Reference work entry

Structure of Higher Education System


Since 2017 higher education has been the responsibility of the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation. It is structured around two types of higher education institution: university level institutions (composed of universidades and academias) and polytechnics (composed of escolas superiores and institutos superiores). The higher education system offers undergraduate (Bacharelato and Licenciatura) and post-graduate courses (Mestrado and Doutoramento). There are both academic and professional post-graduate courses. Universidades and academias are placed under the supervision of a Rector, escolas superiores and institutos superiores under the supervision of a Director-General. The higher education sector is composed of public, public-private and private institutions.

Stages of studies

University level first stage


The Bacharelato is obtained after three years’ study. The Licenciatura is obtained after four...

Copyright information

© International Association of Universities 2019

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