Higher education in Lithuania is open to all persons who have completed general secondary education. University studies are organized in three cycles: a first cycle of undergraduate studies lasting three and a half to four years, a second cycle of Master’s studies lasting one and a half to two years and a third cycle of doctoral studies lasting from three to four years.
The first cycle of university studies leads to a Bachelor degree (‘Bakalauras’) and/or professional qualification and gives access to the second cycle of university studies. To complete the first cycle studies, a student must collect from 210 to 270 ECTS credits. Upon completion of undergraduate studies, graduates may choose to pursue further studies leading to a Master’s degree (‘Magistras’) which prepare students for careers requiring scientific knowledge, skills and competences. To complete the second cycle (graduate) studies, a student is required to collect from 60 to 120 ECTS credits. Doctoral studies leading to a research degree may be pursued after the candidate has obtained a Master’s degree or equivalent qualification. Doctor’s degree (‘Daktaro mokslo laipsnis’) is awarded after completing doctoral studies and defending a thesis.