Hungary has a long tradition of higher education, with some of the oldest universities in the world. The country has a unique identity, something that it works hard to maintain and shows pride in. Although it is one of the smaller European countries, it has many opportunities to offer international students.
Why Study in Hungary?
Universities in Hungary have a strong focus on internationalisation, and offer high quality degree programmes. Hungarian higher education is known for its reputation in science fields, such as medicine and dentistry. The higher education system is divided into colleges and universities, which follows the Bologna Process. You can study for a bachelor, master or doctoral degree at a Hungarian institution.
There is one of Hungary’s universities in the 2019 QS World University Rankings top 500, and 6 in the top 1000. The highest ranked of these is the University of Szeged, which is placed at 470th. The next highest ranked is the University of Debrecen, which is placed in the 601-650th group.
Located in Central Europe, Hungary is home to almost 10 million people. It is a member of the European Union, and is entirely landlocked, sharing borders with 7 other countries. The country has a rich history, and is culturally significant in the areas of the arts, music, literature, sports and science and technology. As well as this, Hungary boasts the largest thermal water cave system, the largest lake in Central Europe, and the largest natural grasslands in Europe.
Cost of Studying and Living in Hungary
Hungary uses the Forint (HUF) as its currency.
The tuition fees you pay will depend on where you choose to study and at what level. If you are from an EU country, you may be able to apply for a state-funded place. This will be under the same system as Hungarian citizens, so applications may be competitive. International students may also be eligible for a scholarship provided by the Hungarian government. On average, you should expect to pay between $5,500/€4,900 and $15,000/€13,200 per year. You should also expect to pay application/examination fees of around $500/€440.
Living costs will depend on where you choose to live in Hungary. If you live in a bigger city, it will cost more than a smaller city or town. On average, you should budget for between $7,200/€6,400 and $10,500/€9,300 per year. This accounts for accommodation, groceries, travel and any other necessary expenses. Another living cost that international students need to consider is health insurance. If you are an EHIC card holder, you will be able to access the same healthcare as Hungarian citizens, but will incur some costs. If you are studying on a governmental scholarship, you might be able to apply for a social security card (TAJ card). This will allow you to access most public healthcare for free. If neither of these apply, you will need to purchase a health insurance policy. Some institutions offer health insurance policies, but you are able to purchase a private policy also.
Depending on where you are from, you may need a student visa to study in Hungary. If you are from an EU/EEA country, you will not need a visa. However, you will need to apply for a residence permit within 15 days of your arrival in Hungary. If you are from any other country, you will need to apply for a student visa and residence permit before you arrive in Hungary. This can be done at the Hungarian embassy or consulate in your home country. This process can take at least a month, so make sure to submit your application in plenty of time!
The official and national language of Hungary is Hungarian.
There are degrees at all levels offered in English and Hungarian. It is more common to find postgraduate degrees taught entirely in English. If you are studying in a non-native language, you will need to provide evidence of your proficiency. If you do not meet the required standards, it is common for institutions to offer language courses to help you improve.
Even if you are able to study in English, you should make an effort to learn as much Hungarian as possible. Communicating with the locals and other students is the perfect way to practice. This is a skill that will look great on your CV/resume!
The capital city of Hungary, Budapest is home to over 1.7 million people. Budapest is often called one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, and has many important museums and cultural institutions. The city centre along the Danube River is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you find many famous monuments. These include the Hungarian Parliament, Buda Castle and the Liberty Statue. Restaurants in Budapest showcase the diverse Hungarian cuisine, with regional traditional dishes being offered.
Located in the city there is more than 35 higher education institutions. There are several popular course choices at these institutions; medicine, dentistry, veterinary programmes and engineering. Many of the institutions offer courses in English, German, French and Dutch, as well as Hungarian. The institutions include the Corvinus University of Budapest, the Hungarian University of Fine Arts and the Semmelweis University.