The Italian Higher Education System
The higher education system in Italy is structured as follows:
Undergraduate degree/Bachelor of Science - B.Sc. (“Laurea Triennale e a Ciclo Unico”)
Course duration: 3, 5 or 6 years
ECTS/Credit points: 180, 300 or 360
Aims to provide a solid foundation in the core subjects as well as more specialized, professional training. Students holding a 3-year undergraduate degree or Laurea a Ciclo Unico can either enter the job market or continue their studies by applying for a Master of Science or Specializing Master program.
Graduate degree/Master of Science - M.Sc. (“Laurea Magistrale”)
Course duration: 2 years
ECTS/Credit points: 120
Undertaken after the undergraduate degree and aims to provide rigorous, advanced training in more highly specialized areas.
Specializing Master (“Master Universitario”)
Course duration: 1 year
ECTS/Credit points: 60
A professionalizing program providing practical knowledge and training through coursework, consultancy projects and internships. These masters programs within the Italian education system do not generally allow access to a Ph.D. program upon completion of the Master. Recognition of the Specializing Master towards a Ph.D. program outside of Italy will depend on local state regulations or individual doctoral programs.
Doctoral Program - Ph.D. (“Dottorato di Ricerca”)
Course duration: 3 years
ECTS/Credit points: 180
Undertaken after the completion of a Master of Science or an equivalent graduate degree. It aims to develop the professional competence to carry out high level research in manufacturing and service companies, public bodies and universities.