Members of EU countries are permitted to enter Italy and even complete a degree programme in Italy without requiring a student visa for the duration of their programme, however each student must register with the local police station.
Non-EU students require a student visa, of which there are two types: a short term visa for less than 90 days and a long-stay visa. The application process for a student visa in Italy can take many weeks so applications should be made as soon as confirmation of acceptance has been received.
There are several documents required for the student visa application including letter of acceptance from the University, health documents, proof of accommodation and proof of adequate financial support – this includes the amount required to travel home if necessary, or a pre-booked return ticket.
Many Italian Universities offer help and assistance to students moving to Italy to study and will have a dedicated international office which will provide information on finding accommodation and the renting process.
There is plenty of student accommodation in Italy to choose from both in the private sector and from the Universities themselves, giving you the choice of going through the international office or doing it yourself online.
It is common in Italy to rent a room rather than an entire apartment and many students share apartments or houses with their fellow students, there are also often shorter terms available for students to make it easier to rent for a term rather than an entire year.
Before applying to your University of choice,it is advisable for any potential international students to contact the University and ensure that the qualifications you have are transferable and appropriate to be accepted for the course. Once you have completed a prior assessment and are deemed eligible you will have to submit a pre-application request to the Italian embassy or consulate in your home country, who will pass this on to the University.
Most Italian Universities offer study programmes in both Italian and English, so proficiency in one or both will be required depending on the programme you wish to study in Italy; these examinations of language proficiency can be taken in most Italian consulates around the world.
You will need to provide several documents on your application including proof of identity and academic transcript. You will also need to provide a CV, a letter of recommendation, a letter of motivation and a portfolio depending on the programme you wish to study.
Tuition fees in Italy are much lower than many other European countries as they are restricted by legislation which states that there is a maximum cost for student contributions which cannot exceed 20% of state funding, this means that fees for public universities in Italy rarely exceed €850-1,000 p/year.
If you are studying a specialised programme like a Masters of a PhD then the tuition fees are not as regulated which makes them considerably more expensive, this also applies to the private universities in Italy.
There are plenty of scholarships and funding options for international students to take advantage of, many of which also cover costs of living assistance as well as covering the tuition fees. There are scholarships and grants available from the Italian government along with the separate institutions which should be explored if you want to study in Italy.