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Bulgarian system of higher education

Education in Bulgaria is managed by the Ministry of Education and Science

The main types of higher education institutions in Bulgaria are: Universities Colleges, Specialized higher schools (academies, institutes).  

The system of higher education in Bulgaria covers the following degrees:

  • First degree requires a minimum 4-year course of instruction and the graduates acquire the educational and qualification degree of Bachelor. Training for each specialty is finalized by sitting for state examinations or defence of a diploma thesis.
  • Second degree requires a minimum 5-year course of instruction, or an extra year after the Bachelor's degree, and the graduates acquire a Master's educational and qualification degree. Training for each specialty is finalized by sitting for state examinations or by defending a diploma thesis.
  • Third degree - at least a 3-years programme after covering the Master's degree The students graduating according to the curriculum are awarded a Doctoral degree. The Doctoral programmes in higher educational institutions and scientific organizations in Republic of Bulgaria are full-time, part-time, distance, and unsupervised on an individual plan.
  • The full-time and unsupervised individual-plan doctoral programmes are three-year programmes. Applicants must have a Master's degree.
  • Part-time doctoral programmes last four years. Applicants must have a Master's degree. The Doctoral degree study is organized in subject areas.

The programmes for lifelong learning and further qualification offered by many higher educational institutions in Bulgaria do not lead to awarding a new degree, qualification or speciality.