Educating children is a high priority for many parents; at the same time education can be a challenging and exciting journey for students. In this blog we take a closer look at the basic requirements for enrolling in a higher education institute and offer some helpful guidelines on visa issues and other requirements.
Swiss boarding schools and universities are renowned for their quality, depending on your circumstances you will need to be accepted by the educational institute or school before you proceed with visa applications. Different requirements may apply for citizens from an EU or European Free Trade Association (EFTA) country.
Swiss universities are supported by the government; fees for nationals are not very expensive although they might slightly differ for foreign or international students. Universities in Switzerland have a high ranking. The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology ranks 12th on a global scale in a study conducted by QS World University Ranking, while the Ecole Polytechnique de Lausanne is at number 17, University of Zurich is 57, and University of Geneva is 85 th.
Swiss universities offer a variety of courses at all levels including bachelor, master and doctorate. Courses are offered in German, French, Italian and English. Depending on your choice you will need to apply first and provide full transcripts as required, along with your high school diploma or bachelor diploma, you may also need to write a personal essay or a motivation letter.
Prospective students should bear in mind that certain qualifications are not recognized by most Swiss universities, these include distance education certificates, night school certificates and vocational training school certificates. Given these circumstances and depending on your situation, you may have to pass the full Swiss Cantonal maturity examination, which is the Swiss equivalent of the international baccalaureate prior to applying.
The deadlines for application will differ depending on the university or college you are applying to. It is advisable to submit your application on time; students are advised to submit their application in the spring semester for studies beginning the following year.
As a general rule the Fall semester application deadlines are from 1 Dec-30 April. The spring semester is from 1 May to 30 November. If a visa is required the following deadlines may apply, Fall semester from 1 December to 28 February, Spring semester 1 May to 30 September.
Education Grants and Student Loans
Swiss students and trainees can apply for an individual or a recurring subsidy, depending on their situation. Student loans must be paid back, grants do not have to be paid back. The Cantonal Funding Office is in charge of such queries; it is advisable to contact them prior to applying for a loan or a grant. Foreign students, artists and musicians are also eligible for funding from the confederation.
The State Secretariat for Education and Research regularly awards excellence scholarships to promote international exchange and research cooperation between Switzerland and other nations. Most of the scholarships offered by the Swiss Government are geared toward young researchers who have completed their Masters degree or PhD, and foreign artists with a bachelors degree.
FERZ SA will explain your rights and privileges as a student and help you obtain a study permit in Switzerland.