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Education System Overview

In the 2015-2016 academic year, 34,894 U.S. students studied abroad for academic credit in Italy. This year, Italy retained its spot as the second most popular destination globally among U.S. students studying abroad, following the United Kingdom.

Academic year: September – May

Major exam period(s): June and July

Five years of English language study are required for all Italian high school students.

Structure of the University System

Years of study required to earn a bachelor's degree: 3 years

Language of instruction in universities: Italian, although a growing number of universities are now offering entire programs taught in English.

Degrees offered: Universities issue the following qualifications: Laurea (Bologna 1st cycle qualification), Laurea specialistica/magistrale (Bologna 2nd cycle qualification), Dottorato di ricerca (Bologna 3rd cycle degree). For more info on the classes of degrees: