Parliament is expected to approve academic programmes offered in English at the University of Cyprus (UCy) and the Cyprus University of Technology (Tepak) before the summer break, UCy said this week.
The details regarding the programmes, such as how much will be charged for them and which subjects will be offered, have not yet been finalised. This will be done only after the parliament’s vote.
What is known is that they will be mainly in English, a development the two state universities have been demanding for years. There might also be programmes in other languages such as German and French.
“It is not that we are going to start teaching after the summer,” said Cleanthis Pissarides, deputy head of UCy’s academic student welfare service.
“Hopefully we will begin in the 2019 academic year and until then we have time to get ready, to set tuition fees and to decide on all the details.”
The idea is to attract foreign students, mainly from Europe, Russia and the Middle East, but it is too early to say which countries will be promoted. The universities expect that at least some Cypriots will also enroll in the new programmes, which are in addition to the ones already offered.
If necessary, more staff will be employed, but Pissarides said the University of Cyprus already has a strong language centre.
So far, the public universities, UCy which admitted its first students in 1992 and Tepak, founded in 2004, have taught courses in Greek and Turkish, the official languages of the Republic. At present, other languages such as English are only offered as foreign language courses.
Private universities in Cyprus have long offered programmes in English as this has enabled them to attract a large number of students from abroad as well as to cater for local students, many of whom have attended private English-speaking schools.