By Zaryab Ahmed

Kyrgyzstan is a very unique study abroad destination. A lot of people are not even aware of the country so they don’t have an idea of the educational institutes situated in this country and what quality of education do they offer. 

 Kyrgyzstan is located in Central Asia and is known for its incredible mountainous scenarios, nomadic lifestyle, culture, and traditions. It had its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991 and is one of the more progressive (aka westernized) countries in the region. It has a Russian style atmosphere cum lifestyle which makes it easier for foreign students to live in the country.

1. Higher Education in Kyrgyzstan:

Kyrgyzstan has its own rules and regulations just like another country. The good thing is that every citizen has the right to education under the constitution of Kyrgyzstan. Kyrgyzstan has adopted the Education Development Concept and Strategy in the Kyrgyz Republic which consolidates values and priorities, along with that, it creates the basis for concrete steps to develop the education system, keeping in mind the international obligations of Kyrgyzstan. 

This may ensure sustainable functioning and development of education in the country including higher education.

Related: Study Abroad in Latvia for Pakistani Students

By the Governmental Resolution of the Kyrgyz Republic No 496 of August 23, 2011 “On establishing a two-level structure of the higher professional education in Kyrgyzstan” a structure for professional education was developed and set with an award of academic degrees Bachelors” and “Masters”, except for certain specialization.

• The first level or level one is the Bachelor’s programs with a duration of 4 years 240 credits.

• The second level or level 2meansMaster programs with a duration, 2 years- 120 credits

• Level 3 was introduced as the pilot regime in 6 higher education institutions

• Ph.D. programs of the duration of 3 years- 180 credits.

• Training programs include Training of specialists – duration: 5 years – 300 credits

  • Medical degree programs are of 6 years – 360 credits
  • The duration is that each semester consists of 30 credits and there are 2 semesters in one year.

2. Visa Requirements for Kyrgyzstan University:

  • Here is a list of general documents required to get your visa:
  • Your Valid Passport
  • The Original Acceptance Letter from your hosting institute in Kyrgyzstan
  • Proof of Security Fee Deposit (every institute has a different fee)
  • Proof of Paid Tuition Fee (submission of receipt of payment of fee)
  • Visa Application (Completed and attested)
  • Proof of finances (Bank statement or credit card statement demonstrating the student can spend money during studies to cover all the basic expenses)
  • Proof of Accommodation Arranged in the country (where you live, Rental contract with residential address)
  • Health Insurance Coverage
  • Medical Examination Certificate
  • Clearance letter from police stating the applicant has no criminal record or case registered against them and that you do not have anything to do with any criminal activity
  • Visa application Fee Receipt 
  • English Language Proficiency Test Certificate (IELTS or TOEFL)

3. Universities and Tuition Cost in Kyrgyzstan for International Students

There was only one university in 1990 called Kyrgyz State University which was situated in Bishkek. This university had a lot of affiliated institutes that offered a wide array of subjects and degrees upon graduation in regional centers. 

Now that the Soviet Union has demolished, Kyrgyz State University still exists but it has been transformed by titles and courses in the university. Thus, for example, the Osh Pedagogical Institute which was founded primarily for linguistic study in 1951, was renamed Osh State University in 1992 and it offers programs in business.

Private tuition fees of universities range from $1,500 for Kyrgyzstan nationals to $2,000 for foreign students, but fees for Kyrgyz State University and other public universities are significantly lower, about 5,000 to 10,000 SOMS (US$100 to US$200) per annum. Deserving students can get scholarships in the form of fee waivers. Only Kyrgyz-Turkish University has no fee structure.

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4. Culture of Kyrgyzstan:

In Kyrgyzstan, you will find everything natural. The lifestyle, clothing needs, and all the other basic necessities are designed in such a way to adapt to the weather conditions of the country. Yurts are pretty much easy to take apart and carry. The good thing is that these can be made warmer for winter, and cooler for summer.

 The textiles inside of yurts, such as sharks and tushkyiz (felt rugs and embroidered hangings) took their inspiration from designs found in nature, such as plants, animals, and landscapes. Even clothing is mostly made out of natural materials and designed to be comfortable while still stylish. So Kyrgyzstan is the place where you will find everything natural and handmade to an extent that it will never seem artificial or too much for you. 

5. Monuments, Memorials, and Museums

There a lot of natural places to visit in this country. Kyrgyzstan caters to monuments belonging to the Soviet times. New statues of Manas and older statues of Lenin are present in the country, while monuments to other notable figures such as ChingizAitmatov, ToktogulSatylganov, and Przewalski can also be found.

The State Historical Museum and the Museum of Fine Arts in Bishkek are the largest yet signature museums of Kyrgyzstan. A lot of people pay special visits to these places. A fun fact is that The Osh State Historical and Archaeological Museum is regarded as the only UNESCO World Heritage Site dwells in Kyrgyzstan.

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