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Study In Latvia - International Students

Study in Latvia, and find the best universities in Latvia.

This study guide will give you all the information you need to find universities and study in Latvia.

Latvia might be one of Europe’s smallest countries with just over two million inhabitants, but it still offers international students a great education.

Latvia's government continues to invest in the education sector and is committed to attracting more students to the Baltic state.

The nation is often called “Europe’s best kept secret” for it’s beautiful scenery, multi-ethnic culture and incredible lakes.

Most international students coming to study a degree Latvia will opt for capital Riga, which is home to the country's top two ranking institutions.

Bachelor Degree In Latvia

Find the right Bachelor Degree in Latvia with our comprehensive guide.

Universities in Latvia

Despite its small size, there are six universities where you can study a degree in Latvia, with several other institutions offering courses to international students.

Higher education in Latvia is usually split between academic and professional studies. Academic programs provide a theoretical background to careers, while professional programs are more vocational providing a practical background in preparation for graduate careers.

Three Latvian universities are ranked in the top 200 of the latest QS University Rankings: EECA, which ranks the top performing universities in Emerging Europe and Central Asia.

The University of Latvia sits at 47th in the EECA rankings and is one of the largest and most prestigious in the Balkan States. Located in Riga it is home to 15,000 students and offers a number of international programs taught either partly or completely in English. This includes medicine and dentistry.

Riga Technical University (RTU) is joint 64th in the EECA rankings, and as the first technical college to be established in the Balkan States (in 1862) is now responsible for large amounts of research essential to the Latvian economy.

Public institution Riga Stradins University (RSU) also features in the EECA rankings and has 7,875 students enrolled, including 1,775 international students from 50 countries. This puts it in the top 10 for proportion of international students according to the EECA rankings. RSU has a strong reputation for the health sciences and is the only university integrated into Latvia’s healthcare system.

Tuition Fees in Latvia

Explore tuition fees in Latvia for bachelor's degrees and find the right bachelors degree at the right tuition cost for you.

Higher education in Latvia is split into two distinct sectors, broadly separated by research and vocational degrees:

• Academic degrees – Focus on developing your research skills
• Professional higher education – Vocational subjects preparing you for work

However, some professional subjects, such as teaching or law, can be taught as both an academic or professional higher education degree, depending on the job role you want to go into afterwards.

Latvian universities are run under the Bologna system that offers three distinct levels of study (bachelor’s, master’s and PhD). The majority of bachelor’s (undergraduate) degrees take three to four years to complete.

In Latvia the academic year runs from September to June, with exams usually taking place in May and June.

Immigration & Visa in Latvia

Advice on Immigration & Visa in Latvia, where you can make sure you get the right documents to make a successful application to your ideal university.

European Union citizens are permitted to study a degree in Latvia without a visa, but will need to obtain a student residence permit within three months. It is worth noting that students from the UK will potentially see a change in status when the country leaves the Union in 2017.

Your university should apply for the permit for you on your behalf. You will need to demonstrate the following:

• You are studying for more than three months.
• You have sufficient income or savings to support yourself during your studies.
• You are enrolled at an approved or accredited institution.
• You have comprehensive health insurance.

Non-EU students will need to apply for a visa and residence permit, and these should be applied for well in advance of the course start date. After being accepted you will be required to submit a list of required documents to your nearest Latvian embassy.

These documents are:

• Completed application form.
• Passport photo.
• Original copy of passport.
• Original copy of your study agreement, showing you’ve been admitted to a Latvian university.
• Academic record.
• Proof you’ve paid your tuition fees (provided by the receiving university).
• Bank statement showing you have enough funds to support yourself during your studies.
• Rental agreement or guarantee letter from the university concerning your prospective accommodation.
• Proof that you’ve arranged adequate health insurance.
• Statement on fluorography or X-ray examining results.

Advice on Accommodation & Living Costs in Latvia

Advice on Accommodation & Living Costs in Latvia.

The two main types of housing on offer to international students are:

• University accommodation – such as halls of residence
• Private accommodation – House and flat rentals

Most of the universities in Latvia will provide dormitory accommodation for students, offering shared kitchens and study areas and private bedrooms. Going for this option is a good way to meet fellow students and settle into university life.

Living costs/rent:Latvia has a relatively low cost of living compared to other European countries, with around €400 enough to cover living costs each month.

Advice For Parents

Advice For Parents whose children may be looking to study in Latvia. You can find complete information on costs, safety, security and tips on keeping in touch during their time away.

How safe is Latvia?

Latvia is a safe country in which to be an international student and is known for being welcoming. The most likely crime is petty theft, particularly of bikes.

Students should always take care to protect their own personal safety in order to avoid becoming victims of crime. They can do this by:

• Avoiding carrying around large amounts of money
• Staying in groups, especially at night, and never walking alone
• Not making valuables obvious
• Always having a route home planned and never getting into unlicensed taxis
• Being wary of strangers
• Being careful of traffic

Staying in touch

Staying in touch when your child is studying on the other side of the world might seem daunting – but there are ways you can talk regularly that don’t have to involve long distance phone calls and a nasty bill at the end of the month. Here are a few tips:

• Skype – the free video calling service can be downloaded within seconds, and will allow you to talk face to face anywhere you have an internet connection.

• Blogging – maybe encourage your child to keep a blog of their adventures overseas, so that other families members (such as grandparents) can keep up to date.

• Local sim cards – it is also a good idea for your child to buy a phone with a local pay as you go sim card when they arrive so that they can text and call home without running up a bill.

Apply to Study in Latvia

Apply to Study in Latvia and get free online and telephone support with your application. The advice here will help you find the right bachelors at the right university in Latvia.

If you would like to study overseas but are not certain as to where is the best fit in terms of country, course and funding you can register for free with the International Student Admissions Service (ISAS) where a dedicated admissions team will be able to help you every step of the way.

You can find out about studying in other countries with our country guides.

Cities in Latvia