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Poland:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

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Overview Poland

Contents

Poland:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Poland:Historical Development

Poland:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Poland:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Poland:Political and Economic Situation

Poland:Organisation and Governance

Poland:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Poland:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Poland:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Poland:Organisation of Private Education

Poland:National Qualifications Framework

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

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

Poland:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Poland:Funding in Education

Poland:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Poland:Higher Education Funding

Poland:Adult Education and Training Funding

Poland:Early Childhood Education and Care

Poland:Organisation of Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Poland:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Poland:Assessment in Programmes for Children under 2-3 years

Poland:Organisation of Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Poland:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

Poland:Assessment in Programmes for Children over 2-3 years

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

Poland:Primary Education

Poland:Organisation of Primary Education

Poland:Teaching and Learning in Primary Education

Poland:Assessment in Primary Education

Poland:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Primary Education

Poland:Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Poland:Organisation of General Lower Secondary Education

Poland:Teaching and Learning in General Lower Secondary Education

Poland:Assessment in General Lower Secondary Education

Poland:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Poland:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Poland:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Poland:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Poland:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Poland:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Poland:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

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

Poland:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Poland:Higher Education

Poland:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Poland:First Cycle Programmes

Poland:Bachelor

Poland:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Poland:Second Cycle Programmes

Poland:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Poland:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Poland:Adult Education and Training

Poland:Distribution of Responsibilities

Poland:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Poland:Main Providers

Poland:Main Types of Provision

Poland:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Poland:Teachers and Education Staff

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

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

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

Poland:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

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

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

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

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

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

Poland:Management and Other Education Staff

Poland:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

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

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

Poland:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Poland:Management Staff for Higher Education

Poland:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Poland:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

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

Poland:Quality Assurance

Poland:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Poland:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Poland:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Poland:Educational Support and Guidance

Poland:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

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

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

Poland:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Poland:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Poland:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Poland:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Poland:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Poland:Mobility and Internationalisation

Poland:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Poland:Mobility in Higher Education

Poland:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

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

Poland:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Poland:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Poland:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Poland:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Poland:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Poland:National Reforms in School Education

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

Poland:National Reforms in Higher Education

Poland:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Poland:European Perspective

Poland:Legislation

Poland:Institutions

Poland:Glossary

Definition of the target group(s)

The Constitution of the Republic of Poland provides autonomy to higher education institutions and the principles of their functioning are laid down in the Law on Higher Education. (Act of 27 July 2005 Law on Higher Education: Journal of Laws No. 2012, item 572, as amended)

The law provides special support measures to students who:

  • are disabled;
  • are experiencing financial hardship;
  • have outstanding achievements in learning.

Financial assistance may be granted to students:

  • of public and non-public higher education institutions established under the Law on Higher Education;
  • of seminaries administered by the Catholic Church, and the Orthodox Seminary in Warsaw.

Regardless of their age, financial assistance may be granted to students following:

  • full-time programmes;
  • part-time programmes;
  • first- and second cycle programmes;
  • long-cycle programmes.

The following students are not entitled to financial assistance:

  • serving or candidate military personnel who have entered into higher education on the basis of a referral issued by the competent military authority or who have received education grants under the regulations governing serving military personnel;
  • candidate public service officials;
  • public service officials who have entered into higher education on the basis of a referral or consent of the competent superior and received education grants under the regulations governing their service.

Specific support measures

The matriculation examination results give students access to first-cycle programmes or long-cycle programmes. The Senate of a HEI determines which matriculation examination results are the basis for admission to a programme. If a HEI organises additional entry examinations (possible only in cases stipulated in the Law), the conditions and procedures of recruitment relating to them should take account of disabled candidates’ special needs.

In accordance with the Law, students (including disabled students) have the right to:

  • be transferred from other higher education institution, including those abroad;
  • follow an individualised study programme or curriculum in accordance with the rules laid down by the board of the basic academic unit or other body specified in the statutes of a HEI;
  • follow a second study programme;
  • be granted leave of absence from courses pursuant to the rules and procedures laid down in the study regulations;
  • receive financial support from the State budget in the form of:
  • a maintenance grant;
  • a special grant for disabled students;
  • an aid payment;
  • the Rector’s scholarship for best students;
  • the Minister's scholarship for outstanding achievements;
  • apply for accommodation in the HEI’s dormitory and for meals in the HEI’s student canteen;
  • apply for accommodation in the HEI’s dormitory for their spouse and child;
  • a 50% discount on public transport fare.

Higher education institutions are under obligation to provide disabled students with conditions for full participation in the process of learning and in research.

The study regulations of HEIs determine the methods of adjusting the organisation and proper implementation of the teaching process to the special needs of disabled students, including the adjustment of studying conditions to an individual type of disability.

HEIs undertake various activities for disabled persons, which aim at:

  • overcoming barriers in access to HEI buildings and student dormitories;
  • providing access to teaching materials in forms adapted to the needs of disabled persons, e.g.: Braille adaptations, large print, e-versions, audio versions;
  • ensuring that disabled students can use other persons’ help, e.g.: persons helping with moving, sign language interpreters, transliterators;
  • ensuring access to specialist hardware and software;
  • organising alternative classes, e.g.: PE, adapted language classes;
  • adapting examination forms or the organisation of examination sessions to the needs of disabled persons, e.g.: by extending the duration of examinations, written examination using adapted materials or computer equipment, change of examination form;
  • organisation of disabled student transport between their place of residence and the place where they attend classes.

To support disabled students, doctoral students and HEI workers working with disabled persons, a number of HEIs appoint disabled person officers or units helping disabled persons (e.g.: offices, centres, points). The organisational structure, type and scope of tasks performed by these entities is diversified and determined by a particular HEI by way of Senate resolutions or the Rector’s regulations.

Below are examples of tasks performed by officers and units dealing with disabled persons:

  • identifying disabled students’ needs, problems and expectations;
  • assisting HEI units with the introduction of solutions aimed at disabled persons, including advice on modern technological devices supporting teaching/learning processes;
  • help with solving current problems;
  • advice on choosing an area of study based on a candidate’s individual abilities and degrees of disability;
  • removing barriers preventing access to information and educational resources;
  • providing candidates with information about education offered to disabled persons;
  • undertaking activities aimed at disabled persons’ social integration and activation;
  • cooperation with other HEIs and governmental, local government and non-governmental organisations supporting disabled persons;
  • assistance in obtaining financial support by disabled persons and HEIs as part of programmes supporting disabled persons;
  • advocacy for disabled persons before HEI bodies and outside.

Higher education institutions are granted subsidies from the State budget, which they can earmark for:

  • funding costs of investments serving the education of disabled students and doctoral students;
  • specialist training;
  • equipment to be rented by disabled students;
  • purchase of specialist equipment, teaching and learning materials adapted to disabled persons’ needs;
  • transport between a HEI’s teaching facilities.

Higher education institutions make decisions on which tasks will be subsidised.

These subsidies may be used for:

  • remuneration of sign language interpreters;
  • sign language courses for higher education institution staff;
  • remuneration of higher education institution assistants to disabled students and doctoral students;
  • training in spatial orientation on the premises of a HEI provided to disabled students and doctoral students;
  • training raising awareness of disability and disabled persons’ presence in HEIs;
  • purchase of equipment to be rented by disabled students;
  • purchase of equipment and specialist equipment assisting the teaching/learning process, e.g.: specialist software, lecture text projectors;
  • organisation of PE classes adapted to the needs of disabled students;
  • purchase of specialist and scientific literature to be used by disabled students and doctoral students.

Subsidies cannot be used for:

  • fees for part-time education to be paid by disabled students and doctoral students;
  • scholarships and other benefits for disabled persons;
  • accommodation costs;
  • rehabilitation of disabled students and doctoral students, including expenses for medical rehabilitation equipment, orthopaedic equipment and aids as well as physiotherapists’ remuneration.

Disabled students and doctoral students may also receive financial support in the form of special grants for disabled persons to which they are entitled in the first and second year of first-and second cycle programmes or long-cycle programmes.

Special grants for disabled persons are awarded for a semester in an academic year and paid monthly. They are awarded for only one area of study indicated by a student.

Special grants are awarded on the basis of a disability statement submitted by a student or a doctoral student.

Such statements are issued by teams confirming disability and its degree (Law of 27 August 1997 on occupational and social rehabilitation and employing disabled persons: Journal of Laws 2011, item 721 as amended; Regulation of the Minister of Labour and Social Policy of 15 July 2003 on confirming disability and its degree: Journal of Laws 2015, item 1110.)

Disabled persons may receive other type of financial support on the same principles as other students.

Disabled students and doctoral students may also apply for student loans, where the State funds the interest rate from the budget and the repayment conditions are preferential.

Maintenance grants may be awarded to students experiencing financial hardship when the amount of income per head in their family does not exceed the threshold set by their higher education institution.

The income threshold is set by the Rector in consultation with the student government of the higher education institution and amounts from PLN 668.2 to PLN 1043.9 (net) a month per family member.

Each student whose income per family member does not exceed PLN 668.2 per month, has a statutory right to obtain a grant.

Grants may be awarded to students on higher income, if the Rector sets a higher threshold, however, not exceeding PLN 1043.9. This is the maximum statutory amount and even in special cases higher education institutions may not award maintenance grants to students on higher income.

Maintenance grants may be increased in the case of full-time students experiencing financial hardship who live in dormitories or facilities other than dormitories (also with their unemployed spouse or child) if daily commuting from the place of residence to the higher education institution prevents or considerably hinders their studying.

Aid payment is awarded to students experiencing temporary financial hardship due to emergency circumstances. Such emergency circumstances include: death or severe illness of a member of close family, natural disasters.

The Rector’s scholarship for the best students may be awarded to:

  • students who have completed the first year, who have a high mean score for the first year or learning, artistic or sporting achievements in domestic or international competitions;
  • first-year students:
  • of first- or long-cycle programmes admitted to follow the programme in the year of their matriculation examination who are the winners of international competitions or winners or finalists in a nationwide subject competition if the profile of the competition is consistent with the area of study,
  • of second- cycle programmes commenced within a year of the date of completion of a fist-cycle programme who the meet criteria in the last year of their first-cycle programme.

The scholarship of the Minister for outstanding achievements may be awarded to students with outstanding achievements in learning or art linked to their programme or for outstanding sporting achievements.

(source: Ministry of Science and Higher Education)