The privileges of studying in Andorra: everything about the school and university education systems



The privileges of studying in Andorra: everything about the school and university education systems

Andorra, officially known as the Principality of Andorra, is a landlocked mountain region located in the Pyrenees, between France and Spain. With only 468 km² and a population of about 85,000, it is the fifth smallest country in Europe.

Studying abroad in Andorra, you will have the privilege of studying in the country's highest capital. Europe. The capital Andorra la Vella is located about 1,023 meters above sea level.

That is why the dominant outdoor activity is alpine skiing, which attracts many tourists. In fact, tourism is one of the main industries of this small country.

Tax residence in Andorra: how to obtain a residence permit and become a tax resident - read here.

Reasons to study in Andorra

1. International students will have the opportunity to become multilingual by speaking Catalan, which is the official language commonly spoken, as well as French, Spanish, and Portuguese.

2. The cost of living and university fees are relatively low.

3. The triple system of education offers international students a choice between the French, Spanish, or Andorran educational systems.

4. English-speaking students will not feel uncomfortable, as many speak English

If you live in Andorra, you will have the opportunity to choose for your children one of the three public systems operating in the Principality: Andorran, Spanish or French, or choose private education. Here's everything you need to know about the national education system in Andorra - from kindergarten to high school to university!

In the Principality of Andorra, the school enrollment rate for children and teenagers ages 4 to 16 is 100%. The school system is considered to be at a good level.

Education is free up to the baccalaureate level.

Three preschool and school systems coexist in the country: French, Spanish and Andorran.

The schools are built and run by the Andorran government, although French and Spanish teachers are paid by their respective administrations.

Catalan, Spanish, French and English are most commonly used.

Primary and secondary education is compulsory for Andorrans and expats in Andorra.

In elementary school, the school year begins on the working day following September 8, the day of the most important holiday in the Principality: Meritxell ends in the last week of June.

From kindergarten to high school in Andorra

There are several levels of education in Andorra, from pre-school to secondary: primary, secondary and vocational.

- Pre-school education, from 2.5 to 6 years old,

- elementary school,

- secondary school,

- compulsory secondary education,

- complete secondary education/vocational training (possible from the age of 16).

It should also be noted that every parish has at least one kindergarten: Canillo, Encamp, Ordino, La Massana, Andorra la Vella, Sant Julia de Llotria, Escaldes Engordani.

Secondary schools are located in large cities. Upon completion of high school, the baccalaureate (or selectividad in Spain) obtained in Andorra allows students to continue their studies at universities in France, Spain, and Europe. The French school in Andorra is part of the Montpellier Academy.

3 Forms of Education for Expats in Andorra

In Andorra, the structure of education, from kindergarten to high school, can seem complicated as it combines three different systems instead of one national education system:

1. Andorran education, which depends on the Principality's government;

2. Spanish education, secular or congregational, dependent on Spain

3. French education, for French expats in Andorra, is under the control of the French state and is based on curricula developed by the French Ministry of Education (Académie de Montpellier).

The French educational system, from kindergarten to high school in Andorra, is an integral part of the country's history. 

Andorra's education system covers children and adolescents from kindergarten to baccalaureate to university. 

Public Schools in Andorra

Andorra has two public schools that teach English. The main difference is that the English-speaking country recognizes the validation of its educational programs.

- Agora International School Andorra, located in La Massana, offers a dual degree: the Spanish Baccalaureate and the American Baccalaureate.

- British School Andorra is located in Andorra la Vella: the educational program is based on the British National Curriculum.

If you are planning to move to Andorra with your family, you can be more confident about your children's education. If you need more information or help with enrollment, please contact us.

Sports Activities in Andorra Schools

Andorra's geographic location, the cultural influences of neighboring countries, and the political configuration have played an important role in the structure of education, where the multilingual education of the population is crucial to the development of the country. Andorra is known as an excellent tourist destination for skiing, and for this reason, the government supports the experiment of teaching skiing as a compulsory school subject. The sport is also subsidized by the government for a short period, but parents can opt for a more advanced version of skiing instruction if they wish.

Promoting sport in the education of the country is very important. In addition to skiing, which only takes up a short period of the year, there is a choice of more traditional sports such as soccer, basketball, and tennis, which are also part of the school curriculum. If you are considering moving to Andorra, education is not something you need to worry about.

What's after school in Andorra

After high school, Andorra offers students a university education. Therefore, expats will have every opportunity to continue their studies in the Principality without having to return to their country of origin!

The structure of education in Andorra is peculiar because of the coexistence of different school systems. Andorra, although a small country, is different in that it has three state-funded public education systems based on language. A quality school system is available to all families living in Andorra.

Parents can choose which school their children will attend - Spanish, French or Andorran - from junior high to high school. The education system in Andorra is varied and flexible, with great freedom of choice, and very comprehensive.

Andorra's educational structure

There are slight differences between each of the educational systems. For example, while primary education in the Spanish and Andorran systems lasts 6 years, in the French system this stage lasts only 5 years. The same situation is repeated at the second stage, which completes compulsory education until the age of 16 (15 years in the case of the French education system).

The last stage of education, "bachillerato" or "batxillerat", is a two-year program in the Spanish and Andorran systems and a three-year program in the French education system.

For those who want to go to university, a two-year course (for the Andorran and Spanish education systems) or a three-year course (for the French education system) is required.

Below is a brief description of all levels:

Elementary school (Primera Ensenyança)

The elementary education sector (Primera ensenyança) is the first stage of compulsory schooling and accepts pupils from the age of 6.

In the French system this stage lasts five years, and in the Spanish and Andorran systems it lasts six years. At the end of this education, students in the Andorran system receive a certificate of first education.

The number of centers teaching this stage is 25, distributed among the three educational systems.

Secondary School (Segona Ensenyansa).

The second stage completes compulsory education until the age of 16 (15 years in the case of French education). In the case of the Andorran system the duration is four years. In the case of the Spanish system, it consists of a four-year cycle (ESO - Educación Secundaria Obligatoria), followed by a two-year cycle (non-compulsory education - Batxillerat).

For schools operating under the French system, the "collège" lasts from 11 to 14 years. In all education systems, students receive a certificate at the end of these 4 years. For most students, if they decide to stay in school, they will study in the two-year system; Batxillerat (baccalauréat) to prepare for university.

Four schools offer a second cycle education: one under the Andorran system, one under the French system, and two under the Spanish system.

3. Baccalaureate 

The "baccalaureate" is a section of formal education that prepares students for university or a higher professional level. It is open to all students who have completed the previous cycles and begins at age 15 or 16 (depending on the educational system). In Andorra, the baccalaureate is taught only in four schools: the Andorran school, the French Lycée, the Spanish Institute and the Sant'Ermengol high school.

University of Andorra

The University of Andorra (Universitat d'Andorra) was founded in 1997 as a public institution of higher education. It consists of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Education, the Faculty of Business and Technology, and the Faculty of E-learning and Continuing Education.

Universitat d'Andorra is a member of the European Association of Universities and the International Association of Universities. In 2006, almost three-quarters of the university's funding came from the state of Andorra.

Those wishing to enroll in a university course must have one of the following qualifications:

- An Andorran high school diploma or equivalent is recognized by the Andorran authorities.

- University entrance exam for students over the age of 25.

- Andorran diploma of higher professional education.

- Bachelor's degree in a relevant specialization for the Master's degree.

- Diplomas of foreign educational systems approved by the Government of Andorra.

Pre-registration for any of the degrees offered by the University can be done online on the University website during the pre-registration period.

Studying in Andorra: cost of living and tuition fees at the University of Andorra

We are happy to announce that you can study in Andorra, and that the University of Andorra has tried to create this opportunity for its students by making the cost of living in Andorra so cheap and the tuition fees at the University of Andorra so affordable.

Cost of living in Andorra

The cost of living in Andorra largely depends on the lifestyle and where the student lives. However, given the small size of the country, there will be little or no variation in prices between localities.

By comparison, living in Andorra is cheaper than in many other parts of Europe. For example, the cost of living, including rent, in Toulouse, France, is about 32% higher than in Andorra la Vella.

Similarly, the cost of living plus rent in Zaragoza, Spain, is about 3 times higher than in Andorra la Vella.

Students should expect to spend an average of €1,000 per month. This should cover rent, utilities, transportation, food, and other expenses.

Obtaining a visa to study in Andorra

Andorra is entered through France or Spain. Therefore, students from non-EU countries must first obtain a tourist visa for one of these countries.

Information on obtaining these visas can be obtained from the embassies of these countries near you.

However, students who require a Schengen visa must have a double or multiple Schengen visa to enter Andorra. Contact the Andorran Ministry of Foreign Affairs for all the information you need on this matter.

Upon arrival in Andorra, all international students of non-European origin must apply for a student immigration permit. The University's International Student Office will guide you through the process of obtaining this permit.

Documents for admission to the University of Andorra

However, you will need the following documents to obtain a student permit:

- An official letter of enrollment from the university

- Bank statement or proof of sufficient funds for your studies in the country

- Proof of tuition fees

- Health insurance

- passport

These documents are also required before obtaining a visa to travel to France or Spain.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees at the University of Andorra depend on the program and its duration.

On average, international students must pay between €750 and €1,800 per semester for undergraduate programs. Postgraduate programs cost between €1,800 and €3,700 per semester.

More information about the individual courses for which fees are charged is available from the respective faculties.