Bachelor degree (Bachelor) (3 years, 180 ECTS), EQF 6;
Branches of Study
Business administration and Law, Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences are the most popular domains in the first cycle of higher education.
Overall, the most popular field of study is Business Administration and Law, which attracts more than one quarter of all students. This is followed by Health and Welfare and Arts and Humanities with 10% of newly enrolled students. This pattern is also true in public HEIs, with the exception that almost one fifth of students at Bachelor level enroll in Arts and Humanities and one tenth in Engineering, Mathematics and Statistics.
The Law on higher education provides that from academic year 2016-2017 onwards higher education institutions examine and admit their applicants based on the average grade of Matura exam and other criteria defined by each institution. The relevant Decision of Council of Ministers states that the minimum average grade to be admitted to first cycle higher education programmes and to integrated first and second cycle ones is 6 (the grading system varies from 4 to 10 with 5 being the lowest pass rate). Average grade is calculated as an average of the following indicators: average of all final yearly marks for all years of high schools; simple aritmetic average for all marks received in the five state matura exams. The universities have defined the ranking/selecting criteria based on average grade of subject groups, e.g. higher average grade of biology for admission in medicine study programmes.
The entire process runs online.
Curricula content is provided by departments of the institution and its specialists. The responsible person for the subject/module provides the number of hours to be devoted to lectures, seminars, exercises, laboratory work based on ECTS number.
Each curriculum is based on national standards, which include defined objectives determined by the set of knowledge, and competences a student must acquire by the end of a study programme. The general objectives in terms of knowledge and competences are the same for similar study programmes offered by different higher education institutions. Institutions themselves set the specific objectives.
Students may also choose optional topics and interdisciplinary activities organized by certain departments (e.g. knowledge on law, economics, foreign languages, IT, telematics).
As established by the new law on higher education the study programmes will be encoded at the national level and the same programmes should have a 70% similar content in all HEIs at the national level (80% for the Teaching study programme).
Higher education teachers have to organize their lectures in compliance with the curriculum but the teaching methods they should use are not prescribed.
Progression of Students
Students can move on to the next year of studies once they have completed their obligations in terms of obtaining the sufficient number of ECTS as provided in the regulation of each HEIs.
The student can pass a particular exam at any time within the dates/periods scheduled in advance by each HEI. Regulations of each HEI provide for further promotion specifications of students.
Cooperation between universities and enterprises has started only recently. Many universities use this cooperation for student placements in enterprises, especially for students in engineering, medicine and agriculture. Some universities organize training courses to update the knowledge of enterprise employees such as teacher training, nursing training, economics training, etc. Some training is organized within Tempus projects and within the framework of other bilateral assistance projects. As provided by the new law on higher education, employability of students will be considered as a parameter for the ranking of universities, as well as an indicator for the assessment of performance in relation to funding of Albanian HEIs.
Student’s exam performance is expressed by grades 4 (failed) to 10 (excellent). Higher education institutions may also establish other, non-numerical grading systems by relating the ratio of such grades (percentage) to the one expressed by grades from 4 to 10. Diploma supplement contains this as well. Statutes and regulations of higher education institutions provide for more specifications on student assessment.
The respective higher education institution is the responsible authority for certification. Upon completion of each higher education level, the student receives the relevant diploma. The student also receives a diploma supplement, which contains information regarding the level, type and content of studies successfully completed, in compliance with the format of the European diploma supplement. The diploma template and the related supplement for each study programme should be registered in the State register of diplomas and certificates for higher education and scientific research, which is administered by Ministry of Education, Sports and Youth. HEIs can issue only the diploma and supplements whose templates have been registered previously in the above-mentioned State register.