Portugal has so many beautiful and interesting features that make international students simply fall in love with this country once they come here for their study experience. For one thing, you enjoy amazing weather, beautiful beaches and landscapes, lovely cuisine and fine wines.

Universities in Portugal

Five universities in Portugal feature in the QS World University Ranking 2016/17, the highest entry being the University of Porto,which is placed at 323rd in the world. With a long history of well-respected universities, Portugal’s higher education system was ranked the 35th best in the world in the first edition of the QS Higher Education System Strength Rankings.

As well as strong universities, Portugal is also home to a number of well-reputed polytechnics. The main difference between the two formats is that the universities have a greater focus on academic research, while the polytechnics are more focused on preparing students for a specific career path. Some subjects are only offered at either universities or polytechnics, but there’s also a lot of overlap. For example, both universities and polytechnics offer degrees in engineering, management and humanities subjects.

Since 2006, Portugal has adopted the Bologna Process throughout its universities and polytechnics, a European reform process which aims to establish a common structure for higher education across Europe. In accord with this structure, Portuguese universities offer three levels of degree. These are: bachelor level or licenciatura, which usually takes between three and four years to complete; master level or mestrado, which takes one or two years; and doctorate level or duotoramento, which typically takes three years.

Most courses – especially at bachelor’s level – are taught in Portuguese. At graduate level, it’s more common to find English-taught programs, but it’s still definitely an asset to be able to speak the national language; this is not a country where you can rely on everyone being able to speak English.

  •  University of Porto
  •  University of Lisbon
  •  Universidade NOVA de Lisboa
  •  University of Coimbra

Other institutions in Portugal to consider include the Universidade Catolica Portuguesa, Lisboa (701+ in the world), Católica Lisbon School of Business and Economics and the Nova School of Business and Economics.