Bridge Year

The Ca’ Foscari Bridge Year aims to improve the study experience of international students at Italian universities by providing an adequate mastery of the Italian language and a solid background knowledge of the main disciplines of future study.

Who should take the Bridge Year?

  • Students wanting to improve their Italian language skills before beginning their studies at a university in Italy
  • Students wanting to strengthen their background knowledge in the discipline they are planning to study
  • Students planning on enrolling at Ca' Foscari University but who do not have 12 years of schooling at the end of high school


The programme runs throughout the academic year, from November 2019 until August 2020 (10 months).

The Bridge Year offers two blocks of courses: an Italian language component of around 800 contact hours, and an optional thematic study track made up of four 30 hour courses, (120 contact hours in total).

Italian language block

The Italian language block consists of 800 hours of intensive Italian language study over the course of the academic year. At the end of the programme students are expected to reach an upper intermediate level (B2 according to the CEFR: Common European Framework of Reference for languages).

Registration for the CILS exam (official Italian language certification) is included.

4-Course Study Track

Study tracks will run from February 2020 until August 2020 (7 months). Each study track consists of 4 courses for a total of 120 hours, and will be activated based on a minimum number of enrolments for each track.

Students choose one track from the following:

(A) Economics and Science (Ca’ Foscari)

Contents available shortly.

(B) Humanities (Ca’ Foscari)

Contents available shortly.

(C) Architecture, Design, Fashion, Urban Planning (IUAV)

Contents available shortly.


The Ca' Foscari Bridge Year is principally designed for students who are planning on enrolling in an Italian-taught degree programme in Italy but who do not know Italian, or who wish to improve their Italian language competency before starting their university studies. The programme can also be taken by those students who wish to enrol at Ca' Foscari University but do not have 12 full years of schooling, or in the case of American students, who do not have 3APs.

Eligibility for Bridge Year

Students applying for the Bridge Year need to meet the following obligatory eligibility requirements:

  1. have finished their 11th year of schooling OR are currently enrolled at high school in their 11th year of schooling 
  2. hold a high school diploma, school leaving certificate, or equivalent, or will have one at the completion of the current school year
  3. hold any University entrance qualification required in their home country in order to access University studies (Gao Kao, 3 O-levels, ÖSYS, etc.).

NB: in the case of students still enrolled in their final year of high school, enrolment in the Bridge Year is conditional on the student receiving both documents in points 2 and 3.

University enrolment following Bridge Year

Upon successful completion of the full Bridge Year, students can apply for their chosen degree programme through the Ca' Foscari Welcome office.

Participation in the Bridge Year does not entitle students to directly access their chosen degree programme; students must take an entry test, where necessary. For further information on enrolment at Ca' Foscari as an international student please visit the webpage.

NB: Students who only have 11 years of high school, or American students who do not have 3 APs, but who complete the Bridge Year, will become eligible for enrolment at Ca' Foscari University. Eligibility for enrolment at other Universities is not guaranteed. Students who are planning on enrolling at other Universities or Tertiary Institutions should contact the appropriate office at the Institution in question.


Required documents

  • Final secondary education leaving qualification (or Certificate of Enrolment, if you are currently attending the last year of secondary School and your final leaving qualification is not yet ready) and eventual English or Italian translation;
  • Certificate of any University entrance qualification required for accessing university studies in your country of origin (Prova de Aferiçao or Prova Geral de Acesso ao Ensino Superior in Portugal, Vestibular or Exame Nacional do Ensino Médio in Brazil, Gao Kao in China, 3 O-levels in the British system, etc.);
  • Valid ID (for EU and Italian applicants only) or passport;
  • Valid Residency Permit (for non-EU applicants residing in Italy);
  • Letter of motivation

Dates and deadlines

Applications for the Bridge Year will open online in March 2019. Students requiring a visa are strongly advised to apply early. Dates will be confirmed shortly. For more information, please contact

Fees and scholarships


Total tuition for the Italian language block is €5,000. Tuition includes all teaching activities (800 hours), tutorials and access to University facilities and services. Extra curricular activities, transport, accommodation and living expenses must be covered by the student.

Tuition costs are to be paid in two installments

  1. €1.000 10 days after receiving the invitation letter (to be reimbursed should your visa application not be accepted)
  2. €4.000 one month after the programme starts

4-course study track (optional)

Tuition for each study track is €1,500. Tuition includes all teaching (four 30-hr courses, 120 hours in total). Study tracks will be activated based on a minimum number of participants once students arrive in Venice (and can therefore be paid at a later date).


There are three scholarships for the Ca' Foscari Bridge Year, based on merit and motivation, of €2.500 per student, to be applied to the second instalment of tuition. Students wishing to apply for a scholarship are required to read the scholarship call (available soon), and will need to send the following additional documents with their application:

  • Mark Sheet or Transcript of records and eventual English or Italian translation
  • Any other additional language certificates or qualifications

Fee waivers

Students who successfully compete the Ca' Foscari Bridge Year and then enrol in a degree programme at Ca' Foscari will receive a fee waiver on the first payment for tuition fees, and for all future payments provided they complete 42 ECTS per year.

Bridge Year students receive comprehensive pre-departure arrival information and assistance with the visa process, and upon arrival will find out how to access students services at Ca’ Foscari such as fully equipped libraries (open late), student cafeterias, campus-wide wifi, the buddy programme for international students, and more.


The Housing Office can assist Bridge Year students with finding accommodation if needed: find out more on their webpage.

To find out more about what the University has to offer, read through the Ca' Foscari Welcome Guide.

Enrolment in your Master's degree

Before enrolling in a Master's degree at Ca' Foscari, EU and non-EU students holding an international qualification must first request a preliminary online evaluation of their qualifications.

Last update: 06/03/2019