University of Pisa

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The University of Pisa (Italian: Università di Pisa, UniPi) is an Italian public research university located in Pisa, Italy. It was founded in 1343 by an edict of Pope Clement VI. It is the 19th oldest extant university in the world and the 10th oldest in Italy. The prestigious university is ranked within the top 10 nationally and the top 400 in the world according to the ARWU and the QS. It houses the Orto botanico di Pisa, Europe's oldest academic botanical garden, which was founded in 1544. The University of Pisa is part of the Pisa University System, which includes the Scuola Normale Superiore and the Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies. 

In the fields of philology and cultural studies, the University of Pisa is a leading member of ICoN, an inter-university consortium of 21 Italian universities supported by the Ministry of Education, Universities and Research, as well as a member of the European University Association, the Partnership of a European Group of Aeronautics and Space Universities network and the Cineca consortium. It's the only university in Italy which has become a member of the prestigious Universities Research Association.

Among its notable graduates there are several national and foreign political leaders including two Italian presidents, five Popes, five Italian prime ministers and three Nobel Laureates as students, faculty or staff affiliates. Pisa has an intense athletic rivalry with the University of Pavia, which traditionally culminates in the Pisa-Pavia Regatta (Regata Pisa-Pavia), the oldest competition of this kind in Italy, and second in Europe only to the Oxford Cambridge boat race.

In 2013, the University of Pisa finished with La Sapienza University of Rome in first place among the Italian universities, according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities. The University of Pisa ranks high in the most prestigious rankings, both global and by discipline. The various ranking institutes put it between the 200th and 400th positions, thus in the top 1-2% worldwide. Its main strength is academic performance, hence it ranks higher wherever the latter is given more emphasis (e.g., in the ARWU and NTU global rankings, as well as in QS and THE "by discipline" rankings). In the rankings by discipline, the University of Pisa often ranks in the top 100 worldwide in Physics, Mathematics, Classics, Computer Science, and among the top Italian universities in the same disciplines.

  • Department of Civil and Industrial Engineering

    DICI was established in 2012, following a major reform of the Italian higher education system, as a merger of the former departments of Aerospace Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Industrial Chemistry and Materials Science, Mechanical, Nuclear and Production Engineering, and a part of the department of Civil Engineering.

  • Department of Information Engineering

  • Department of Economics and Management

  • Department of Computer Science

  • Department of Biology

    The Department of Biology of the University of Pisa brings together a range of disciplines to understand life at all levels of biological organization in a wide variety of organisms, including viruses, bacteria, animals, plants and humans.  Research plays a central role in the Department’s mandate and focuses on the organization and functioning of cells, tissues, organs, individuals, populations and ecological communities in an evolutionary context. In addition to fundamental research, the mission of the Department of Biology is also to promote the applied aspects of the research, as for example with the research program in biotechnology. 
    The Department of Biology has good infrastructure and instrumentation to ensure laboratory and field advanced research. The units of the Department of Biology consist of high profile scientific researchers who have developed national and international partnerships with leading research laboratories in their disciplines and who are able to attract funding from public and private organizations both nationally and internationally. 
    The teaching staff of the Department is mostly involved in undergraduate programs in Biological Sciences, Biotechnology, Environmental and Natural Sciences, and in many degree courses. The Department of Biology also offers a PhD course in Biology.

  • Department of Chemistry and Industrial Chemistry

    The research is divided into the following areas: Analytical Chemistry, Physical Chemistry, Industrial Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry and Organic Chemistry. The research taking place in the Department are both fundamental nature that application, with contracts with industry, including international ones, and with bodies such as CNR and the European Community. 
    The scientific contacts at national and international level are very intense and both the teachers but also the young trainees spend periods of study and work abroad. Some of the universities with which it collaborates the Department are at the North Carolina Un.ty Chapei Hill; Cornell Un.ty; Virginia Commonwealt Un.ty; Paris Sud (Orsay); Tromsoe Un.ty (N); USC-Los Angeles; Un.ty and MPI Mainz; Un.ty; Burgos Un.ty; ENS Lyon et ETH Zurich; Waseda Un.ty Tokyo; UCV-Caracas (VL); State Un.ty NY; Un.ty California Berkeley; Acad. Sci. Poland; Un.ty Manchester; Un.ty Northampton (UK).

  • School of Engineering

  • Department of Agricultural, Food and Agro-Environmental Sciences

  • Department of Veterinary Sciences

  • Department of Civilization and Forms of Knowledge

  • School of Medicine

  • Department of Political Science

  • Department of Law

  • Department of Chemistry and Industrial Echimica

  • Polo University Logistic Systems

  • Department of Earth Sciences

  • Department of Philology, Literature and Linguistics

  • Department of Pharmacy

  • Naval Academy

  • Department of Mathematics

  • Department of Physics

  • Interdepartmental

The University of Pisa was officially established on September 3, 1343. However, a number of scholars claim its origin dates back to the 11th century.The first reliable data on the presence of secular and monastic schools of law in Pisa is from the 11th century and the second half of the 12th century, a time when Pisa had already achieved a remarkable economic development. The following century formed the first documents to prove the presence of doctors of medicine and surgery.

The earliest evidence of a Pisan Studium dates to 1338, when jurist Ranieri Arsendi transferred to Pisa from Bologna. He, along with Bartolo da Sassoferrato, a lecturer in civil law, were paid by the municipality to teach public lessons. The papal bull In supremae dignitatis, granted by Pope Clement VI on September 3, 1343, recognized the Studium of Pisa as a Studium Generale; an institution of further education founded or confirmed by a universal authority, the Papacy, or Empire. Pisa was one of the first European universities to boast this papal attestation, which guaranteed the universal and legal value of its educational qualifications.

The first taught subjects were theology, civil law, canon law and medicine. In 1355, Francesco da Buti, the well-known commentator of Dante's Divine Comedy, began teaching at the Studium. Pisa and its Studium underwent a period of crisis around the turn of the 15th century: the Florentines' conquest of the town led to the university's closure in 1403. In 1473, thanks to Lorenzo de Medici, the Pisan Studium resumed its systematic development, and the construction of a building for holding lessons was provided for in 1486. The building — later known as Palazzo della Sapienza (the "Building of Knowledge") — was located in the 14th-century Piazza del Grano. The image of a cherub was placed above the gate Dell'Abbondanza (the "Gate of Abundance"), leading to the piazza, and today is still the symbol of the university.

Following the rebellion and the war against Florence in 1494, the Pisan Studium suffered a period of decline and was transferred to Pistoia, Prato and Florence. The ceremonial reopening of the university on November 1, 1543, under the rule of Duke Cosimo I de Medici, was considered as a second inauguration. The quality of the university was furthered by the statute of 1545 and the Pisan Athenaeum became one of the most significant in Europe for teaching and research. The chair of Semplici (botany) was held by Luca Ghini, founder of the world's first botanical gardens. He was succeeded by Andrea Cesalpino, who pioneered the first scientific methodology for the classification of plants, and is considered a forerunner in the discovery of blood circulation. Gabriele Falloppio and Marcello Malpighi lectured in anatomy and medicine. Galileo Galilei, who was born and studied in Pisa, became professor of mathematics at the Pisan Studium in 1589.

The annexation of Tuscany to the Napoleonic Empire resulted in the transformation of the Studium into an Imperial Academy. The Athenaeum became a branch of the University of Paris, and the courses and study programs were structured following the French public education model. Five new faculties were established: (theology, law, medicine, science and literature), along with examinations, different qualification titles and graduation theses. In 1810 the scuola normale was established, after the École normale of Paris.

The Restoration wasn't able to cancel the effects of the Napoleonic experience. The first Congress of Italian Scientists was held in Pisa in 1839. Over 300 experts of various disciplines and 421 scientists discussed zoology, comparative anatomy, chemistry, physics, mathematics, agronomy, technology, botany, vegetation physiology, geology, mineralogy, geography and medicine. In 1839–1840, the Director of Education Gaetano Giorgini brought about the most important reform in the University of Pisa by raising the number of faculties to six (theology, law, literature, medicine, mathematics, and natural sciences). Giorgini also created the world's first chair of agriculture and sheep farming.

In 1846, the Scuola Normale reopened. At the same time, liberal and patriotic ideals were spreading at Athenaeum and a battalion of the university (composed of lecturers and students) distinguished itself in the Battle of Curtatone and Montanara in 1848.

During the Second Restoration in 1851, Leopoldo II united the universities of Pisa and Siena in a unique Etruscan Athenaeum, motivated in part by economic reasons, but primarily for political control. The faculties of theology and law rested at Siena, while those of literature, medicine, mathematics and natural sciences remained at Pisa. Following the Florentine insurrection and the fleeing of the Grand Duke in 1859, one of the initial measures imposed by the provisory government was the restitution to the city of Pisa of its Studium with all six of its faculties.

During the years of fascism, the Pisa Athenaeum was an active centre for political debate and antifascist organisation. After the second world war, the University of Pisa returned to the avant-garde style of learning in many fields of knowledge. To the faculties of engineering and pharmacy, established pre-war, were added economics, foreign languages and literature and politics. In 1967 the Scuola Superiore di Studi Universitari e Perfezionamento S. Anna was founded which, together with La Scuola Normale, formed a prestigious learning and teaching centre.

Pre-enrollement in Italian Embassy

Before enrolling in an Italian University, you need to download the Pre-enrollment forms from the Ministry of Education's website (italian version: Modello A; english version: Form A).After filling the forms out, you must take them to the Italian Embassy or Consulate in your country which you may find at the following website by typing your country name: Ministero degli Affari Esteri - Ambasciate.

You may apply to only one Italian university and for only one course of studies. The competent Italian embassy/consulate is the authority responsible for accepting your pre-application request and making sure it meets the necessary requirements to obtain a "Study Visa". They will then transmit the list of accepted applicants to the University of Pisa by e-mail, return all required documentation to each applicant, and provide information about the admission exam.

Admission for Bachelor's degree italian language 

You need to submit the pre-enrollment Form A to the Italian Embassy/Consulate along with the following documents:

  • High school diploma
  • Certificate proving the completion of one or two years of academic studies or a post-secondary title in case the total number of school years (i.e.: elementary, middle and high school combined) equal less than 12 years
  • Certificate attesting that you have passed the University admission examination, if required by the law in your country (e.g. GAO KAO for China, Vestibular for Brazil, etc.).

Language certification

All non-EU citizens living overseas who have pre-enrolled at the Italian embassy/consulate of their area of residence must have a B2 Italian language level in order to enrol in a degree programme held in Italian. Students will be exempt from taking the language test if they have the following language certification.

Italian language certificates of at least a B2 level according to the European Council. These certificates must be issued according to the CLIQ quality system (CLIQ is the Italian acronym for the Italian language certificate of quality). The current certifying agencies in this system are: Università per stranieri di Perugia; Università per stranieri di Siena; Università Roma Tre and Società "Dante Alighieri"; sometimes in convention with overseas Italian cultural institutes or other institutions

Master’s degree programmes held in English.

Admission for Master's Degree

Pre-enrolment at the Italian embassy in the country where you are residing (From April to June):

The pre-enrolment procedure takes place at the Italian embassy/consulate in the country where you reside. This procedure usually starts in April and ends in June: a formal application and supporting official academic documents must be submitted according to the terms and rules posted by the Italian Ministry of Education.

Necessary documents for the pre-enrolment at the Embassy/Consulate:

  1. the admission letter from the academic committee of the Master's degree programme you chose
  2. your Bachelor's degree diploma
  3. university transcript with all the courses taken

and, in some cases, according to the Embassy, the description of these courses.

For all details about the requirements to pre-enrol, please visit the website of the Italian embassy in the country where you reside and refer any enquiries directly to them. Some of the documents you will need to submit such as your Bachelor’s degree diploma will have to first be issued and legalized by the local authorities of your country (for example, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs), then these documents will have to be officially translated into Italian, in order to get the Declaration of Value.

At the Embassy, in fact, you will have to ask for the Declaration of Value - DOV (Dichiarazione di Valore) too. The DOV is an official document which provides a short description of your academic qualification, awarded to you by an institution belonging to an educational system other than the Italian one. Please note that it is really important to be sure which are the supporting official academic documents required in order to get a Declaration of Value (i.e. Bachelor's degree transcipts, etc. and whether they need to be translated and/or legalized). For all details, you must enquire directly at the Italian embassy/consulate. Remember that each one of these steps can be a lengthy process so make sure to start ahead of time so that once pre-enrolment is officially open, you can have documents ready to be submitted.

If you find yourself in a difficult financial situation you may be able to Apply for a grant from the dsu:

The DSU is a regional agency, which offers the possibility of a special grant based on financial income and merit. Indeed, it is a benefit relative to accommodation and meals. If you obtain the DSU grant, you will get free accommodation, free meals and you will not have to pay the tuition fees. Part of the list of documents the DSU requires includes the family’s gross income and assets owned during the year before the application. This documentation is usually issued by the authorities of the country in which income was earned. Also, usually, these documents must be translated into Italian, legalized by the competent Italian diplomatic authorities of the country where they were issued and must be submitted in the original format to the DSU.

Requesting a visa after the pre-enrollment procedure:

For results about the pre-enrolment procedure, you must enquire directly at the Italian embassy/consulate.

The actual Enrolment will take place once you arrive in Pisa. It starts during the last week of July and ends on 31st December. Keep in mind that classes usually start in late September.

Once in Pisa, the main university documents you need in order to enrol are:

  1. the original version or an authenticated copy of your Bachelor's Degree diploma (or equivalent of a first level academic degree), officially translated into Italian and legalized by the Italian authorities in the country in which it was issued
  2. Declaration of Value (Dichiarazione di valore) of the corresponding diploma awarded
  3. an official University transcript with the list of courses taken, legalized and translated into Italian.

University of Pisa is a non-profit public higher education institution located in the urban setting of the large town of Pisa , Toscana. Officially accredited and/or recognized by the Ministero dell'Istruzione, dell'Università e della Ricerca, Italia (Ministry of Education, Universities and Research, Italy), Università di Pisa (UNIPI) is a very large coeducational higher education institution. Università di Pisa (UNIPI) offers courses and programs leading to officially recognized higher education degrees such as pre-bachelor degrees (i.e. certificates, diplomas, associate or foundation degrees), bachelor degrees, master degrees, doctorate degrees in several areas of study.This 677 years old higher-education institution has a selective admission policy based on entrance examinations. The admission rate range is 20-30% making this Italian higher education organization a very selective institution. International students are welcome to apply for enrollment.

1933. This law accredits a set of Universities, faculties, and courses. It involves two separate but correlated programs that were instituted at the same time: First, each University went through a four-step process to adopt and approve its own Regolamenti Didattici di Ateneo (RDA). The RDA establishes the rules for the organisation of teaching at the university, including establishing the requirements and objectives of each degree program, the curricula, credits awarded and requirements and objectives of examinations.

The RDA's were developed in consultation with representatives of the individual university, the regional coordinating committee (CRC), employers and the National University Council and are ultimately approved by the Ministry of Education (MIUR). Second, a series of formal, objective standards was adopted as minimum requirements for approval of any programs.

In 2011, the University of Pisa came in first place among the Italian universities, according to the Academic Ranking of World Universities and within the best 30 universities in Europe.Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranks University of Pisa among the 350 best world universities.Times Higher Education Europe Teaching Rankings ranks University of Pisa among the top 100 European Universities for teaching.QS World University Rankings ranks University of Pisa in the world's top 100 for Computer Science & Information Systems, Physics & Astronomy, Mathematics, Classics & Ancient History, Library & Information Management.The U.S. News & World Report places the University of Pisa among the world's 300 best universities.The European Research Ranking, a ranking based on publicly available data from the European Commission database, puts the University of Pisa among the best in Italy and the best performing European research institutions.

Accomodation 

The University of Pisa is not a campus-based university and instead has its buildings and departments spread throughout the city. In terms of accommodation, students usually find housing through the city's many estate agents or by checking out postings placed on notice boards in each of the University's departments. Students often share an apartment with other Italian or international students. 

Canteens 

The University of Pisa offers a low-price dining service to students through the Diritto allo Studio Universitario (DSU Toscana) agency.In Pisa, there are five dining halls that may be accessible to students enrolled.In order to access the university canteens you must have a temporary canteen card that can be obtained at the canteens themselves, or the student card given to the student along with the exam booklet.

Associations

Besides the Orchestra and the Choir, you can also sign up to participate in many other university associations.

Counseling services

Entry into University and higher education is an important life-experience as it represents a decisive step towards achieving independence and reaching maturity. The transfer into university study can therefore be daunting and some students may find themselves confronted by certain problems.

Learning facilities

The University has various teaching and research buildings, museums and libraries spread throughout the city. Given that Pisa is a small city, it is quite easy to reach these facilities by bicycle. The University provides an online system so students and professors can have access to information related to an academic course such as syllabus and homework. Each department has a tutor - usually a young researcher - who advises students on academic matters.

Language courses (CLI)

The Language Centre (CLI) offers Italian language courses for foreigners for different proficiency levels from October to July.In order to enrol in an Italian language course it is necessary to establish the student’s prior knowledge of the language; therefore, students including absolute beginners are required to take an Entry Test.

Sports and leisure

The University of Pisa sporting facilities are among the best in the country and reflect the popularity and significance of sports in the university. This is evident in the wide range of both indoor and outdoor facilities available.The University Sports Centre of Pisa (CUS) is a member of CONI (the Italia Olympic Committee) and offers a full programme of fitness classes including aerobics, gymnastics, yoga and pilates. The centre has modern facilities and is used by many students.

University of Pisa on map :

Study programs at University of Pisa :
University of Pisa logo
  • Tuition Fee:
  • Domestic students: $ 8.63k / 1 year
  • International students: $ 13.6k / 1 year
  • Ranking:
  • 189 StudyQA
  • Duration:
  • 1 year