study in Greece – The comprehensive Guide

Greece is the cradle of democracy and the home of great philosophers such as Plato, Aristotle and Socrates, from which the Olympic Games were launched for the first time, and it has a history full of legends and achievements. All this and more makes Greece more than just a tourist destination for holidays and vacations, as studying in Greece will be an amazing experience that is not comparable to any other experience at all.

Information about Greece

Greece (officially: the Hellenic Republic) is a country located in southeastern Europe, bordered by Albania, North Macedonia, Bulgaria and Turkey, making it a strategic location at the crossroads between Europe and Asia.

  • Capital: Athens.
  • Greek language.
  • Population: 10.7 million.
  • Area: 131,957 square kilometers.
  • Currency: the euro.

Advantages of studying in Greece

If you decide to study in Greece, this means that you have the opportunity to fully immerse yourself in an enchanting environment of cultural diversity, openness and hospitality that will offer you many unforgettable memories.
Not only that, choosing this country as a study destination has many other advantages, including the following:

1- Distinguished Universities

Greece has 24 universities and about 16 technical universities, most of which are governmental, and it is considered one of the best universities in the world, as a number of them ranked among the best educational institutions in famous rankings such as the QS.

Studying in Greece will allow you to enroll in one of these universities and obtain a distinguished education.

2- Free education and acceptable cost of living

European students can study for free in Greek universities except for some master’s programs, as for the rest of international students they must pay tuition fees to join these universities, but they remain lower than the tuition fees in some other countries such as Britain or Canada.

On the other hand, Greece is one of the cheapest countries in Europe for foreigners, whether they are tourists or international students. So studying in Greece will not be a heavy burden on your budget!

3- Study programs and specializations that Greece is famous for

Greece is not only proud of its cultural and historical heritage, but also preserves and enhances its traditions through education. Therefore, we find that many universities offer distinguished programs and specializations, where they are taught in English, which is also a point in your favour!

Here are examples of some of the majors that Greece is famous for and that you can study in its universities:

  • Philosophy: Is there a better place to study philosophy than in Greece, known as the land of the philosophers?
  • Architecture: While studying, you can draw inspiration from both modern and ancient Greek architecture.
  • Political Studies and History: Study and earn your degree in these disciplines from the very cradle of democracy.
  • Study Medicine in Greece: You have no doubt heard of Hippocrates, the Greek physician who developed many theories about medical ethics as well as methods of diagnosis, biology and treatment that are still in use today. You can dig deeper and get a medical degree from Greece, from which it emerged, as well as Hippocrates and many other doctors.

4- Distinctive tourist places and charming beaches

Who said that you cannot travel to Greece while studying there?!

If you decide to study in Athens, you will be just a few steps away from the most famous monuments such as the Temple of Olympus Zeus, Mount Olympus, the Byzantine city walls, the Ottoman White Tower and many more.
Not forgetting the charming Mediterranean climate, amazing islands and beautiful nightlife. Studying in Greece will not only be an academic trip but also a great tourist adventure.

5- The opportunity to enjoy the delicious Greek cuisine

Exploring the local cuisine is one of the things to do when traveling abroad, and in Greek cuisine you will find something to satisfy your taste buds!

Experience Mediterranean-inspired Greek cuisine and enjoy delicious and healthy meals every day while you study in Greece.

6- Warm climate all year round

Greece enjoys a relatively warm climate due to its strategic geographic location. During the summer there is no rain for two or three months (which allows you to enjoy the beautiful beaches of Greece) and in the winter, snow is rare and temperatures often remain above zero degrees Celsius.

This mild climate will allow you to do many outdoor sports and cultural activities while studying in Greece.

The best universities in Greece

Greece boasts many of the world’s most prestigious universities that are often ranked among the world’s top universities.

Here are a number of these universities:

1-  National Technical University of Athens

It is the highest ranked university in Greece, ranked 477 globally in 2021. The university was founded in 1837 and is referred to by the acronym NTUA, as it is the oldest university in Greece.

Today, the university has about 23,000 students, most of whom are enrolled in five-year study programs such as engineering or medicine. Subjects at the National Technical University of Athens are taught in Greek, but students who enroll in it through the Erasmus program present their graduation projects in English.

2-  Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki is the largest university in Greece and one of the largest in Southeast Europe. Its main campus is located in the heart of Thessaloniki, which is the second largest city in Greece and an important tourist attraction.

The university was founded in 1925 and named after the famous philosopher Aristotle, who was born near the city.
The university offers many majors for undergraduate and postgraduate levels, with most subjects taught in Greek. It was ranked 571 in the QS World University Rankings for 2021.

3-  National and Kapodistrian University of Athens

This university is ranked among the best 700 universities in the world, as it was founded in 1837 to be one of the oldest universities in Greece.

The university has about 125,000 students enrolled in it, and there are multiple disciplines that include law, languages, health sciences, philosophy, political sciences and natural sciences.

The university has four branches distributed in different parts of the city of Athens.

In addition to the previous universities, there are three other universities that appeared in the QS World University Rankings for 2021, including:

You could also consider enrolling in one of the small private colleges in Greece, such as the American College in Greece, for example.

Living costs in Greece

The cost of living in Greece is reasonable compared to other European countries. With regard to housing, some universities and institutes only offer student housing options, and you must meet many conditions to be able to obtain this housing.

You can start by staying in a small hotel until you get used to the place and then you can find a suitable apartment, where you can use the following websites for that:

It is important to bear in mind that renting a one-room apartment in major cities can cost you about 250-450 euros per month, and the amount drops to about 200-350 euros in the suburbs. In small towns, the cost is lower and cheaper.

You need about 50 -100 EUR to cover the costs of gas, electricity and heating. And about 25 euros the cost of the Internet connection.

As for transportation, the cost is also acceptable, as you will not need to pay more than 30 euros per month for the metro or bus, and with the student discount the amount may decrease more and more.

Thus, the total cost of living in Greece may range between 600 – 750 euros per month including housing, food and transportation, which makes this country suitable for many students who want to study abroad and who have a limited budget.

Study and scholarship costs in Greece

As we explained at the beginning of the article, studying in Greece is free for Europeans, but not for students from outside the European Union.

International students are therefore expected to pay approximately €1,500 per year for a Bachelor’s degree, including textbooks. In the case of enrolling in a master’s degree, the cost here ranges between 1500 – 2000 euros per year in public universities.

But if you decide to enroll in a private university, the cost increases significantly and may reach about 10 thousand euros annually. So be sure to visit the official website of the university of your choice and check the costs of joining it.

What about scholarships in Greece?

We regret to say that the number of scholarships available to international students in Greece is very limited, and applicants have to meet many conditions and criteria to be accepted, which increases competition for them and reduces the chances of obtaining a scholarship in Greece.

The only consolation here is that the tuition costs are relatively acceptable and can be covered personally. However, you can, for example, apply for various external financial grants that finance the student’s studies at a university of his choice.

Steps to apply to study in Greece

So, are you excited to study in Greece?

If you did, you may be wondering now about the steps that you must follow to achieve this, and we are here on the opportunity to introduce you to these steps and summarize them for you to make it easier for you:

1- Choose the appropriate major and desired university

The first step, always, is to choose the right major that matches your interests, skills and passions. Analyze your strengths and weaknesses, know your interests, and decide exactly what degree you would like to obtain (Bachelor, Master or PhD).

2- View the terms and criteria for applying

After you have passed the stage of choosing the right university major, you can start searching for the right university in Greece. It often depends on your budget, the major you want, and the university’s admission requirements.

Choose the appropriate university that you find that you meet its conditions, and do not hesitate to contact the Admission and Registration Unit at any university if you need any additional information.

3- Prepare the required documents

After you have chosen the major you want and the university degree you will enroll in, and after you have made a list of the universities to which you will send your application, you should now pay attention to the documents required from each university and prepare and prepare them before starting the actual application process.

The documents required vary according to the university, of course, but some of them are required in all universities, such as a high school diploma, academic record, motivation letter, a copy of the passport and personal photos.
Check the official university website before performing this step.

4- Submit your application

Now that you have your application ready, all you have to do is send it.

The application procedures and method differ from one university to another. Some universities only accept applications sent electronically, while other universities receive applications by traditional mail.

Again, contact the university of your choice and check the application procedures before submitting your application.

5- Apply for a travel visa to Greece and residence permit

If your application is accepted, a letter of acceptance will be sent to you with all the other necessary information you will need to know before traveling to Greece.

This means that now is the right time to send the first payment of tuition fees as well as start the procedures for obtaining a travel visa and residence permit, where you can contact the Greek embassy or consulate in your country to find out what you need to do.

We will talk in more detail about the procedure for obtaining a student visa to Greece later in the article.

6- Arrival in Greece

Once you have your visa and residence permit approved, you can start looking for suitable accommodation, and book a plane ticket to travel to Greece. There is not much left for you to begin your wonderful adventure in the land of the Philosophers and you can be excited and eager for this next step.

Obtaining a student visa to study in Greece

Before your scheduled travel date to Greece, make sure you have all the necessary documents ready and contact the Greek embassy or consulate in your country to find out the details of applying for the visa, and actually start it.

It is worth noting that these procedures take a lot of time and may need months to complete, so you must start them immediately after obtaining university admission.

For students from developing countries, the type of visa you need to study in Greece is a National-D visa. To obtain it, you must submit the following documents:

  1. A valid passport.
  2. The visa application after being filled out and signed by the relevant authorities.
  3. Two passport-sized photographs.
  4. Acceptance letter from the university you attended and a receipt proving that you have paid the university fees.
  5. Evidence that you have a source of income of at least 400 euros per month to cover your living costs for the entire period of study in Greece. (bank deposit, salary statement, scholarship…etc).
  6. Evidence of proficiency in the Greek language (if your chosen major is taught in Greek).
  7. Travel insurance.
  8. A medical certificate proving that you are free from any communicable or contagious diseases.
  9. Clean criminal record.

Costs for obtaining a student visa to Greece: 90 euros.

In order to apply for a residence permit, you need to fill out a complete residence application and pay the application fee of 150 euros.

Job opportunities for students in Greece

There are many job opportunities for international students in Greece, whether in cities, suburbs or even the Greek islands.

To get a job opportunity in Greece, you can communicate with one of your professors at the university or through recruitment companies that will help you to get a job during the summer vacation period.

As you can see, Greece is not just a tourist destination that you visit for vacation and recreation… It is an ancient country that has a lot to offer at the academic and educational levels, and you can be the next beneficiary of this legacy of knowledge that the country is proud of. Are you ready for this adventure?

If you do not like traveling to Greece to study, you can view other study destinations around the world and read the comprehensive guide to studying in each country separately.

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