Studying Abroad

Studying in Norway

James Birch  · Nov 23rd 2021

Norway, which is famous for the Northern Lights, has much more to offer than its beautiful landscapes.

Norway flag

When studying in Norway, you should know that tuition is free for all students (even if you're studying Medicine in Norway or studying Norwegian in Norway), so you'll essentially be studying in Norway for free, including international postgraduates, and it is home to a host of outdoor activities as well as mountains, glaciers and forests to keep even the most adventurous of students occupied.

Thousands of students fly over to become part of the educational system in this Scandinavian country every year, read on to find out why…

Studying in Norway

Norway’s education system

The Norweigian education system is split into three parts. Elementary school, lower-secondary school and upper-secondary school.

The ages are:

  • Barneskole (elementary school): 6-13
  • Ungdomsskole (lower secondary school): 13-16
  • Videregående skole (upper secondary school): 16-19

Those who are studying barneskole and ungdomsskole, will have a shared curriculum which deviates according to age, whereas videregående skole brings more freedom-of-choice for students, similar to GCSEs in the UK.

If you are looking to study in Norway from the UK, you should know that there are seven universities and nine are specialised university institutions. The country also holds 22 Norway university colleges, two national colleges of the arts and private higher education institutions. University colleges offer bachelor’s degree courses and some offer master’s degrees also.

There are only a handful of bachelor’s degrees that are taught in English but more than 200 master’s degrees. Research is key to ensure you are applying for the right course for your abilities.

Norway’s higher education institutions (except for a few private university colleges) are all state-run and comply with the terms and conditions of the Bologna process. The University of Oslo and the University of Bergen were featured in the University World Rankings in 2013-2014, which is definitely something to shout about!

The primary teaching language is Norwegian so learning the language before you move will help you to settle in, although English may also be available in some schools, colleges or universities.

Studying abroad in Norway

What do I need to get into a university in Norway?

Each individual institution will have its own specific admission or application requirements. Application deadlines can fall between December and March however individual universities may have specific dates that you need to take note of.

To gain access to an undergraduate course, students need to have completed their secondary education equivalent to the exams that are held at the end of the Norwegian secondary education system. To check if your qualifications are recognised by institutions click here (NOKUT – GSU list).

An important point to remember is to check the Norwegian Universities and Colleges Admissions Service, NUCAS, before March to ensure you are complying with the application process.

How much will it cost to study in Norway?

Most colleges and universities in Norway are publicly funded and therefore do not charge tuition fees. This applies to EU nationals and foreign students no matter what country you are from and what level of education you are studying. However, each semester there is a fee of 300 – 600 Norwegian Kroner (NOK), but this fee grants students:

  • Membership to the local welfare organisations for students
  • Counseling, sports facilities and health services
  • Student card that allows cheaper travel fares
  • Eligibility to take exams

Will I receive funding to study in Norway?

Students are eligible for financial support and can receive funding for a full degree or through other various schemes such as fellowships or student loans. International offices of UK institutions will have information regarding funding at Norwegian universities, check out a list of Norweigian scholarships if you want to find a way to help with your finances.

Abroad studying abroad in Norway

Here are some important points to consider:

Student housing is provided by most Norwegian universities and can be cheaper than private accommodation options. Once students are enrolled in an institution, they should be provided with information about the different options available through the university’s student housing service. If you are unsure, contact the university directly.

EU nationals are allowed to work and study in the country but international students outside of the EU will not be eligible for a maintenance loan from the government. International students will also obtain a residence permit, which allows them to work up to 20 hours a week during term time and full time during study breaks. However, when international students re-apply for the permit the following year they will need to provide proof that they’re continuing with their studies.

Will I need a student visa to study in Norway?

EU and UK students are allowed to live and work in any EU country as long as you are; enrolled at an approved university or other educational institution, have enough income to support yourself (through work or savings) and have sufficient health insurance coverage. Your EHIC card will suffice, but we do advise purchasing additional travel insurance cover.

Cost of living

We have compiled a list of everyday items and their average cost so you can get an idea of how it can cost to live in this beautiful country.

Type Price in Norway UK equivalent
Dining out per-meal 180.00 kr £15.32
McDonalds (per-meal) 120.00 kr £10.21
Beer 89.00 kr £7.58
Coke 32.20 kr £2.74
Water 26.67 kr £2.27
Milk 18.88kr £1.61
Bread 28.39 kr £2.42
Bus ticket (one-way) 38.00 kr £3.23
Bus ticket (monthly) 760.00 kr £64.69
Utilities 1,645.25 kr £140.05
Internet (60+ mpbs) 499.74 kr £42.54
Cinema 130.00 kr £11.07
Rent (Apartment: 1 bedroom) in City Centre) per-month 10,125.67 kr £861.91

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