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Bulgaria:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

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Overview Bulgaria

Contents

Bulgaria:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Bulgaria:Historical Development

Bulgaria:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Bulgaria:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Bulgaria:Political and Economic Situation

Bulgaria:Organisation and Governance

Bulgaria:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Bulgaria:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Bulgaria:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Bulgaria:Organisation of Private Education

Bulgaria:National Qualifications Framework

Bulgaria:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Bulgaria:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Bulgaria:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Bulgaria:Funding in Education

Bulgaria:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Bulgaria:Higher Education Funding

Bulgaria:Adult Education and Training Funding

Bulgaria:Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Organisation of Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Assessment in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Bulgaria:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Bulgaria:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of Vocational Lower Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Lower Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Vocational Lower Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Bulgaria:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Bulgaria:Higher Education

Bulgaria:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Bulgaria:First Cycle Programmes

Bulgaria:Bachelor

Bulgaria:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Bulgaria:Second Cycle Programmes

Bulgaria:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Bulgaria:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Bulgaria:Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Institutions Providing Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Main Programmes and Provision in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Teachers and Education Staff

Bulgaria:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Management and Other Education Staff

Bulgaria:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Bulgaria:Management Staff for Higher Education

Bulgaria:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Educational Support and Guidance

Bulgaria:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Bulgaria:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Bulgaria:Mobility and Internationalisation

Bulgaria:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Mobility in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Bulgaria:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Bulgaria:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Bulgaria:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Bulgaria:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Bulgaria:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Bulgaria:National Reforms in School Education

Bulgaria:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Bulgaria:National Reforms in Higher Education

Bulgaria:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Bulgaria:European Perspective

Bulgaria:Legislation

Bulgaria:Institutions

Bulgaria:Bibliography

Bulgaria:Glossary

Structure of Education system 2015/2016:

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Pre-primary (pre-school) education in Bulgaria comprises chidren from the age of 3 to age of 6 or 7. Two years of pre-primary education are compulsory.

The main objective of pre-school education in Bulgaria is to prepare children for the school environment at a later stage and provide them with the skills and values needed for that environment. Compulsory preparation of children for school two years before they enroll in first grade of primary school is organized in preparatory groups at kindergartens or classes at school, free of charge.

School education in Bulgaria begins at the age of 7. Six year olds may also enter school, if their physical and mental development allows for it and with their parents'/guardians' consent.

By degree, school education is divided into primary and secondary and by content, general or vocational. 

In October 2015 the Bulgarian National Assembly adopted a law on pre-school and school education, which will come into force on August 1, 2016. It will propose a new structure for the academic year 2016/2017 and on.

Upper secondary general education is provided at non-specialized schools (3 or 4 courses of study) and at profiled (specialized) schools (4 or 5 years of study). Pupils may enter profiled (specialized) schools and vocational upper secondary schools upon completion of VII or VIII grade and taking entrance examinations, which correspond to the specialization of the respective school (Bulgarian language and Literature, Mathematics, Humanities, etc.) or be admitted on the basis of submitted documents according to the requirements of Ordinance No. 11 of March 28, 2005 on Admission of Pupils in Public and Municipal Schools. Restrictions based on race, nationality, gender, ethnic and social origin, religion and social status are unlawful.

The Bulgarian system of higher education is autonomous. According to the Higher Education Act Higher schools shall enjoy academic autonomy which includes academic freedoms, academic self-government and inviolability of the territory of the higher schools. Higher schools shall perform their overall activities in adherence to the principle of academic autonomy and in compliance with the laws of this country. The system of higher education shall offer academic training beyond the secondary level. 

Higher education comprises the following levels:

  1. Bachelor's educational and qualification degree for the acquisition of which the following shall be required in accordance with the curriculum;

a) at least 180 credits with a minimum length of studies of three years - "professional 

bachelor in...";

b) at least 240 credits with a minimum length of studies of four years - "bachelor";

      2. Master's educational and qualification degree for the acquisition of which the following shall be required:

a) at least 300 credits in accordance with the curriculum with a minimum length of studies of five years;

b) at least 120 credits after the acquisition of a "professional bachelor in..." educational and qualification degree;

c) at least 60 credits after the acquisition of a "bachelor" educational and qualification degree;

      3. Educational and scientific degree "doctor" - the length of training is 3 to 4 years depending on its form (regular, part-time, independent or distance).

 The training for the bachelor's degree in accordance with the curriculum shall provide comprehensive training or specialised professional training in professional areas and specialties. The training at the second level, up to the master's degree, provides profound fundamental training in combination with specialisation in a particular specialty. The training at the third level, for the educational and qualification degree of "doctor" (doctor's degree), is carried out in doctoral programmes.

Adult Learning and Education (ALE) is being recognized as an instrument for human resource development in several strategy papers and national plans in Bulgaria. The main goal at which ALE is aiming is to improve the qualification level of the unemployed and employed persons and enable them to adapt to the rapidly changing working and living environment.