School System in Nicosia
Both public and private schools are open to expats in Cyprus, and education is mandatory for children 12 and younger. The teaching language of state schools in Cyprus is Greek, so younger expat children will quickly learn the language if they attend public school, but for older expat children, instruction in a language they are unfamiliar with and just starting to learn may cause some educational problems.
Basic education in Cyprus is divided into pre-primary education, primary education (6 years), and secondary education (2 3-year cycles). Pre-primary education is compulsory for children between 4 8/12 and 5 8/12 years old, though children as young as 3 may attend. Children over the age of 5 8/12 must be enrolled in primary education, and secondary education consists of Gymnasio (lower secondary education) and Lykeio (upper secondary education) for students aged 12 to 18.
Gymnasio and Lykeio are meant to provide students with many interdisciplinary subjects and extracurricular activities in addition to core lessons. Students do have the option to attend a Secondary Technical and Vocational Education to prepare them for a specialized skill or trade in the workforce, instead of Lykeio, but relatively few students exercise this option.
Grading in Cyprus
Grading in Cyprus public schools is modeled after the Greek grading system, and based on a point system of 20. The points translate as follows:
- Excellent: 19-20 points
- Very Good: 16 – 18.99 points
- Average: 13 – 15.99 points
- Below Average: 10 – 12.99 points
- Fail: 0 – 9.99 points
Private and international schools may use a different grading scale, most likely based on the US or UK system of grading.
Private Schools in Cyprus
There are many private schools, which mostly tend to be international schools, in Cyprus. These schools run for profit and are located in the major urban centers of Nicosia, Limassol, Larnaca and Paphos). Many expats in Cyprus send their children to private schools, especially if the family's first language is English.
Private School Fees in Cyprus
The cost of private schools in Cyprus is quite high, usually ranging from 2,000 to 8,000 Euros per year, depending on the specific school and the age of the enrolled child. This amount does not take into account additional expenses such as registration and enrollment fees, books, uniforms, and other expenses.
Universities in Cyprus
There are several excellent public and private universities in Cyprus, and most of them offer some type of English-language courses to accommodate both expats and international students.
List of colleges and universities in Nicosia
- University of Cyprus: The University of Cyprus was established in 1989 and has approximately 7500 students in its undergraduate and postgraduate programs. Research is promoted and funded in all departments, as the university aims to establish itself as a Pioneer Research institution and thus boasts 11 research units. In addition to a Faculty of Humanities, the University boasts a medical school, Faculty of Pure and Applied Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences and Education, and Graduate school programs in Economics and Management, Engineers, and Letters. The university is located in Nicosia.
- The Cyprus University of Technology: Based in Limassol, the Cyprus University of Technology was founded in 2003 and has six faculties, including a Faculty of Communication and Media Studies, Faculty of Engineering and Technology, Faculty of Fine and Applied Arts, Faculty of Geotechnical Sciences and Environmental Management, and a Faculty of Management and Economics.
- The Open University of Cyprus: This is the only distance learning university in Cyprus and was modeled on the British Open University. Based in Nicosia, the university offers humanities and social sciences, pure and applied sciences, as well as economics and management courses.
- European University: The European University in Cyprus is one of the top educational institutions in the country. Established in 1961, the university has a law school, medical school, school of business administration, school of arts & education sciences, school of humanities and social sciences, and a school of pure sciences.
- Frederick University: A relatively recently founded (2007) private university with campuses in both Nicosia and Limassol.
- University of Nicosia – Cyprus: This is the largest university in Cyprus, and is part of both the Erasmus programme as the European Credit Transfer System. Besides its educational achievements, the university also has a track record of community involvement and campaigns, which is why it received a “Global 500” award from the United Nations.
- Neapolis University: This university in Paphos is a private institution focused on graduate and undergraduate degrees in Economic and Business Studies, Law, Health Sciences, and Architecture.
- University of Central Lancashire: The University of Central Lancashire's branch in Larnaka is modeled after the UK university system, and offers the advantage of honours and postgraduate degrees recognized in both the UK and Cyprus.