Latvia, officially the Republic of Latvia is an independent republic in the Baltic region of Northern Europe. Since its independence, Latvia has been referred to as one of the Baltic states. It is bordered by Estonia in the northern region, Lithuania in the southern, to the east is Russia, and Belarus to the southeast, as well as sharing a maritime border with Sweden to the west. Latvia has 1,957,200 inhabitants and a territory of 64,589 km2 (24,938 sq mi). The country has a temperate seasonal climate. It has a unitary government of 118 divisions for administrative purposes with 109 municipalities and 9 cities.
A unique feature that stands out in the case of Latvia when students need to research about study in Latvia is that the education is administered at three levels, the national, municipal and institutional. The policies regarding education are formulated by the Ministry of Education and Science and the elected members of the ministry.
Academic programs for higher education are based on the fundamental and applied science. Typically, they constitute a thesis at the end of every stage whether at the bachelor's or the master's. Although the structure and system seems to be complex to an outsider, the system ensures a tight framework that ensures that the graduate enters the professional world with the highest degree of competency thanks to the provision of study and research in Latvia This is applicable to both levels of higher education in the country.
There is an abundance of information that is available to students when they seek information on study in Latvia. For example, although as foreign students they may have to spend for higher education, the same is absorbed by the government if they are entering the Latvian higher education system as exchange students.
Why study in Latvia?
Latvia is known as the land that sings and Latvians claim that their country is a symphony of sounds, sights and experiences. The Latvian government has laid special emphasis on education and has made several educational reforms that have made it an ideal study abroad destination.
Latvia has both fee paying as well as state financed higher education opportunities in universities. For scholarship schemes a careful process of student selection is carried out so as to offer government aid to the most deserving students. There are two types of higher education programs offered in Latvia: Professional and Academic. Latvian universities offer both these programs, but there are several non-university type institutes in Latvia that offer only professional education to students.
The Bologna System is followed in higher education, which is divided into three distinct levels – the Bachelor’s studies, the Master’s studies and the Doctoral studies. A bachelor degree is awarded are either three or four years of regular study. A master’s degree on the other hand can be achieved only after receiving the Bachelor’s and completing further one or two years of study. In Doctoral studies, the students should have a master’s degree or an equivalent diploma. Doctoral studies can take anywhere from three to four years and involve advanced studies and the preparation of a Doctoral thesis.
The major reason why you should study in Latvia is the affordable education. The tuition fees and other living costs are lower as compared to several western nations. Engineering study in Latvia is very popular and the universities here are famous for producing high quality engineering and IT graduates. Latvia also has EU membership, so a degree from here is equivalent to that from any other EU country. So you can still get an education in a European country with considerably cheaper living costs and other expenses.