Higher education in Morocco consists of:

There are various types of higher education institutions.

University education

University education in Morocco can be both research-oriented and professionally oriented. Since 2003, the universities have been using the French LMD structure with 3 cycles (3 + 2 + 3 years):

Please note: bachelor replaces Licence

Since September 2020, students are able to take 4-year bachelor's programmes at Moroccan universities. The first students can get their bachelor at the end of the 2023-2024 academic year. The bachelor's degree gives Moroccan students more opportunities internationally than the Licence. This adjustment is part of the changes to the Moroccan education system that have been legally established (loi-cadre 51.17).


Students start the first cycle of 3 years with a propaedeutic year. After this 1st year, they can choose:

  • a research-oriented degree programme (études fondamentales); or
  • a profession-oriented degree programme (études professionnelles).

Research-oriented degree programme

  • Duration: 3 years (180 ECTS).
  • Content: research-oriented education.
  • Admission requirements: an Attestation du Baccalauréat.
  • Diploma: Licence d’Études Fondamentales/ الإجازة في الدراسات الأساسية.

We compare the Licence d’Études Fondamentales to 2 years of research-oriented higher education (WO).

Profession-oriented degree programme

We compare the Licence Professionnelle to 3 years of higher professional education (HBO).

In addition, students may be awarded an interim diploma at their own request after 2 years of higher education (120 ECTS). Depending on the chosen specialisation, these diplomas are:

  • Diplôme d’Études Universitaires Générales (DEUG)/ دبلوم الدراسات الجامعية العامة
  • Diplôme d’Études Universitaires Professionnelles (DEUP)/دبلوم الدراسات الجامعية المهنية.

Diplôme Universitaire de Technologie (DUT)

In the first cycle, students may also attend higher professional education at one of the institutions affiliated with a university.

We compare the Diplôme Universitaire de Technologie (DUT) to at least 2 years of higher professional education (HBO).


The 2nd cycle, the 2-year master's programme, also offers 2 specialisations:

  • a research-oriented degree programme (Master); and
  • a profession-oriented degree programme (Master Spécialisé).

Research-oriented degree programme

  • Duur: 2 jaar (120 ECTS).
  • Inhoud: wetenschappelijk onderwijs.
  • Toelatingseisen: Licence d’Études Fondamentales.
  • Diploma: Master/الماستر.

We compare the Master is comparable to a 1-year master’s degree in research-oriented higher education (WO).

Profession-oriented degree programme

  • Duration: 2 years (120 ECTS).
  • Content: higher professional education.
  • Admission requirements: Licence Professionnelle.
  • Diploma: Master Spécialisé/الماستر المتخصص

We compare the diploma of Master Spécialisé to a master’s degree in higher professional education (HBO).


The third cycle of university education is the doctoral programme.

  • Duration: at least 3 years (180 ECTS).
  • Content: conducting research, writing and defending a thesis.
  • Admission requirements: Master.
  • Diploma: Doctorat/ دكتوراه.

Duration exceptions

Most university programmes have a duration of 2 or 4 years. Exceptions include the following study programmes:

  • Veterinary medicine, architecture and pharmacy study programmes last 6 years.
  • Medicine study programmes last 7 years.

Non-university education

In addition to universities, non-university higher education institutions and grandes écoles offer higher education programmes. These types of higher education institutions do not award degrees. The diplomas that students can receive include the following:

Brevet de Technicien Supérieur (BTS)

We compare the Brevet de Technicien Supérieur (BTS) to 2 years of higher professional education (HBO) or an associate degree.

Diplôme de Technicien Spécialisé

For the most part, students take study programmes that lead to the Diplôme de Technicien Spécialisé at an Institut Supérieur de Technologie Appliqué (ISTA) or an établissement d'enseignement supérieur ne relevant pas des universités (EESNRPU).

  • Duration: 2 years (120 ECTS).
  • Content: specialist study programme in a particular discipline.
  • Admission requirements: at least a Diplôme de Technicien.
  • Diploma: Diplôme de Technicien Spécialisé/ دبلوم التقني المتخصص.

We compare the Diplôme de Technicien Spécialisé to 2 years of higher professional education (HBO) or an associate degree.

Diplôme d’Ingénieur d’Application

Students take the 4-year study programme that leads to the Diplôme d'Ingénieur d'Application at either a public or a private institution.

We compare the Diplôme d’Ingénieur d’Application to a bachelor’s degree in higher professional education (HBO).

Diplôme d'Ingénieur d'État

Students take the 3-year study programme that leads to the Diplôme d'Ingénieur d'État at one of the grandes écoles (écoles d'ingénieurs). To prepare for the entrance examinations to this study programme, prospective students attend 2 years of classes préparatoires ( السنتان التحضيريتان لسلك المهندس) after secondary school at one of the dedicated lycées.

This study programme is part of 'executive education' (formation des cadres). Both professional and academic specialisations are offered. Students attend one of the grandes écoles or the technical faculty of a university.

  • Duration: 3 years (following 2 years of classes préparatoires).
  • Content: research-oriented education and profession-oriented.
  • Admission requirements: 2 years of classes préparatoires and an entrance exam.
  • Diploma: Diplôme d’Ingénieur d’État/شهاده مهندس الدولة.

We compare the Diplôme d’Ingénieur d’État to 1 year of a 2-year master's degree in research-oriented education (WO).

Types of higher education institutions

Higher education in Morocco is offered by the following institutions::

  • universities
  • non-university higher education institutions
  • grandes écoles


Universities provide both research-oriented and higher professional education (see also University education). A university consists of various sections, but at least 3 faculties (facultés). Examples of other sections are: écoles normales supérieures, écoles normales, écoles supérieures, écoles nationales, écoles dingénieurs, école nationale de commerce et de gestion. Universities can be public or private.

Non-university higher education institutions

Other higher education institutions are not affiliated with a university. These are known as établissements d'enseignement supérieur ne relevant pas des universités (EESNRPU). Examples of these types of institutions are école nationale, institut national, institut supérieur, école, centre pédagogique regional, école normale supérieur, centre de formation. Non-university higher education institutions can be public or private.

Grandes écoles

Grandes écoles do not fall within any of the previously mentioned categories. Students who attend them receive 'executive education' (formation des cadres). The study programmes offered are both professional and academic, leading to such certificates as the Diplôme d'Ingénieur d'État.

Admission to higher education

The admission requirement for higher education in Morocco is:

Extra requirements

For some study programmes, extra requirements such as a particular subject cluster or specialisation apply. Alternatively, prospective students must sit an entrance examination. This is the case for medical and engineering study programmes. In addition, the average marks for school-leaving examinations may play a role in admission.