Is it Possible to Study For Free in Spain?

Public universities in Spain are not totally free, but they are very low cost compared to private universities and other countries in Europe. Learn more below.

The price difference between studying at a public and a private university in Spain is something very important to take into account when deciding your future studies. For a student coming from abroad, it is good to know that you will have to spend on accommodation, food, materials, transportation, among others, so you should know how to manage your expenses depending on the price of your studies.

Public universities

In the model of university education in Spain, 77.5% is financed by the state, but if you get access to a scholarship, your studies can be free. Tuition fees at public universities in Spain are the lowest in Europe. Prices usually vary from one city to another, and it also depends a lot on the number of credits of the degree you decide to study. The price per credit is determined by the regional governments.

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Normally, each of the four years of study can have 60 credits, so the total of your studies would be 240 credits. The price of each of them usually varies between 12.50 and 30 euros, so the annual price of a course would be between 750 and 1,800 euros per year. In public universities you will have to pay the registration fee previously mentioned, as well as the necessary materials and books, which will vary depending on the type of studies. In humanities courses you can spend about 200 euros per year on materials, while in courses such as dentistry or engineering this expense can reach up to 1,000 euros.

Private universities

On the side of private universities, you will have to spend a lot of money on tuition, which can vary between 5,000 and 18,000 euros per year, depending on the course you choose and the number of credits it has. In addition to that, you will have to pay the monthly fee required by the university, which is usually around 800 euros. Keep in mind that private universities are a business so they are free to choose the price they charge you for your studies, unlike public universities that are governed by the costs per credit determined by the regional government. Another point to pay close attention to is what happens when you fail a subject. Every time you fail one of them, you will have to enrol again, and therefore, pay for it again. Well, this time it doesn’t cost the same, because all universities will charge you more for the second time you enrol in a certain course. And if you fail again, the price will increase again, so there is no better advice than to study hard to avoid those expenses that nobody wants to incur.

Spanish view

Where is it cheaper to study?

As mentioned above, if you want to save money, the best option is to choose a public university over a private one. If you are looking for an authentic Spanish experience and high quality education, here are some of the cheapest universities where you can get it: University of Jaen. The approximate price you will spend is 1,000 euros per year of tuition. This university is located in Andalucia and is relatively new, as it was created in 1993. Open University of Catalonia. While not considered a public university, the UOC (Universitat Oberta de Catalunya) is a public service institution and is organised through private management. The price you will spend annually is approximately 1,500 euros. University of Lleida. Located in Lérida, this public university has an approximate price of 1,800 euros per year of tuition, taking into account the number of credits and the career you choose. It is a cheap and high quality option for students. University of Valencia. Although it has a slightly higher price than the others, the University of Valencia has a great prestige and is ranked among the top ten in Spain. The approximate cost per year is 2,700 euros.

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Written by

Ryan Rosser

Master’s program, 2021

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