The Scuola Normale is an institute of a decidedly international nature. Examinations for admission to the undergraduate degree course and for the PhD course are open to all citizens worldwide. A certain number of places on the PhD course are reserved for students from other countries. During the pre laurea and post lauream teaching courses, study and research programmes are made available at overseas universities and research centres with which the Scuola forms an intense network of collaboration. The doctorate course in particular is taught in a veritable graduate school in line with the highest international standards.
Why the Scuola Normale
During the two centuries of its existence, the Scuola Normale Superiore has earned itself a special reputation in Italy and abroad characterised by merit, talent and scientific rigour. The highly selective admission process gives students access to a unique educational system in which the keynote is the interweaving of teaching and research: students become engaged in research at an early stage, and this is the key strength of their study course. In addition, students at the Normale can avail themselves of the opportunity to attend study and research programmes at prestigious universities and research centres abroad.
The undergraduate course
The undergraduate course is the baseline degree course of the Scuola Normale Superiore. The course culminates in the awarding of a degree certificate and is taught in concomitance with a study course at the University of Pisa. The course syllabus differs from traditional university courses in its emphasis on research as an instrument and method of teaching. The direct and continuous exchange of ideas among students and with older students, teachers and researchers is an integral part of the Scuola’s teaching model, together with the policy of encouraging student residence on campus.
The PhD course
The PhD course is a post lauream course culminating in the international PhD (Philosophiae Doctor) degree. It is equivalent to the doctorate courses issued by Italian universities and has a duration of three or four years depending on the chosen discipline. Its stringent selection process, its decidedly international character, its policy of creating incentives for the furthering of research study and the annual verification of the results obtained are the key features of this course.