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Study in Brazil

Graduate programs in Brazil

Brazil is one of the world’s most glamorous destinations, with sun-kissed beaches, samba rhythm and beautiful, friendly people. Who wouldn’t want to study here?Study a graduate program in Brazil

If you do, you best get in quick. With the 2014 football World Cup and the 2016 Rio Olympics just around the corner, Brazil’s popularity and exposure is set to soar. International students looking to study a graduate program in Brazil can make the most of its growing popularity and improving graduate courses by applying now.

Population: 194,000,000

Education overview

Brazil is a large country and has several different types of institution where you can study a graduate program, as well as different university systems. You can study a graduate program in Brazil at the following types of university:

  • Federal government managed universities
  • State government managed universities
  • Municipal government managed universities
  • Private universities

Master programs in Brazil are known as Mestrados and take between one and two years to complete, dependent on the subject and mode of study. A PhD is known as a Doutorado and takes between three and four years to finish.

Immigration and visas in Brazil

Most students coming to study a graduate program in Brazil will need to obtain a student visa from the Brazilian government. In order to get the visa, you will need to demonstrate the following:

  • Original passport valid for six months after the end of the course
  • Copy of a letter of acceptance from an approved Brazilian institution
  • Proof of finances for the duration of the stay

Once you are in Brazil, you will have to register with your local branch of the Federal Police within 30 days of your arrival. If you don’t, you’ll be charged a tax for each day you go past the 30 day limit and it may harm your chances of applying for a visa renewal or extension.
As with all visa applications, you should check with the local embassy or consulate in your country.

Life in Brazil

Brazil is a relatively expensive country, so expect to be looking for bargains and cheaper rent. The country is dominated by three things – football, food and partying. Expect to spend an inordinate amount of time learning to samba, particularly when Carnival season comes round – head to Rio for one of the biggest parties.

Other than that, Brazilian’s love their sport and their beaches. This is a laid back, fun country with friendly locals. And with both the football world cup and the Olympics around the corner, it’s only going to get busier.

Working in Brazil

Brazil is one of the world’s fastest growing economies and has the largest national economy in Latin America according to the International Monetary Fund. Brazil has seen rapid growth in several sectors over the last few years, particularly in agriculture, engineering, food manufacturing and renewable energy.

As with most developing countries, Brazil also has a large services sector. English speaking students will be more likely to get opportunities in big cities like Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paolo, Brasilia and Porto Alegre, but a working knowledge of Portuguese is also important.


Universities in Brazil don’t normally offer accommodation to their students, so unlike other countries, most students live in private accommodation.

It’s worth contacting your chosen university’s international office in advance to see if they can provide you with advice on where to stay. It might be worth booking into a hostel for the first month or so of your studies, as it is much easier to find accommodation once you are in the country.

As a guide, here is what you can expect to pay in rent:

  • Lodging with a landlord – R$180-350 per month
  • Pensionata – R$350-800 per month (a room with meals included)
  • Furnished flat – R$500-2,000 per month depending on the city and where you live

Climate in Brazil

Brazil’s climate varies dramatically depending on where in the country you are studying, but most of the country experiences a typically tropical climate. Expect the north and south regions to have regular rainfall throughout the year. The north has no real deviation of temperature, while the south has hot summers and cool winters where frosts are common.

The central belt of Brazil is dominated by the Amazon rainforest and has seasonal rainfall with a savannah climate.


Brazil’s transport network is extensive, but the quality varies from region to region. The main way of getting around the country is by road or air, with more than 2,500 airports or landing strips existing in Brazil.

Students in the main cities will get around by car or taxi, although traffic jams can be a major problem in cities like Sao Paolo and Rio de Janeiro. Tram systems do exist in some cities, but rarely serve student areas or universities.


The currency of Brazil is the Real.

What to do next

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