Academic Year and Language of Instruction in Poland

The academic year in Poland has been separated into two semesters – the winter and the summer semester. The duration of each semester is 15-weeks.

The Winter Semester

The winter semester begins in October and ends in mid-February along with a short vacation of about ten days for the Christmas. The examination session generally lasts for two to three weeks, commencing in January. 

The Summer Semester

The summer semester begins in mid-February and ends in June, with a one-week vacation for Easter. Summer vacation usually lasts for three months from the beginning of July to the end of September, but only for those who have passed all exams within the summer assessment sessions (two-three weeks in June). Those who have failed the exams need to re-take in September.

Language of Instruction in Poland

Poland has a tradition of multi-lingual education in its schools and universities. Of course, Polish is the primary language and is taught compulsorily, but many other foreign languages such as English, French, and German are also included in higher education. 

Language of Instruction Pre-Primary Education
There is no requirement to learn foreign lingos at this level. They are not comprised in the curriculum. Still, most children start foreign languages in pre-primary schooling. The learning method involves 'playing' with a specified language, by means of new method and techniques suitable for children. The most common foreign tongues are English, German and French. 

Language of Instruction at Primary Education
In primary schooling a single foreign language is compulsory from the first grade. This condition can transform for the better after 2014, once a new education restructuring will be fully effective. The most prevalent foreign languages are English, German and French. The state of affairs in primary education is positive.

Language of Instruction at Secondary Education
Throughout secondary education scholars continue to study the overseas language selected in primary school. They, correspondingly, start a second foreign language in the very first year of secondary level. Two foreign languages are mandatory and students can select their second foreign language from among English, French, German, Russian, and Spanish. In some institutes, students are trained in Chinese. There are subordinate schools with an intercontinental baccalaureate (CIB) and the syllabus is based on contents as well as language education.

Language of Instruction at Higher Education
At the professional training level, the learning of extraneous languages faces many difficulties: the curriculum and syllabus is shaped locally. Vocational schools are sovereign in building their final linguistic requirements; though, there is connection to the CEFR. The class assurance and procedures linked with final assessment are not widespread. One of the possible changes could be the overview of a common platform for negotiation between vocational establishments in order to craft common external language requirements containing a syllabus and final examination. 

Universities have obligatory foreign language courses in their packages. The colleges in Poland are autonomous and the programme of a specified subject should be accepted by the Faculty Board. It is very problematic to regulate foreign language programmes at universities. 


Poland has endured substantial modifications in the area of education. A range of European documents have shaped a common agenda for making Polish people more conscious of being European residents. The quantity of pupils learning foreign languages at universities is continuously rising, with a prevalence of English taught to majority learners at primary, lower, and secondary schools.
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