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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Higher education funding

Bosnia and Herzegovina

3.Funding in education

3.2Higher education funding

Last update: 27 November 2023



Financing of higher education at public universities/colleges is made partly from the budget of education authorities, and partly from students’ fees. Tuition is the amount of funds with which the student participates in co-financing of the total costs of his/her studies at public HEIs. Minister of Government proposes tuition fee for all study programmes in public HEIs, based on the proposal of HEIs in accordance with the enrollment policy for that year. The government decides on the amount of tuition for all study programmes at HEIs and for each academic year. Registration fees are fees that students pay when enrolling at HEIs, including:

  • Administrative costs of entry
  • Fees for failed students who repeat a year
  • Fees for exams commission
  • Fees for the recognition of diplomas for students transferring from other faculties for purpose of continuing education
  • Compensations for printing of diplomas, graduation exams and promotions
  • Fees paid upon enrollment of each semester.

Funds for higher education activities in public institutions of higher education shall be provided from the following sources:

  • Budget of responsible education authorities
  • Own revenue
  • Budget of the local self-government
  • Donation and other sources

Financial Autonomy and Control

Higher education institutions can be financed only from sources that do not affect their autonomy. The rector of the university or college director is responsible for the use of financial resources, in accordance with the financial plan and regulations governing the field of higher education and financial operations. The following items are co-financed in public HEIs from the budget of the relevant educational authorities: - Scientific and research papers - Costs of materials and services - Costs for the purchase of fixed assets HEIs realize own revenues by collecting tuition fees, registration fees, projects and scientific and research work, services of laboratory tests and certifications, seminars and other training programmes of lifelong learning, publishing, study development and expertise, rent of office space in accordance with the standards and norms for funding of public HEIs. The HEI Managing Board establishes rules on the criteria for the allocation of its own revenues, which specify how and to what extent organisational unit has the financial authority and takes responsibility within HEI.

Fees within Public Higher Education

In the first cycle, there are two basic types of financial status for students: budget-financed and self-financed. Budget-financed students are selected based on their good performance at secondary school and at the entrance exam and they enter a certain enrollment quota, or the number of students planned for this category. Their tuition fees are paid by the responsible ministry of education, but students need to pay administrative and other fees (entrance and application fees, fees for issuing diploma and diploma supplement, etc.) ranging from BAM 94 to BAM 500.

Self-financed students are full-time students at the universities and pay tuition fees. Fees vary from faculty to faculty. These students also pay both administrative and tuition fees. The minimum annual fee for self-financing students in the first cycle is BAM 440 and the maximum is BAM 1 500, plus administrative fees. The most common annual fee in the first cycle is BAM 660.

In the second cycle, annual fees range from BAM 440 to BAM 4 000. All 2nd cycle students pay tuition and administration fees.

All part-time students pay tuition and administrative fees. In the 1st cycle, annual fees range from BAM 900 to 4 500; and in the 2nd cycle from BAM 1 000 to 3 000.

Responsible ministries of education at entity and cantonal level award merit-based public grants to full-time students with Bosnian and Herzegovina citizenship in public universities. The eligibility criteria include both need- and merit-based elements, such as the minimum grade obtained should be 8/10, performance (1st-3rd place) in national or international competitions, parents' income and employment status. The monthly grant ranges from BAM 100 to BAM 800 and is available for 10 months each year until graduation. Further grants for students are provided by local government.

Part-time students are not eligible to apply for state-funded grants.

The salaries and benefits of employees are financed from the budget funds of the competent educational authorities in accordance with the regulations governing the salaries of employees in the field of education and in accordance with the standards and norms for funding of public HEIs. The Minister shall pass the rules on the standards and norms for funding of public HEIs.

Financial Support for Learners’ Families

There is no financial support to the family of students, unless two or more students study from one family, then tuition fees at some universities / faculties are deducted for another member / student of that family.

Financial Support for Learners

Responsable education authorities, as well as units of local self-government award scholarships to students in need, from socially disadvantaged families, families who belong to a minority group, and in accordance with the prescribed criteria.

The relevant educational authorities co-finance from their budgets the following items for public HEIs:

  • Equipment and facilities for the study of students with disabilities
  • International exchange of students and academic staff
  • Programmes and projects of student organisations

Students who are ranked from the total number of budgeted students are entitled to enter the next year of study as students financed from the budget of the relevant education authorities.

Private Education

Funding for higher education activities in private institutions of higher education shall be provided from the following sources:

  • Own revenue
  • Donation and other sources

The private HEI makes the decision on the amount of tuition fee at a private HEI. HEI is required to publish in a manner accessible to the public and prior to the announcement of the competition for students, the tuition fees for all courses for which enrollment is announced.

At private universities / faculty students pay administrative fees and tuition in full amount. It may be the same or different for different study programs. In most private faculties, second family member pays a reduced tuition of 10%.