Hungary, and especially its capital, Budapest, is a fantastic location for student life in Europe. With its complex history and awe-inspiring heritage, not to mention its vibrant culture and nightlife, Budapest is a top destination in Eastern Europe if you are looking for culture, fun, and everything in between.
Therefore, studying medicine in Hungary is a great idea. The country prides itself on welcoming international students, too, and the universities there have a great reputation worldwide. The great thing about university degrees – especially MD awards – obtained in Hungary is that they are recognized across the European Union, in the United States, and many other countries worldwide. This is thanks to their high academic standards, competitive entrance exams, and the offer of English language instruction.
Let’s have a look at the top medical schools in Hungary.
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What is the benefit of studying in Hungary?
The cost/benefit ratio of studying in Hungary is significant. By western European and American standards, the cost of living in Hungarian cities is very low, as is the cost of tuition comparatively. Additionally, the atmosphere of student life in Hungary is excellent and the reputation of the universities here is great for medical studies.
How long does it take to complete a Medicine degree in Hungary?
The general medicine programs taught in Hungary span six years. These will award you the M.D. (medical doctor) degree and will include the practical application of your studies in a clinical environment.
How much does a medical degree cost in Hungary?
Whilst it is much cheaper to obtain a medical degree in Hungary than in most European countries, tuition fees for a general medicine course are still around 9,000-11,000 USD per semester.
What are the undergraduate requirements for studying medicine in Hungary?
No matter what you have studied beforehand, you will need to pass an entrance exam into medical school in Hungary. This is usually a series of tests in chemistry, biology, the English language, and sometimes also medical English. You should prepare in advance and consult the admissions calendars, as you’ll need to be present in Hungary for the entrance exams, and you need to obtain your results well before the academic year begins every October.
Top Medical Schools in Hungary
1. Semmelweis University – Faculty of Medicine, Budapest
Located in the capital city, Budapest, Semmelweis University is the top medical school in Hungary. Founded in 1769, its medical school offers programs in English, Hungarian, and German. This is the oldest medical school in Hungary and it is also the largest faculty within the University of Semmelweis itself. Alongside, the Faculties of Dentistry and Pharmacy were not founded until 1955.
It sets aside about 25% of its seats for international students annually and has a great worldwide reputation for research. There are over 4,000 students studying medicine at Semmelweis today – 3,000 in the Faculty of Medicine, and the rest split between Dentistry and Pharmacy.
Each university has its own entrance exams, and the process is slightly more complicated than in other countries. There is usually chemistry, biology, and English language tests to take, which are high-school level. If you already have a Bachelor’s degree from a different university and can prove fluency in English (by means of a test such as the TOEFL, for example), it is sometimes possible to get an exemption from the entrance exam, but normally this should be considered essential.
2. University of Pecs – Faculty of Medicine, Pecs
Pecs University is the oldest in Hungary, as it was founded in 1367 by King Louie the Great. It then developed into one of the largest institutions in the country. The medical school only opened in the beginning of the 20th century, however.
At the Medical Faculty of the University of Pecs, you can study in English or German alongside Hungarian. There are students enrolled here from 66 countries and this medical school in Hungary boasts not only excellent academic offerings but also a vivid student life.
The General Medicine program only accepts 180 students every year, so it is quite exclusive. It includes a year of “clinical rotation” – i.e. practical application of the tuition received. Their diploma is recognized across the European Union and many other countries worldwide.
3. University of Szeged – Faculty of Medicine, Szeged
As one of the top universities in Hungary, the University of Szeged offers a very reputable program of General Medicine. This involves two years of basic medical foundation, then clinical practice is added on from the third year.
The University of Szeged has been operating since the 16th century and the medical school here opened in 1775. They also offer a dental faculty as well as pharmacology studies. The school is named after Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, a winner of the Nobel Prize for his merits in isolating vitamin C by extracting it from paprika.
You can apply for a full-time English language program of tuition at this medical school in Hungary, or opt for a Hungarian language version as well. In the international program, there are over 1,000 students from all over the world.
4. University of Debrecen – Faculty of Medicine, Debrecen
We end our list of top medical schools in Hungary with the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Debrecen. It is built around campus and was the first Central European medical school to adopt this set-up. The University has been teaching medicine since 1918, alongside Arts, Science, and Theology.
This Hungarian medical school spans many specialties and has various research opportunities. Moreover, the school serves as the city hospital for Debrecen, so students can practice the theory they are taught comfortably from early on. It is worth noting that the Research Centre for Molecular Medicine at the University of Debrecen was awarded the title of “Centre of Excellence” by the European Commission in 2003.
Beyond its 22 departments of basic science, the Faculty of Medicine at Debrecen University has 25 clinical departments with various specializations. To gain admission into Debrecen University’s medical program, the entrance exams are taken in biology, chemistry, physiology, and physics, and they are both written and oral exams.
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