New law on universities – the most important solutions

Changes in the system of universities and their financing, and in obtaining a doctorate is provided for in the draft of the new law on universities. The science ministry also wants greater autonomy for universities, changes to the rules for science evaluation, and the extension of part-time studies.

The draft of a new law reforming universities and science, the so-called “New Law on Universities and Science”, provides. Set 2.0., presented by Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Science Jaroslaw Gowin during the National Science Congress in Krakow. Public consultations on. The project will take approx. three months. PAP has reached the justification of the bill, in which theorym described the most important proposals for solutions.

Amongod important directional changes are The dependence of many capabilities of the university ( opportunities to conduct studiesoin profile ogolnoacademic and awarding of degrees) from the scientific categories it will obtain in the disciplines being conducted. Universities will be divided into academic and vocational. According to the proposed provisionsoin the bodies of the university, oprocz rector and senate (as before), will roalso the university council. The central authorities of the universities, rector, gain at the expense of faculty authoritiesointo a greater ability to shape the policy of the placowki. Part of the provisionow will disappear from the bill so that universities can regulate them in their statutes – according to its own policy.

Major changes will concern the doctoral studentsow. Doctoral schools are to be established at universities, where all doctoral students will be provided with scholarships. However, there will be greater requirements for doctoral students in terms of the quality of their research and publications.

The duration of studies is to be extendedoIn part-time. Another novelty is education cycles krotier than a bachelor’s degree – it would be possible to obtain an education one mesh higher than a baccalaureate, and one mesh lower than a bachelor’s degree.

Teaching staff working at universities will also receive greater opportunities for career development.

The science ministry is not backing away from habilitation, although it will not be necessary to work as a university professor. The belvedere professorship also remains – the title of professor will, as now, be granted by the President of Poland. Fromod of the science ministry’s proposal, however, there is an idea to make sure that a candidate for a professorship has not worked and served in state security organs between July 1944. and July 1990. Similarly, when it comes to members ofoin the Commission for the Evaluation of Science (which evaluates the quality of education at universities).

Neither student discounts on public transportation nor the system of material aid for students will change after the reformsow. The bill also does not provide for additional fees for full-time studies at public universities. Instead, there are to be sanctions for universities thatore violate the rights of studentsow.

The Ministry of Science does not intend to introduce the – previously considered – retirement status for professorsoin retirement. Although from the sourceosources close to the Ministry of Science report that the President of Poland is to come up with such an initiative. The new regulations will also not force mobility after earning a doctorate.

Division of universities

After the reforms, much will depend on the scientific category obtained as a result of the evaluation (there will be five categories: A+, A, B+, B, C). The evaluation will be subject to each of the followingolne disciplines of science conducted at the university, and not, as before, the organizational units of the university. The draft introduces a new classification of scientific fields and disciplines (based on the OECD model already used in Europe).

The draft also provides for the division of universities (public and non-public) into academic and vocational (so the ministry has withdrawn from the idea of dividing universities into research, research and teaching). Professional universities will not compete with academic ones for funding. Pools of fundsow for those dwoch groups of universities will be separate.

An academic institution will have to have at least one of the academic categories A+, A or B+ (these are the highest grades). Only academic universities will be allowed to provide doctoral educationoin doctoral schools.

In turn, according to the draft, a vocational university will gain the ability to conduct coursesow and training to obtain qualifications at level 5. Polish Qualification Framework. And this means that the university could offer cycles of education krotier studies. One would then be able to obtain an education one notch higher than a high school diploma, and one notch lower than a bachelor’s degree – which is possible in many countries. So far, there has been no such possibility in Poland.

The bill specifies requirements for being able to use the word in a university’s nameow: university, polytechnic and academy. It will be roAlso – indirectly – dependent on the obtained scientific categories. Transitional provisions, however, stipulate that the current names of universities will not change, even if they cease to meet certain requirementsow. This is to stabilize the naming of universities.

Conducting studiesow

After the reforms, the rights to conduct studiesoin and conferring degrees will be assigned to universities, not to their organizational units.

Universities rated the best in a given discipline (at A+ or A), will be able to award doctoral and postdoctoral degrees, and will also be able to independently create new fields of study in that disciplineow and off-site branches.

If a university obtains a B+ category in a given field, it will only be able to award doctoral degrees there. And new fields of studyow (with a profile ogolnoacademic or practical) will be able to open only after obtaining the approval of the minister of.

In turn, the universities with the lowest categories (B or C) new courses of studyoin will be allowed to open in a given discipline only on a practical profile, and only with the permission of the minister. SquareoThese students will not be allowed to conduct schooloł doctorates nor educate studentow on doctors and dentistsow.

In addition, the minister of science will moThe mainoTo grant a permit to establish a field of studyow if it deems that education in a particular field of study does not meet there socio-economic needs.

Regulations on minimum staffing levels will disappear. However, there will be provisions mobind what proportion of study hours must be taught by academic teachers employed at the university as their primary place of work. In the case of studiesow with og profileolnoacademic studies will be up to 3/4 hours of classes, and practical 1/2. It has ukroccurricular activities and conducting classes within the framework of the so-called “educational system”. umoin junk.

After the reforms, it is also to be possible to form unionsoin the university and the federation of universities.

Ustroj of the university

The key document for the operation of the university is to be the statute – it is there that the most important provisions for its operation are to be included.

According to the proposed provisionoin the organs of the higher school, oprocz rector and senate (as before), it will roalso the university council, while in a non-public higher education institution – the rector and the senate.

The university council will be able to have 7 or 9 membersoThe project assumes that 50% of the members of the university council will be retained, of which more than half will be people from outside the university, and one of its members will be a doctoral studentoThe president of the student government will be in charge of the. The election of the remaining members of theoin the council will be made by the university senate. The tasks of the university council will include Adopting the university’s strategy, supervising the financial management of the university and the management of the university, identifying candidates forow for the rector.

The rector will be elected by the electoral collegeoin the form ofod at least twoochob indicated by the university council. To the dutiesoThe rector’s duties are to be Management of the university, its finances, staff and organization or preparation of a projectoin the statute and strategy of the university.

The university senate is to continue to be composed of students, doctoral students, academic teachers and other university employees. The University Council has enact statutes, rules and regulations of the studiesoin, confer degrees or define study programsow and studioin postgraduate.


The baccalaureate exam is to be the basis for enrollment, but the university will be able to order an entrance exam (with the result being mohead will constitute a maximum of half of the pointsoin the recruitment procedure – at least half of the recruitment result will be matriculation results). When recruiting students, the university will have to provide the full catalog and the amount of fees to be paid by the student. University, whichora will change the student’s fees during studiow is to be penalized.

Part-time studies are to last longer than full-time studies – by one semester in the case of studies with aoIn the case of first- and second-cycle studies, and by 2 semesters in the case of studies in the first- and second-cycleoin uniform master’s.

The draft assumes that 50 percent of. discounts on public transport fares. Opportunities provided by the material aid system should not change either.

The law is also to make publication of thesis reviews mandatory.

PhD students

After the reforms, there are to be two paths to obtaining a doctorate: doctoral schools and an extramural path known as the “doctoral school”. "with free footing". In doctoral schools, each doctoral student will be provided with a scientific stipend, and the schools will not have a part-time form.

Ph.D. student’s academic scholarship (awarded for a maximum of 4 years) is initially to be at least 110 percent of the. minimum salary (as of today it would be PLN 2200 gross). And after the person in question receives a positive evaluation of the mrodokresowa, would be raised to at least 170 percent of the. In doctoral schools each doctoral student will be provided with a scientific stipend, and the schools will not have a non-stationary form of study. Negative evaluation of the middleoA docent is to be expelled from the list of doctoral studentsow.

The authority to confer a doctoral degree will be held by a university, a federal university, a scientific institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences, a research institute or an international scientific institute in a discipline in which theoThe cruise will have a scientific category of A+, A or B+.

A third reviewer from outside the institution is to be introduced for the evaluation of the doctorate, in ktowhere the doctorate is done. And the defense (with certain exceptions) will be public.

D. students whooThose who start doctoral studies before the 2019/2020 academic year will continue them under the current rules. Przewod doctoral studies under the old rules will be able to be initiated until the end of April 2019., But then the doctorate must be done by the end of 2020. (Doctoral dissertations of those whoowho do not make it, will be forgiven).

In order to obtain a doctoral degree, one will have to have to their credit a peer-reviewed scientific monograph or a publication in a recognized journal (from the Minister’s list). These requirements are more difficult to meet than those enshrined in the current law.

Academic career

The draft provides for three groups of academic teachers: employeeoin teaching, research and research and teaching.

The science ministry wants the position of university professor mohead be hired even a doctor (with achievements – e.g. scientific or didactic). An excellent lecturer will mohead to become a university professor, even if he or she does not have a habilitation degree. Also disappearing from the law will be restrictions on how long it takes to do a habilitation (previously 8 years).

To hire an academic teacher, the university will have to hold a competition (with some exceptions – which applies to the laureateoin important grantoin whether someorych lecturersow from abroad). However, if the university only wants to change the employment contract of an already employed lecturer from a definite to an indefinite term, the competition will no longer be necessary. A positive periodic evaluation is to be sufficient. If an employee receives two negative periodic evaluations in a row, the university may dismiss him or her. The employment contract will specify whether the university is the teacher’s primary place of work.

Habilitation and professorship

Doctoral and postdoctoral degrees will be conferred by the university senate (or its committee) or, in the case of institutesow – scientific council. The title of professor is to be conferred – so far – by the President of the Republic of Poland.

Central Commission for Scientific Research. Degrees and Titleoin Scientific – ktora dealt with applications for habilitation and professorship – will be replaced by the Council for Scientific Excellence.

To obtain a habilitation, one will have to have (with minor exceptions) a doctoral degree and significant scientific or artistic achievements, as well as scientific activity in more than one university or scientific institution "in particularolarity abroad" – is written in the justification. Achievements will include roalso and those prior to obtaining a doctorate (this is a novelty). Habilitation proceedings will be open.

An easier path to habilitation will open up for those whooThe positive periodic evaluation is to be sufficientolnie ERC grant winners). They will obtain habilitation in a much simplified procedure.

Professorship, in turn – according to the draft – will be available to a person whoora has conducted scientific research or development work and has an outstanding scientific achievement to his credit. Another condition is to lead research teams in grants and conduct research at foreign scientific institutions.

"The requirement for each of the osob, whichore applying for the title of professor is to make sure regarding such a person that he or she has not worked or served in state security organs in the period since July 22, 1944. until July 31, 1990." – is written in the justification of the project.

The Ministry of Science also wants that in exceptional cases the title of professor of mohead get even a doctor without a habilitation. However, he or she must meet all other conditions from the law.


The funding model for higher education and science will also change. According to the draft, universities will receive a single research and teaching grant. It is to be allocated zarowno to maintain the teaching potential of the university as well as its scientific potential. The new subsidy will be directed to the university, and not – as before – to its organizational units (e.g. facultyow). It will be the rector who will decide how to divide the grant.

There will also be a grant for the maintenance of research potential, whichoThe evaluation will be granted not only to public universities. As part of these measuresoin the foreseen maintenance of the szkoł doctorates.

Beneficiaries will be able to decide more freely than before what they will specifically spend the money on. In addition, funds not used in a given year will carry over to the following year.

"The reduction in the number of funding streams will not mean a reduction in resourcesoin transferred to universities" – noted in the justification for the law.


Evaluation of the quality of scientific activity will be conducted every four years by the Committee for the Evaluation of Science (previously – the Committee for the Evaluation of Scientific Units). A KEN member will be able to become a person whoora actively participates in the implementation of scientific research and has significant achievements in this area. A KEN member will be able to be a person whoora "in the period from July 22, 1944. by July 31, 1990. has not worked or served in state security organs (. ) and does not supportoThe team worked with these organs" – was written in the justification.

During evaluation, scientific achievement will be able to be demonstrated only once – when evaluating only one discipline. And this is with the authorization of the author of this achievement.

Meanwhile, evaluation of the quality of education will be carried out by the Polish Accreditation Commission. Such an evaluation can be either positive or negative.

Programs for top universities

The best academic universities will be able to compete for additional funds under the program „Initiative of excellence – research university”. They can gain up to an additional 10 percent in it. research and teaching grant of the year in question. A maximum of 10 universities will be able to count on support in the first stage. This is expected, according to the project’s rationale, to help improve the university’s competitiveness with world universities.

The science ministry also proposes a second competition in the bill – „Regional initiative of excellence”. Its purpose is to developoj of a particular scientific discipline at a given university and to provide guarantees for zroin the sustainable development of the country’s universities.

Sourceosource: PAP – Nauka w Polsce, Ludwika Tomala, fot. Minimus/Wikimedia Commons