01 - Latvia - Historical overview
All-embracing school network was formed in the 19th century; and at the
same time the first higher educational institutions were established in
the territory of the present Latvia. In 1862, Rīga Polytechnic
Institute was founded later serving as the basis for the establishment
of the University of Latvia in 1919, when also the Latvian State
Conservatoire and the Latvian Academy of Arts were established. During
the years of occupation higher education institutions and their
research centres continued to function, and much attention and
resources was devoted to the development of science.
started in 1991 providing autonomy of higher education institutions.
The new Education Law introduced Bachelor and Master degrees as well as
professional study programmes instead of the 5-year diploma studies;
the new regulation also opened opportunities to establish private
higher educational institutions. The Law on Higher Education
institutions adopted in 1995 introduced a higher education quality
assurance system in Latvia as well as rules for recognition of foreign
In Latvia, higher education institutions offer
the possibility to master higher academic education (ISCED-97, level
5A) and higher professional education (ISCED-97, level 5B and 5A) as
well as postgraduate level studies (ISCED-97, level 6).
Historical Overview. Academic Tertiary Education and Professional Tertiary Education
is a wide network of higher educational institutions in Latvia.
Universities, academies and colleges are located throughout Latvia, but
mainly in the capital of Latvia, Rīga .The basic network remains as it was
under the Soviet regime. Since 1991, most newly established
universities have been private ones located mainly in Rīga although
several have been established outside the capital to make higher
education more accessible to rural students.
In the recent years Latvia, pursuant to Bologna
declaration of 19 June 1999 "The European Higher Education Area",
carried out approximation of academic and professional higher
education. A uniform system of degrees is being established, thus
ensuring the possibility of transfer from higher academic education to
higher professional education, and vice versa.
Historical Overview. Postgraduate Level
a long while, doctoral studies were devised for working out doctor’s
dissertation, but today they include advanced studies of the subject
and examination. According to the 1998 amendments to the Law on
Scientific Activities (null and void since adoption of the new
Scientific Activities Law in 2005), the former two-tier doctoral degree
system has been changed to a one-tier system. The second-level doctoral
degree habilitēts doktorsis not any more awarded since January 1, 2000, and since that date the holders of the degree
habilitēts doktorshave the same rights as the holders of the degree
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