Public fee and support system for students in Europe

Country
Date of publication

Bulgaria 2016/17 - student fees and grants

Country: Bulgaria
Date of publication: 2016/2017
Fees - first cycle (euro): min 153 - max 767
Fees - second cycle (euro): min 235 - max 537
Fees - note: All students pay fees
Grants - note: 12.7 % of full-time students receive grants
Need-based grant (euro): min 307 - max 736
Merit-based grant (euro): min 307 - max 736

National student fee

Public higher education institutions define their own fees, but maximum amounts are set annually by the government.

Student fees depend on the programme and field of study. The lowest fees are paid, for example, in social sciences, economics and law, the highest fees in arts, navigation programmes.

The first cycle fees in the state universities, for full-time studies, range from BGN 300 to BGN 1 500 per year and for part-time studies from BGN 150 to BGN 1 100. Annual second cycle full-time study fees range from BGN 460 to BGN 1 050, and for part-time studies from BGN 370 to BGN 580. Full-time short cycle students pay from BGN 300 to BGN 1 600 per year, while part-time students between BGN 150 and BGN 1 000.

Certain categories of students are exempted from paying fees. They include orphans, persons with disabilities, war invalids and senior cadets in military schools.

Fee ranges for international students are also set by the government and depend on the study field. The actual amounts are defined by higher education institutions. They are usually higher than those paid by EU students.

Student grants

Grants/scholarships are available to full-time students in all study cycles. They are distributed by higher education institutions based on their specific eligibility criteria. One type of grant must contain two indicators: academic performance and monthly income per family member of the student for the previous six months. From 2016, universities must also award merit-based grants – based only on academic performance. Grant amounts range from BGN 50 to 120/month, and in most cases are issued during 10 months. Starting from the second semester of the 2016/17 academic year, grant amounts shall range from BGN 70 to 150 per month. There is no support for part-time students.

Loans

Full-time first and second cycle students who are EU/EEA/Swiss citizens, less than 35 years old and have not interrupted their studies can apply for state guaranteed loans. The study loan may be equal to the tuition fee. The amount of loan to cover living costs is linked to the minimum wage. The interest rate cannot exceed 7 % at banks that have signed an agreement with the government. Repayment is due one year after graduation and must be completed in 10 years. No information is available on the percentage of students taking out the loan.

Tax benefit for student's parents

Tax benefits for parents play no role in the student support system.

Family allowances

Family allowances for parents play no role in the student support system.



Source: Eurydice, National Student Fee and Support Systems 2013/2014 - 2015/2016
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