31 August 2021
According to QS Best Student Cities 2019, Warsaw made the top 50 of best places in the world to study in, while both Kraków and Wrocław took respectable 104 and 108 positions. Poland is well-known to be an affordable destination for students who want to combine getting high-level education with reasonable expenses. Students who have participated in the Erasmus programme are generally happy with their experience in Poland, since the country gives multiple options for travel and personal development and the teachers are generally described as helpful and competent. Although not all programmes are run in English it is possible to attend classes in English for non-Polish students.
Polish Universities offer a wide variety of programmes, often with a possibility of expanding the chosen program through taking additional subjects (electives) or even mixing different areas within interdisciplinary studies such as MISH (eng. Interdepartamental Individual Humanistic Studies) available on some universities. Generally, Bachelor-level studies take 3 years to finish and Master’s degree additional two, in both cases at the end the student prepares and presents a thesis. There are however exceptions for engineering studies or medical schools, when it comes to the length of a specific course or its completion. Each university in Poland has their own admission system, so you have to check your chosen schools individually. It’s generally required however to have some kind of English certification.
It is possible for abroad students to get a scholarship, although the ones for good results in learning are typically given after finishing the first year based on the achieved notes or other scientific accomplishments. Foreign students compete for those directly with Polish students, so in some cases the language barrier might be a problem in getting higher notes. It is possible, however, to get accommodation in a dormitory, which will be much cheaper than looking for a room or apartment on your own.
It’s also important to mention that in Poland there are two types of universities. Some of them belong to the State and those are generally free of charge for students taking standard courses (some courses can be made on weekends or in the evenings, however for those there is an obligatory tuition fee). You can also get admitted to “private universities” that function under the name “Wyższa Szkoła” – they need to be accepted by the Polish Accreditation Committee, so the standard of teaching and most of the procedures are the same, but those kind of studies are paid irrelevant whether you participate in the classes on weekdays or during the weekends. The one important difference is, that usually only the State Universities have their dormitories, so you do not need to search for an apartment for yourself.
There are more than plenty IT-related programmes that usually come with an obligatory professional practice. Very often specific companies cooperate with universities showing an interest in their young graduates. Therefore, the courses are created in agreement with representatives of those companies and enriched with knowledge of specific instruments, which opens a possibility to stay in Poland after finishing studies with a job offer. Within such collaborations it is customary that the emphasis is put more on practical skills and the knowledge is passed on by actual employees of a firm investing in the programme. It’s also a common practice to combine work with studying, especially on the last one or two years. Since Poland is an attractive destination for both out-sourcing and students from abroad, the open courses are usually advanced and up-to-date with current market trends. For instance WSEI College of Economics and Computer Science Krakow trains junior programmers in 7 semesters, while Warsaw University of Technology offers a programme combining mathematics and programming, while Wroclaw University of Science and Technology goes for industrial automation and robotics as part of their scope.
Studying in Poland may be a good experience for young learners also in the IT field. An impressive choice of courses is something to be considered by anyone thinking about studies in a foreign country. With a variety of job offers and a demand for specialists, one cannot overestimate Poland and its obvious advantages.
Author: Leszek Warzecha, Digital Marketing Specialist at ITSG Global