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Higher education

Higher education in Slovenia includes academic university studies and professionally oriented studies. It is regulated by the Higher Education Act (1993, amended 1999, 2001, 2003, and 2004). The most important features introduced by the new legislation are: the new role of the university (change from an association of independent faculties to an integrated university) and the creation of single higher education institutions, the separation of some large faculties into several smaller ones, changes in the structure of the higher education system, the implementation of the Diploma Supplement and the gradual implementation of a three-cycle higher education system according to the Bologna Declaration by 2016. The Act provides for a three-level study structure. The first level relates to the undergraduate studies and the second and third levels to postgraduate studies. The duration of study programmes is limited in years (three to four years) and credit points (180 to 240 credit points). Study programmes must be in line with the EU study programmes. The second level maintains the master's studies. It encompasses from 60 to 120 credit points and takes one or two years to complete. The third level is the doctoral studies and lasts three years.
Public higher education is free of charge for native full-time students and for students from EU countries. Part-time students and post-graduate students pay tuition fees.

Higher education institutions comprise universities, faculties, art academies or professional colleges. Slovenia has at the moment (2010) 4 universities with 37 faculties, 3 art academies or professional colleges, and 10 single higher education institutions (Samostojni visokoŇ°olski zavodi) established as private institutions. Higher education institutions are autonomous in managing their internal organization and operations (considering their statutes and the legal requirements), selecting and electing the faculty, electing the internal bodies: rectors, senates, administrative boards and student councils, deans and academic assemblies. In addition to teaching, higher education institutions also conduct research and offer artistic activities.

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