Study at the Faculty of Arts
In compliance with the Bologna system, the Faculty of Arts currently offers bachelor’s degrees (3 years, BA), master’s degrees (2 years, MA) and doctoral degrees (3-8 years, Ph.D.). These degrees are internationally recognised and respected, as Charles University is among the top 2% of world’s Universities.
The individual types of degree programmes are designated for:
- applicants for a bachelor’s degree programme who have completed their higher secondary education and achieved the final secondary school certificate – maturita;
- applicants for a following two-year master’s degree programme who have achieved their bachelor’s degrees, and
- applicants for PhD degree programmes who have achieved their master’s degrees.
If the required education level has been achieved elsewhere than in the Czech or Slovak Republics, the applicants, if accepted, must submit a document proving the equivalence of their certificates (nostrification); without such proof, the applicant cannot be enrolled.
Certian programmes are available both as single subject and combinable with a second subject, while others can only be studied in combination.
For most of the bachelor’s and master’s programmes, subjects are taught and examinations taken in Czech. Nevertheless, a growing number of departments is offering courses in English and other major languages (for some, it has been the rule for many years) and for the doctoral programmes, depending on the subject, knowledge of Czech may not be a prerequisite.
The Institute for Language and Preparatory Studies and The Institute of Czech Studies offer a large selection of Czech courses.
An Open Day is held in the main Faculty building every January, usually on the second Saturday of the month, providing applicants with an opportunity to hear more detailed information from representatives of the individual subject areas both on entrance exam requirements, and on the actual courses and graduate career options. The Open Day timetable is announced not later than December of the preceding year.
The deadline for submitting applications is usually 28th February for bachelor’s, 31st March for following two-year master’s degree programmes, and 30th April for PhD degree programmes. The applications are submitted electronically using the online application system of the University. A non-reimbursable administrative fee is charged for the application; the payment receipt slip is always attached to the application. With the exception of requests for waiver of a part of the entrance exam or of the whole exam, or requests for a modification of the entrance exam due the special needs of the applicant (in both cases a good cause must be shown and supported by relevant documents), the applications for bachelor’s and master’s degree programmes do not contain any other attached document. Applications for doctoral degree programmes must contain an attached C.V., dissertation project including bibliography and a professional resume (publishing and research activity etc.).
Entrance exams take place through the months of May and June; each applicant will receive an invitation not later than 28 days before the date of the exam. The entrance exam can be a sing-round exam (written or oral) or two rounds (written and oral); the entrance exam for doctoral degree programmes is only one round – oral. The decision on acceptance or non-acceptance is delivered to applicants personally by mail, usually by the end of July. Information on entrance proceedings (exam dates and results) is also available on the web.
Together with the admission decision the accepted applicants will receive information concerning enrolment.
An application for review of the non-admission decision may be submitted in the case when the applicant has not been accepted. The review proceedings will investigate whether the Dean’s decision has been issued in accordance with the relevant rules; the Dean or Rector may change the decision only if it has been issued in violation of the rules and terms, not however in the case when an insufficient number of accepted applicants enrol for a course.
The entrance requirements are defined for each academic year and that is accessible to the public; the requirements specify the manner of submitting applications, the administrative fees, the conditions that have to be met for acceptance, the fields of study open in the particular year and the content and form of the entrance exams. The requirements may be further specified by provisions announced by the Dean (the organisation and execution of the entrance exam, arrangements allowing applicants to see their marked tests etc.).
If you need more information on admission procedures for bachelor’s, following master’s and PhD degree programmes and subjects, feel free to contact the relevant admissions officer or the constituent part of the Faculty that provides the courses in the relevant subject.
Applicants accepted into courses have the right to enrol within the stipulated dates; enrolment takes place during the month of September. The students will receive a study record passport (“index”) serving as a proof of attestations passed during the course of their studies; another important document is the student identity card. Following enrolment, the student registers electronically at the beginning of each semester for individual subjects (see CU Information System). At the end of every phase of the course (year of study), the fulfilment of study obligations (credit points) is checked by the office for undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral studies; enrolment into the second and further year of the course can also be done electronically.
Study within the individual bachelor and master subject areas is implemented also through study plans, which define the mandatory and mandatorily electable subjects for the relevant study plan; normally, electable subjects account for 10% of the study plan. The study plan allocates the teaching time for the individual subjects in the study plan (the scope dedicated to the subject during the course of study), the attestation/s and number of credits awarded for successful attendance of the subject; it may also stipulate the mutual requirements, co-requirements and incompatibility of individual subjects included in the study plan. In the case when a student studies two subject areas (two majors), the student follows the two study plans (one for each field); the number of credits is divided equally between the two fields.
The recommended study plan of the specific field of study stipulates the best possible passage through the course, enabling the student to complete his/her course within the standard time of study
Every semester, a teaching timetable is adopted in accordance with the recommended study plan and posted not later than two weeks before the start of the semester on the relevant web pages of the individual constituent parts of the Faculty that teach the respective discipline; it is also available now in the information system.
Students studying under a combined regime have the same rights and duties as full-time students. The same study plan applies to them with the exception of physical education (in the bachelor’s degree programme). Most departments and institutes offering a combined regime of study hold informational meetings at the start of the academic year where the students are informed about the requirements, organisation and actual manner of execution of the combined form of study.
Study under doctoral degree programmes is governed by individual study plans under the guidance of a supervisor. Besides containing a list of specific study duties of the individual student, the individual study plan also stipulates the exact dates by which these have to be met; there is normally no regular timetable of lessons, with the exception of doctoral seminars. The course of study is monitored and assessed on a continuous basis by the subject area board; periodic evaluation takes place once a year, in September.
The Academic Year
The academic year is divided into two semesters, winter and summer, followed by a five-week examination period; July and August are holiday months, and the examination period continues in September. Besides continuous attestations, the examination period is the time of the final “State” exams.
The Information System (IS)
The Information System (IS) is an integral part of study the Faculty. Electronic registration of subjects in the Study Information System (SIS) is obligatory for all students enrolled from 2003/2004 onwards in bachelor’s, following master’s and doctoral degree programmes including foreign students studying under exchange programmes; students use the Information System to enlist for attestations; students enrolled in the academic year 2006/2007 and later use the SIS to register for all the succeeding academic years, with the exception of the first year.
On graduation, students who have completed studies in their field in the regular manner receive a Diploma and Annex to the Diploma containing information on the completed degree programme and field of study, including excerpts of all the subjects the student had studied.
Internal students whose time of study has not exceeded the standard time allocated for the degree programme by more than one year may receive, during their studies, the following types of scholarships:
- Scholarship for excellent study results;
- Single-purpose scholarship: (i) for outstanding scientific, research, development, sport, artistic or other creative achievement, (ii) in the case of extraordinary personal circumstances, (iii) in support of study abroad or to allow work practice on the territory of the CR, or (iv) in case of an exceptionally worthy cause;
- PhD scholarship awarded automatically to all full-time doctoral students for a period of not more than 3 years; it is paid out monthly;
- Accommodation allowance;
- Student support.
The single-purpose scholarship must be endorsed by the Dean on the basis of an agreement reached by the Faculty Bursary. The accommodation allowance and student support is awarded by the Rector on the basis of an assessment of the social circumstances of the applying student.
Immatriculations and Graduation Ceremonies
The tradition of immatriculations and graduation ceremonies is one of the centuries-old transition rituals observed by Charles University. Immatriculation is a solemn event during which the student is entered into the Faculty register (“immatriculated”) on taking an oath of observance of study obligations and ethical commitment to the school, its rules and the decisions of its academic dignitaries. Immatriculations usually take place in October and are designated for students only.
Graduation is a solemn farewell ceremony dedicated to graduates who have succeeded in completing their studies; the graduates take an academic oath in Latin and receive a diploma entitling them to use the relevant academic; the diploma is presented by the Dean or one of the Vice-Deans. Unlike immatriculation, graduation ceremonies are attended by family and friends and take place thrice a year (following the dates of final exams); PhD ceremonies take place twice a year, in March and October.
Both ceremonies are usually held in the Large Aula of the Carolinum (with the exception of bachelor graduations that take place in the aula of the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics in the Lesser Town Square [Malostranské náměstí]); university and faculty insignia – mace and chains of office – and ceremonial gowns are worn by the attending academic dignitaries.