- Italy is one of the top 10 economies in the world! Consequently, employers are looking to hire people who speak both English and Italian
- It is a world leader in many diverse fields - notably the culinary arts, fashion, graphic design, furniture design, robotics, space engineering, and transportation equipment
- Italy has a lot to offer outside of its universities, with some of the best food, wine, fashion and art in the world
Italy's education system
Italy's academic year begins in September or October and ends in July the following year. Each year is split into two terms, each about 20 weeks long with 14 weeks of teaching and 6 weeks of exams.
The teaching style may differ between unviersities. Most teach through lectures to large groups of students, but also encourage students to do a lot of self-study work independently.
Most exams in Italian universities are oral, although a few are written or will have a written section to go alongside the oral one. In the six week exam period, students are offered a number of dates and they can choose on which one they'd like to sit the exam. If they aren't satisfied with their mark the first time round, they can take the exam again up to a certain number of times.
Exams are marked out of 30 with 18/30 being a pass grade. This is then used to calculate an overall degree mark, which is out of 110 - here the pass mark is 66/110. ‘Summa Cum Laude’ can be awarded to students who get 110/110 and they get a special distinction.
How much will it cost?
For public universities, undergraduate tuition fees will very between the different universities but will, on average, be between €800 - €1,500 per year (£601- £1,127).
Private universities will charge more and, in all universities, some courses, for example medicine, will have higher fees than others.
However, most students are means tested based on their families income and the result will determine how much tuition fee they pay.
Living in Italy can be quite expensive but this is mainly because of all the big tourist areas in the main cities. You can expect to be spending between around €800 - €1,000 every month while living in Italy. This can be broken down to something like:
- Accommodation: €300- €700(£226 - £526)
- Food: €100 - €200(£75 - £150)
- Transport: €20 (£15)
- Social/Other activities: €80 - €120 (£60- £90)
- Books and study materials: €40 (£30)
The currency in Italy is the Euro, depicted by €. The current exchange rate is €1 : £0.75
Exchange rates can change quickly and, while this value is correct at the time of writing, it's worth checking again before you travel.
Scholarships, loans and grants are available to EU students and Italian students equally. Eligibility is either merit-based or means-tested so not all students have access to it, however the international office at your chosen university can help you figure out if you're able to receive any and, if so, what's the best option for you.
Working while you study
As an EU student you are allowed to work in Italy alongside your studies without needing any extra permissions, however finding a job in Italy can be difficult and there may be a lot of competition for the few available. Speaking and understanding Italian can be a big advantage when looking for work.
Living in Italy
Italy is a really exciting country with a long history of art and literature. Over 30 different languages are spoken in the country and there are loads of great foods to try - a lot more than just pizza and pasta! Italy can offer incredible wine to sample, architecture to admire and clothing to purchase.
On the whole, Italy is a relatively safe place to live, however there are still crimes such as theft and pick-pocketing to look out for. The best way to avoid this is just to use common sense, be aware of your surroundings and take care of your belongings.
When in comes to students, studying usually comes before socialising. However enjoying student life is still important. Of course some go out to pubs and clubs, but it's also popular just to meet up in public places outside to talk - and sometimes drink - with friends. On the whole, student culture is very different to the UK; it's less about going out and getting drunk and more about enjoying a city's traditions and food.
Universities also don't offer that many social activities to students; societies don't exist, however sports teams do if you want to get involved in one.
The Italian schedule
Another major difference to the UK can be seen in Italy's business hours. Most shops are open 9:30am - 1pm and then again from 4pm - 7pm - a little different from the UK's 9am-5pm. However each business may differ, so it's worth checking the opening hours of your local shops when you're there.
Evening are also popular in Italy. From 8pm onwards, streets will be full of people going out to eat, and then maybe going to a bar afterwards. Everything happens a lot later than in the UK.
Where to study?
As an international student you can choose between 89 of Italy's universities, including the University of Bologna which is the world's oldest university and ranks at 182nd in the 2014 QS world university rankings. A complete list of Italy's universities with their world rankings noted in brackets, can be seen below:
- Basilicata University
- Biomedical University of Rome
- Ca'Foscari University of Venice
- Catania University
- Foreigners University of Siena
- Free University of Bozen-Bolzano
- IMT Institute for advanced studies
- Institute for Advanced Study of Pavia
- International School for Advanced Studies of Trieste
- International University College of Turin
- Italian Institute of Human Sciences
- Iuav University of Venice
- IULM University of Milan
- Kore University of Enna
- Libera Universita Mediterranea
- LUISS University of Rome
- Magna Graecia University of Catanzaro
- Marche Polytechnic University
- Marconi University
- Maria SS. Assunta University of Rome
- Niccolo Cusano University
- Parthenope University of Naples
- Pegaso University of Naples
- Perugia University (551-600)
- Politecnico di Milano (229)
- Politecnico di Torino (365)
- Polytechnic University of Bari
- Rome ISIA
- S. Pio V University of Rome
- Sapienza University of Rome (202)
- Scuola Normale Superiore
- Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna Pisa
- Second University of Naples
- Suor Orsola Benincasa University of Naples
- Tuscia University
- Universita Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (377)
- Universita' degli Studi di Napoli 'L'Orientale'
- Universita degli Studi di Roma - Tor Vergata (305)
- Universita degli Studi Europea di Roma
- Universitia degli Studi di Pavia (371)
- University for Foreigners of Reggio Calabria
- University for Foreigners Perugia
- University of Aosta Valley
- University of Bari
- University of Bergamo
- University of Bocconi
- University of Bologna (182)
- University of Brescia
- University of Cagliari
- University of Calabria
- University of Camerino
- University Carlo Cattaneo
- University of Cassino
- University of Chieti
- University of Eastern Piedmont
- University of Ferrara
- University of Florence (352)
- University of Foggia
- University of Gastronomic Sciences
- University of Genoa (551-600)
- University of Insurbia
- University of L'Aquila
- University of Lecce
- University of Macerata
- University of Messina
- University of Milan-Biocca
- University of Milano (238)
- University of Modena
- University of Molise
- University of Naples - Federico II (345)
- University of Padua (262)
- University of Palermo
- University of Parma
- University of Pisa (245)
- University of Reggio Calabria
- University of Rome III
More from TSR
- International study forums
- How to apply to university in Italy
- Student Visas and what you need
- Accommodation for students in Italy
General external links
- Go Overseas: Italy
- Studies Abroad: Italy
- Study in Europe: Italy
- Study in Italy
- Study Portals: Why choose Italy?
- The Complete University Guide: Italy
- Top Universities: Italy