Latvia which is officially known as the Republic of Latvia is a country with a democratic parliamentary structure situated in the Baltic region in Europe’s North.It shares its land borders with Estonia, Latvia, Russia, Belarus and by a coastal border to the west with Sweden. It has a unitary government of 118 divisions for administrative purposes with 109 municipalities and 9 cities.
A unique feature that stands out in the case of Latvia when students need to research about study in Latvia is that the education is administered at three levels.viz. the national, municipal and institutional. The policies regarding education are formulated by the Ministry of Education and Science and the elected members of the ministry.
Academic programs for higher education are based on the fundamental and applied science. Typically, they constitute a thesis at the end of every stage whether at the bachelor’s or the master’s. Although the structure and system seem to be complex to an outsider, the system ensures a tight framework that ensures that the graduate enters the professional world with the highest degree of competency thanks to the provision of study and research in Latvia This is applicable to both levels of higher education in the country.
There is an abundance of information that is available to students when they seek information on study in Latvia. For example, although as foreign students they may have to spend for higher education, the same is absorbed by the government if they are entering the Latvian higher education system as exchange students.
Why study in Latvia?
Latvia is known as the land that sings and Latvians claim that their country is a symphony of sounds, sights, and experiences. The Latvian government has laid special emphasis on education and have made several educational reforms that have made it an ideal study abroad destination.
Latvia has both fee paying as well as state financed higher education opportunities in universities. For scholarship schemes a careful process of student selection is carried out to offer government aid to the most deserving students. There are two types of higher education programs offered in Latvia: Professional and Academic. Latvian universities offer both these programs, but there are several non-university type institutes in Latvia that offer only professional education to students.
The Bologna System is followed in higher education, which is divided into three distinct levels – the Bachelor’s studies, the Master’s studies and the Doctoral studies. A bachelor degree is awarded are either three or four years of regular study. A master’s degree on the other hand can be achieved only after receiving the Bachelor’s and completing further one or two years of study. In Doctoral studies, the students should have a master’s degree or an equivalent diploma. Doctoral studies can take anywhere from three to four years and involve advanced studies and the preparation of a Doctoral thesis.
Costs of studying in Latvia
- The major reason why you should study in Latvia is the affordable education. The tuition fees and other living costs are lower as compared to several western nations. Engineering study in Latvia is very popular and the universities here are famous for producing high quality engineering and IT graduates. Latvia also has EU membership, so a degree from here is equivalent to that from any other EU country.So you can still get an education in a European country with considerably cheaper living costs and other expenses.
The cost of studies depends on the institution and the programme being followed.
- The average tuition fee in Latvia for undergraduate programs is between EUR 3000 – EUR 5000 (USD 3,600 – USD 6,100).
- Medicine degrees are at higher rates, with the most being up to EUR 15,000 (USD 18,400) per year.
- On the other hand, master’s degree programs range from EUR 3,700 (USD 4,560) for other international enrollees.
- While living costs in Latvia will depend on the city, type of accommodation and one’s lifestyle, everyday expenses in this Baltic state are still generally cheaper compared to many European countries.
- It is estimated that around €450 – 700 (USD$ 553 – USD$ 861) is enough to cover necessities such as food, transportation, utilities and accommodation for a month.
- Cost of Living in Riga:
- Accommodation: Student hostel/dormitories: €90 -150, Solo Flat: €250 – 350, Shared Flat: €100 – 200
- Food €120 – 250
- Transport Public transport (with student discount): €16 for each month (buses, trams, trolleybuses)
- One-way ticket for public transport: €1.15. Taxi (city center to suburbs): €7 – 15 (only 1 transfer)
- Leisure / personal, Cinema ticket: €5 – 10, Opera ticket: €7 – 42, Rock concerts: €7.5 – 30
- Cost of Living in Jelgava:
- Accommodation, Student hostel/dormitories: €80 -140, Solo Flat: €86 – 341, Shared Flat: €55 – 215.
- Food €120 – 250
- Transport, Public transport (with student discount): €14 for each month (buses, trams, trolleybuses), One-way ticket for public transport: €0.70 – 1, Taxi (city center to suburbs): €5 – 15 (only 1 transfer)
- Leisure / personal, Bowling: €5 – 7, Ice skating: €4 – 20, Events: €5 – 30
- Cost of Living in Ventspils:
- Accommodation, Student hostel/dormitories: €80 – 100, Solo Flat: €100 – 20, Shared Flat: €85 – 100.
- Food €120 – 230
- Transport, Public transport (with student discount): €16.50 for each month (buses, trams, trolleybuses), One-way ticket for public transport: €0.60 – 0.90, Taxi (city center to suburbs): €3.56 – 6 (only 1 transfer)
- Leisure / personal, Cinema ticket: €3 – 5.70, Opera ticket: €4 – 20, Theater ticket: €4 – 37
Famous cities and universities in Latvia
Riga is the capital of Latvia and is the largest metropolis in the three Baltic States. Dubbed as the European Capital of Culture in 2014, students wanting to come to Riga will get to combine a world-class cultural experience with the highest quality of education available in Latvia.
Ventspils has distinguished itself as one of Latvia’s best success stories by managing to reach new heights of development in recent years, successfully transforming itself into a flourishing city known for its friendly community, sprawling infrastructures and vast collection of cultural and leisure facilities.
Jelgava is the capital of the region of Zemgale, famous among international guests for its vast collection of beautiful architectural styles from various time periods. With a rapidly developing industry in the areas of economics, culture, and education, Jelgava is an ideal place to study abroad.
- Riga Technical University
- Turiba University
- RTU Riga Business School
- University of Latvia
- Liepaja University
- Ventspils University College
- Daugavpils University
- Latvia University of Agriculture (LLU)
- Riga Stradins Medical University
Popular courses to study in Latvia
The study programmes in Latvia are offered at bachelor, master, or doctoral level, as well as certain short courses (summer schools) and exchange programmes are provided to international students.
- Art & Design
- Computer Science & IT
- Engineering & Technology
- General Studies
- Health & Well-Being
- Humanities & Culture
- Media & Communications
- Teaching & Education
- Tourism & Hospitality
- Transport & Logistic
- Register: Register with us.
- Profiling: We assess academic qualifications, work experience, financial status, career goals as well as life interests and aspirations.
- Standardized Tests: We evaluate the requirement of any standardized tests you may need to take or review results that has been already obtained.
- University/Course Selection: Together, we shortlist potential countries, universities and courses that match your profile.
- Document Editing: We edit essays, Statement of Purpose, Letters of Recommendation and Resume, which have been written by you.
- Application Review and Submission: The completed application forms are reviewed before they are submitted to your final choice of universities.
- Interview Preparation: We assist in preparation (including mock sessions) for the interviews that you may have with the chosen universities.
- Visa Counselling: We assist in preparation (including mock sessions) for the interviews that you may have with the High Commissions or Embassies, as well as the collation and review of relevant documentation for submission of the visa application.
- Pre-Departure Information: We deliver comprehensive information about the country of choice to ensure that you are completely prepared for life at an overseas university.
To acquire the student visa, you must have enrolled in a course of study in Latvia and show evidence of your financial capacity to pay the course fee and support yourself throughout your stay.
A person who a student is arriving in the Republic of Latvia to the successive full-time studies a higher education establishment operating in the Republic of Latvia should apply for a multiple entry national visa D, which could be applied for only at Latvian Embassy.
- Original of the Long Stay Visa Application Form of the Republic of Latvia (filled out, with photo)
- 4photo (size 35mm x 45 mm) must be taken in last 6 month and it should be on white background.
- Passport with a period of validity extending at least three months after the intended date of departure from Latvia or other Member State and containing at least two blank pages. Copies of the identification pages and the pages that contain information about previously issued visas.
- An invitation by applicant’s education facility in Latvia that is approved by the OCMA must be submitted. The invitation should be dated not later than 6 months prior to the application date.
- A copy of a signed study agreement must be submitted along with the documents.
- A copy of a proof of your intended residence in Latvia must be submitted along with the documents.
- Original private bank account statement showing the movements during the last three months with balance confirmation letter from the bank duly stamped and signed by the bank; Indian income tax return acknowledgment for the last three assessment years (please note that Form 26AS as well as Form 16/ 16 A must be submitted along with ITR-V). In case university provides the service of issuing a statement on the availability of the necessary financial means in the university account, original of the statement dully signed and stamped by the university must be submitted.
- In case you are sponsored by a family/relative, a notarized declaration of sponsorship to be submitted. Proof of professional status of the sponsor – contract of employment, pay slips for the last 3 months; self-employed – certificate of registration of the Company, Company’s bank statements for the last three months dully signed and stamped by the bank.
- Originals presented and copies of your prior education diplomas and mark sheets must be submitted.
- An air ticket reservation stating the intended entry to Schengen area must be submitted. Please note that the Embassy is not responsible for purchased tickets in case of the visa refusal.
- Travel insurance to be valid for the whole Schengen area and covering the entire period of the intended visit (90days). The minimum coverage of 42,600 EUR including the costs of urgent medical attention and/or emergency hospital treatment in case of an illness as well as medical transportation and repatriation in the event of death. Medical insurance policy can be obtained in applicant’s country of residence, or in any other country, or taken out by the inviting person. It is important that the insurance meets all the above requirements.
- Get approval within 30 days.
- Collect passport from embassy.
- Get ready for your new destination.