The Kingdom of Norway is a mountainous country in the Scandinavian peninsula, Northern Europe. Most of its population resides in the south, while the north is home to the Sami. The government is a leading petroleum exporter and is a high-income nation. Furthermore, it is one of the safest and most beautiful countries in the world.
Norway maintained its folklore and storytelling customs and has a rich literary tradition. Norwegians have many festivals which are celebrated lively and colorfully. Norway is best known for long, rugged coastlines, fjords, polar bears, the Northern Lights, and the midnight sun. In this article, we will be looking at the best universities in Norway for international students.
Is Norway good for international students to study in?
Universities in Norway deliver a high standard of education and reputable research. Students are encouraged to develop creativity and think critically. There are several English-taught programs, and the country has a high level of English in general. Norway has consistently ranked on international student satisfaction awards because of its quality education, egalitarian culture, and beautiful environment.
The government publicly funds most Norwegian universities and state colleges. Thus, public institutions do not charge tuition fees for local and international students. They only need to pay a semester fee of approximately 590 NOK for student welfare organizations. Private universities have comparatively low tuition fees than in other countries. They offer bachelor’s, master’s, Ph.D. programs, shorter study programs, and continuous learning courses.
Living costs in Norway range higher than in other countries but guarantee a quality standard of living. Norway is one of the happiest countries across the globe, according to the World Happiness Report. The Global Peace Index also states that it is a peaceful and safe nation, very apt for a country that awards the Nobel Peace Prize.
Can international students work in Norway while studying?
International students can hold part-time jobs in Norway during their studies with a few conditions. EU/EEA nationals can freely live, study, and work in Norway. However, if staying for more than three months, you must register with the police. You can find more information on the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI) website.
Non-EU/EEA nationals must apply for a study permit, allowing you up to 20 hours of work per week. You can work full-time during the holidays. Norwegians are quite good at English. However, most employers prefer a particular proficiency in Norwegian. It is best to learn the language as soon as possible.
Can international students stay in Norway after graduation?
After graduation, international students may stay in Norway for one year to look for work. Before your current permit expires, you should apply for a residence permit as a job seeker. You need to find a job related to your degree and reach a level of earning customary to the industry. For a permanent residence permit, it will depend on the type of work and your competence. You can check for the guidelines on the UDI website.
Best Universities in Norway for International Students
1. University of Oslo (UiO)
The University of Oslo is the best university in Norway for international students, located in its capital city. From 1947 to 1989 and in 2020 subsequently, the university hosted the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize. UiO consists of eight faculties in educational sciences, natural science, social science, humanities, law, mathematics, medicine, and dentistry. UiO has over 800 courses in English, while several Master’s and Ph.D. programs are held in English entirely. Furthermore, it is a publicly funded university, so students pay only a semester fee and no tuition.
UiO is affiliated with institutions dealing with environmental research and studies on traumatic stress. Its research units center on life science, energy, Nordic issues, and more. It is also home to scientific and historical museums.
2. University of Bergen (UiB)
The University of Bergen is a public research university and the most cited institution in Norway. Presently, it focuses on marine research, global challenges, and climate & energy transition. Ph.D. candidates in the university are paid employees and make the program attractive for talented international students. Aside from this large investment in research, the seven faculties of UiB provide high-class teaching in mathematics & natural sciences, medicine, dentistry, fine arts, and more.
This top university in Norway has the most students that participate in exchange programs. It has close to 2000 international students and is actively recruiting more. Furthermore, UiO is a publicly funded university too.
3. UiT The Arctic University of Norway (UiT)
The University of Tromsø – The Arctic University of Norway is the world’s most northern university. The institution holds an essential role in environmental science and research due to its location in the Arctic. Climate research, auroral light research, fishery science, and Saami culture research are some of the activities in UiT. Furthermore, there are also common subject areas like health sciences, education, law, tourism, and fine arts.
Many partner universities support the expertise of UiT in environmental studies. The population of international students and staff has increased rapidly in recent years, and their various programs in English are encouraging.
4. Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)
Norwegian University of Science and Technology is one of the best universities in Norway for international students. Engineering, technology, and natural science are where the university is best known. It also offers degree programs in teacher education, social sciences, medicine, psychology, architecture, and fine arts.
NTNU ranks first globally in having corporate links, with its R&D contracts with international companies like ABB. Shell, Alcatel, and more. These collaborations solidify the institution’s effective teaching and research excellence. Aside from its strong links to industries, NTNU participates in global academic initiatives.
5. Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU)
Norwegian University of Life Sciences is a Norwegian public university specializing in human and animal health, resource management, and the likes. It began as an Agricultural college in 1859 and expanded into seven faculties: biosciences, environmental sciences, landscape & society, chemistry, economics, veterinary medicine, and science & technology.
NBMU is the leading institution when it comes to veterinary research. Food science, biotechnology, and business development are key areas too. Despite a modest number of students, this specialized university has partnerships with universities in 93 countries.
6. University of South-Eastern Norway (USN)
The University of South-Eastern Norway is one of the top universities in Norway for international students. It was established by merging three university colleges; that’s why it provides diverse academic programs and is spread in many regions. USN offers programs in health & social care, computer science, history, business, mathematics, natural sciences, maritime studies, and art.
The university has a focus on applied research and coordinates with regional industries. USN focuses on being an entrepreneurial university that contributes to innovation and sustainable development of the world.
7. University of Stavanger (UiS)
The University of Stavanger is a leading research university in Norway that ranks the third-highest in research publications per scientific staff member. It is a fellow of the European Consortium of Innovative Universities (ECIU), which are catalysts of innovative culture in higher education institutions. UiS comprises six faculties like social sciences, arts & education, and science & technology, to name a few. There is also the Museum of Archaeology and many national research centers.
UiS welcomes around 400 international students every year and is working to improve internationalization strategies. The university is located in Norway’s oil and energy capital, which encourages a dynamic interplay of students with industries and corporations.
8. University of Agder (UiA)
The University of Agder is a young university in Norway but has an academic history of over 190 years. This top university in Norway was established in 1994 as a merger of six regional colleges in Holt, Aust-Agder, including a nursing school, a music conservatory, and a technical school. Since then, UiA offers degrees in the social sciences, business, health & sports science, fine arts, humanities, engineering, & science. There is also an interdisciplinary teaching education unit.
A young and modern institution, the research priority of UiA includes e-health, integrated emergency management, multimodality, and cultural change. UiA has a strong international orientation with several international joint programs and courses in English or German.
9. BI Norwegian Business School (BI)
The BI Norwegian Business School, one of the best universities in Norway for international students, is Norway’s largest business school and the second largest in Europe. It received recognition from significant business school accreditations like AMBA and EQUIS. This specialized institution is the primary supplier of administrative and economic talent to the Norwegian workforce. With BI, you can learn about Norway’s leadership, business, and equality strategies, a country known for high productivity and empowered workers.
The school teaches BBA and all graduate programs in English in addition to Norwegian undergraduate programs. BI collaborates closely with other international universities like Fudan University in Shanghai, Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, the University of California at Berkeley, and more.
10. Norwegian School of Economics (NHH)
Norwegian School of Economics is the first business school in Norway. Since 1936, it has been pioneering teaching and research in economics and business administration. The prestigious university is the most selective among business schools, yet also the most popular first choice of students. It is EQUIS and AMBA accredited and a member of CEMS Global Alliance in Management Education, a partnership of selected 33 academic institutions for business.
NHH works closely with the local business community and also with over 170 international business institutions. NHH started its global expansion in 1984 and continues to this day. It is in partnership with Columbia University, Cornell University, New York University, and many prestigious institutions.
I hope that this article on the best universities in Norway for international students was helpful. You can also find more information on different European universities and scholarship opportunities on the Europe Scholarships Page!