The curtailing of undergraduate degree programmes and non-admissions to many undergraduate degree programmes is the reality these days. Higher education institutions are cleaning up.
Representatives of the embassies of France, Germany, Italy, and Spain voiced their concern about the decline in educational opportunities for these languages and cultures in the Slovak Republic at a meeting with representatives of universities and the Slovak Accreditation Agency for Higher Education at the Ministry of Education, Science, Research and Sport of the Slovak Republic on Thursday, 28 April 2022.
The Chair of the Executive Board of the Slovak Accreditation Agency for Higher Education stressed that Slovakia is interested in the development of education and cooperation also in the field of foreign languages and cultures. However, over the last 15 years, the nineteen-year-olds are falling dramatically by 45% in Slovakia. Understandably, this also reflects in fewer applicants to higher education overall.
For example, there are 380 registered university study programmes in philology and more than 220 programmes in teaching. Of these, about one-third have no students already registered.
“Universities have begun to curtail education in areas of little interest. It has to do with both funding cuts and preparation for new accreditations. Applicants are thus moving to other universities or workplaces where there is more interest and where more of them are studying,” said Robert Redhammer, chair of the Executive Board of the Slovak Accreditation Agency for Higher Education. “This is a desirable concentration of education,” he adds.
“We very much encourage universities to cooperate with foreign universities, for example, in joint programmes. In a direct interconnection, the quality of study also enhances, students experience other learning, which also strengthens international understanding,” Redhammer said.
Practically, this means that the total number of study programmes will reduce. According to information continuously monitored by the universities, they plan to cancel more than a thousand non-viable study programmes over the holidays. Thus, by 1 September 2022, they will offer only those that meet the latest requirements of accreditation standards. After the cancellation of about a thousand programmes last year, the reduction in the total number is about a third.
Contact for the media: Zlata Petrusová, zlata.petrusova [at] saavs.sk; tel.: 0948/988 265