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Bulgaria:Short-Cycle Higher Education

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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

Branches of Study

The typical length of a "Professional Bachelor in…" programme is three years in accordance with the curriculum and requires acquisition of at least 180 ECTS. "Professional Bachelor in…" programmes are offered by self-contained colleges, colleges within universities and specialized higher schools in many fields of study such as Health Care, Tourism, Economics, Arts, etc. The instruction for the professional bachelor's degree in accordance with the curriculum provides specialized professional training in the respective professional areas and specialties.

Admission Requirements

People who have completed secondary education that gives them access to edudcation in higher schools (e.g. who have successfully passed the state matriculation exams) are eligible to apply for "Professional Bachelor in..." programs.

Higher schools may hold a general entrance examination or recognise the results of the entrance examination given at another higher school. With a decision of the Academic Board, higher schools may admit applicants without any entrance examination provided that the applicants have successfully passed the state matriculation exams under the Level of Education, General Education Minimum and Curriculum Act.

Applicants who have successfully partaken in the admission competition to a higher school shall be admitted under easier terms and conditions as established in the higher school's Rulebook in any of the following cases:

  • applicants who scored equally;
  • disabled persons with long-term disabilities and reduction of the ability to work by 70 percent or more;
  • disabled war veterans;
  • orphans;
  • mothers of three or more children;
  • twins where both have concurrently applied to the same higher school and for the same professional area and one of them has been admitted.

Applicants who are winners at national or international competitions completing their secondary education in the year of the competition and medal winners at Olympic, worlds and European championships shall be admitted without any entrance examination and beyond the annual number of students to be admitted under the Decision of the Council of Ministers where the entrance examination for the specialty they apply for corresponds to the subject-matter of the competition or championship.

At the proposal of the Minister of Physical Education and Sports and following a decision of the academic council with the higher school medal holders from Olympic, World and European Championships may be admitted without entrance examination beyond the established under the Decision of the Council of Ministers annual number of admitted students.

Higher schools announce the admission terms and conditions before the 31st of March of each year.


Curriculum

Under the provisions of the Higher Education Act Higher schools in Bulgaria enjoy academic autonomy which includes academic freedom, academic self-government and inviolability of the territory of the higher schools. Besides other characteristics the academic self-government finds expression in independent choice of faculty, admission requirements and forms of training students and postgraduates. Overall state requirements are set for acquisition of the different degrees – Professional Bachelor in…, Bachelor and Master. There are also state requirements set for certain regulated professions (Health Care for example).

The subjects are taught in Bulgarian but there are certain programmes taught in foreign languages, mainly English, French and German.


Teaching Methods

The forms of higher-school instruction are full-time, part-time, evening attendance and correspondence (distance) courses. Organizational matters are subject of the Academic autonomy and shall be treated in higher school's Rules of Operation (Rulebook) in compliance with the Law. Teachers are supposed to use their own teaching methods in accordance with the certain discipline/module.

Usually the organisation forms vary from formal lectures for the entire course and practical exercises for smaller groups to seminars, self-preparation (at laboratories, libraries, through papers, homework, and others), projects work; etc. Typically the teaching is structured in disciplines and/or modules and different materials such as books, audio-visual and other assistant materials are used. The new technologies in class (such as computer-assisted teaching, e-learning, etc.) are increasingly being used.

Progression of Students

This field is subject of the Academic autonomy and shall be treated in higher school's Rules of Operation (Rulebook) in compliance with the Law.

Employability

here are student on-spot internships and practices implemented in the curricula of certain specialties.

Student internships and practices are also organized and conducted under projects funded by the Operational program “Human Resource Development” of the European Social Fund.

Centers for Career Development have been established in 47 out of 51 higher schools. In process of establishment are centers for career development in two higher schools. An information system to support the professional orientation of students was established in one of the Academies without Centers for Career Development. These centers provide information on available job positions; register students and alumni in order to find suitable positions for training and work practices; organize company presentations to students for educational practices on spot and job positions, etc.

Student Assessment

The basic form of knowledge assessment at higher schools is the written examination, unless the specific features of the subject and/or module require otherwise. The written materials from the checking of the knowledge and skills shall be stored for at least a year after the conduct of the assessment. Students' knowledge and skills shall be graded on the basis of a six-grade system comprising of: Excellent (6.00), Very Good (5.00), Good (4.00), Fair (3.00) and Poor (2.00). Any higher school shall have the right to introduce through its Rules of Operations different grading system whereas it shall be required to ensure comparability with the above mentioned grades The grade of at least Fair (3.00) is required for an examination to be successfully passed.

The course of studies shall be completed with a final state examination or defence of a diploma thesis. The state examination or the diploma thesis defence shall be conducted pursuant to the state diploma-granting requirements before a state board of examiners made up of habilitated persons having academic rank.

Higher schools provide a Credit transfer and accumulation system for grading the knowledge and skills acquired by the students in the course of studies. The system is based on 60 credit points per academic year or 30 credit points per semester, allocated by subjects and/or modules in accordance with the curriculum of the specialty and the educational and qualification degree, or another number of credit points compatible with this system. The objective of the system is to provide students with an opportunity to choose subjects, self-preparation and mobility on the basis of mutual recognition of certain periods of studies, which correspond to elements of the curriculum of the speciality and the educational and qualification degree. Credit points shall represent the grading of the obligations which students have to fulfill in a certain subject or module as part of the overall obligations required for the successful completion of an academic year or semester. Credit points in each specialty shall consist of the total number of lectures, practical exercises and seminars, self-preparation (at laboratories, libraries, through papers, homework, and others), examinations passed and other forms of grading as established by the higher school. Credit points may also be awarded for participation in practical courses or course or diploma papers, where these activities constitute elements of the curriculum. The credit points under shall be awarded to students who have successfully completed the respective subject and/or module through an examination or another form of grading.

Certification

Higher schools shall issue the following documents for education and training:

1. Diploma degree in higher education "professional bachelor in ..."," bachelor " or " master" and annexes thereto;

2. European Diploma Supplement;

3. Certificate of qualification;

4. Certificate recognized specialty in the health care system for post-graduate education;

5. Certificate of successful completion of preparatory course for professional and language training in Bulgarian for foreigners - undergraduate and graduate students;

6. Certificate of professional qualification;

7. Certificate of professional teaching specialization;

8. Certificate for additional training or specialization.

The higher schools alone determine layout and arrange printing of the documents.

Organisational Variation

Higher schools can organize distance learning for acquiring higher education degrees (Professional Bachelor in ..., Bachelor and Master), Doctor's degree, and qualification of specialists with higher education. Admission of undergraduate and graduate students in distance training is conducted within the approved number of students under the Decision of Council of Ministers. Admission to distance learning takes place under state requirements. Distance learning is equal to the regular form of education regarding the content of the curriculum, required number of credits for the degree, diploma for completed education and degree and professional qualification. The organization and implementation of distance learning are settled in the the higher schools' Rulebooks.