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Information for Foreign Students in Bosnia-Herzegovina
Četvrtak, 25 Maj 2017 00:00

Information for Foreign Students in Bosnia-Herzegovina

 How to apply 

Academic information 

Study programmes 


Before coming to Sarajevo 

Living&Studying in Sarajevo

 Obtaining a Visa


Cost of Living

 Health & Safety

 Transportation


Welcome to new exciting academic life in Federation of the Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is our great pleasure to have you here. We appreciate your choosing one of the Universities of FBiH for your exchange programmes and wish you a successful stay at any of our University, as well as an enriching and unforgettable time in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

BOLOGNA EDUCATION SYSTEM In September 2003, Bosnia and Herzegovina signed and accepted the European strategic goals in the field of higher education, as expressed in the Declaration of the European Higher Education Ministers made in Bologna (1999), as well as the subsequent development of this concept. In 2000, the first project by model 3+2 was implemented at the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. The first ‘’Bologna’’ generation of the University of Sarajevo (I cycle) was enrolled in 2005, the II cycle in 2008 and the III cycle in 2010. Changed model to Bologna process implementation happened during the period 2012-2014.

TEACHING LANGUAGE The majority of courses and study programmes are in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian (B/C/S) and it is required that candidates have at least B1 level of knowledge of the host country's language before arrival. Bosnian/Croatian/ Serbian are languages with three different language standards and minor regional variations. However, there are cases where complete study programmes are in English (such as the programmes offered by the Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies, by the School of Economics and Business which offers undergraduate and postgraduate joint programmes in cooperation with the Griffith College Dublin, Faculty of Business, and by SSST or IUS), or where certain courses can be provided in English. Please contact the administration of the institution you are interested in, and ask for course descriptions and language requirements. The BH Universities and their member institutions offer a variety of study programmes within the Bachelor, Master, and Doctoral level of studies. As of Academic 2015/2016, first generation will be enrolled at the Faculty of Medicine where the classes of instruction will be held in English. Interlingua International organizes Bosnian Language Courses for Academic purpose as well as IELTS or TOEFL English preparation courses for students.

LANGUAGE SUPPORT Before or during their application for the exchange period candidates are advised to contact the administration of a specific Faculty or Academy and ask for course descriptions they are interested in as well as to enquire about the language of instruction and other conditions for academic mobility. If the course you want to do is only held in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian language, the Interlingua International Students Office will try to help you with arranging consultations, literature and exams in English, by contacting professors who are willing to help you. Also, Interlingua International offers language school for foreigners called “Bosnian for Foreign Students - Immerssion Programmes for the Academic purpose”. Classes are organized for the small groups who are being taught Bosnian for the improved daily communications.

APPLICATION PROCESS - All students, including foreign citizens who wish to study at the University of Sarajevo need to complete a corresponding secondary school and have their diploma on graduation exam recognized. Admission to all university study   programmes is restricted; i. e. the   number of places is subject to an annual  decision by the University Senate. The call for application is given in June every year. If there are available places, the call will be repeated in September. For a more detailed information search for information at the Faculty/Academy of the University(state or private) you wish to enrol. Private Universities might have a different terms of the students registration. The admission to private university study programmes is not so restricted. Before sending any documents, check with the Faculty or Academy representatives about the needed documents you need to send. All foreign documents must be translated into Bosnian/ Croatian/Serbian and original foreign public document copies must be certified by a public notary. REGISTRATION. At the BH Universities registration process differs depending on the Faculty/Academy. What candidates will surely need to take from home before arrival is: PROOF OF NON-CRIMINAL RECORD and BIRTH CERTIFICATE. Check for any additional documents with Faculties or Academies. These documents must be issued by official services (before arrival) and translated in English by the official court interpreter. The coordinator at the International Office guides the exchange students through the process of enrolment/ registration at the faculty’s student service. 


INDEX/GRADE BOOK With your Letter of Admission you also receive an application form for a student Index-Grade Book. An Index-Grade Book is a small, dark blue handbook in which all your grades will be written by professors. Every student has one. When you arrive in FBiH, you will need to buy Index-Grade Book at the Faculty/Academy. The Index-Grade Book identifies you as a student at the University and you must remember to bring it when you sign up for and sit your exams.


Bachelor programme: completion of a four-year secondary school.

Master programme: holder of the Bachelor degree diploma.

PhD programme: holder of Master degree diploma.


  • Winter semester 201_/201_ 5. (October - 22 January). EXAMS: 25 - 29 January

  • Summer semester 201_/201_ . (15 February - 27 May). EXAMS: 15 - 26 June

  • September exams 1 - 15 September 201_.

Apart of tests during semester and academic work during lessons, exams are organized in given exam periods in months: January, February, April, June, July and September (mostly for AntiBologna students). It is advisable to check for exact dates directly with the department(s) concerned.


The most University are closed for following dates:

  • 1-2 January - New Year
  • 1 March - B&H’s Independance Day
  • 1-2 May - Labours Day
  • 25 November - Statehood Day.

RELIGIOUS HOLIDAYS There is a break in the academic calendar for religious holidays such as Christmas (Catholic and Ortondox), Easter, Ramadan and Eid Bayram (dates vary according to the movement of the holiday day). In practice there is usually a break from classes over the New Year’s period. The exact dates are determined by each department so please check with the programme / department to confirm when classes / assignments are paused.

Obtaining a Visa

A visa is not needed for a stay that is less than three months, as it is considered a tourist visit, but ONLY if you are a citizen of the EU, United States or Canada. Most other countries will need a visa, and getting one is possible in your respective country. However, should you wish to stay longer, you must obtain a visa from the nearest embassy in your home country. The maximum duration of a temporary residence permit (visa) is 12 months, with the possibility of an extension. A police certificate indicating that the applicant has no criminal record is required for this permit and should be obtained from the applicant’s home city. For additional information please visit the official website:

www.mvp.gov.ba / www.msb.gov.ba.


Hotels are on the expensive side than would be expected for this country. Most hotels will not accommodate you for less than 35€ per night in a single, or 38€ for a double. Smaller towns might be in the range of 25€. Although it looks expensive Interlingua and its partners could provide a special monthly package price of which depends on the length of stay and that includes half board.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in BiH is fairly inexpensive compared to the United States or Western Europe. Most food in BH is of high quality and very affordable. For example, a good meal at a nice restaurant will be about 10-15€ including beverages. As a whole, eating is a very big part of life in BH and traditional foods are very hearty and mainly meat based, so it is inadvisable for strict vegetarians. LIVING COSTS - Rough estimates of living costs for a single person per month: Housing 150-200 €  Meals 150 €  Books 50 €  Local transportation 25€ Pocket money 100-150 € . To save money, we  recommend buying a  monthly ticket for public transport services. There is a student discount, so make sure you give right information when buying tickets or any necessities.

Health & Safety

Drinking water throughout the country is excellent and food hygiene is good, so that change of getting one of the standard traveler’s illnesses is slim. There are no legal requirements for vaccinations. Land mines are a serious concern in BH as there are still many of them around the country following the war in the 90s. It is encouraged to stay in populated areas and be watchful of the suburbs of Sarajevo and former lines of confrontation in the countryside. Should you venture into these areas, it is best to go with a guide who knows the terrain. MEDICAL SERVICES The Sarajevo Canton Public Institution - Student Healthcare Institute of the University of Sarajevo (the Institute) provides primary specialist and counselling healthcare to students at the University in Sarajevo. We recommend   informing yourself upon your arrival, before case of emergency happens. INSURANCE We strongly encourage you to purchase general insurance (accident and liability) prior to your departure for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Contact your own international office for further advice on where to take our insurance policy.  Alternatively you may take out an insurance policy with international Health Insurance (IHI). If you have chronic medical problems requiring prescription medication, it is a good idea to bring copies of your medical history issued by your local doctor.


Buses are always cheap within the towns, but taxi prices depend on the town you are in. Transport between cities is also very reasonably priced. LOCAL TRANSPORTATION IN SARAJEVO There are several ways of public transportation - trams, buses, and city railway. They operate all day (every few minutes) until late night. Tickets can be bought on board (2 BAM) or at newsstands (1-20 BAM – 1.50 BAM depending on transportation).  Make sure that you stamp your ticket once you board. If now, you can be faced with a violation ticket and pay certain amount of money.   Daily tickets are available at the newsstands. Monthly or annual tickets can also be bought at offices at a reduced price (student discount). For a monthly/annual ticket you will need to fill in a form that you are currently enrolled in current academic year and stamp it at the faculty/academy you enroll. Then you will go to the central office of the Sarajevo City Traffic. There you will purchase a pass (app 4€ + photo) and every month you will buy a ticket for special discount app. This monthly ticket enables you to use all buses and trams in the area of the city of Sarajevo.   Taxis Taxis are quite cheap in Sarajevo. The starting price is 1 BAM and it goes 0.10 BAM per kilometer.   Always ask driver to turn on the taximeter.