Study on Low Tuition in Italy: Cost of Living, Tuition Fees and Application Process

So you have made your mind to study in Italy,indeed you will most certainly be impressed by the country’s beautiful heritage.Italy’s capital, Rome, is the renowned political center of the Western civilization. Throughout several centuries, Italy has played a pivotal role in Europe’s culture and society, being considered the birthplace to the Renaissance also known as modern civilization, a cultural and intellectual movement that started in Northern Italy by the 14th century to later spread rapidly to the rest of Europe. On top of this, it’s comforting to know several universities across Europe offer courses on low or cheap tuition.

Whether you are seeking to enroll in a Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD degree or a summer study abroad program in Italy, you will find a wide spectrum of programs that will surely fit your educational needs and personal goals.

General requirements


If you have successfully completed your secondary studies in a recognized higher institution, or are in possession of a valid school leaving certificate and qualify for higher education studies in your individual home country, you would also qualify for tertiary education programs in Italy. However, you’ll be requested to prove your level of knowledge of Italian. In a few cases, you might be required to take additional qualifying programs for some competitive  programs.

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If you are applying for a master’s program at university in Italy, you’ll have to be in possession of a relevant bachelor’s or equivalent degree diploma.


In the case of  applying for doctoral programs at any university in Italy, you will have to have in possession  a relevant diploma or master’s degree program.

Tuition Fees

In Italy, both local and international students are required to pay tuition fees. The average tuition fee for bachelor’s and master’s programs amounts to approximately 1500 EUR per academic year.

In a few cases, students are exempted from paying tuition fees depending on their financial situation and academic performance. Therefore, we would encourage you to contact your university in Italy to learn whether you qualify for tuition fee exemption.

Application Deadlines

In general, application deadlines for studies at university in Italy follow the dates shown below:

  • Mid April to mid May: students  are able to connect with the Italian embassy or consulate in their home countries to receive a Letter of Academic Eligibility and Suitability (in Italian, Dichiarazione di Valoro in Loco (DV)) and pre-apply for the study program of their choice.
  • August: students receive a notification on whether they have been admitted to the selected course and the exact date to take the required Italian language exam and any additional exam in case of competitive programs with limited study places.
  • September: students sit for the Italian language exam and any additional exam if needed.

Documents required to apply for your student residence permit in Italy

  • The filled-in application form, which you may obtain at any post office.
  • A photocopy of a valid travel document, such as your passport. Make sure your passport is valid throughout the entire period of your stay in Italy.
  • A copy of your health insurance plan.
  • A copy of the statement clearly stating the programs you will be taking in Italy. The statement is issued by the Italian embassy or consulate along with your national visa for Italy.
  • Four recent passport size photos should accompany the application.

Please, do well to connect with your local post office in Italy or the Italian embassy or consulate in your country if you need to provide additional documents.

In order for your student residence permit in Italy to be granted, you will have to prove you have, at least,417.30 EUR per month to offset living expenses.

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How to apply for university studies in Italy as a non-EU student

Undergraduate studies (first cycle)

If you plan to enroll in full time undergraduate studies (first cycle) at a higher education institution in Italy for the first time and you are not an EU student, you will have to submit your application by going through the steps indicated below:

01 Actively research for a suitable study program that best meets your personal expectations and academic profile.

02 Reach out to the institution you are interested in, and ask for a prior assessment to learn whether you might be eligible for the study program of your choice.

03 Once the university you are interested in informs you might be eligible, you’ll have to submit a pre-application request to the Italian embassy or consulate in the country where you are residing, by presenting the following documents:

  • The filled-in application form to receive a Letter of Academic Eligibility and Suitability (in Italian, Dichiarazione di Valoro in Loco (DV)). The DV is a certificate that acknowledges your foreign studies prior to applying for university studies in Italy.
  • The filled-in pre-enrollment form (Model A) (preinscrizione modello A) or the filled-in pre-enrollment form for studies at institutions of arts, deign, music and dance (AFAM) (Model A-bis)
  • A  duly signed copy of your school leaving certificate and the certificate of the results of the university entry examinations you have taken in your country. Please, note that these documents must be officially translated into Italian and legally authenticated by a respected and designated authority.
  • Two passport-sized photographs, one of which must be signed by you should all be submitted.

04Once the Italian embassy or consulate has received all the necessary documentation, they will submit your application and documents to the Italian higher education institution you are interested in.

By the end of August, the Italian embassy or consulate will publish a full list of admitted candidates.

Graduate Programs

If you are interested in applying for graduate studies (second and third cycle) at university in Italy, you will need to follow the same steps as explained for undergraduate, non-EU students. However, you have to present a relevant university certificate that allows you to apply for further higher education programs and fill in the appropriate pre-enrollment form and form in order to receive a Letter of Academic Eligibility and suitability.

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