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Admission requirements for studies at university in Portugal

General requirements

First cycle studies (bachelor's)

Students seeking to study first cycle (undergraduate) degrees at universities and polytechnics in Portugal, must:

  • have completed upper secondary education
  • have passed the university entrance examination in their home country
  • meet the study program pre-requisites if required. A pre-requisite is a subject any applicant must meet before being allowed to register for a course. For example, students seeking to study music in Portugal, will be required to pass an aptitude exam in music.
    To learn whether you need to pass a specific course before registering for the study program of your choice, you may contact an advisor at any of the Higher Education Admissions Offices ("Gabinetes de Acceso")

    [Locate a Higher Education Admissions Office in Portugal (Gabinetes de Acceso)]

Second cycle studies (master's)

If you are applying for a master's program at university in Portugal, you are required to be in possession of a relevant bachelor's or equivalent degree diploma.

Third cycle studies (PhD)

In the event you are applying for doctoral studies at university in Portugal, you are required to be in possession of a relevant diploma or master's degree program.

Language requirements for studies at universities and colleges in Portugal


Since the language of instruction at Portuguese universities and colleges is Portuguese, you are required to prove your level of command of the Portuguese language. You may do so by presenting the results you received at school examinations if you studied Portuguese as part of your study program or by presenting Portuguese language courses diplomas.

In general, most institutions require a minimum level of command corresponding to the B1/B2 level according to the European language passport. Please, note that the Portuguese language requirement usually applies to studies at the first cycle (undergraduate). Master's and research programs may not require any knowledge of Portuguese since they are often designed for international students.

If you still need or want to improve your level of knowledge of Portuguese, you may want to take any of the Portuguese language courses organized by universities and polytechnics in Portugal for their own international students.

Minimum grade point requirement to access higher education studies in Portugal

Each year, the Portuguese Ministry of Education publishes the number of available study places (called vagas) at public universities and polytechnics. Private institutions in Portugal have limited study places as well. This is the reason why applicants are ranked based on their grade point average from their previous studies. Therefore, always check with your Portuguese school about the minimum passing grade you need to meet, specially if you are applying for first cycle (undergraduate) programs.

You may use the European grades comparison chart to learn how you would score in Europe.

Source: Deliberation n.º 8/2008 of 18th of June of the National Commission of Access to Higher Education .
DGES - Direcção-Geral do Ensino Superior (Directorate General of Higher Education)

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