Education System in Armenia

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Education has traditionally always been highly rated in Armenia - in a country, which has 1600 years old history of literacy. From the very beginning, the school has been the basis of the nation's political and cultural survival and the incentive for national progress.

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The current education network has been established during the short existence of the first Republic in Armenia in (1918 1920).

It has further developed during the years of Soviet Power (1920 1990). Armenia was considered one of the most advanced scientific centers of the former Soviet Union, with 99% literacy rate.

The applied sciences such as physics, mathematics, chemistry, microbiology, engineering and medicine are the main developed branches in the scientific and educational system of Armenia.

Structure of Education System in Armenia

Preschool Education

The main aims of preschool education are establishment of basis for the child's physical, moral and mental development; development of communication skills in mother language and ensuring the capability for studying foreign languages based on the obtained skills of the mother language;

development of basic counting skills, etc. develop basic behavioral skills; develop knowledge about the surrounding nature and environment; getting to know the elements of own history and culture; develop love and devotion towards the motherland; develop primary operation skills and capabilities; preparation for school studies.

The main role in pre-primary education the government prescribes to the family, and takes up the obligation for ensuring adequate conditions in the family for providing child comprehensive development and care.

The state establishes the following types of preschool institutions: day care (for children from 2 to 3); kindergartens (for children from 3 to 6); or the combination of the above two.

Secondary Education

According to the Constitution of the Republic of Armenia the secondary Education is compulsory and free of charge.

The goal of secondary education is to create favorable conditions for development of the mental, psychological and physical capabilities of the citizens.

The main challenges for achieving this goal are: to enable the students perceive basic knowledge about nature, society, technology, industry and environment;

to create adequate conditions to pursue self-education and self-development of the students in a continuity ensuring education system; to develop an individual equipped with the knowledge of national and international values, an heir of the cultural, moral and psychological values, who can develop a functioning political position.

Secondary Education in the republic contains 3 levels. Duration of study in secondary schools is 10 years.

Elementary School (1-3 grades): The basic goal of this level is to provide literacy for pupils.

Basic School (4-8 grades): The goal of secondary schools is implementation of general education.

Students, who accomplish 8 grade, obtain the certificate of 8-year education (incomplete secondary education) and they can continue their study in the high school as well as in specialized secondary and technical secondary educational institutions.

High school (9-10 grades): The high school offers complete secondary education, which is realized in the two forms: general education study; colleges (deepened study of some subjects). Graduate students of the high school obtain certificate of complete secondary education and can continue their study in the Higher educational institutions.

There are 1418 secondary schools, 1 gymnasium, 1 lyceum, 25 state colleges, 4 academic schools, 11 private high schools, 15 private schools.

There are deepened study forms in 197 high schools-colleges (74 -humanitarian, 68 - physics-mathematics, 53 - natural sciences, 22 economics) in the Republic of Armenia.

Higher Education

There are both state and private institutions of higher education. Armenia has 15 (21 with branches) state higher educational institutions and close to 75 private universities. Higher educational institutions in Armenia have three-level structure.

First level (baccalaureate) includes 4 year-study in institutions (Universities). The main objective is to acquire general knowledge in subjects of specialty as well as to get acquainted with economics, history, philosophy, law, medicine and other subjects.

Upon completion of the 4 year study Bachelor's degree is awarded (The "Diplom" is awarded if it is a five year institution).

Second level (magistracy) includes next 2 years of study. The objective is to acquire deepened knowledge in specialization subjects, to study additional specialization subjects.

It can be either a one-year or a 2-year program. In both cases the student is awarded the Master's degree. The Master's degree in Armenia is awarded only in the state institutions, the only exception are the American University of Armenia and the French University in Armenia (UFAR).

Third level (post-graduate studentship) continues 3 years. Students acquire necessary knowledge in order to conduct scientific-research work.

After completion of this level and defending the dissertation the students are awarded the "Doctor in [Name of Speciality]" degree.

After getting the Doctor in [Speciality] degree the researchers can do their doctoral studies in one of the research institutions.

As it can be deduced from the above mentioned there still exists a division between the "Doctor in [ Name of Speciality]" and "Doctor of Science" in Armenia.

Today, in the Republic of Armenia with nearly 3.2 million population are functioning 18 state universities, 8 of which foreign managed, and more than 20 private universities.

Thousands of foreign students and fellows have graduated Armenian higher educational institutions and successfully apply their knowledge in the USA, Canada, Latin America, Europe and Asia.