Higher Education in the Czech Republic

On April 7, 1348, Charles IV founded the first university in Central Europe. The second university in present-day Czech Republic was established in 1576 (see Palacký University, Olomouc) in an effort to counter weigh the influence of Protestants, who controlled the Prague University and who constituted about 90% of country's population. After the Czechoslovak state was established, a number of other universities were founded, such as Masaryk University-- the second largest university in the Czech Republic.

Higher professional schools
Higher professional schools (vyšší odborná škola, VOŠ) offer professional tertiary education and are usually connected with professional high schools. Before their graduation, students must take final exams (absolutorium) and write a final thesis. Graduates are entitled to use the honorific "DiS." (diplomovaný specialista, specialist with diploma) after their name.

Higher education in the Czech Republic consists of public and private universities, as well as state-run police and military training academies. Czech-language study at public universities is unlimited and free for first-time attendants; however after the age of 26, the attendant will not receive student status from social services and the individual's health insurance will not be state-funded. Czech public universities also host international students, who have the choice of free instruction in Czech or paid instruction in English.

For private universities, annual tuition is between 2,000 and 3,000 euro and for BSBA and MBA (not accredited by Ministry of Education) study programs cost between 3,000 and 10,000 euro. The perceived quality of education at public universities is higher than private institutions, as private universities have undergone many scandals in recent years.

University education takes from 2 to 6 years, depending on the degree of studies:

Bachelor's degree programs - lasts usually 3 years, title Bc. (bakalář) or BcA. (bakalář umění) (only artistic fields of study), Maturita level is required. Students must pass final exam (státní zkouška, state exam - despite its name, this exam is not organized by state, but by universities themselves; at some universities required only if the student did not have good notes during his studies) and present their thesis.

Master's degree programs - Bachelor's degree required, except of law, pharmacy and 1st stage teaching (5 years programs, maturita required) and medicine (6 years programs, maturita required). They are finished by final exam (státní zkouška, for medicine státní rigorózní zkouška) and thesis presentation. Awarded titles:
Mgr. (magistr)
MgA. (magistr umění) - for artistic fields of study
Ing. (inženýr) - for technical and economical fields of study
Ing. arch. (inženýr architekt) - architecture
MUDr. (medicinae universalis doctor) - medicine
MVDr. (medicinae veterinariae doctor) - veterinal medicine
MDDr. (medicinae dentium doctor) - dentist

Doctor study programs, Ph.D. title
These titles are granted after a special exam (rigorózní zkouška), which contains a thesis presentation. A master's degree is required to write this exam. This a non-comprehensive list titles given to those with doctorate degrees:

PhDr. - philosophiae doctor, for philosophy, literature, languages, pedagogic and similar subjects
JUDr. - iuris utriusque doctor, for law, formerly used also for security studies
RNDr. - rerum naturalium doctor, for natural sciences
ThDr./ThLic. - theologiae doctor / theologiae licentiatus, for theology
PharmDr. - pharmaciae doctor, for pharmacy

Formerly, also other titles were used:
PhMr. - pharmaciae magister, for pharmacy, replaced by Mgr. title
PaedDr. - pedagogiae doctor, for pedagogy, replaced by PhDr. title
RTDr. - rerum technicarum doctor, for technical science, it was not replaced by any title
RCDr. - rerum commercialum doctor, for economy, it was not replaced by any title
RSDr. - rerum socialium doctor, for absolvents of Communistic Party of Czechoslovakia Political University in Prague and Klement Gottwald Military Academy in Bratislava in years 1966-1989
MSDr. - medicinae stomatologicae doctor, for dentistry in years 1951-1953, replaced by MUDr. in 1980 and subsequently replaced by MDDr. in 2004
CSc. - candidatus scientiarum, "lower scientific degree", for absolvents of postgraduální studia (postgradual studies) in years 1953-1998, replaced by Ph.D.
Dr. - doctor, written after the name and separated by a comma, for absolvents of postgraduální studia (postgradual studies) in years 1990-1998, replaced by Ph.D.
Th.D. - theologiae doctor, for absolvents of doctoral studies of theology in years 1998-2016, replaced by Ph.D.
DrSc. - doctor scientiarum, "higher scientific degree", for academics and researchers in years 1953-2001, a reception based on a dissertation thesis, partially replaced by DSc.