Higher Education in Georgia
For Georgian students, the education system underwent a massive overhaul in 2004, which was widely controversial. Currently, local students can enter the system of accredited higher education through passing their Unified National Exams. The higher education system consists of three cycles. The bachelor’s degree cycle is worth 240 credits, followed by the second cycle, or master’s degree cycle of 120 credits, and finally the third cycle, or doctor’s degree of 180 credits. Within this overall system, there are certain unique degree programs that work slightly outside the regular path. For example, dental, medical, and veterinary degrees all comprise of 300-360 credits from the beginning, and graduates finish with their master’s degree. It is also possible to become a Certified Specialist, which consists of only 180 credits of the first degree cycle.
Colleges are typically for those who are pursuing first cycle, or bachelor’s degree programs. A teaching university is typically used to achieve a second cycle, or master’s degree. Finally, a university will offer all three levels of higher education, which is especially useful for those who wish to pursue the highest cycle. There are 25 universities, 27 teaching universities, and 5 colleges that are accredited within the country.
Tuition at Georgia institutes of higher education tends to be significantly cheaper than many American Universities and is more comparable to other European Universities. Many programs require less than 2,000 USD per academic year. Students should expect to be required to find their own housing and food while studying in Georgia, although there may be exceptions to this. In general, those interested in studying in Georgia should speak directly with their university or college to learn about tuition and living arrangements.
The academic year at Georgian schools tends to be divided into two semesters, a fall semester and a spring semester. There are also some universities and colleges where instruction is offered in languages other than Georgian, such as English, with the International Black Sea University serving as a good example. Marketing, international relations, and other global fields tend to be popular subjects of study. Studying in Georgia will allow students to have a unique perspective on the emerging nations of the Caucasus region and the former USSR, which in turn can help them understand current European politics at a much deeper level.
Students hoping to study in the country are expected to submit all transcripts as well as descriptions of their programs and written authorization from their current college or university. Many schools also require health records and related information. The information should also be translated into Georgian and notarized.