Tertiary education in Belize corresponds to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) Levels 5, 6 and 7. Tertiary education programmes build on foundational knowledge and skills from secondary and prepare students for further education or the world of work. Several types of tertiary education programs are offered: 1) Short-cycle tertiary, ISCED level 5 and 2) Bachelor and Master degree level programs, ISCED levels 6 and 7. Short-cycle tertiary programs are offered by junior colleges and universities and students earn an Associate degree upon completion of full-time study. Students may transfer into and complete a Bachelor’s degree program after earning an Associate degree at a university or junior college or they may do the entire program at a university. Programs at the Associate and Bachelor’s degree levels typically contain a large number of specialized courses along with a few support and general core courses which all students take regardless of programme.
The official age for tertiary programs is 17-21yrs. Tertiary programmes are designed to provide instruction and training suited to the ages, abilities and aptitudes of adult learners.
Associate degree programs are typically two years in duration and Bachelor degree programs are four years. Most courses are three credit courses which require a minimum of 150 minutes per week for 15 weeks.
A secondary school diploma is required for entry into tertiary level programs. Alternative criteria including assessment of prior learning and placement examinations may also be required.
There are no mandated national assessments at the tertiary level; however, nursing students sit a regional nursing exam to become certified. A few students also sit the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Exams (CAPE). The top performing student on CAPE is awarded the Belize Scholarship which provides funding for further study.
Promotion and Exit Requirements
Promotion and completion of tertiary programmes are based on meeting the requirements outlined in institutional policies. Students who complete the programme are awarded a degree.
Staff Pedagogical Qualifications
There are no licencing requirements for teaching at the tertiary level.
Directory of Tertiary Institutions