Situated in the midst of the meeting point of Europe, Asia, and Africa, Portugal boasts of being home to 10.3 million people. Lisbon, the capital of the country is a hub for numerous international flights. Portugal is commonly a point of entry into the Schengen zone, which is why it encounters lots of tourists from around the globe annually.
Portugal became a part of the European Union in 1986 and was one of the first countries to use the Euro. Portugal is one of the many countries in the EU that have political stability, and are founding members of the eurozone and NATO.
Portuguese, the primary language widely spoken in the country is considered to be one of the Romance languages in the world since deriving from ancient Latin. Additionally, Spanish and English are also used by many people in the country. Portugal is considered to have one of the highest English proficiency levels amongst its people when compared to its neighboring countries.
Portugal is one of the most reasonable places in Europe to stay in, whether it be for a short visit or a longer stay. Although the real estate sector in the country is considered to be quite competitive, people can look and apply for apartment listings posted in newspapers and outside residential complexes. Moreover, there are some property websites that offer countless deals on short-term and long-term apartment rentals.
Portugal has been ranked the 3rd most peaceful country in the world. Additionally, the country has one of the most diverse and friendly communities in Europe, warmly welcoming visitors regardless of which corner of the earth they come from.
The winters in the European country are light and the summers are warm and sunny. People in Portugal commonly frequent the many sandy beaches in the summer, while they prefer to stay indoors in the wet and mild winters.
What’s more, Portugal offers a remarkable quality of life. Food, contemporary art, and music play a significant role in Portuguese culture. There are a vast number of local restaurants that prepare delicious native dishes that are guaranteed to leave people wanting to come back for more. Music festivals take place in the cosmopolitan city of Lisbon, more frequently during the summers.
The education system in Portugal is typically divided into pre-primary, basic education (further comprising three different stages; grades 1-4, grades 5-6, and grades 7-9), and secondary education. There are both public and private schools that are open to the public that mostly follows the national curriculum.
The national curriculum is predominantly taught in Portuguese, foreign students either take additional lessons on the language or opt for other international curricula available in Portugal. There are a number of international schools in Portugal that follow International GCE (IGCSE’s and A-Levels) and/or International Baccalaureate (IB).
On completing secondary education, students have the option to choose from university colleges, art colleges, and universities. Bachelors, Masters, and Ph.D. degrees are only available at universities, whereas university colleges and art colleges just offer diplomas, associates, and technical degrees. There may be some exceptions in certain institutions where they offer bachelor’s degrees.
Post-secondary education in Portugal is one of the best in Europe, with most of their universities being research-based. Just like in many other European countries, most degrees at the undergraduate level in Portugal are taught in the national language, although there may be some exceptions. There are widely available language courses and classes that are offered to foreigners and international students who wish to study there.
However, there are various masters and Ph.D. programs offered that have English as the primary language of instruction. Even though most international students are interested in applying to courses offered in English, some like to take it on as a challenge.
Tuition fees are modest and low when compared to its neighboring countries. Public universities cost considerably less than private institutions.
Even though the tuition fees in Portuguese universities are considerably low comparatively, there are numerous scholarships and financial aids available for international applicants. Most international scholarships are attainable at the master’s and doctorate levels of study, with a few exceptions at the bachelor’s undergraduate level.