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Reducing study programme fragmentation and promoting study internationalisation at Rīga Stradiņš University

Project/agreement No.
Project funding
597 348.54 EUR, including 507746.26 EUR ESF co-funding and 89602.28 EUR public funding
Project manager
Santa Bartuševiča,  Dagnija Briede
Project realization
01.05.2019. - 30.11.2023.


The aim of the project is to increase the competitiveness in the supply of study programmes at Rīga Stradiņš University (RSU) on the international education market by focusing and sharing resources, reducing the fragmentation of study programmes and developing new, modern, interdisciplinary study programmes that meet the requirements of the Latvian and European labour market.


RSU has drafted a plan for the development and consolidation of study programmes in cooperation with industry experts, and by involving academic staff, general staff and student representatives. The Study Programme Development and Consolidation Assessment Board of the Ministry of Education and Science has coordinated the development of six new study programmes at RSU:

  1. International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship (academic bachelors’ programme);
  2. Biostatistics (academic masters’ programme);
  3. Russia and Eurasia studies (academic masters’ programme);
  4. Economic Security (joint professional masters’ programme);
  5. Social Sciences (doctoral programme);
  6. Medicine and Health Sciences (doctoral programme).

The development of these new study programmes contributes to the broadening of the internationally competitive education offered at RSU by strengthening the fields of study that have the greatest potential for growth.

All newly created study programmes will be implemented by strategically cooperating with Latvian and international institutions of higher education, thus reducing the fragmentation of the study programmes, promoting international cooperation and sharing resources. It is intended for the doctoral study programmes to share resources among several study programmes implemented by RSU in this way creating research-based doctoral study programmes.

Activities and Deliverables
No.Project activityResultNumerical result
1.The development and licensing of new study programmes and joint PhDs in European Union languagesStudy programmes developed and licensed6Licensed study programmes
2.International publicity for the new study programmes developed within the projectStudy programmes received international publicity1Set of events
2.1Participation in international education exhibitions6 study programmes presented4Exhibitions
2.2Posting on international student recruitment websitesInformation about newly created study programmes published internationally3Publicity
2.3Publication of booklets and posters as well as a concept development serviceBooklets and posters published3Agreements
3.Information and publicity events on the implementation of the projectPublicity activities of the project implemented1Set of events
4.Approbation of new study programmes and joint PhDs in European Union languagesStudy programmes approbated6Approbated study programmes
5.Accreditation of study programmes developed within the project by EQARPrograms accredited in relative fields6Study programmes
6.Project management and project implementationProject implemented1Project
RSU Visiting Lecturer and Entrepreneur Sergejs Jakimovs: Start-Ups are the Backbone of Modern Economy (10 March 2020)

Iepazīt nākotnes profesiju, mācībspēkus un studentus: RSU aicina uz izstādi "Skola" (24.02.2020) – in Latvian only

Independent Experts Evaluate New RSU Business Studies Programme (10 February 2020)

RSU Develops International Business Studies Programme (9 January 2020)

RSU to offer a new business and start-up study programme in English (30 October 2019)

RSU Receives Funding to Develop Six New Study Programmes (22 May 2019)

17 August 2022

The Health Care doctoral programme description for accreditation has been developed and the licensing expert recommendation plan has been implemented. Work continues on drawing up the development plan.

There have been several publicity activities in cooperation with the International Admissions Office and the Communication Department. Amendments have been made to the Admission Procedures for the 2022/2023 academic year. There have been Zoom meetings with doctoral students about the implementation of the programme in the 2022/2023 academic year, about issues related to the transition process, and discussions about the organisation of the study process.

Work has been started on adapting the e-studies environment in the Social Sciences doctoral study programme with Latvian and English as languages of instruction (both for full-time and distance learning). A design sketch of the distance learning e-studies environment has been developed that is being tested in the existing e-studies environment. Documents have been updated on the professional qualifications, current positions, and terms of the expert status of the persons involved in the doctoral study programme. A licensing document package has been prepared and submitted to the Academic Information Centre (AIC).

All the necessary steps have been taken to implement the Russia and Eurasia Studies programme in the 2022 autumn semester: potential lecturers have been approached, the course layout has been improved, and synchronisation with other master’s programmes in the Department of Political Science has been facilitated. A dialogue has been conducted with potential students about studies in this programme and the dialogue with international universities is ongoing.

Documents for the Economic Security programme have been submitted to the Higher Education Quality Agency (Augstākās izglītības kvalitātes aģentūra, AIKA). The visit time was extended as AIKA could not find experts. The AIKA experts have been agreed upon and the expert visit is planned for 1 September. Accreditation plans are being reviewed with the project manager.

The Biostatistics programme has participated in the International Biostatistics Conference, communication has been carried out with potential students, and work on the accreditation process has begun.

The incubation programme in the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship programme has been completed, and the programme has been awarded 3rd place. A student hackathon was organised, and virtual placements are being conducted. Some students have gone abroad within the frame of the Erasmus exchange programme. The practical thesis defence project has been implemented.

17 November 2021

The approbation process for the Russia and Eurasia Studies and Biostatistics study programmes was not launched in the autumn semester of this year, but some of the study courses developed within the Russia and Eurasia Studies programme have been incorporated into the International Governance and Diplomacy programme. This allowed students to gradually get acquainted with the new programme's contents. Communication with interested parties regarding the contents of the programme and the possibility to join during the next admission period in 2022 autumn semester is ongoing. Participation in Open Days events and international school exhibitions is being planned together with the RSU International Department.

The International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship programme is in development and the study quality commission will make a decision on accreditation by the end of the year.

The documentation required for licensing the Economic Security programme has been updated and a council meeting of the Faculty of Law to approve and promote the licensing documents is planned. After this meeting, the applicable documents will be reviewed by the RSU Deans’ Council and the RSU Senate. Cooperation agreements on the implementation of the programme have been signed with the State Revenue Service and the State Police. The agreement on implementing the study programme is being coordinated between the partner universities according to the documents that have been developed.

The plan for the Social Science doctoral programme has been developed, work on the programme description and other technical documentation is also taking place. Work on preparing the descriptions of the individual study courses has also begun. The opinions provided by experts, cooperation partners and student representatives on the contents and scope of the study courses provided in the programme are being incorporated.

The Health Care doctoral programme has received a positive QAHE decision on licensing the programme on 10 November.

Posted on 17 November 2021

22 August 2019

Riga Stradiņš University has started work on the development of new study programmes. The first study programme is the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship academic bachelors’ degree programme. In June, a second meeting was held with the lecturers involved during which the programme was interactively mapped, the content of the study programme was also reviewed and possible outcomes of the study course were discussed. Lecturers also shared their experience on innovative study methods and discussed various aspects of implementing the study programme. It is planned that the study programme will be developed until the end of August followed by a specialised course description examination carried out by industry and international specialists.

From September 2019 work on developing the Biostatistics masters’ study programme will start. Several meetings with international colleagues took place in the first half of 2019, before the project began to be developed, in order to prepare for the study programme development.

Posted on 22 August 2019

22 November 2019

Riga Stradiņš University is continuing its work on developing new study programmes.

The development phase of the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship academic bachelors’ programme has been completed and the programme was approved by the RSU Senate at the end of October with a statement by independent experts.

The content of the new programme was presented and discussed at the end of October in the presence of university management, programme lecturers, visiting professors, entrepreneurs and representatives of organisations that participated in the creation and evaluation of the programme (article on RSU website - "RSU will offer a new business and start-up business study programme in English"). The event was also streamed online, providing access for those unable to attend.

In September the Biostatistics professional masters’ study programme began to be developed. Since the start, several meetings have been held with international colleagues to discuss and agree on the content of the programme and the outcomes to be achieved.

Posted on 22 November 2019

21 February 2020

The development of the study course description for the professional master’s study programme Biostatistics is ongoing, as well as work on improving the programme’s objectives. The programme’s materials are currently being developed and documentation is being updated, as part of a study programme comparison. The head of the study programme has submitted a proposal to the Ministry of Welfare regarding including Biostatistician as a new profession in the occupation classification system. 

RSU is also currently working on introducing the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship bachelor's study programme. A meeting of licensing experts from the Academic Information Centre took place on 6 February and as a result it was decided that the study programme would be licensed, provided that the title of the study programme was changed to International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship. Information on the new study programme will also be available at the International Education Exhibition “Skola”.

Negotiations have started on initiating the Transition and Russia Studies academic master’s study programme, and developing a joint Economic Security professional Master’s study programme.

Posted on 21 February 2020


The academic bachelor's study programme International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship, that was created during the project, has been licensed. The degree that can be obtained – a Bachelor’s degree in Management and Administration. RSU will receive a license within ten working days and the Management, Administration and Real Estate Management study direction will seek accreditation.

Updated on 25 February 2020

27 February 2020

The International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship programme’s website has been created and the programme has been included in the RSU catalogue of undergraduate programmes.

Posted on 2 March 2020

22 May 2020

During the development of the study programme a decision was made to change the type of the Biostatistics master’s study programme from a professional to an academic programme. Thus, students will obtain a degree rather than a professional qualification upon graduation: Master's Degree of Natural Sciences. The Ministry of Welfare of the Republic of Latvia has included the new profession of Biostatistician in the occupation classification system, but many steps must still be taken in order to implement the new profession. A decision was therefore made within the study programme's development group, to initially develop the study programme as an academic programme, thereby gradually developing the capacity of the teaching staff and enabling the industry to develop. The development of the study programme is in its final stages wherein possible companies for placements  are being identified, the programme description is being created. The training materials are ready and course descriptions have been added to the system and are currently being translated.

Having obtained the license, work on the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship academic bachelor's study programme continues and the adjustments mentioned in the licensing experts' decision are being made. Particular attention is paid to the incorporation of e-courses into the system, the ability to deliver studies remotely, accreditation documentation is being improved, and work is underway on the planning and implementation of a marketing strategy.

In April, work started on developing the Transition and Russia Studies academic master’s study programme by attracting lecturers from Estonia and Germany.

RSU has started to develop a new professional master’s study programme implemented jointly with Daugavpils University - Economic Security.

Posted on 22 May 2020

21 August 2020

RSU and Daugavpils University have jointly started to develop a new professional Master’s study programme - Economic Security. A working grou consisting of local and foreign experts has been created, for the development of the programme. 

The study programme's objectives and aims have been defined and the potential study courses and study course planning for full-time studies have been developed. Consultations with students regarding the content of the study programme have begun and recommendations have been received. Possible lecturers have been identified and information is being gathered regarding their involvement in the preparation of the study course descriptions.

The promotion of the licensed programme International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship is ongoing and final work is being carried out on accreditation documents and preparations for the administrative opening of the programme. Development of cooperation with IBSE partners in Latvia and abroad, including guest-lecturing and planning Brussels Week for the following year.

RSU has started working on developing the academic master’s study programme Transition and Russia Studies, but the title of the study programme has been changed to Russia and Eurasia studies. During the initial stage of development, cooperation was created between two foreign experts on geographical scope, methodological framework and the possible content of the programme, based on the experience of Estonian and German experts. The potential developers of the course descriptions, as well as lecturers from Latvia and abroad have been addressed, and currently the study programme is being developed and mapped.

Work on the Biostatistics programme has been finalised until accreditation, and after the summer break, the programme is going to be submitted to licensing documentation independent experts. 

Posted on 21 August 2020

20 November 2020

The professional Economic Security master's study programme is being developed jointly with Daugavpils University. The authors of the study courses have been determined and the development of study course descriptions has begun. An agreement has been reached with the State Revenue Service and the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Latvia on concluding a cooperation agreement in the professional Economic Security master's study programme. Work has begun on a programme description and meetings and discussions are being held with students on the programme’s contents.

Work continues on the development of the academic Russia and Eurasia Studies master's study programme. Study course descriptions have been developed and will be submitted to an independent documentation licensing expert for evaluation. The study programme was discussed with employer and student representatives. The comparison of the programme description with similar programmes has been conceptually completed, letters of support have been obtained, and other institutions’ opinions have been collected.

Work has begun on the Medical Science doctoral study programme. Descriptions of the study programme have been developed and the programme’s content framework has been updated. There has been a meeting with lecturers on the harmonisation of the study courses within the doctoral study programme. Communication is underway about the programme description and the development of course materials.

Approbation of the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship (IBSE) academic bachelor's study programme has begun. Work on the development of a combined distance learning and regular study plan has been completed, which has been changed into a distance learning plan. Work continues on improving the e-learning environment and cooperation in the implementation of the study programme.

The prepared licensing documentation of the Biostatistics study programme has been evaluated by an independent expert and the study programme will be submitted for licensing.

19 May 2021

The Economic Security professional master’s study programme is currently being developed. The placement regulations for the programme have been drawn up and the preparation of licensing documents is ongoing. The study contract and admission regulations are being developed and agreed upon together with Daugavpils University, and the design of the study programme is in progress.

The Biostatistics academic masters' study programme has been licensed for full-time, part-time and distance learning.

An expert decision has been taken to put forward the Russian and Eurasian Studies academic master's study programme for licensing, and there are plans to introduce expert recommendations into the programme’s contents.

Work on the Medical and Health Sciences doctoral study programme is ongoing and the preparation of documentation for the licensing stage is in progress.

The approbation stage of the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship study programme is in progress, and activities and work are being planned for admissions in September 2021.

The Social Sciences doctoral study programme has begun to be developed.

19 August 2021

The Health Care study programme has been developed and coordinated at RSU internally and the programme's documentation was submitted to the AIC for licensing in July.

The Russia and Eurasia Studies academic master's study programme and the Biostatistics academic masters' study programme are licensed and ready to start work; applications are now open, interviews with applicants have been conducted and the respective section on the website has been developed and updated. Further improvements in accordance with the licensing experts' recommendations have been made and further improvement of the study programme is ongoing.

The work together with Daugavpils University (DU) on the development of the Economic Security professional master's study programme is currently in progress. The study programme's design has been developed for full-time and part-time studies in cooperation with colleagues from DU and the admission requirements for both Latvian and English students have been developed and agreed upon.

Work on the development of the Social Sciences programme has commenced and, the concept of the programme has been developed, a draft of the study programme has been developed and the composition of potential lecturers has been identified. A comparison of similar programmes has been prepared. Discussions with potential foreign lecturers and guest lecturers have taken place. The work with potential partners (MEPRD, Health Inspectorate, Ombudsman, etc., who also participated in the development of the programme), has taken place. The development of technical documents has been started.

An experts report has been received following the visit of accreditation experts to the study programmes of the Management, Administration and Real Estate Management study direction, including the International Business and Start-up Entrepreneurship programme, the work on the implementation of the expert recommendation plan is ongoing. An overview of the first year of approbation with students and lecturers has been performed.

Posted on 26 August 2021

15 October 2021

Licensing experts for the doctoral programme in Health Care took place on 11 October, during which the experts met with university management, the management of the study field and the study programmes, lecturers, students and employer representatives.