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Eurydice

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Other dimensions of internationalisation in higher education

Poland

13.Mobility and internationalisation

13.5Other dimensions of internationalisation in higher education

Last update: 7 June 2024

Global and intercultural dimension in curriculum development

The national legislation sets general requirements for curriculum design but does not specify detailed curricular contents (except for programmes for regulated professions) and, thus, does not define European, global or intercultural contents to be incorporated into curricula (Law on Higher Education and Science of 20 July 2018, as subsequently amended / Ustawa – Prawo o szkolnictwie wyższym i nauce z 20 lipca 2018 r.) (z późn. zm.);  Regulation of the Minister of Science and Higher Education of 27 September 2018 on degree programmes, as subsequently amendedRozporządzenie Ministra Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego z dnia 27 września 2018 r. w sprawie studiów) (z późn. zm.). See also information about higher education in Chapter 7.

Based on the data available in the POL-on System (Integrated Information System for Science and Higher Education), Polish higher education institutions (HEIs) provide in total around 50 programmes in the field of European Studies and related fields (first- and second-cycle programmes jointly). Programmes in these fields are offered, in particular, by public HEIs, mainly classical universities and few technical universities, but also by non-public HEIs. Various elements of the knowledge about Europe, the EU and / or the world are included in syllabi for compulsory and optional courses developed by HEIs in many fields of study.

Pursuant to the Law on Higher Education and Science, HEIs may provide first-, second- and long-cycle programmes as joint programmes and joint doctoral training programmes, or operate joint doctoral schools, together with other Polish or foreign HEIs and research institutions. Graduates are awarded joint diplomas which should contain elements specified in the national legislation.

In the last two decades, Polish HEIs have also extended the range of degree programmes taught in a foreign language. Based on the information available in the ‘Ready, Steady, Go Poland’ Portal, Polish HEIs offer in total over 950 programmes in foreign languages, mainly in English.

Partnerships and Networks

The Erasmus+ Programme offers Polish higher education institutions (HEIs) most extensive opportunities for establishing partnerships and networks. HEIs can also participate in other multilateral programmes, whereas projects co-funded by the EU and the national budget are aimed mainly at enhancing institutional capacities for international cooperation.

EU programmes

As part of projects under the Erasmus+ Programme (2014-2020; 2021-2027), HEIs – like schools and other educational institutions – build their capacity for international collaboration and / or work jointly to enhance their performance (Cooperation Partnerships); carry out various activities to develop labour-market relevant skills (Centres for Vocational Excellence); and devise strategies, approaches and innovations for new skills development (Alliances for Innovation). HEIs also develop and test models of transnational collaboration and mobility in the area of initial and in-service teacher training (Teacher Academies); develop and provide joint Masters programmes (Erasmus Mundus Design Measures and Joint Masters); and provide training and conduct research in the field of European Union studies (for example, Chairs, intensive programmes, Centres of Excellence) (Jean Monnet Actions).

Programmes / projects co-funded by the EU and the national budget

PO WER Programme

The PO WER Programme (Program Operacyjny Wiedza Edukacja Rozwój) (information in Polish only) (2014-2020; projects lasting till the end of 2023) is co-funded by the European Social Fund and the national budget. The National Agency for Academic Exchange awards grants for projects supporting the establishment of transnational partnerships and the internationalisation of Polish higher education:

  • Katamaran (Catamaran). Enhancing institutional capacity of Polish HEIs through international study programmes(2018-2023): development and delivery of joint second-cycle programmes by HEIs and other research institutions.
  • STER (Rudder). Internationalisation of doctoral schools (2022-2024): mobility of Polish and international doctoral students; activities related to “internationalisation at home” (for example, organisation of stays for international academic staff; training events, meetings, conferences, summer schools); activities expanding international collaboration (for example, development of project proposals; implementation of joint research projects on doctoral training; development of joint study programmes and teaching materials); activities aimed to attract international doctoral students (for example, development of information materials in foreign languages; organisation of information meetings; development of websites or tools for international doctoral students).
  • Spinaker (Spinnaker). Intensive international programmes (2022-2023): development of new or adaptation of existing intensive programmes (30 to 150 teaching hours) in a foreign language to be provided on campus and / or online; staff training; implementation of programmes.

Multilateral programmes

Central European Exchange Programme for University Studies (CEEPUS)

CEEPUS is the first multilateral cooperation programme in the field of education in Central Europe, established by a multilateral agreement. Poland has participated in the programme since 1994. The National Agency for Academic Exchange is the contact point for the programme in Poland. The other participating countries are Albania, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Kosovo, North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Slovenia. HEIs from the participating countries establish cooperation networks for student and academic staff exchanges – see Chapter 13.2.

International Visegrad Fund

The International Visegrad Fund was created in 2000 by the governments of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland and Hungary (V4 countries). Each of the four countries provides an equal financial contribution to the Fund. The Fund is also supported by governments of other countries, including Canada, Germany, South Korea, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States. Currently, it aims to strengthen cooperation among the V4 countries and between the V4 Region and other countries, in particular in the Western Balkans and the Eastern Partnership Region. The unit administering the Fund is situated in Bratislava, Slovakia. In addition to scholarships for students and academic staff (see Chapter 13.2), the Fund awards ‘Visegrad grants’ for projects involving 2, 3 or all of the V4 countries which are aimed at enhancing labour-market relevant and lifelong learning skills.

European Economic Area Financial Mechanism: Education Programme

The Education Programme (2014-2021; final Call for proposals in 2021; projects lasting up to 2 years) is funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway and administered in Poland by the Foundation for the Development of the Education System. Within the component ‘Institutional cooperation for the improvement of quality and relevance of education’, HEIs (and institutions in other formal and non-formal education sectors) have been awarded grants for the development or updating of curricula, activities supporting the exchange of experience and good practice and joint initiatives (for example, conferences, seminars, education and training events) with partners in the donor countries. 

National programmes / projects

In addition to the programmes co-funded by the EU and the national budget (see above), the National Agency for Academic Exchange is running the Strategic Partnership Programme (2022-2024), which aims to develop mechanisms fostering long-term cooperation in the areas of teaching, research or joint initiatives within the framework of transnational strategic partnerships. Grants are available for the following types of activities: organisation of exchanges, lectures, study visits and / or industrial placements for students, including doctoral students, and academic staff; development or improvement of innovative teaching and learning materials, methods and tools; development of programmes leading to a joint or double diploma; joint research and development work; development and implementation of a strategy for the dissemination of research outcomes; development or enhancement of a quality management system for education at partner institutions; establishment of cooperation with international entrepreneurs for the adaptation of programmes to labour market needs.

Other initiatives

College of Europe campus in Warsaw-Natolin

Established in 1949, the College of Europe, based in Bruges, Belgium, is a university institute which offers Master’s degree courses in European studies. Its campus in Warsaw-Natolin, Poland, was established in 1992 with the financial support of the Polish Government and the European Commission. The Natolin campus provides a Master’s degree programme in European Interdisciplinary Studies in English and French.

Collegium Polonicum in Słubice

The Collegium Polonicum is a joint unit of the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland, and the Viadrina European University in Frankfurt an der Oder, Germany. It offers programmes to students, conducts research, for example, on European integration and border regions, and supports collaboration between Polish and German academics. Based on the agreement signed between the Polish Minister of National Education and the Minister of Science, Research and Culture of the Federal State of Brandenburg in 2002, the Collegium hosts not only students from the partner universities undertaking a study period or following postgraduate courses, but also students and graduates from other HEIs.