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master's in italy

Master’s in Italy: A Comprehensive Guide for 2024-25

Italian universities offer a variety of courses in various streams that facilitate students to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the subject and its application in real life.

Italy is home to the world’s oldest university, Bologna University, where thousands of students seek to continue their higher education to get a taste of the rich culture and heritage that the country carries.

Master’s in Italy- An Emerging Destination

When it comes to studying abroad, most Indian students choose Europe as their destination after the USA and Canada.

The capital of Italy is Rome, and it has the smallest city in the world, the Vatican City. There are direct flights to Italy from India, and it offers an easy immigration process.

The vibrancy of Europe encourages students around the globe to pursue their higher studies in various parts of the continent. This is due to the presence of highly ranked, world-class universities that offer quality education at an affordable cost.

European industries play a crucial role in providing vivid and diverse career options to students through internships, part-time work, and full-time employment. 

The country is located in the southern-central part of Europe, creating boundaries with France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, and Vatican City.

It helps students to uderstand the boundary of Italy
Every year, around 65–70 million tourists from worldwide visit Italy. Italy is considered the 5th most visited country in the world. It is now also becoming a hub of education and industrial expertise in Europe after the UK, France, Germany, etc.

Let’s discuss the reasons why pursuing MS programs in Italy is worthy and valuable for Indian students.

Reasons to Pursue Master’s in Italy

1. World Renowned Institutions

Studying in Italy is a unique and incredible experience for Indian students. Italy is home to the world’s oldest university, Bologna University, where thousands of students seek to continue their higher education to get a taste of the rich culture and heritage that the country carries.

QS World University Ranking 2024 has listed 145 Italian universities in its index of global institutions, which shows the reliability and commitment of the country to providing quality and affordable education to students. Due to this, on average, about 5,000–6,000 Indian students choose to study higher degree courses in Italy every year.

Also, Times Higher Education 2024 has enlisted eight Italian universities in its top-300 ranking list. Cutting-edge technology, modern infrastructure, and the presence of extraordinary faculty rich with knowledge and subject expertise have contributed to putting national institutes on the world map.

2. Multicultural Exposure

Residing in Italy means exposure to several known and unknown global communities and their unique perspectives that bring fulfilment to a student’s life. Every year, around 35,000 international students reach Italy to pursue their higher studies.

Since Italy is famous for its top tourist destinations worldwide, many people visit Italy every year, which can provide exposure and allow students to become local guides for them.

It not only improves communication skills but also facilitates the cost of expenditure in the country

3. Low Tuition Fees

In total 180 Bachelor’s, 700 Master’s and 50 PhD degrees are offered and taught in the English language across Italian Universities. Indian students who want to pursue a Master’s in Italy can explore the variety of course options.

The tuition fees in public universities range from €500–4000, whereas private institutes charge tuition fees between €1000 and €22,000.

They also provide various scholarships, both need-based and merit-based, to help them cover other expenses.

4. Diverse Career Options

Post completion of their MS programs in Italy, international students can stay back in the country, which is also known as “Permesso di Soggiorno,” which literally translates to Residence Permit.

Tourism, engineering, and law are the most popular career pursuits. With the presence of cutting-edge technologies, modern infrastructure, a developed education sector, and university-industry cooperation, international students find satisfactory career growth opportunities in Italy.

5. Chance to Learn Foreign Language

Studying in Italy is about appreciating the cultural heritage and diversification that the country carries.

While pursuing higher studies in Italy, you will get the wonderful chance to learn the Italian language, which not only enhances your communication skills with locals but also helps you serve as a local translator or tour guide for incoming people coming to the country.

Top Universities in Italy for Master’s

We’ve tabulated below the top universities in Italy for master’s degree programs, including their QS World Ranking 2024, popular courses, and tuition fees.

UniversityQS World University Ranking 2024Top CoursesAverage Tuition Fees (per year)
Alma Mater Studiorum - Università di Bologna143Engineering and Technology
Economy and Managament
Università di Padova219Accounting, Finance and Business Consulting
Aerospace Engineering
Computer Engineering
Medicine and Surgery
Biotechnology for Food Sciences
Politecnico di Milano123Computer Science
Civil Engineering
Environmental Sciences
Politecnico di Torino252Data Science and Engineering
Cyber Security
Mechanical Engineering
Architecture and Design
Computer Science
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore505Finance
Medicine and Surgery
Computer Engineering
Electronic Engineering
Electrical Engineering
Università degli Studi di Pavia469Advanced Biotechnology
Molecular Biology
Civil Engineering
Urban and Environmental Engineering
University of Siena731-740Economics and Business
Chemical Sciences
History and Cultural Heritage
Computer and Information Engineering
Istituto Marangoni-Interior Design
Fashion Design
Fashion Business
Fashion Management
Multimedia Arts
Verona University801-850International Economics and Business Management
Medical Bioinformatics

Also read- Study in Europe

Popular Master’s Programs in Italy

Indian students find a variety of MS programs in Italy at very nominal tuition fees with their different specializations and course structures.

The positive aspect of pursuing a Master’s in Italy is that every student can explore abundant courses relevant to their aspirations and dreams.

Below, we have tabulated the details of master’s courses that are currently popular among international students, along with their duration, tuition fees and career prospects.

Popular CoursesDurationAverage Tuition FeesCareer Prospect
Master's in Law2 Years€6,000-16,000Lawyers
Legal Advisor
MBA2 Years€25,000-35,000Project Manager
Human Resource
Business Operation Manager
Master's in Building Engineering2 Years€7,000-13,000Structural Engineer
Design Engineer
Urban Development Engineer
Master's in International Politics and Economics2 Years€6,434,16,000International Marketing Analyst
Policy Analyst
Management Analyst
Master's in Medicine and Surgery5-6 Years€16,085-20,500Surgeon
Master's in Civil Engineering2 Years€6,630-15,000Construction Manager
Construction Engineer
Geotechnical Engineer
Master in Electrical Energy Engineering2 Years€6,434-14,000Control Engineer
Device Design Engineer
Circuit Engineer
Master in Visual Arts2 Years€7,000-15,000Graphic Designer
Fashion Designer
Art Designer
Master in Computer Science and Engineering2 Years€5414-17,800Web Developer
Multimedia Programmer
Data Analyst
Mechanical Engineering2 Years€2000-6,300Test Engineer
Automation Engineer
Maintenance Engineeer

Study Intakes in Italy

Italian universities accept enrollment in master’s programs twice a year. Most of the students find fall intake relevant to commence their studies in Italy, as universities offer most of the MS programs in this cycle, hence it is also called primary intake.

On the other hand, winter intake or autumn intake is known as secondary intake since only a few master’s programs are available for students.

Some universities, like the University of Bologna, accept admissions throughout the year, which is referred to as rolling intake.

Study IntakesApplication CycleCommencement of Session
Fall IntakeMarch-OctoberMid-January/February
Winter IntakeDecember-MaySeptember/October

Eligibility Criteria for Master’s in Italy

The higher education system of Italy is the same as the Indian education system since they also accept applications of students coming from 10+2+3/4 backgrounds.

However, the specific criteria can vary depending on the course and university chosen by a student. 

To pursue an MS in Italy, Indian students need to fulfil the following eligibility criteria:

  • Indian students must complete a bachelor’s degree relevant to their field of study. The duration of the undergraduate course must not be less than 3 years.
  • They must pass standardized tests like university-specific entrance exams, TOEFL, IELTS, GMAT, GRE, etc.
  • They must show their proficiency in the Italian language, which is highly recommended but not mandatory.
  • Students must show proof of attendance for the past two years of study.

University Application Documents Checklist

The following documents are essential for the application process for the MS in Italy:

  • Academic transcripts (minimum 7.5/10 CGPA) in a related undergraduate program.
  • University application form
  • GRE score (minimum score of 260–300) for specific engineering and science-based programs. It can vary depending on the course and university.
  • For an MBA and business, management, and finance programs, Italian universities may require you to take the GMAT (minimum score of 600–750).
  • Results of English-language proficiency tests, such as IELTS (minimum score of 6.0-7.5, TOEFL (minimum score of 80 – 100).
  • Depending upon the university, the students need to submit a medium of instruction certificate which states that the candidate has concluded his/her course in English language as a medium of instruction. (in case they don’t want to appear for IELTS/TOEFL/PTE exams).
  • Some universities may need Italian proficiency for their selected master’s programs (the minimum proficiency level required is A2) Two of the main Italian profiency tests are CELI (Certificate of Knowledge of the Italian Language) and CILS (Certification of Italian as a Foreign Language).
  • Declaration of Value Certificate
  • Letter of recommendation
  • Statement of purpose
  • 2-3 years of work experience (mainly for the MBA program)
  • CV
  • Passport-sized photographs
  • Proof of Funds
  • Pre-enrollment application form
  • Health Insurance
  • Passport

Application Process for Master’s in Italy

International students desiring to pursue an MS in Italy can follow these steps to get admission to Italian universities.

The foremost thing an Indian student should remember is that universities in Italy accept enrollment through a common portal, Universitaly.

The major steps of the application process for a Master’s in Italy are:

1. Pre-Enrollment

  • This pre-enrollment process should start about 10–12 months before the commencement of the application cycle.
  • Decide which master’s course you are interested in. It may depend on your skills, interests, and the availability of programs.
  • Shortlist at least 7–8 Italian universities.
  • Contact the shortlisted universities’s authorities in order to get relevant guidance on available services for international students.
  • While researching, consider some factors like program structure, course structure, specific eligibility criteria etc.
  • Prepare for standardized tests such as the GMAT, GRE,TOEFL, other program-specific entrance tests, etc.
  • After preparation, appear for the required standardized tests at least 6-7 months before the commencement of the application cycle.
  • Obtain the scorecards for all the tests.
  • Arrange all the necessary documents in original as well as photocopy forms.

2. Application

  • Start the application process on Universitaly portal by uploading all the necessary documents when application cycle begins for the desired intake.
  • Once the application has been positively evaluated, the chosen institution will be able to issue a “Letter of eligibility for enrolment”. The competent Italian higher education institution will validate online your application.
  • This letter is also known as an acceptance letter, and with it, you can proceed to apply for a study visa.

Declaration of Value Certificate (DOV)

Indian students are required to submit a ‘Declaration of Value‘ certificate or Dichiarazione di Valore during their application process. The DOV certificate briefly describes the academic program a student has previously pursued at an Indian university.

Uses of DOV

It consists of the characteristics of the foreign institution that granted the degree, including its level; the length of the course and admission criteria; any grades received, the local assessment system; degree’s worth in the country where it was obtained.

Issuing Authority

It is issued by the territorial competent Italian diplomatic Missions present in India.

Required Documents

  • Duly filled DOV application form (available here)
  • Data privacy form
  • First and last page copy of the passport
  • Original Final Degree/Final School Certificate duly attested by the competent Higher Education Department and apostilled by Ministry of External Affairs, Govt. of India + 1 photocopy (Competent Higher Education Department attestation is mandatory)
  • Original transcript/marksheet(s) duly attested by the competent Higher education department and apostilled by the Ministry of External Affairs, Govt. of India
  • Admission letter from the Italian Higher Education Institution
  • Pre-enrollment summary downloaded from the official universitaly portal

Where to Apply?

Apply for DOV via VFS here or UNI-ITALIA here

When to Apply?

Before the Visa application or together with the Visa application

Study Visa for Italy 2024

Indian students can apply for a Type ‘D’ student visa either by booking an appointment at Italy Consulate/Embassy present in India or VFS Global. Long-stay visas (national D visas) are issued for stays exceeding 3 months.

Visa Application Fees

50 for National Study Visas

Required Documents

  • Duly filled and signed Visa Application Form 
  • 2 Passport size photograph 
  • Passport (issued within the last 10 years with a validity of at least 3 months after the entire duration of the study program in Italy)
  • Statement of Purpose – it should define the reasons for choice of course and Italian Higher Education Institution, means of financial support, scholarship (if applicable) and intended accommodation 
  • Admission Letter from the Italian university
  • Pre-enrollment summary from the official universitaly portal
  • Receipt of payment of enrolment fees
  • Final Degree/Final School Certificate duly attested and apostilled
  • Copy of Transcript/Marksheet duly attested and apostilled
  • Copy of Declaration of Value (DOV)
  • CV
  • Proof of funds of not less than €6079,45 per year or €506,59 for each month of the entire intended period of stay
  • 6 months’ original bank statement of the applicant stamped and signed by the branch manager
  • Documents proving the applicant’s source of income
  • Medical Insurance with a coverage of at least €30,000
  • Round-trip air ticket
  • Proof of boarding and lodging in Italy for at least 30 days

Cost of Living in Italy

Without considering rent or tuition fees, the cost of living in Italy for Indians or other foreign students living alone is about 750-1500 EUR per month. However, these expenses will differ depending on the Italian city where you decide to study.

Following is a table highlighting the average cost of expenditure in the daily life of an Indian student while pursuing a Master’s in Italy.

ExpensesCost of Expenditure
Utilities (Water, Electricity, Cleaning, Phone bills etc.)€100-150


Italy, due to the presence of beautiful scenes, rich heritage, and natural endowment, is also called Bel Paese. The country is famous for its unmatched architectural designs, arts, cinema, and tourism.

Italy is now gradually becoming the hub of knowledge and innovation for international students who want to fulfill their dreams and aspirations.

Italy is better known for the presence of the centuries-old University of Bologna, where students continue to be equipped with quality and top-class education at an affordable fee.

On average, the acceptance rate of Italian universities falls in the range of 35–45%. Italian universities offer a variety of courses in various streams that facilitate students to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the subject and its application in real life. 


Is pursuing a Master's in Italy a good option?

Yes if you are looking for cost-effective quality and skill-based education in Europe, there is no better option than Italy. The country is filled with rich cultural heritage, multicultural environment and peaceful surroundings offering a unique perspective to International students both academically and professionally.

The primary focus of the students studying in Italy at any level should be to focus on studies primarily because of high academic pressures and challenging coursework.

However, part-time work provides relevant experience needed for future career aspects. It also helps students to manage their living expenses on their own. The Master’s students can work up to 20 hours per week.

According to the decision taken by the Government of India and the Government of Italy jointly in November 2023, Indian students are allowed to stay in Italy for 12 months for initial professional experience.

If you are an aspirant looking to study at your dream university, book an appointment with AdmitX today and start your applications early to avail yourself of all the benefits.

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