Spanish university system

Spanish university system - study in Spain

ECTS: European Credit Transfer System

If you want to study in Spain you should know that Spanish university system belongs to the European Area for Higher Education; therefore university degrees are authorized in the European Union and can be used to work in any European country. In addition the official university degrees are authorized in 8 more non-European countries.

According to European regulations, there are three higher education levels: Degree, Master and Phd. In each of these educations there are a standard number of ECTS credits established in order to warrant the equalisation of different European education systems.

Those credits are called European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).

Degrees are usually composed of 240 ECTS distributed in 4 years. Degrees are divided in the following fields:

  • Arts and Humanities
  • Science
  • Health
  • Social Science and Law
  • Engineering and Architecture.

Afterwards students can specialize in different areas to study Master, composed of 60 or 120 ECTS (meaning 1 or 2 more years of studying).

The access to the Phd programme is allowed when the Master is finished and passed. Phd usually takes 3 or 4 years.

In Spain, the University academic offer is composed of 50 public universities and 32 private universities, 82 in total.

Many Spanish and foreign students prefer private universities to study in Spain because the access requirements are lower and the education quality is higher.

Annual fees in public universities are around 2000€ and 3000€ and in private universities are around 6000€ and 15.000€ depending on the university.

Private universities in Spain usually have better facilities, high quality teachers, personalized attention, less number of students in classes and more national and international options to participate in the internships.

That is why more and more students select private universities to study in Spain.

Spanish university calendar

Spanish university calendar - study in Spain

The academic year is divided in two semesters and two months of holidays in summer.

First semester starts in September and ends in January, when the final exams take place. In December usually there are Christmas holidays during two weeks before the exams.

Second semester starts in February and ends at the end in June. During this period there are Eastern holidays for a week in March or April (depending on the year).

Finally, there is a last chance to pass the exams again at the end of June and beginning of July for those who failed previously.

Admissions to study in Spain

Admissions to study in Spain

To get an access to a degree in Spain, it is necessary to recognise your completed studies in your own country.

To proceed with this process, a document called “Credencial UNED” should be requested to in the UNED. This document allows to study in any public or private Spanish university.

UNED recognises the studies completed in a foreign country, compares those studies with the official ones established in Spain and provides an average mark out of 10 which will let you select the degrees.

However, private universities do not take into account the average mark to allow the access, although the document is still required. They have their own admission tests and interviews to guide students.

If you want to study in Spain we can help you with the processing of this document (Credencial UNED) efficiently and quickly. For more information, please click here.