Lithuania has one of the oldest universities in the Central European countries, namely the University of Vilnius, which was founded in 1579 and for many years was a cultural hub in Central and Eastern Europe. A number of higher education programs in Lithuania have English-language courses, especially at master’s level.
Lithuania is the southernmost of the three Baltic countries bordering Latvia, Russia, Belarus and Poland. Lithuania was under Soviet rule from 1940, but in 1991 the country became an independent democratic republic. In 2004, Lithuania was admitted as a full member of the EU.
The linguistic and ethnic minorities (approximately 15%) in Lithuania have almost all Lithuanian citizenship. The two largest minority groups are Russians (approx. 8%) and Poles (approx. 7%).
Vocational training in Lithuania
There are a total of four levels of vocational training (profesinis mokymas) in Lithuania:
- Profesinio mokyklos I (vocational education, level 1) is part of the primary school. The education is for students from the age of 14 who want a basic practical education. The schooling lasts 2-3 years and educates for jobs such as. agricultural assistant, dock worker and garbage worker.
- Profesinio mokyklos 2 (vocational education, level 2) lasts 2 years and is based on 10 years of primary school. The education gives status as a skilled worker in Lithuania. The students are between 15 and 18 years old.
- Profesinio mokyklos 3 (vocational education, level 3) lasts 3 years and is based on 10 years of primary school. The education combines a vocational education with a vocational high school education. The education gives status as a skilled worker in Lithuania. The students are between 15 and 20 years old. In addition to the vocational diploma, you also get proof of your high school education, brandos atestatas, which gives access to higher education.
- Profesinio mokyklos 4 (vocational education, level 4) is aimed at young people who have a high school education. The educations last 1 to 4 years. The students are between 19 and 21 years old. The education gives status as a skilled worker.
If you are thinking of taking all or part of your own internship abroad, read the section on internships abroad for vocational education under the section Primary school and upper secondary education.
Higher education in Lithuania
Lithuania has both public and private higher education institutions. A number of programs have English-language courses, especially the Lithuanian master’s programs. The academic year begins on September 1 and ends on June 30.
In Lithuania, one can take a higher education at two types of institutions:
- Kolegija offers profession- oriented higher education at non-university level. There are a total of 23 colleges, 13 of which are public. Kolegija is found within e.g. business economics, shipping, design, pedagogy and technology.
- University / Academy. There are a total of 22 universities or university-like institutions (academies, seminars, etc.). 14 of them are public. A number of universities offer a wide range of educations at university level, others specialize in one area such as. engineering, music and theater, medicine, veterinary, agronomy, sports, architecture and visual arts.
Aukstojo mokslo (vocational qualification) at the dormitory are profession-oriented educations at non-university level. They are based on applied research. These educations usually last 3 years, but can also be 4 years. They can provide credit for parts of the first years of a university education on a subject-to-subject basis, but they do not provide access to the Lithuanian master’s program, magistras.
The higher education at university level includes:
- Bakalauras or profesinis bakalauras, the Lithuanian bachelor’s program, usually last 4 years. There may also be profession-oriented educations at university level, which provide a professional diploma.
- Magistras, the Lithuanian master’s program, lasts 1½ to 2 years. It prepares for independent research or advanced high-level artistic activity. It provides access to study at PhD level.
There are also integrated studies, which are coherent, non-divided courses.
- Mokslo daktaras or meno daktaras, the Lithuanian PhD program, lasts 4 to 6 years. The student will be awarded the title Daktaro diplomaswhen the education is completed.
The scope of the studies is calculated in points, where 1 point corresponds to 1 ECTS point. 60 credits correspond to one academic year.
Some universities offer programs that do not lead to a degree degree, so-called none degree programs. This primarily applies to internships and retraining within medicine, dentistry and veterinary medicine (rezidentura)as well as pedagogy (pedagogines studijos).
On the Study in Lithuania website, you can find a search function for higher education institutions in Lithuania that is relevant to you. Here you can also find contact information for the individual institutions.
Application for higher education
You must contact the individual educational institutions directly to register and for information on specific admission requirements and application procedures. You will also find information on the website of the individual educational institutions. For example. legalization of diplomas, certified copies of birth certificates, photos, motivated application and opinion from previous educational institutions are required. You must have a passport that is valid for at least 1 year, as well as apply for a temporary residence permit.
To be admitted to a higher education, you must have completed an education at the high school level. Your application will be assessed on the basis of your examination grades and / or the result of an entrance examination held by the educational institution.
The admission requirements for the individual programs are determined by the educational institutions. There is an entry restriction in the form of quotas for foreign students. Read more about the entry requirements at studyinlithuania.lt.
You must have a good knowledge of Lithuanian except for studies that take place in English, French, German or Russian, as well as for special studies such as music and visual arts. At some educational institutions, you must present an English language test such as. TOEFL or IELTS to follow English-language subjects. You can get more information about language tests at the individual educational institutions.
A number of universities organize summer courses or courses during the academic year in Lithuanian. These are Vilnius University, Department of Lithuanian Studies – Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas- Kaunas University of Technology – Klaipėda University – Šiauliai University – and M. Romeris University.
You must contact the individual educational institutions for information on application deadlines.
Recognition of foreign educations in Denmark
If you have completed a publicly recognized education abroad, you can have it assessed by the Danish Agency for Research and Education.
Economics and education
As a Danish citizen, you do not have to pay tuition fees at the public educational institutions.
The Lithuanian State awards scholarships for stays at Lithuanian educational institutions. The scholarships are awarded to researchers, teachers at higher education institutions and students who have completed at least one year of university studies.
The scholarship covers tuition fees as well as housing and living costs.
Read more about the Lithuanian scholarships on the Danish Embassy’s website and on Study in Lithuania’s website.
It is a good idea to start your scholarship search well in advance. Many scholarships are awarded only once or twice a year.
Work in Lithuania
As an EU citizen, you are free to work in Lithuania. Due to the high unemployment, however, it is very difficult to get a job as a foreigner unless you have been sent as an expert through a Danish company or organization.
You can receive unemployment benefits for 3 months while applying for a job in Lithuania. See more about this in the article Job search abroad in the folder Paid work.
You can get information about work in Lithuania from the EURES Advisers at the country’s Job Centers.
At the Lithuanian Resource Center for Guidance (Lithuanian NRCVG)you can find links to various job portals.
Work-and residence permit
As a Dane, you can stay and work in Lithuania for 3 months without a residence permit. You must then have an EU residence permit. Find out more on the Danish Embassy’s website.
See also the article Visas, work and residence permits.
Facts about Lithuania
Population: Approx. 3.48 million
Employment: Unemployment is 13.1% (EUROSTAT, February 2013).
Residence permit: Applied to the local authorities after 3 months.