Overview: Bosnia and Herzegovina Education

Education system of Bosnia and Herzegovina is under the responsibility of the Federal Ministry of Education and Science. Compulsory education in Bosnia and Herzegovina last for 9 years, starting at the age of 6 and until the age of 15. Education in Bosnia and Herzegovina starts with school education and those who complete secondary education are eligible for higher education. 

Preschool Education

Preschool education in Bosnia and Herzegovina is not compulsory. Children up to 3 years of age attend daycare centres, and children aged 3 to 6/7 attend kindergarten. This level provides social care to children, and also prepares children for primary/elementary education. This educational level develops communication, problem solving and thinking skills. Play-based activities are conducted at this level in order to teach children.

Primary Education  

Primary education in Bosnia and Herzegovina is compulsory. This educational level develops the basic numeracy and literacy skills.
  • School type: Primary school (osnovna skola)
  • Ages: 6 to 15
  • Duration: 9 years
  • Grades: 1 to 9
Curriculum: Mathematics, biology, foreign language, history, art, physics,  local language, music, geography, nature and society, chemistry, health and physical education, and technical education. 

Secondary Education

Secondary education in Bosnia and Herzegovina is not compulsory to attend. Students who have completed 9-year primary education are eligible for secondary education in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This level of studies is offered in general, arts and vocational schools. 
  • Duration: 3 to 4 years
  • Ages: 15 to 18/19
  • Grades: 9 to 12
This educational level is of two types:
  • General secondary education (Gymnasium)
  • Vocational secondary education

General Secondary Education

General secondary education is of 4 years duration, and provide general studies.
  • School type: General secondary school (Gymnazija)
  • Ages: 15 to 19
Curriculum (general secondary education): Mathematics, Bosnia language and literature, history, biology, first foreign language, chemistry, sociology, Latin, physics, psychology, second foreign language, health and physical education, logic and philosophy, music, computer science,  and arts.

Certificate awarded: Secondary school leaving certificate

Secondary Vocational and Technical Education

Secondary vocational and technical education in Bosnia and Herzegovina is of 3 to 4 years, depending on the field of study. This secondary educational level prepares students for workforce. Practical training is provided at this level. 
School type: Technical and vocational schools (Vocational and Technical Schools (srednje stručne i tehničke skole)

Certificate awarded: Diploma

Examination: At the end of secondary education, students are required to sit for a Matura exam. Students who pass the exam are awarded a Certificate of Completed Examinations (Svjedocanstvo o polozenom zavrsenom ispitu).

Tertiary Education

Tertiary education in Bosnia and Herzegovina comprises of university higher education and non-university education. University higher education comprises of art academies and faculties, while the non-university includes post-secondary schools. Post-secondary schools in Bosnia and Herzegovina provide courses of 2 to 3 years duration. 

At the university level, undergraduate and graduate courses are offered. 
  • Undergraduate studies last for 4 to 6 years depending on the field of study and lead to the title of Bachelor of Science or Arts. 
  • Postgraduate studies last for 1 to 2 years, and lead to the title of Masters. 
  • Doctoral studies in Bosnia and Herzegovina last for 3 years and require the students to submit a doctoral thesis. 
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