The total duration of education until the completion of school giving the opportunity to take the matriculation examination is 12-15 years. After passing the matriculation examination, graduates receive a secondary school-leaving certificate authorizing them to apply for admission to studies.
The principles of higher education functioning are specified in the Act of 20 July 2018 - Law on Higher Education and Science (Journal of Laws, item 1668). Public universities are created by a state body. Studies at universities are conducted as the first-cycle degree programmes, second-cycle degree programmes or long-cycle Master studies. Studies can be conducted as full-time or part-time studies. First-cycle full-time studies last at least 6 semesters, and if the study program includes learning outcomes enabling engineering competences - at least 7 semesters. Second-cycle full-time studies last from 3 to 5 semesters. Full-time long-cycle Master studies last from 9 to 12 semesters. Part-time studies can take longer than the corresponding full-time studies. The qualifications obtained as a result of graduation as part of higher education are assigned a level of the Polish Qualifications Framework specified in the Act of 22 December 2015 on the Integrated Qualifications System (Journal of Laws of 2017, item 986, as amended). A first-cycle graduation diploma confirms the full qualification at level 6 of the Polish Qualifications Framework. Second-cycle graduation diploma and long-cycle Master degree diploma confirm full qualification at level 7 of the Polish Qualifications Framework.
Bachelor’s degree, Bachelor of Science and equivalent titles: architecture engineer, fire engineer, bachelor’s degree in nursing, bachelor’s degree in obstetrics - awarded to first-cycle graduates,
In order to obtain a first-cycle graduation diploma, students are required to obtain at least 180 ECTS credits, second-cycle graduation diploma - at least 90 ECTS credits,, long-cycle Master diploma - at least 300 ECTS credits, if they last 9 or 10 semesters, or at least 360 ECTS credits if they last 11 or 12 semesters.
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