In principle, admission to higher studies takes place on the basis of the recruitment process, in accordance with the provisions of Art. 169 of the Act of 27 July 2005 – Law on Higher Education. However, Article 170(g) of the above-mentioned Act provides for another possibility of obtaining the student status: as a result of the confirmation of learning results by the university. This procedure was introduced into the regulations on higher education in order to meet the needs of lifelong learning and to facilitate the access of mature and professionally experienced persons to higher education (i.e. first-cycle studies, second-cycle studies, uniform master studies).
A person admitted to the studies as a result of the confirmation of learning results will be able to participate in fewer activities. This will create the possibility of shortening the time of studies or decrease their intensity.
Learning results, i.e. the knowledge, skills and social competence acquired previously by the person applying for the student status on the basis of Art. 170(g) are verified.
The Act specifies the requirements for applicants for the student status:
- upper secondary school-leaving examination certificate and at least 5 years of professional experience – when applying for admission to first-cycle studies and uniform master studies,
- bachelor’s degree (engineer’s or equivalent) and at least 3 years of experience after the completion of the first-cycle studies – in the case of applying for admission to the second-cycle studies,
- master’s degree (or equivalent) and at least 2 years of professional experience after the completion of second-cycle studies or uniform master studies – when applying for admission to another faculty of first- or second-cycle studies or uniform master studies.
Confirming the learning results is carried out by means of formal verification process of the learning effects of the given person by the university, which aims at admitting to the studies. The verification of learning results is carried out by the committees designated for that purpose. They check the actual skills, competencies and knowledge, and not only the submitted documents. The verification applies to learning results which are specified in the core curriculum for the given programme of studies, level and profile of education. After the verification, the Commission confirms what learning results of the given person correspond to the learning results in the core curriculum and whether the person obtained the results which allow him/her to pass certain classes, group of classes along with ECTS points assigned to them. Then it is possible to determine in which semester/year such a person starts his/her studies.
It should be emphasised that a basic organisational unit holding at least a positive programme assessment rate in the scope of a given faculty, profile and at a given level of education is authorised to confirm the learning results in a given faculty, profile and at a given level of education, and in case of lack of assessment in the given faculty – the basic organisational unit of the university having the right to grant doctoral degree in the field of education and area to which the given faculty is assigned (Art. 170(e) section 1 of the above-mentioned Act). As a result of the confirmation of learning results, not more than 50% of ECTS points assigned to the given training programme of the given faculty, level and profile of education may be recognised.
Terms of studies for students admitted to university as a result of confirmation of learning results, focusing on the individual plan of studies and scientific care, shall be specified by the universities in the regulations of studies (§ 1 point 9 of the Regulation of the Minister of Science and Higher Education of 25 September 2014 on the conditions that have to be fulfilled by the Regulations of Studies at the universities).
The university is not entitled to create “shortened” training programmes for those admitted as a result of the confirmation of learning results and to create separate groups of students studying according to a separate programme of studies. Persons admitted to university as a result of the confirmation of learning results should be included in the regular mode of studies.
The procedures for confirming the learning results do not apply to faculties of studies for which certain standards of education were specified (Art. 170(e) section 3 of the Act).