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UPF was founded in 1990 by the Catalan government with the aim of creating a public university focused on academic excellence and contributing to the country’s development. To achieve this goal, over the years, UPF has carried out all of its activities in accordance with strict quality criteria and has created a model of an urban university that is intimately linked to the city of Barcelona. As a university, we have been selective in the areas of knowledge that we have focused on in order to specialize primarily in research and training related to the various dimensions of the human being, including biology, communication and social phenomena. Our relatively small size, which we have maintained despite some growth, has emerged as one of our defining traits, and an eminently positive one at that, as it has allowed us to preserve the ideal size for the formation of a cohesive academic community, in which academic and administrative units have a sense of belonging to the same institution and of sharing the same values.
On 18 June 1990, Catalan Parliament gave the go-ahead for the creation of a new public university in Catalonia, Pompeu Fabra University, inspired by the principles of freedom, democracy, justice, equality, independence and plurality. From its beginnings, this young academic institution set itself two main objectives: to train responsible professionals and citizens fully committed to civic values, and to contribute towards the development of outstanding research.
The first lectures at UPF were given on 8 October 1990 in Balmes building, once the site of the Fòrum Vergés. They were attended by around 300 students of the new degrees in Law and Economics and Business Sciences. Today, UPF offers its studies around three areas of knowledge: the social sciences and humanities, the health and life sciences, and the ITC and communication sciences. To develop its activity, the University has been structured into seven schools, a Polytechnic School and eight departments. Meanwhile, in recent years UPF has also been participating in a set of institutions and specialized centres focused on teaching, research and transfer activities, centres with legal personality and that constitute the UPF Group.
Moreover, in order to promote research and transfer activities undertaken by university researchers and provide them with greater international visibility, the University has developed the UPF Research Park in the fields of social sciences, humanities, communication and information technologies. The UPF Research Park, which develops its activity at Ciutadella and Poblenou campuses, coordinates its activities in the fields of health and life sciences with the Barcelona Biomedical Research Park, located at Mar campus.
Times Higher Education ranking (2019):
Students have to introspect before planning to study abroad in Spain. It is necessary to make awell-versed decision before you plan foranoverseas higher education. The country has emerged as a leading study abroad destination known for its top-quality education. Here are the top 10 reasons why you shouldchoose to study in the Spain:
1. Education System
The standard of education in Spain has greatly improved in the last 25 years through increases in spending and educational reforms. The latest OECD/PISA survey (2015) of educational standards of 15 year olds across 70 countries and economies showed that Spain’s performance in mathematics, reading and science is slightly above the OECD average. Spain is currently ranked 30 out of 70. The country scored particularly highly in terms of students’ sense of belonging at school, ranking 1st out of all countries assessed.
2. Global recognition of education
From bachelors to masters, you can find a wide variety of programs in different disciplines. Universities in Spain are known for its law programs as they are recognized globally. You will also find some top universities in Spain that offer programs in marketing, finance, art and humanities, hospitality management, science, and Spanish courses. Spain is home to some of the best universities in a range of courses in business and liberal arts. You will also find universities in Spain that teach a course in English and get you accustomed to the Spanish culture.
3. Lowest tuition fees in Europe
Public universities in Spain are known to have the lowest tuition fees as they are set by the government. Tuition is calculated on the number of credits you take and hence an average bachelor’s degree might cost about 1500 EUR/year and master’s degree may cost 2500 EUR/year.
The Spainish are also some of the most welcoming people around. Hospitality plays a large role in Irish culture, so you’ll likely get to know a lot of locals right away. Although social circles (among locals) are very solid – friendships often last a lifetime – people are also very keen to make new friends and make visitors and resident foreigners feel very welcome.
5. Lots of funding and student support
Universities in Spain provides several funding options for international students through scholarships, grants and loans provided by the government. The scholarships exist for both EU and non-EU students.
6. Learn the Language
Spoken across oceans and continents, Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world when you count only native speakers. Whether you’re a total beginner or want to improve what you’ve already learned in school, Spain is the best place to do it! Not only do many universities offer courses to international students to learn Spanish, being immersed in the culture will also give you the ability to practice what you learn no matter where you go!
7. Witness the Art and Literature
After all the partying, you might need a little down time to recuperate. International students with any interest will also be able to experience the more low-key side of Spanish culture as well. Start by exploring the diverse literature produced by famous Spaniards such as Miguel de Cervantes or Javier Marías. Try reading them in their original language to practice your Spanish skills! The list of famous painters from Spain will not disappoint either. If you haven’t heard of Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Francisco Goya, or Joan Miró, it’s time to start visiting one of the many worthwhile art museums across Spain.
8. Celebrate the Sports
If you’re a sports fan (and even if you’re not), be prepared to celebrate after one of Spain’s many sport successes! In recent decades, Spain has experienced great success in football (soccer), tennis, and basketball. Spain has also hosted international events such as the FIFA World Cup and the Summer Olympics, making it the ideal destination for any student who likes to catch a game or two during breaks from class.
9. Festivals and parties
Life in Spain is one big fiesta; and no one throws a fiesta like the Spanish. From seeing the bulls run in Pamplona, to a city light up in flames for Las Fallas in Valencia, to throwing tomatoes in Buñol, it’s a country that impresses the world. Parades, carnivals and bonfires happen throughout the year – you’ll definitely get the chance to catch something if you’re studying in Spain.
10.The big cities (and the smaller ones too)
Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and Seville: they’re the big four and it’s for a reason. Each city has its own personality and they will all entrance you with their various foods, architecture and culture. These are the most popular bucket-list cities, but don’t forget about the smaller ones too. Malaga, Toledo and Santiago de Compostela are just a few more extraordinary places with intriguing traditions that shouldn’t be looked over if you’re planning a trip!
In Spain there are more than 70 universities, around 50 are public and the rest, over 20, are private. They are distributed throughout the Spanish territory and the cities that concentrate the largest number of universities are Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia.
The largest number of private universities are found in Madrid. All Spanish universities facilitate the admission of foreign students to their full range of university undergraduate and graduate studies.
According to the EHEA the university studies in Spain are grouped into three different degree levels: Grade degrees (undergraduate studies), University Master degrees (graduate studies) and Doctoral degrees (postgraduate studies).
Besides these official degrees, each university offers a wide range of unofficial specific qualifications (Masters). These degrees, which are usually obtained in one or two years, require a prior graduate or postgraduate degree and are widely appreciated because of their value in the labour market. These degrees offer a highly practical training focusing on the various specialized professional sectors. Spanish universities cover close to all subject areas offered by the Spanish official degrees recognized by the Ministry of Education as well as a very wide range of specific degrees in a large number of professional areas.
The education system includes lectures, seminars and supervised practice. Class attendance is not mandatory but highly recommended because it is an essential element of university education. Classes last between 50 and 60 minutes and teachers delve into the topics usually relying on audiovisual media assistance.
The assessment of the student is performed by conducting a test, which takes place either in the first instance in February, if the course is quarterly, or in June, if the course is annual or quarterly of the second quarter. Students who do not pass the assessment on first sitting can use a special convocation in September. In some cases the teacher can choose to perform several assessments (exams, papers, etc.). If the student passes all these over the course they are free from sitting the final exam.
Students from a foreign education system who want to study at a Spanish university must validate or certify their studies and perform an entrance exam for university (Selectividad), which is held every year. StudyInSpain gives advice to those who wish to sit the Selectividad but wish to do it in their country of origin. Students can begin their studies at any Spanish university, either public or private, once they have passed the necessary test.
Spanish universities require students who wish to study to hand in pre-registration paperwork or application forms for places in their faculties or schools. It is highly recommended to do so well in advance.
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