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Charles University 1st Faculty of Medicine - Ranking, Tuition, Campus & Environment | ValueMD

General Information

A Brief History of the Czech Republic

Following the First World War, the closely related Czechs and Slovaks of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire merged to form Czechoslovakia. During the interwar years, the new country's leaders were frequently preoccupied with meeting the demands of other ethnic minorities within the republic, most notably the Sudeten Germans and the Ruthenians (Ukrainians). After World War II, a truncated Czechoslovakia fell within the Soviet sphere of influence. In 1968, an invasion by Warsaw Pact troops ended the efforts of the country's leaders to liberalize Communist party rule and create "socialism with a human face." Anti-Soviet demonstrations the following year ushered in a period of harsh repression. With the collapse of Soviet authority in 1989, Czechoslovakia regained its freedom through a peaceful "Velvet Revolution." On 1 January 1993, the country underwent a "velvet divorce" into its two national components, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The Czech Republic joined NATO in 1999 and the European Union in 2004. Read More...

Map of Czech Republic

History of CU

A Czech and Roman king Charles IV founded the Prague university by a deed of foundation on April 7, 1348 as a first university (studium generale) to the north of the Alps and to the east of Paris. The Charles University belongs to old European universities. It followed the example of the Bolognese and the Parisian universities and in a short time became internationally famous. The university consists of four faculties: faculty of theology, of arts, of law, and of medicine. Not only Czech but also many foreign teachers and students were members of the academic community of the university, especially those from Central European areas for whom the university in Prague became accessible and erudite university of studium generale. Charles´s son and successor Wenceslas IV extended his influence on the university and in 1409 strenghtened also the position of the native members of the academic community by a Kutna Hora Decree. A territorial character of the Prague studium generale was emphasized by the protest departure of a part of masters and scholars from the Prague university. Shortly after the Prague university influenced by the Hussite movement preceding the European Reformation changed its character. The university rector, Master Jan Hus, became very influential at the university. In following social and political revolution the university was reduced to one faculty- faculty of arts (artium)- as a prototype of future territorial reformation academies.

He created a cultural metropolis where besides a court center (with scholars Joannes Kepler and Tycho de Brahe)also a university erudition was developing.

At the beginning of the 17th century the University was considerably influenced by political provincial estates which were involved in the antihapsburg opposition whose political representatives stirred up a conflict at the beginning of the first European war ( the Thirty Years´ War in 1618-1648). Their defeat caused a radical change at the university. A victorious Roman emperor and Czech king Ferdinand III amalgamated a Carolingian university and a Jesuit university in Clementinum (whose beginnings go back to 1556) into a university with a new name Charles-Ferdinand University (the name survived until 1918). This university re-established all four faculties which it had consisted of before the Hussite movement and was growing from a former free corporation of intellectuals into a public educational institution and this process was rounded off with reforms of the absolutist regime of the emperor Joseph II in the 1780s.

The university started to grow into a modern university during the reforms in 1848/49. It was gradually changing into a public institute educating a professional intelligentsia class. In 1882, in the period of a high national political movement, the Charles-Ferdinand University in Prague was divided into two universities: Czech and German.

At the turn of the 20th century have both universities reached a high scientific level. At the German university there worked e.g. professor Albert Einstein. At the Czech university there were excellent personalities who played an important part in a state-political emancipation process, especially professor Thomas G. Masaryk who became first president of an independent Czechoslovak Republic in 1918. The Charles University- a name of the Czech university in an independent state- took advantage of new circumstances to develop a scientific research and some of its results achieved a world standards. We should remember the discoveries of professor Jaroslav Heyrovsky in the field of polarography which brought him a Nobel prize in 1959.

The Hitlerian occupation of Czechoslovakia caused a terrible disaster and loss. After student demonstrations on October 28, 1939 and during a funeral of a medical student Jan Opletal were the Czech universities closed down on November 17, 1939, and a persecution of students and university teachers followed.

The Charles University could take up its activity after the World War Two. The German university in Prague which joined the association of Reich universities in 1939 came to an end simultaneously with the Nazi Reich.

Free development of activity at Charles University was interrupted after a communist coup in February 1948. The regime subordinated the education and research to an ideological and political control for a long time, the international relations and the impulses of science were affected. Students loyal to a tradition of liberty principles protested against a totalitarian system on November 17, 1989 and initiated removal of the regime.

Supported by international cooperation a modern university life developed rapidly. The Charles University keeps developing a systematic research cooperation and takes part in both European and international programs.

CU profile

Charles University founded in 1348 is one of the oldest universities in the world and nowadays belongs to the most eminent educational and scientific establishments in the Czech Republic which are recognized in both the European and global context. It is an outstanding cultural institution due to its scientific and pedagogical results and its unique historical tradition.

Charles University now contains 17 faculties (14 in Prague, 2 in Hradec Králové, and 1 in Plzeň), 3 collegiate institutes, 6 additional establishments for educational, scientific, research and developmental activities and other creative activities and for information service, 5 university-wide facilities and the vice-chancellor´s/ rector´s office as an executive establishment for Charles University management. There are more than 7000 University employees, 4000 of them are academic and research workers.

Over 42,400 students study at Charles University (approximately one fifth of all the students in the Czech Republic) in more than 270 accredited academic programs with 600 departments. 7200 students are studying for bachelor´s degrees, 29 000 students are studying for master´s degrees, and over 6200 students are in PhD programs. There are more than 4300 foreign students—750 of which study in English language academic programs. Over 5000 participants graduate from continuing education courses every year.

Scientific and research activities form the basis on which the doctoral and master´s programs are based at Charles University. Scientific results of CharlesUniversity workplaces measured by the amount of financial means provided to universities in the Czech Republic make approximately one third of this financial means. Charles University aims to be recognized as a competitive research university on the world stage.

Charles University stresses international cooperation with prestigious educational and scientific establishments. Charles University has entered into 450 bilateral contracts and 170 international partnerships with foreign universities.

The scope of Charles University can be characterized also by its income amount which is cca 5 billion Czech crowns per year. 41% of this amount comes from educational funding, 27% from competitive research grants, and 26% is its own income.

Charles University is an accredited public university, it is an autonomous scientific and educational establishment. The rector is head of Charles University; the Academic Senate is the supreme self-regulating academic organ. Other organs: the Academic Council and bursar, the Board of Directors is responsible for implementation of public interest in Charles University activities, the Senate consisting of prorectors, bursar and chancellor makes the consultative body of the rector. The deans are heads of faculties which are independent to a large extent; other parts of Charles University are managed by their directors.

Study medicine in Prague

Studying of medicine in Europe is different than in the US. In comparison to the US, students in Europe apply for studying of medicine right after obtaining high-school diploma. The study of medicine in Europe is generally spread over 10-12 semesters. Preclinical subjects (pre-medical school) are included in the first two years of the curriculum. There are uncountable possibilities for studying medicine in Europe. Applicants can choose any of the seventeen European countries. Because of study costs, most of Czech applicants choose to study medicine and gain MD degree in Czech Republic at one of seven schools of medicine. The most prestigious school for studying medicine in Czech Republic is the First Faculty of Medicine at Charles University in Prague. First Faculty of Medicine, where you could gain your MD degree, is one of the original four faculties of Charles University, established in 14th century. It is the biggest faculty in Czech Republic. There are more than 3,100 students studying medicine at this faculty. They are taught by more than 650 pedagogical and/or scientific experts. First Faculty of Medicine gained the certificate of US Ministry of Public Education as a first faculty in Czech Republic. Studying medicine in Prague is not only a chance to study in a beautiful historical city of Prague which is, according to many people, the most beautiful metropolis. First of all, it is a chance to get MD degree which is accepted both in US and EU at one of the top schools in field of medicine.

Essential Info for Applicants

Study programs offered in English

  • General Medicine
    6 year curriculum leading to the Master degree MUDr. - "Medicinae Universae Doctor" (M.D.) = Doctor of General Medicine
  • Dentistry
    5 year program leading to the aster degree MDDr. - "Medicinae Dentalis Doctor" = Doctor of Dental Medicine

International recognition

  • The degrees are fully recognized in the EU and most countries for at least limited registration. The student should ask the authorities or professional bodies in the respective country for information about the conditions for full registration and recognition of the degree required to practice medicine.
  • The Faculty is listed in the World Directory of Medical Schools published by WHO (7th edition, 2000, page 105)
  • Faculty is also listed in the Directory of Postsecondary Institutions published by the US Department of Education
  • The First Faculty of Medicine has qualified to participate in programmes under Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA) and the Federal Student Financial Assistance Programs (Title IV, HEA programs) in the USA. Charles University in Prague - First Faculty of Medicine participates in the Federal Family Education Loan Stafford Program (OPE ID Number G33004).

How to be admitted

Students are selected on the basis of an entrance examination. It is necessary to:

  • send a complete Application form on time
  • successfully pass the entrance exam
  • provide a certified copy of a high school diploma (or equivalent)

How and When to Apply

Each student can apply once per academic year to each study program. Students can apply even prior to obtaining a high school diploma, so it is sufficient to send

  • completed and signed application form by post, fax or e-mail.

The application should be addressed to the official representatives if available, otherwise to Medical school directly. The deadline for sending regular applications is specified by each official representative.

The deadline for sending regular applications to our mailing address is May 15, 2009.

NOTE: For Enrolment, it is necessary to provide further documents – see Enrolment chapter for more details.

Entrance Exam

Students are accepted on the basis of written and oral entrance examinations taken in English from the following subjects: standard college biology, chemistry and physics or maths and an interview (just those who successfully pass the written part) both taken in English. Sample questions are available. The examination is supervised by Faculty's examiners. The maximum number of enrolled students in the academic year 2009/10 will be 110 for GM and 20 for Dentistry.

The exam can be taken:

A. At places specified by our official representatives. Please see our list of representatives.

B. In Prague

  • terms
    • regular term June 17, 2009
    • late term September 2, 2009 (just for those who are not able to attend the regular one because of serious reason)
    • exam fee 50 EUR
    • visa if a visa is required, a short-term (tourist) visa is sufficient for the entrance exam
    • An invitation letter for the entrance exam will be send by post as well by an e-mail at the end of May. If the Invitation letter ïs needed earlier, please let us know. An invitation letter and e-mail will be sent to every applicant who meets all the criteria.

    Note: For the additional term, there are limited opportunities to make all necessary arrangements in time (typically Visa and accommodation in residence halls) due to a very short period between the exam and enrolment. These reasons are not legitimate for postponing the beginning of study obligations.

    1. At places specified by our official representatives.
    • U.K., Ireland and Nigeria - Abbey College, 253 Wells Road, Malvern Wells, Worcestershire, WR 144JF, U.K.
      • June, 2009
      • August, 2009

    Please see the full list of the reps for contact information.


      • Students from EU countries and Shengen Zone do not need a Visa to enter or study at our University.
      • If a Visa is required, please apply to the Czech embassy or Consulate well in advance, i.e. 3 months prior to the planned departure.
        For the:
        • entrance exam - a short term visa is sufficient
        • enrolment - a long term Visa is required

      Tuition and Costs

      Annual net tuition fee is:

      • 13.000 EUR for General Medicine
      • 14.500 EUR for Dentistry

      Additional expenses (not included in tuition):

      • Additional expenses (not included in tuition): lodging, meals, books, transportation, etc. Cost can significantly vary depending on spending habits. Please see the Living in Prague section for more.


      Enrolment takes place in Prague in September before the semester begins and it requires:

      • Admission valid for the respective academic year
      • A Signed Contract with the Dean of our Faculty.
      • A certified copy of your diploma
      • A certified English translation of the diploma
      • A Long-term Visa, if applicable

        NOTE: The signatures and seals on the original of your diploma must be verified, if not otherwise stated by an international agreement by:

        • either the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the country where the respective school is located where you have passed
        • or a Notary Public plus the Embassy or a representative office of the Czech Republic in the respective country, if not otherwise stated by an international agreement.

      All the forms should be sent to our mailing address.

      Living in Prague

      There is no doubt that you will find Prague very attractive, easy to live in and still affordable. You might be interested in:

      • Czech
        As for living, English will work perfectly for you, but in order to be able to communicate with the patients on the wards during the clinical rotations some basic skills in Czech will be necessary. During the first three years of medical studies the student will attend lessons and tutorials in Medical Czech. There are also plenty of opportunities to practice Czech in the city.
      • Accommodation
        Students can either stay in the Residence Halls or it is currently very popular to rent a flat. It is quite common to get an apartment in the centre, few minutes away from the campus at around 400 EUR per month if you share.
      • Expenses
        can significantly vary depending on spending habits. Sample costs are introduced here.
        Accommodation 400 EUR/month shared double-bed apartment or shared room in the residence halls
        Meals 3 - 5 EUR per meal in student canteens
        Transportation 13 EUR/month
        9 EUR
        reduced-price student pass
        average taxi ride in the city

      Academic Calendar

      The Academic year is divided into two semesters, each followed by exam period.

      • The winter semester starts at the end of September and lasts 15 weeks. It is interrupted by a 2-week Christmas vacation and followed by a 4-week examination period.
      • The summer semester lasts 15 weeks and is followed by an examination period and summer vacation.
      • Starting from the 2nd year, summer clerkships in clinical departments are included in the curriculum.


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