The education system in Turkmenistan is funded and administered by the state, it is under the purview of the Council of Higher Education. There are 24 higher education institutions in Turkmenistan, these include 6 universities, 16 institutes, 1 academy and 1 conservatory. Academies in this context is understood as, study or training graduate programs in specific fields.
Despite the growth the country experienced post-Soviet control, there are still significant improvements needed. For example, all institutions save three are located in the capital of the country causing an unequal regional distribution of higher education.
Funding of these institutions is determined by the type of educational institution and number of students which is set by the Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan. Institutions still have the agency to conduct other income-generating endeavours so long as it is in line with legislation, this does not affect the state funding they receive.
Higher education in Turkmenistan is no longer free for citizens, a move the government undertook in 2003.
University studies in Turkmenistan takes five years to complete with the exception of medicine and some art programmes.
Turkmenistan uses the Bologna structure for higher education—three years for a Bachelor’s, two years for a Master’s followed by a three years (minimum) for a doctorate. However, there are two universities, The International University for Humanities and Development and Oguzkhan International University offering 2-cycle studies.
Higher education is carried out on the basis of full-time courses with fields of study strictly adhering to the classification of specialties, which is determined by the Cabinet Ministers of Turkmenistan.
Admissions to programs in Turkmenistan higher education system is regulated by a Presidential Decree which determines the number of students to be admitted to each faculty. The process of admissions to higher education is a difficult process, students must pass three entrance exams that test their knowledge of general subjects, the history of Turkmenistan and writing and interviews in Turkmen.
Turkmenistan now requires that Turkmen be the standard language of instruction in all of its schools.
Since the introduction of fee-based education in Turkmenistan annual tuition fees range from 6,000 to 8,000 manats, the exact amount is contingent on field of study and institution of choice. For example, Turkmenistan’s State Institute of Economics and Management charge a minimum of 6,000 manats a year. Whereas, the Institute of Telecommunications and IT could reach up to 7,400 manats.
Information for International Students
Spaces for international applicants is quite limited with school offering a few dozen seats per year. Successful international applicant will need student visas.