Pursuing Slovakian Education? Know 6 tips that can help you
Europe has many beautiful countries that serve as great educational opportunities to domestic as well as international students. One such country is the Slovak Republic. A thriving landlocked country with a rich, unique culture, language, and lifestyle, Slovakia is one of the most highly educated countries in the world. Outperforming many countries across the globe in terms of economic growth, health care, education, and peacefulness, you will be thoroughly satisfied with the quality of experience you would have here. If at all you want to pursue higher education in Europe, then you must consider Slovakia.
Of course, like every other country, it has its own peculiarities which must be known to anyone even remotely interested. Let us discuss a few of these peculiarities that every student applying to a Slovakian university must know.
You might think that language may be an issue here. Well, no. Slovakia’s official language is Slovak, which uses the Roman script, followed by Hungarian. However, Slovak and Hungarian are not the only languages most Slovaks are proficient in. Many foreign languages are widely spoken in the country such as French, English, and German. While your university may be administering your course in English or any other language, you should learn Slovak or Hungarian in order to smoothen things out for yourself here. Learning a local language helps in integration. You will be able to respond more appropriately to cultural circumstances and share familiarity with Slovaks.
- Tuition Fees
Now you may have heard that Slovakian Higher Education is tuition-free. Well, not exactly though they are definitely a whole lot lower than most of its European counterparts. Waiver of tuition fees depends on the kind of course and the mode of instruction. If you pursue a course that is administered in a foreign language, you will have to pay tuition fees. But, in case you don’t want to pay up the fee, then you should apply to courses administered in Slovak and which are full-time. Also, multiple scholarships are available for international students to consider.
- Types of Higher Education Institutions
Over here, you will find three types of higher education systems. Public higher education institutions, as the name suggests, are government-funded institutions and are largely autonomous. Currently, there are 20 such institutions. State higher education institutions are specialized institutions generally focussed on medicine, military, and police. Then, finally, private higher education institutions are not funded by the government and are more diverse in terms of courses offered. Some of the most popular Slovakian universities include Comenius University, Pavol Jozef Safarik University, Slovak University of Technology, and the Technical University of Kosice.
- Student Cards
Living on a student budget could be challenging, especially for an international student. In Slovakia, some burden is lifted off your shoulders if you get a student card, certain international cards can be used to avail benefits here such as International Student Identity Card (ISIC0 or International Youth Travel Card (IYTC). These cards can be used for availing discounted rates on transportation, housing, restaurants, and movies. You may even get amazing deals on health insurance provided you have certain international student cards. Before getting any such card, make sure you have researched enough to know which one(s) will be most useful to you.
While most universities have dorms, they may not necessarily be available to every student. So, it is advisable to always keep alternative plans. In Slovakia, you may want to rent an apartment or find a non-affiliate dorm, whichever suits your budget. When selecting an apartment, make sure you have contacted your potential future landlords at least 3 months in advance. In order to cut costs of living, you might want to take in a flatmate. A flatmate could greatly reduce your overall expenses not only in housing but also in food and general maintenance. For finding flatmates, you should contact student representative bodies in your university and they might offer you much-needed assistance.
- Food in Slovakia
Usually, Slovakian food is a mix of traditional Slovakian and borrowed European cuisines. The most commonly found cuisines here include Hungarian, Czech, Asian and Italian. The prices of food in various eateries will vary depending on a number of factors including location. For Slovaks, lunch is the main deal of the day and you will often find them eating out during lunchtime. So far as tipping is concerned, it is expected to be 5-10 percent of the total cost. In case Slovak food is not your thing, you can find an ample number of grocery shops to buy your desired items and cook whatever you want.
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