República de Moçambique/Dziko la Mozambiki (The Republic of Mozambique) is located on the southeastern coast of Africa and is bordered by Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, South Africa and the Indian Ocean. The population is 21,284,700 and the literacy rate is 47.8%. Portuguese is the official language with Emakhuwa and Xichangana as the most widely-spoken languages.
Bantu tribes arrived in the area of present-day Mozambique between the 1st and 4th centuries AD. Later, Swahili and Arab traders set-up outposts on the coast. The first European explorer in the area was the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama who arrived in 1498. By the mid-16th century, Portugal had established settlements along the coast and in the interior, and Mozambique became a Portuguese colony. From 1961 to 1974, Mozambique, along with the other Portuguese colonies of Angola and Guinea-Bissau, was involved in sporadic warfare with Portugal over control of their territories. This is often referred to as the “Portuguese Colonial War”. Following the military's loss of control of Portugal and a return to democracy, Mozambique was granted independence on June 25, 1975.
During the colonial period, education was very limited for Mozamibicans, except for that available at missionary schools. About 50% of the schools in Mozambique were destroyed during the Portuguese Colonial War, and the country is still in the process of rebuilding the destroyed schools.
Education is free and compulsory from ages 6 to 12. Most students remain in school for 8 years. Ensino primário (Primary school) is 7 years beginning at age 6. At the end of the 7th year, students are awarded a Carta de Ensino Primário de Segundo Grau.
Only 10% of students go on to ensino secondário (secondary school). Ensino secondário is divided into 2 cycles. The ESG1 (first cycle) of general secondary school is 3 years and leads to the Carta de Ensino Secundário. Students sit for an examination to determine their eligibility to continue into the ESG2 (second cycle) which is 2 years and leads to the Certificado de Habilitação es Literarias. The first cycle of vocational secondary school is 3 years, and the second cycle is also 3 years and leads to the Certificado do Nível Técnico e Vocacional Médio.
Post-secondary education is offered at public and private universities and higher institutes. Admission requires a Certificado de Habilitação es Literarias.
First and Second Cycles
The first level of study is 2-3 years and leads to the Bacharelato. A further 2 years of study leads to the Licenciatura.
Graduate study is 2 years and leads to the Mestrado. A Licenciatura is required for admission.
The Strategic Higher Education Plan of 2000-2010 includes plans for a doctoral degree Doutoramento, although it is not clear if any doctoral degrees have been awarded.
Primary school teachers are trained in a 2-year program leading to the Certificado de Professor para o Ensino Primário following a Carta de Ensino Primário de Segundo Grau or after completion of 10 years of primary and secondary school. Secondary school teachers are trained in a 4-year, post-secondary program leading to the Certificado de Professor para o Ensino Secundária Geral.