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In a thriving region stretching along the Atlantic coast of northern Spain, the people of the Basque Country are the custodians of one of Europe's most ancient languages and cultures. The high esteem they have for their history and tradition is impressive to say the least, but they are also a remarkably forward-thinking people that have collectively established a highly-regarded industrial sector.

The region's success and scientific and technological progress are underpinned by the Universidad del País Vasco, also known as the University of the Basque Country, a vibrant 30-year-old institution with 45,000 students, 5,000 world-class academic staff and state-of-the-art facilities.

About the Universidad del País Vasco

The Universidad del País Vasco (English: University of the Basque Country) is the only public university in the Basque Country, in Northern Spain. It has campuses over the three provinces of the autonomous community: the Biscay Campus (in Leioa, Bilbao, Portugalete and Barakaldo), the Gipuzkoa Campus (in San Sebastián and Eibar), and the Álava Campus (in Vitoria-Gasteiz). It is the main research institution in the Basque Country, carrying out 90% of the basic research performed in that territory and taking full advantage of the excellent industrial environment that the region boasts.


Although there have been several institutes of higher learning in the Basque country over the centuries, starting with the Universidad Sancti Spiritus de Oñati (founded 1540 AD), it was not until the 20th century that major efforts were made to create an official university for the Basque people. The first of these institutions opened its doors in Bilbao in 1938, largely thanks to the enthusiasm of the Basque president (lehendakari) at the time, José Antonio Aguirre, an alumnus of the University of Deusto. However, this was during the Spanish Civil War, a time that proved to be an inopportune moment to open a center of learning.  The northwest of the Basque region mostly sided with the Republican movement at this time, earning the wrath of General Francisco Franco. Thus, when Franco's armies entered Bilbao in 1939, the fledgling university was shut down.

It was not until 1968 that another university in the Basque region was established. In that year, the University of Bilbao was founded.  Three years later, in 1972, the campus in Leioa—a remote place among cultivated fields—was finished and began admitting students (as was case with the Somosaguas campus of the Complutense University of Madrid, the dictatorial authorities wanted to keep the rebellious students away from urban areas).  In 1977, additional campuses sprang up in the cities of Álava and Gipuzkoa. Finally, in 1980, the university of Bilbao and its many satellite campuses were officially designated as the Universidad del País Vasco, or University of the Basque Country.

As of 2014, the Universidad del País Vasco offers roughly 80 degree options, and the university's 48,000 students can choose from more than 1,300 subjects of study. Students can study nearly half of the courses in the Basque language, while most of the remaining courses are taught in Spanish. The university is now recognized as one of the foremost higher education institutions in Spain, both in terms of the number of degrees offered and the quality of the typical degree awarded.

In 2009, the Universidad del País Vasco Project, known simply as "Euskampus", was labeled as a "Campus of International Excellence," the highest quality of award offered by the Spanish Minister of Education. The project has been designed with the contributions of two important international players: the Tecnalia Research and Innovation Corporation and the Donostia International Physics Center Foundation.

The current rector of the Universidad del País Vasco is Iñaki Goirizelaia.

More about the Universidad del País Vasco

The motto of the Universidad del País Vasco is a Basque-language verse that reads “Eman ta zabal zazu (Give and distribute [the fruit]),” from Gernikako Arbola, a Basque anthem from the 19th century. The school’s logo is an interpretation of the Guernica oak tree, created by the Spanish sculptor Eduardo Chillida.

The Universidad del País Vasco offers an English language, distance postgraduate diploma in International Election Observation and Electoral Assistance, the first official postgraduate qualification of its kind that provides advanced learning in electoral systems and electoral campaign processes, with a particular focus for those occurring in contexts of developing democracies or post-conflict situations. The program is run in cooperation with a variety of local and international organizations in the field of election monitoring, such as the Carter Center, Electoral Reform International Services (ERIS), International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), National Democratic Institute (NDI), the Organization of American States (OAS), and the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR).

Students looking to study abroad in the Basque region can take advantage of the university’s summer courses, performed in Bilbao, Donostia-San Sebastián and Vitoria-Gasteiz. Since the program’s inception, the number of international students has regularly increased, partly because all of the summer lessons are lectured by renowned professionals and experts from various countries around the world.

The Universidad del País Vasco boasts a very multicultural student population. Their International Relations Office manages over 900 exchange agreements with Spanish, European and other international universities.  Every year, the three campuses of the university are transformed into lively melting pots where over 900 foreign students blend in with local trainees and students.  The school takes part in a program known as SICUE, the Spanish Universities Students´ Exchange Program; ERASMUS, the most extended European mobility program; and has created its own exchange programs with universities in Latin-America (UPV/EHU-AMÉRICA LATINA) and other destinations, such as the United States, Canada, The Philippine Islands, New Zealand, and Russia.

Study Programs:

  • Architecture, Building and Landscape
    • Architecture
  • Arts, Design and Crafts
    • Fine Arts
    • Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage
    • Creation and Design
  • Business
    • Business Administration
    • Advertising
    • Public Relations
    • Marketing
    • Human Resources
    • Finance
    • Safety and Health
    • Project Management
    • Business Management
    • Financial Management
  • Communications
    • Communications
    • Journalism
    • Social Communication
    • Audiovisual Communication
  • Computing
    • Information Technology
  • Economics
    • Economics
  • Education
    • Early Childhood Education
    • Primary Education
    • Pedagogy
    • Social Education
    • Social Anthropology
  • Engineering
    • Electronic Engineering
    • Engineering Science
    • Biomedical Engineering
    • Electrical Engineering
    • Industrial Engineering
    • Mechanical Engineering
    • Civil Engineering
    • Naval Engineering
    • Chemical Engineering
    • Computer Engineering
    • Materials Engineering
    • Environmental Engineering
    • Automation Engineering
    • Building Construction Engineering
    • Geomatics Engineering
    • Engineering Physics
    • Thermal Engineering
    • Industrial Technology Engineering
    • Marine Engineering
    • Computer Engineering InformationTechnology
    • Topography Engineering
    • Industrial Chemical Engineering
    • Computer Engineering in Information Systems
    • Industrial Organization Engineering
    • Renewable Energy Engineering
    • Technology of Mining and Energy Engineering
    • Computer Engineering in Management and Information Systems
  • Health
    • Nursing
    • Pharmacology
    • Medicine
    • Human Nutrition and Dietetics
    • Dentistry
    • Physiotherapy
    • Neuroscience
    • Microbiology
    • Nutrition and Health
  • Human Studies and Services
    • Social Work
  • Humanities
    • History
    • Art History
    • Philosophy
    • International Studies
    • Comparative Literature
  • Industries
    • Insurance
  • Law
    • Law
  • Philology, Languages, Literature
    • Philology and Linguistics
    • Translation and Interpretation
    • English Studies
  • Public Administration and Services
    • Public Administration/Management
    • Development Studies
    • Tax
    • Public Health
    • Territory Organization
  • Sciences
    • Athletics and exercise science
    • Biology
    • Environmental Studies
    • Political Science
    • Physics
    • Geography
    • Geology
    • Mathematics
    • Psychology
    • Chemistry
    • Sociology
    • Viniculture
    • Food Sciences and Technology
    • Criminology
    • Biochemistry
    • Natural Resources
    • Biomedical Sciences
    • Nanoscience
    • Molecular and Cellular Biology
    • Space Science
  • Social and Cultural studies
    • Basque Studies
    • Global Studies
  • Technology
    • Biotechnology
    • Spatial Information Technology
    • Maritime Transportation

Type of studies: University Degree Programs, Graduate, Professional Programs, Master Erasmus Mundus
Language of instruction: Spanish, Basque
Type of school: Public University

Location: Negociado de Títulos Propios - Edificio Aulario, 1, Leioa, Vizcaya, Spain, 48940
Telephone and Fax: Tel.: +34 94 601 30 44 Fax.: Not available

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