to provide universal general education, theoretical preparation, the highest level of professional skills. University degree programmes can be integrated by linking the first and the second cycles, for example, when studying medicine. Full-time undergraduate (Bachelors) course lasts four years; part-time course usually lasts five years. Graduates acquire a Bachelor's Degree. Graduates may continue studies in post-graduate programme which takes 1.5 to 2 years. Those who wish to link their lives with academic activities may continue studies in pursuit for the doctoral degree (duration four years). University studies are provided by universities, academies and seminaries.
Study programmes are offered by 24 colleges (including 11 private colleges) and 23 universities (including 9 private universities).
Students with good achievements may be provided with incentive scholarships following ther procedure prescribed by a respective school. Students meeting specific criteria established by the Government may also be provided with social scholarships.
Academic year is divided into semesters and holiday periods. The beginning and end of an academic year and a semester as well as holiday spans are established by each school of higher education individually. In summer students are entitled to at least one month uninterrupted holidays.
The cost of living in Vilnius is low compared to other places. The cost of living comparison to other places, uses local prices for defined quantities of the same goods and services at or near each location, converted to a single currency. The prices are grouped together into basket groups and the cost of living index calculated for each basket. The cost of living index for Vilnius can be compared to any other selected location using the calculators.
Vilnius is currently ranked 483 out of 780 places (rank 1 is most expensive: rank 780 is least expensive).
Brief history of Lithuania
Lithuania was first united in 1236 by Mindaugas and by the end of the 14th century it was the lagrest state in Europe, incorporating most of nowadays Belarus and Ukraine. It entered an aliance with Poland in 1386 and between 1569 and 1795 Lithuania formed a single dual state with Poland, the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. It became independednt after the First World War, but it was annexed to USSR in 1940. Lithuania declared its independence from USSR on 11th of March 1990 and the last Russian troups left in 1993. After restructuring its economy, Lithuania joined NATO and the EU in 2004.
Lithuania adopted its Constitution on the 25th of October 1992 and is parliamentary democracy. The head of the state is the President that is directly elected every 5 years for maximum 2 consecutive mandates. The President, with the approval of the Parliament, appoints the Prime Minister and the members of the cabinet. The unicameral Parliament has 141 members elected for a 4 year period.
General facts and figures
The official name is the Republic of Lithuania and the capital is the city of Vilnius.
The Local time is GMT +2.
The official language isLithuanian and the currency is Lithuanian Litas.
The Most common foreign languages spoken in Lithuania are Russian, Polish, English.
The countries that border Lithuania are Latvia, Belarus, Poland and Russia.
The length of the coastline is90 km.
The Surface Area is
total: 65,300 sq km
land: 62,680 sq km
water: 2,620 sq km
The Population is 3.525 million (July 2012 est.)
The Ethnic Groups areLithuanian 84%, Polish 6.1%, Russian 4.9%, Belarusian 1.1%, other or unspecified 3.9% (2009)
The climate of Lithuanian is mild, varying between maritime and continental.