Education System in Bulgaria


 EducationSchool/LevelGrade FromGrade ToAge FromAge ToYearsNotes
PrimaryNatchalno utchilischte (Basic First Stage)147104Grade IV Leaving Certificate
SecondaryProgimnazialno utchilichte (Basic Second Stage)5810144 
SecondaryGimnazii (Secondary Education)91214194Diploma za Zavurcheno Sredno Obrazovanie (Diploma of Completed Secondary Education)
SecondaryProfilirani Gimnazii (form IX to XII - Vocational Secondary)91215194 
SecondaryProfessionalni gimnazii I/ili technikumil (Vocational Secondary Education)  15194Diploma za Zavurcheno Sredno Obrazovanie (Diploma of Completed Secondary Education) and Certificate of Professional Qualification.
SecondaryProfessionalni utchilichta (Vocational Secondary)  15194Diploma za Zavurcheno Sredno Obrazovanie (Diploma of Completed Secondary Education) and Certificate of Professional Qualification
Post-secondaryTechnical/Vocational School    3Non university-level post-secondary education generally consists of a 3-year course of study after completion of secondary education and leads to the qualification of Specialist in different fields.
TertiaryUniversity level first stage    4Bakalavr (Bachelor):
TertiaryUniversity level second stage    5Magistr (Master) 5/6 years
TertiaryUniversity level third stage     Doktor (Doctor). Obtained on the basis of individual research and after the defense of a thesis
TertiaryTraining of pre-primary and primary/basic school teachers    4Professional qualification of teacher
TertiaryTraining of secondary school teachers    4University or some Academies of Arts with special training in teaching

Primary Education

In Bulgaria, education is compulsory between ages 7 to 16 and free in state owned schools. The ministry of education has prescribed an evolving academic curriculum throughout, consisting of Bulgarian (language and literature), foreign languages, information technologies, maths, natural sciences, social sciences & civics, physical education and sport. Children must attend a one-year pre-school program before embarking on 4 years of primary school.

Middle Education

The final 4 years of elementary education take place at junior high school, where a certificate of elementary education must be obtained before proceeding further at any Bulgarian school.

Secondary Education

There are two secondary education alternatives, namely comprehensive high schools and vocational schools. Pupils must remain at least until age 16. When graduating from the former they must take examinations in Bulgarian, and another subject of their choice.

Vocational Education

Vocational training outside the school system suffers from a high degree of centralization but is currently being reformed. Primary impediments include the absence of an integrated framework, and the capacity of an institutionalized system.

Tertiary Education

Bulgaria EducationHigher education facilities include specialized higher schools, colleges and universities. At universities, undergraduate programs take at least 4 years to complete, and may be complemented by masters degrees and even doctorates. The oldest university was founded in 1888 and is known fully as the Saint Clement of Ohrid University of Sofia.


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