Information about Schools in Bulgaria
There is no need to write on the importance of education, for it is rather clear: Education is the tool for putting a human creature into full potential. It could be said that a human being is not in the proper sense till he or she is adequately educated.
Among the various breathtaking landscapes in Bulgaria, the Black Sea lays its salty, quiet waters to amuse the traveller.
But the importance of education goes beyond the fact that a human mind is not complete without education: education makes good thinkers, and tells men how to make good decisions by themselves, with no state, religious or political intervention. Moreover, it is only through education that man is enabled to acquaint himself with past history and receive all necessary information regarding the present to avoid being misled.
To a certain extent, that is why education in Bulgaria is free at all levels and is supported by the state through the Ministry of Education and Science, and for the same reason it is compulsory for children from seven to sixteen years of age.
According to the European traditional way of organizing education, the Bulgarian educational system also features secondary schools, and the main types of secondary schools in the country are: general educational, vocational, language schools, and foreign schools. Some new private schools are also being open and they are beginning to compete with the state schools.
There are many (over 40) Higher Education institutions in Bulgaria offering degrees both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Full-time courses of studies often take 5 years, or 10 semesters. The academic year lasts some 30 weeks, usually between October and April, and involves attending lectures, seminars, and practical training. Although flexibility is increasing, attendance of seminars and practical training sessions is compulsory.
The teaching load, depending on the selected course of studies, averages twelve hours per week, and classes usually meet once a week for 75 - 90 minutes.
Bulgarian prospect university students may get ready to strict entrance examinations, and are admitted to Universities and Colleges after taking qualifying written exams for a number of state-commissioned places. The qualifying written exams are held each year on previously announced dates.
Those who fail and, as a consequence, are not admitted in this way, compete for an additional number of places, but as the Bulgarian state does not finance their education, they are supposed to pay for their studies by themselves or by finding scholarships or grants.
The oldest University in Bulgaria is St. Kliment Ohridski University of Sofia, which was granted its charter in 1909. It is considered the largest and most advanced educational and research center in the country, for students can choose among fifty programs in Humanities and Sciences, Social Sciences, and Business Administration fields. The building of the University was designed by the French architect Breanson, and is one of the most remarkable buildings in Sofia. It has a 1.5-million-volume library that keeps many old books that have played an important role in Bulgarian History.
These are some of the other higher educational institutions of Sofia are:
- The University of National and World Economics, The Higher Institute of Architecture and Civil Engineering, The Medical Academy, The Academy of Fine Arts, The Higher School of Drama and many more.
- Plovdiv, the second largest city in Bulgaria, located in the Thracian Plain in Southern Bulgaria, and established in 1961.
- Varna is a university city. Its major institutions are The Higher Institute of Economics and The Varna Polytechnic.
- Veliko Turnovo, former medieval capital of Bulgaria, houses the The Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, the second well-established University in Bulgaria with over 10,000 students.
- Blagoevgrad, about 100 km south of Sofia, houses the American University in Bulgaria (AUBG), founded in 1990. English is the language of instruction and evaluation procedures at AUGB, and the establishment follows the US academic system. Most members of faculty are American scholars.
- Southwestern University, also in Blagoevgrad, focuses on the humanities and teacher training.
Final words for nationals of other countries
Prospect students to Bulgarian universities are expected to have an average very good = 5 in high school for admission. Graduates intended to attend postgraduate studies are asked to produce their University degree, diploma of specialist, or their professional title based on curricula of four years or longer. .
The grading system in Bulgaria is:
- 1 = Very Poor (losh)
- 2 = Poor (slab)
- 3 = Average (sreden)
- 4 = Good (dob'r)
- 5 = Very good (mnogo dob'r)
Being the bases for a developed modern country, education has been a major concern for the Bulgarian government officials in recent years. No matter what, education is the tool and the key that allows people to move up in the world, seek better jobs, and ultimately succeed fully in life. Totalitarian, democratic, monarchic, or whatsoever regime is in force, education is all-vital in the life of individuals and for the development of countries. Hence, and no one should be deprived of it.