Why Slovaks love to accumulate letters before and after their names

It is not unusual to find people brandishing combinations of three, four, five or even more titles.

Illustrative stock photoIllustrative stock photo (Source: SME)

The purpose, value and cost of higher education are issues that every country grapples with. To take just one example, discussions about American politics seem to focus ever-more closely on demographic categories defined by reference to education: college-educated women, non-college-educated rural voters, etc.

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Such a framing assumes, as a matter of course, that one’s life outcomes will be determined by the possession (or absence) of higher education qualifications – and also helps justify the absurd cost of university in America.

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The calculus surrounding higher education in Slovakia is different, but no less pernicious.

The good news for those who study here is that, for first-time undergraduates at public universities, tuition is still (mostly) free. Even fees at private universities, typically a few hundred euros per semester, are low by international standards.

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