Norway is a popular destination for international students because tuition is free at public universities. This lowers the barriers for many although the high cost of living must also be considered.
Over 200 master’s degrees are available in English, with many more taught in Norwegian. Bachelor’s degrees are almost exclusively taught in Norwegian although there are some exceptions. International students are welcome to apply to a Norwegian language programme but must meet strict language requirements, often requiring a one-year language course before commencing studies.
Around 15,000 foreigners are currently enrolled at Norwegian institutions of higher education. Some are studying full-time master’s degree programmes (typically two years), while others are taking part in established exchange programmes such as the Erasmus programme.
What are Norwegian universities like?
Life at a Norwegian university is quite different form the experience you’ll get at an American or British institution, but there are many similarities too. Read Lauren’s take on Norwegian university life.
Recognition of foreign qualifications
The Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education (NOKUT) is responsible for dealing with applications for general recognition of foreign qualifications and awarding general ECTS credits. They also state whether the level and scope of the course is equivalent to a Norwegian degree. The individual institutions deal with applications for specific recognition, i.e. whether a foreign qualification is academically equivalent to a degree.
Residence permit for students
Citizens of EU/EEA countries do not require a permit to study in Norway, however you must register upon arrival. Citizens of all other countries need to apply for a study visa. You will need a lot of documentation plus proof of housing and finance. See our immigration guide for more information.
Norwegian language tuition
Some universities offer international students a fast-track Norwegian language course. Priority is often given to non-EU/EEA citizens.
What and where can you study?
Business, science and arts are well covered by Norwegian universities. Some institutions offer specialist courses relevant to the energy industry.
The bigger institutions run many international master’s programmes across a wide variety of subject areas. They include:
- BI Norwegian Business School, Oslo (link)
- Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Ås (link)
- Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), Trondheim (link)
- University of Agder, Kristiansand (link)
- University of Bergen (link)
- University of Nordland, Bodø (link)
- University of Oslo (link)
- University of Stavanger (link)
- The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø (link)
Other institutions offering some form of English language master’s level (or equivalent) education are:
- Bergen Academy of Art and Design – Design, Fine Art
- Bergen University College – Education, Software Engineering
- Buskerud and Vestfold University College – Social Sciences, Business, Engineering, Maritime sciences, Health sciences, Optometry and Teacher education
- Diakonhjemmet University College – Master’s in Diakonia and Christian Social Practice
- Gjøvik University College – ICT
- Hedmark University College – Applied Ecology
- Lillehammer University College – Social Sciences, Film Science, Health and Social Work
- MF Norwegian School of Theology – Religion and Society
- Molde University College – Logistics, Sports & Event Management
- NHH Norwegian School of Economics – Business
- NLA University College – Intercultural Studies
- Norwegian Academy of Music – Music
- Oslo & Akershus University College of Applied Sciences – Education, ICT
- Oslo School of Architecture and Design
- School of Mission and Theology
- Telemark University College – Environmental Science, Energy Technology
- Ålesund University College – Business, Product & System Design, Ship Design
- Østfold University College – Acting
For more substantial information, see studyinnorway.no