You can study on the same terms as Polish citizens, if you:

  • have been granted a residence permit (to settle in Poland),
  • hold refugee status granted by the Republic of Poland,
  • have been granted temporary protection on the territory of the Republic of Poland,
  • are a migrant worker, EU/EEA national or a member of an EU/EEA migrant worker family ,
  • have been granted an EU long-term residents residence permit,
  • are a EU/EEA citizen with the right of permanent residence.


If you study on terms applicable to Polish citizens doing full-time programmes at public higher education institutions, you do it free of charge. This, however, requires a sound knowledge of Polish and participation in the recruitment procedure.

Student financial support

There are a number of State budget financial support forms available for students studying on terms applicable to Polish citizens.

They include:

  • maintenance grant,
  • special grant for disabled persons,
  • allowance,
  • scholarship for the outstanding students, awarded by a rector,
  • scholarship for academic or sport results financed by a natural person or a legal entity which is not a state or local government,
  • scholarship for academic achievements awarded by the minister,
  • scholarship for outstanding sporting achievements awarded by the minister,
  • assistance grants.

You can study in Poland as a foreigner on the basis of rules defined within/by:

  • international agreements,
  • agreements concluded between a higher education institution and foreign entities,
  • decision of the minister competent for higher education,
  • decision of the rector of a higher education institution.

Tuition & Scholarships

Studying on terms applicable to foreigners, you can:

  • be awarded a scholarship by a Polish partner,
  • study on a tuition fee-paying basis,
  • study free of tuition fees and with no scholarship entitlement,
  • be awarded a scholarship by the sending partner (for example your country or university), and free of tuition fees,
  • be awarded a scholarship by Polish higher education institutions.

Students who do not fall under the rules applicable to Polish citizens are not obliged to compete with other students to enter studies, but have to pay fees as defined by higher education institutions.

Studying on terms applicable to foreigners does not provide an entitlement to state budget financial support. Students of non-public HEIs are admitted on the basis of the rector’s decision and on a tuition fee-paying basis. They are able to be granted an HEI scholarship or be partially or fully waived of fees. Foreigners with officially confirmed Polish descent are entitled to a 30% fee discount.


It may be easier for foreigners to get into their chosen HEI as they don’t have to compete with local students. The standard requirements include:

  • confirmation of sufficient knowledge of the instruction language to enter the chosen course,
  • a high school diploma and – if applying to 2nd or 3rd cycle studies – a diploma from the previous cycle of study (for example: a BA diploma is necessary to apply for an MA course).

You may also be asked to prove that you have the predispositions and qualifications required by for example arts or medical HEIs.

You can choose if you wish to study on the terms applicable to Polish citizen or those applicable to foreigners when:

  • you are a holder of a valid Card of the Pole,
  • are an EU/EEA citizen and have enough funds to support yourself in Poland.

Card of the Pole (Karta Polaka) is a document stating that you belong to the Polish nation. It can be issued to people who do not have Polish citizenship and live in one of former Soviet Union states. Among other privileges, it entitles holders to choose the terms on which they wish to study.

More information on the Card of the Pole is available here:

EU/EEA citizens can also choose if they want to study like Polish students or as foreigners. However, they must have the necessary funds to support themselves in Poland. Even if they decide to study on terms applicable to Polish students, they will not be eligible for a maintenance grant or a special grant for disabled persons.


Terms of studying: Advantages Disadvantages

as a Polish citizen

- free education in public HEIs

- access to state budget student financial support

you have to compete with Polish students for places at HEIs

as a foreigner

- easier admission to HEIs

- one-year preparatory Polish language course (in public HEIs)

- a possibility of being awarded a scholarship

- study on a tuition fee-paying basis

- no access to state budget student financial support