Education in Cyprus, follow the European education program. It is mandatory up to the age of fifteen (15). The primary school lasts for six (6) years. Following the secondary education, is divided into two parts: Gymnasium for three (3) years, and then Lyceum for another three (3) years. The six years of secondary education are common called as high school education. Therefore, for a Cypriot citizen, education is mandatory up to the end of the gymnasium, the total mandatory education lasts for nine (9) academic years. In addition, after the primary school or after the gymnasium a Cypriot student can continue studying in a technical school.
Higher education is provided by public institutions and private third level institutions, which award diplomas below first university degree level. During the academic year 2004-2005 there were nine public and twenty private institutions of higher education, with over 10,000 students, including about 1,900 (19%) overseas students. Foreign students in Cyprus mainly come from countries of the British Commonwealth and the Middle East. Semester in Cyprus places students at the bridge between the European Union and the Middle East. They are eligible to select from the 57 different accredited associate’s, bachelor and master’s programs of study across a variety of liberal arts, business, and engineering and science fields. These programs are fully locally accredited by SEKAP, the Cypriot Accreditation Board that is appointed by the Ministry of Culture and Education and the Council of Ministries.
Public Colleges and institutes
The State University is a public corporate body, governed by the Council and the Senate. For more information check: University of Cyprus
In the current academic year, there are nine public tertiary institutions. Five of these, offer courses at the sub-degree level in various fields of study and these are:
- The Cyprus Forestry College, of the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources
- The Higher Technical Institute (H.T.I), of the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance
- The Higher Hotel Institute, of the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance.
- The School of Nursing of the Ministry of Health
- The Mediterranean Institute of Management (M.I.M), of the Ministry of Labour and Social Insurance.
Private Colleges and institutes
A number of private tertiary institutions offer programs in various fields of study (e.g. secretarial studies, business administration, electrical, civil and mechanical engineering, hotel and catering, banking, accountancy and computer studies) with a duration of one to four years. Law 67(I)/96 regulate the establishment, control and operation of tertiary institutions in Cyprus. According to this Law, all private tertiary institutions have to register with the Ministry of Education and Culture. Twenty tertiary education institutions are registered with the Ministry and offer specific courses leading to the award of a Certificate/Diploma/Degree. Some of these schools have registered to offer post-graduate programs as well. It should be noted, however, that registration of a private institution does not imply recognition of the degrees awarded by these institutions. Recognition is possible only after successful accreditation of the programs of study offered by a private institution. During the academic year 2004-2005, the process of educational accreditation has been forward and 79 out of 147 programs of study have gained conditional accreditation.