7 Cheap Universities in Romania for International Students

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What comes to your mind when you read the word “Romania”? Medieval castles? Horror stories? Vampires? Famous soccer players or gymnasts? Well, you should definitely add quality universities to your list because the Romanian higher education system has a lot of strengths! And this is also true for international students.

Multilingual programs, affordable prices, transferable credits, and multicultural society are just a few of the characteristics. We will discuss today about cheap universities in Romania for international students.

If you want to study abroad, Romania is one of the countries you should definitely consider. Higher education institutions welcome international students by providing many advantages, including those that don’t come from other EU countries.

There are also nearly 100 universities from which you can choose, and many of them have programs completely taught in English at very affordable prices. You will also have the opportunity to study one or two semesters in another country or visit one of Romania’s neighbors during your holidays.

On this occasion, we prepared a detailed article about cheap Romanian universities to help you choose the best option. We’ll discuss important aspects related to the education system and we made a list of the cheapest universities.


Romania’s Higher Education System

Along with universities, Romania’s higher education system is also comprised of institutes, academies, colleges, and vocational schools. There are both public and private universities, which grant bachelor’s degrees, with a program duration of three years; master’s degrees, with a program duration of two years; and doctoral degrees, with a program duration of three years.

There are certain programs that could last longer, like engineering, and some combine the undergraduate and the graduate programs, which last for six years. These longer programs are usual for majors like medicine.

The higher education system is part of the ECTS, which is a credit transfer system that will allow you to easily transfer to other universities in Romania and in Europe.

Once you graduate, Romania offers Diploma Supplements (DS), which come in Romanian and English. On the transcript, they specify the details about your program and your performance. This will make things easier when applying to jobs back home or when applying to other universities to get a master’s or a Ph.D.


The Admission Process at Romanian Universities

In order to be admitted, international students have to validate their high school diplomas, submit any required documents, and follow the extra steps of each university. These could be comprised of interviews, tests, essays, etc.

Non-EU citizens must go through extra steps. They need to obtain an acceptance letter from the university and the Ministry of National Education. They’ll also have to make any necessary payments if applicable. With these documents, they can start the student visa process.

Completing the process can take about two months, so we suggest you to start the application process as early as possible.

Tuition Fees of Romanian Universities

As usual, tuition fees will depend on the university and the major. This will also depend on your country of origin. Tuition fees usually go from 2,000 EUR to 5,000 EUR per year, which is around $2,250 and $5,650. There are also many scholarships available for EU and non-EU citizens.

Costs of tuition are usually expressed per month and not per year, so you’ll have to multiply the quantities according to the number of months of your program, which are typically nine or ten. Some universities give students the option of paying in two or three installments instead of everything before getting the student visa.

There are majors like veterinary that could be more expensive. Also, tuition fees can vary according to the year in many universities. So, fees could increase or decrease after your first year. There are many universities in Romania whose tuition is cheap for international students.

Language of Instruction at Romanian Universities

Although you may already be interested in studying in Romania, chances are that you don’t actually know how to speak Romanian. Fortunately, you’ll have many options here.

About 25,000 international students choose Romanian universities each year. This is one of the reasons why many universities offer programs completely taught in English. There are also programs in other languages, like French and German.

Additionally, a large proportion of Romania’s population speaks English, especially in the big cities, so you shouldn’t have any problems outside the classroom. If you still want to challenge yourself, universities offer Romanian language courses for international students.


Living costs in Romania

Besides tuition and university fees, you have to include living costs in your budget. Luckily, Romania is one of the cheapest countries in the EU.

As it happens with the Czech Republic, Romania belongs to the European Union, but their official currency is the Romanian Leu (“lei” in plural), not the euro. It is abbreviated as RON. So, you may see many prices expressed in euros, but you’ll probably have to pay in lei. This could be confusing at first, but you’ll quickly get used to it.

Renting a one-bedroom apartment could cost you between $250 and $350 per month. Many universities in Romania have students dormitories that cost only a fraction of private renting.

Regarding food, you can expect to spend between $170 and $230. Transportation is also affordable. The regular price of the monthly pass is around $16.


Cheap Universities in Romania

1. University of Bucharest (UB)

Established in 1864, the University of Bucharest (UB) is one of the oldest public universities in Romania. Prior to its transformation, it was the Saint Sava Academy, which was founded in 1694. UB belongs to the group of Romanian elite universities and was in the top 700 of the QS University World Ranking.

This university has 20 faculties and 5 departments that offer programs in both English and Romanian. It also has research institutes and a publishing house.

UB has a preparatory language program of a year for international students that want to take a program in Romanian. It has a cost of 2,610 EUR (around $3,000).

Tuition fees for international students go from 1,980 EUR (around $2,300) to 2,430 EUR (around $3,000) per year. They also have student dormitories, but spots for international students are limited. Explore their website to learn more about admissions and programs! If you are interested


2. Babeș-Bolyai University (UBB)

Located in Cluj-Napoca, the Babeș-Bolyai University (UBB) was established in 1581 and is also part of the group of elite Romanian universities. It has ranked as the best university in terms of research and the impact on the job market.

This cheap university in Romania educates more than 41,000 students each year and has campuses throughout the city. This includes five museums and dormitories that can receive 5,280 students.

It has 21 faculties that offer 242 programs in 5 languages! They include Romanian, German, French, Hungarian, and of course, English.

Tuition fees per year go from 2,700 EUR (around $3,100) to 5,500 EUR (around $6,200). Bedrooms in the student dormitories cost less than $100 per month, so we suggest you to check it out. Visit their admissions section to learn much more!


3. Iuliu Hațieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy (UMF Cluj)

For those who are interested in the health field, the Iuliu Hațieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy (UMF Cluj) grants degrees in different areas of medicine. This cheap university in Romania was established in 1919 and was originally part of the Babeș-Bolyai University.

It has three faculties. First, there’s the Faculty of Medicine that has undergraduate programs in medicine, nursing, balneotherapy and recovery, and radiology and medical imaging. There, there’s the Faculty of Dentistry, which was the first one and is divided into four departments. And finally, there’s the Faculty of Pharmacy, which has 21 disciplines.

The first three years of the programs of medicine, pharmacy, and dental medicine are taught in English, Romanian or French. However, as students will have to attend seminars, communicate with patients and the personnel of hospitals, and complete their residencies, education starts to be in Romanian in the fourth year. The university offers a language program to prepare international students.

Calculation of tuition fees will depend on your country of origin and the path you took to enroll in the university. There are two options: by “competition of school performance and personal achievements assessment” or by taking an entrance exam.

In general, tuition fees are between 5,000 (around $5,650) EUR and 6,000 EUR (around $6,800). However, you could pay less depending on your conditions. This means paying only $2,000. Check the guide in their admission section and their tuition fees section to learn more.


4. Alexandru Ioan Cuza University (UAIC)

The Alexandru Ioan Cuza University (UAIC) is another public university ha was founded in 1860. It is a member of the Romanian elite group of universities.

It is comprised of 15 faculties and a Center for European Studies. Over 22,000 students receive their education here, and there are currently 80 research projects.

They offer undergraduate and graduate programs in English and French. Click here to check the degree programs offered in foreign languages. They also have dormitories, so check the application process here.

Depending on the faculty, tuition fees for international students go from 2,070 EUR (around $2,400) to 2,520 EUR per year (around $2,850). Check their admissions section to learn more about the process and fees.


5. Bucharest University of Economic Studies (ASE)

The Bucharest University of Economic Studies is a public university in Romania that was established in 1913. It specializes in the fields of economy and business administration. It has a great reputation as it is known for being a leader in preparing students for the job market.

It has twelve faculties that offer programs in English, Romanian, German, and French. Click here to check all the undergraduate programs in foreign languages available.

As for admissions, they explain the process in detail on the documents available here. Apart from the steps explained above, students must also write and submit motivational letters.

Regarding tuition fees, EU, Swiss and EEA citizens have to pay around $1,000 per year during the first two years, and around $859 during the last year. Non-EU citizens have to pay 2,700 EUR (around $3,050) per year during the first two years, and 2,250 EUR (around $2,550) during the last year. Because of these fees, Bucharest University of Economic Studies is regarded as a cheap university in Romania for international students.


6. Politehnica University of Bucharest

The Politehnica University of Bucharest is the most important and best-ranked technical university in Romania. It was established in 1818 and is part of international organizations like the European University Association (EUA).

This public university has 15 faculties that offer 85 undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate programs. It also has student dormitories with places for 14,000 students.

Among the 15 faculties, there’s the Faculty of Engineering Taught in Foreign Languages. They offer undergraduate programs in French, English, and German. However, they have a preparatory language program if you want to take a program in Romanian.

Tuition fees for bachelor’s and master’s degree programs go from 2,430 EUR (around 2,800) to 2,700 EUR (around $3,050) per year. This cheap university in Romania offer scholarships for those who need financial help and internships to get professional experience while studying. To learn more about admissions, click here if you are from an EU country or here if you aren’t an EU citizen.


7. West University of Timișoara (UVT)

We finish our list with the most recently founded university. Established in 1962, the West University of Timișoara (UVT) is considered as a research and academic university. It is the fifth member of the Romanian elite group of universities.

It has 11 faculties where over 16,000 students are educated each year. These faculties offer 20 undergraduate programs in Romanian, English, French, and German, and master’s degree programs in English, Romanian and French. Click here to check your options. They also have research opportunities, with more than 100 projects.

Those who want to take a program in Romanian have to pass a mandatory one-year language preparatory program or submit language proficiency certification.

Tuition fees for undergraduate and master programs go from 1,980 EUR (around $2,300) to 8,550 EUR (around $9,600). Prospective students also have to pay an application fee of 75 EUR ($85). To learn more, visit their website and check the Practical Guide for International Students.


I hope that this article on the cheap universities in Romania was helpful! If you are interested, visit the Europe Scholarships Page!