Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU) has been the academic destination for international students for over 26 years already. The International Student Department was established in year 1990 and initially offered foreign students the possibility to take-up full time studies at the Faculties of Medicine and Dentistry (at the time – Stomatology) in English.
Currently the International Student Department has 1910 students from around 56 countries: Afghanistan, Albania, USA, Australia, Azerbaijan, Byelorussia, Brazil, Denmark, Egypt, France, Greece, Georgia, Hong Kong, Estonia, India, Iraq, Italy, Israel, Ireland, New Zealand, Canada, Kazakhstan, Russia, China, Latvia, Great Britain, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Nepal, Nigeria, Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Finland, Spain, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Germany, and Sweden.
We offer a versatility of study programmes in English not only in medicine and dentistry, but also in nursing, rehabilitation, pharmacy, public health, health management and social work with children and youth. Although studies in English are mostly chosen by students from EU and EEA countries, in recent years the citizens and permanent residents of Latvia are demonstrating increasing interest about study possibilities in English.
Historically rooted RSU medical studies for local and international students are an attractive choice also because of clinical placement possibilities. Contrary to numerous other European universities whose students may undergo practical training at hospitals only during residency, RSU students are learning in a clinical environment on a daily basis, for example 3rd year students have the possibility to contact patients and discuss medical examination and treatment plans with practitioners whereas following completion of 3rd study year students go on clinical care placement. In subsequent years students have clinical placement at hospitals where they work under the supervision of hospital practitioners.
The International Student Department renders comprehensive support to students with English as their study language: consult on study planning, provide tips for finding accommodation and help integrate into the academic life and local community. Since 2014 RSU has launched a programme aimed at fostering internationalization where senior foreign students are given the option to study in English together with local students.
The mentor program is implemented through senior students who assist freshmen with diverse academic and everyday issues. There is also a psychological consultation centre at the university.
Foreign students enrich RSU study environment, foster intercultural communication, facilitate formation of a tolerant multi-cultural society and promote internationalisation. RSU foreign students, young practitioners and dentists speak for the quality of our medical education as they act as our heralds worldwide. The presence of international students makes our academic staff take a more international approach towards the study courses taught and strive towards foreign language proficiency.