Pre-school education is not compulsory in Belarus but around 70% of children do attend nursery or kindergarten before they start school.
Most children in Belarus start school at the age of 6.
All pupils must follow the basic education curriculum up to the age of 15, and the vast majority of pupils stay at school until they finish their high school education at 18.
At the age of 15, pupils that have successfully completed basic education can attend college or professional technical institutions where they can focus on completing their high school education and work toward a professional certificate.
Completion of a high school or professional certificate allows students to apply to continue their education at the university level.
There are two official languages within the education system in Belarus, Russian and Belarusian.
Further education in Belarus
Belarus has one of the highest student-to-population ratios in Europe. The higher education system in Belarus is seen as prestigious due to its high quality and affordability.
There are four main types of higher education establishments to choose from, which can be either private or state operated:
profile university or academy
Most courses run for 5 years and students can choose to study full time, at evening classes or by correspondence.
Grants are available for full-time students and scholarships are awarded to very gifted students.
All higher education establishments are governed by the Ministry of Education in Belarus.
Can foreign students study at universities in Belarus?
Yes. More than 6000 foreign students study at higher education institutions and universities in Belarus every year.
In general higher education fees for foreign nationals range from 700-3500 USD, depending on the subject and the institution.
How do foreign students apply to study at universities in Belarus?
Once you have chosen your university and your course, you will need to apply for a student visa.
Documentation can be supplied in Russian or Belarusian. If documents are provided in English, French, Spanish or German, accompanying translated copies are required in Russian or Belarusian.
Courses are conducted in Russian or Belarusian – most foreign students need to do a one-year language course in Belarus before they start their studies.
What accommodation is available for foreign students?
All colleges and universities in Belarus have an accommodation department, which can help you get a residence permit and find lodgings.
Most students live in student hostels, which cost around 15-30 USD per month.
Where can you study?
There are more than 50 higher education establishments in Belarus.