Albania provides a unique opportunity for scholars interested in connecting with students and academics from a rapidly developing country in Europe. In the heart of the Mediterranean on the Adriatic and Ionian Seas, Albania is a beautiful country with a varied climate and topography. In the last few years it has become a popular travel destination. Albania enjoys friendly and cooperative bilateral relations with the United States. Pro-American sentiment is widespread among the population.
Still relatively unspoiled by globalization, Albania offers an inspiring mixture of civilizations and cultures. Scholars are impressed by the ancient history of Albania, the rich cultural tradition, and the harmony and respect shared among the adherents of the country’s three major religions: Islam, Roman Catholicism, and Orthodox Christianity.
Albania has a young population eager to learn and study. The educational system has experienced constant change and improvement in the last twenty-five years to reflect global developments in education and to meet the changing needs of the population. In 2015, a group of educational experts, representatives of private and public universities and other stakeholders drafted a new law on higher education. For the first time, all Albanian universities went through an institutional accreditation process led by the British Accreditation Agency successfully concluded in December 2017. Find a full list of accredited universities here.
There are 15 public universities and over 25 private universities in Albania. The Albanian higher education system is part of the European Higher Education Area and operates on a 3+2+3 scheme (3-year undergraduate degree, 2-year graduate degree - usually referred to as a Scientific Master’s Degree, and 3-year doctoral program). Both public and private universities have partnerships with European universities and exchange programs are largely funded through EU Erasmus programs.
The country has some good universities with strong international connections but only one University, currently offers joint degree programs with foreign universities. However, all universities are working to introduce or increase instruction in English in order to attract international students. The Fulbright Program enjoys high prestige. The Public Affairs Section (PAS) at the U.S. embassy in Tirana is responsible for administering the Fulbright Program in the country. PAS staff help interested applicants identify potential host institutions, safe and affordable housing options, and organize an orientation program for the newly arrived U.S. grantees. The orientation program provides an overview of Albanian culture, current academic, political and practical issues, as well as medical and security briefings. Throughout the grant period, grantees are invited to participate in cultural enrichment programs or engage in additional academic or non-academic activities with a variety of audiences.
The living conditions and infrastructure in Albania are good, particularly in cities. However, rural areas are still developing and infrastructure, especially roads, can be poor. Monthly housing costs vary between $600 and $800, depending on location and size. An international English language school (K-12) is located in Tirana. Instruction in English language is extremely limited outside of Tirana.
Internet access is widely available in homes and in cafes in urban areas. Rural areas have more limited access to the Internet but many people connect via smartphones. Electronics are available for purchase, but are often very expensive.
Applications in all fields are welcome, but preference is given to those related to Journalism, Gender Studies, Education, Public Administration, and Law.
For further information contact Deputy Public Affairs Officer Lucija Straley StraleyLB@state.gov and Educational and Cultural Assistant Mirela Cupi email@example.com, or visit the U.S. Embassy website