The basic requirement for University entry in Italy is the possession of a secondary school leaving certificate. In general, there is no entry quota (numerus clausus) except for the admission to undergraduate courses in Medicine and to postgraduate courses. When a quota is applicable, students are required to pass an examination to be admitted.
Fees are paid upon admission; their amount depends on the relevant department. Applicants must submit their application form to the Rector's Office, together with the required documents, by the end of September of each year.
Overseas guest and exchange students
Places are available for overseas students in a limited number. Students from foreign countries who want to apply for admission to an Italian state university should forward their request through the Italian consulates in their country. Before being admitted, overseas students are required to pass a test intended to give satisfactory evidence to the University of their proficiency in written and spoken Italian providing that they are able to take full advantage of their studies in Italy.
Overseas students wishing to attend Italian language courses in their home country may apply to the Italian cultural Institutes; moreover, The University of Sassari itself organises an intensive Italian course twice a year (October and February) to overseas students.
Students eligible for EU mobility programmes (e.g. ERASMUS or ECTS), or of agreements signed by the University of Sassari with overseas Universities, will be received irrespective of the above terms. They remain registered at their own Institution while they are in Sassari and are not officially enrolled as students at the University of Sassari, being considered as guest students. They are admitted to one or several courses according to their individual programmes and are registered for single courses (corsi singoli). They can submit the required documents directly to the Registrar's Office (Segreteria Studenti) and are entitled to be exempted from fees. Upon completion of their period of study, a certificate is sent back to their home University.
The University of Sassari offers short-term courses (Scuole dirette a fini speciali), undergraduate courses (Corsi di laurea) and different kinds of post-graduate courses, not only valid in the sphere of academic research (Corsi di laurea specialistica, Dottorati di ricerca, Scuole di specializzazione, Corsi di perfezionamento).
The main degree awarded is called Laurea; it is conferred on students having passed the prescribed number of examinations and presented a written thesis on a specific topic. The duration of the studies to obtain such a degree depends on the Faculty and ranges from 3 to 6 years.
Every year each department publishes its handbook or upgrades the website, where available courses are listed, along with their contents and lecturers. Rules and proposals for the preparation of individual curricula are also provided.
The basic unit of the Italian system of higher education is the academic year, lasting from October 1st to September 30th. Lectures are held until the end of May. There are two mid-term holidays, around Christmas and Easter, and a long summer holiday from July to the opening of the next academic year.
At the University of Sassari the "semester system", ranging approximately from October 1st to January 31st and from March 1st to June 30th, has been adopted for several courses. Classes are held Monday to Friday. 3 hours per week are included for annual courses, and 4-6 hours per week if the course lasts only a semester. As a rule, lectures are given in Italian, except courses by foreign visiting professors, or international post-graduate courses.
Students have to take examinations in the disciplines of the planned curriculum. The two regular examination periods are in June-July and in October. Special periods are in February and September. Exams may be oral or written and are evaluated by a three-member commission. Grades range from 18 (the lowest passing grad) to 30 cum laude.
Students who have passed all required examinations are admitted to the final accademic defence, consisting of a "viva voce" discussion of a thesis (tesi di laurea) in front of a departmental commission of eleven members. The grading system for the degree exam ranges from the lowest passing grade (66) to first-class honours (110 - magna cum laude).