Universities in Norway

Study in Norway
All higher education institutions (except some private institutions) in Norway are state-run i.e. tuition is not required for study at Norwegian higher education institutions (except some professional courses where some fees might apply). MSc courses at Norwegian University of Science and Technology Norwegian universities and state university colleges, as a rule, do not charge tuition fees for international students. But you need to pay for living expenses (unless you get a scholarship!). The education system is 3+2+3 yrs(Bachelor's, Masters and Ph.D.) as in most other countries. es, Students may be allowed to work up to 20 hours per week (some restrictions apply).

If you stay for more than one yr, then you automatically get enrolled in Health Insurance (under National Insurance Scheme).

Norway Overview

Famous for its natural beauty and celestial spectacles, Norway is consistently ranked as one of the most beautiful countries in the world, as well as one of the happiest. From its fjords to food, to its ‘midnight sun’ and Northern Lights (aurora borealis), Norway is a slice of Scandinavian paradise for adventurous students who are looking for an opportunity to travel off the beaten path. The kingdom of Norway sits on the western edge of the Scandinavian peninsula in far northern Europe. In fact, it is this long northern-sloping coastline that gave Norway its name. From the old English Norþweg, meaning “northern way,” the country got its name from Anglo Saxon sailors who followed its shores into the rich fishing grounds of the Arctic Circle.

Norway is also renowned for its contributions to art and culture. One of the most recognizable paintings in western art, The Scream, was painted by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch. The cities of Norway retain much of the old world architecture, creating a rich blend of both ancient and contemporary style. Of particular note are the stave churches in Norway. The majority of these unique buildings, constructed in the Middle Ages, are found in Norway and the most famous of these, the Urnes Stave Church, is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Much of the culture of modern-day Norway can be traced back to the Vikings. Intermixed with the heritage of these seafaring fishermen and pirates is a strong influence of rural farm culture that is still very evident in traditional costumes, folk music, and folklore. The Norwegian ethos is celebrated as one of the most egalitarian in the world, having legally recognized minority rights long before other major Western countries. The Women’s Suffrage movement swept across Norway in 1884, thirty years before the movement gained traction in the U.K., and a full four decades before it reached America.

University System

Higher education in Norway is comprised of a mixture of both public and private universities. Norway currently has 9 universities, 8 university colleges and 5 scientific colleges owned by the state. The “university colleges” of Norway concentrate mainly on providing undergraduate-level education in a range of more vocationally focused subjects.

Since 2003 Norway has been following the objectives of the Bologna process in the European higher education. The Bologna process standardizes higher education degree tracts across Europe to ensure continuity and transferability within the E.U. For non-E.U. students, this simply means that they can expect all Norwegian institutions of higher learning to follow the “3 + 2 + 3” standard for the number of years it takes to complete a Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Ph.D. The academic year normally runs from mid-August to mid-June.

English-speaking students attending university in Norway can choose from many English-taught undergraduate programs and more than 200 master’s programs. The University of Oslo offers English-taught degree programs in humanities, social sciences, law, theology, mathematics and natural sciences, education, medicine, dentistry, energy, development, and gender studies.

International Student Admissions

Universities in Norway welcome international students either as a part of an exchange agreement or students seeking a full degree. A diverse student body is considered an asset for the institution, increasing the quality of campus culture and education.

Most Norwegian universities and university colleges require a higher education entrance exam ( generell studiekompetanse) for admission. Applicants who completed high school in a country outside of Norway, must meet the the requirements specified in the GSU-list. This list contains information on basic education which qualifies for admission to universities and university colleges in Norway. However, students from the U.S. must take note: there are no defined GSU requirements for students applying to university in Norway from the U.S. It is imperative that American students wishing to study abroad in Norway contact an admissions counselor at their institution of choice at least one-year before matriculation in order to prepare documents, take any necessary placement exams, apply for admission, and receive a student visa.

When applying for programs taught in English, you will need to apply directly and individually to each institution you are interested in. You’ll usually need to fill in an application form, which is typically available on the institution’s website or by request.

International Student Tuition and Expenses

With a few exceptions, Norwegian universities and state university colleges are publicly funded. This means Norwegian public institutions do not charge tuition fees, even for international students regardless of their country-of-origin. The Norwegian government considers access to higher education for all to be an important part of the Norwegian society. International students are treated equally to Norwegian students and are not charged higher fees. A few private institutions charge tuition fees for their degree programs, but the fees are typically lower than those of comparable programs in other European countries. Some Norwegian universities are accredited by the U.S. Department of Education, enabling students from the U.S. to apply for financial aid on their FAFSA.

University students may be required to pay a small semester fee, typically around NOK 300-600 (US$40-80). The semester fee grants you membership to the student welfare organization, access to health services, counselling and sports facilities, and a student ID card which can be used for reduced fares on public transport and discounted tickets to cultural events.

Despite their low-cost for higher education, Norway does have a very high-cost of living. International students from outside of Europe are expected to document financial solvency to be granted a student residence permit. Some international students in Norway work part-time, but students should not count on finding work to meet their financial needs as employment opportunities are limited.

International Student Visa

A student visa is required for those who plan to study in Norway for more than three months. There is a processing fee for each application, which varies according to your country-of-origin. When applying for a student visa, you must submit the application to a Norwegian embassy or consulate in your country, or country of residence during the past six months. The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI) website suggests that students from the U.S. apply for their visa before July 1 in the year they intend to begin class. This should allow enough time for your application to be approved by August 15, the tradition start date of Fall semester.

International students applying for their student resident card must show around $15,000 in cash for the 2018-19 school year deposited in an Norwegian bank. If you have been admitted to an institution that charges tuition, you must also show proof that you are able to cover those extra costs.


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