Study in Sweden application guide
Published: 30 Nov 2011
Are you applying for higher education studies in Sweden for the academic year 2012-2013? I have compiled the things you need to know.
A large number of courses and study programs at Swedish universities and university colleges are accessible to international students. For bachelor's level and master's level studies you need to apply via www.universityadmissions.se. (For studies at doctoral level you apply directly to your chosen university.)
Photo: Ulf Lundin/imagebank.sweden.se
Applying to a master's or bachelor's degree program can seem overwhelming, so I've broken the process down into five steps:
1: Find your program
The first step to applying for a master's program is finding the perfect one. You can search our program database of over 600 master's degree programs (and 40 bachelor's level programs) given in English. You can also use the course and program database at www.universityadmissions.se.
2: Apply for a study program (& scholarship)
Once you've identified which program/s you'd like to apply for, use the application instructions available at www.universityadmissions.se. Universityadmissions.se is a central application service where you can apply for up to four different master's programs at different universities around Sweden with just one application.
Each program has a unique application code which you must use in the application to ensure that you apply to the correct program. You can find each program's code at www.universityadmissions.se or, usually, in the program description at the university's homepage.
Please note that students who are not citizens of the EU, EEA or Switzerland are required to pay an application fee of SEK 900. (If you are in doubt whether you are required to pay tuition fees, Universityadmissions.se provides a helpful guide.)
The master's degree programs are open for applications from December 1, 2010, and the application deadline for most programs is January 16, 2012.
Please note that a few programs may have different deadlines and application procedures. Additionally, some programs have specific entry requirements which applicants also need to satisfy. If that is the case, the application process should be explained in the program description on the university website.
At this point you should also look into the possiblities of scholarships. For scholarships that are administered by the Swedish Institute, I recommend that you use this guide to see if you are eligible to apply to any of them. Some of them have a deadline that is roughly the same as the study programs, and for some you need to be accepted to a study program before you apply for the scholarship.
3: Wait to receive notification of acceptance
After the deadline passes, your application will undergo a selection procedure determined by the individual school and based on various criteria, such as grades obtained and results of previous courses and degree projects. All of these will influence the outcome of your application.
The decision on whether to accept an applicant rests with the academic institutions themselves.
If you are accepted you will need to confirm that you will attend the program in question.
If you are not a citizen of the EU, EEA or Switzerland you will also be required to pay the tuition fee for the first semester at this point. (If you are in doubt whether you are required to pay tuition fees, Universityadmissions.se provides a helpful guide.)
4: Apply for a residence permit
As the application process for visas and residence permits can be lengthy, you should apply as soon as you have received your acceptance letter!
Generally speaking, in order to obtain a residence permit for studies you will need to show that you:
- have been accepted to a full-time study program (if you are not a citizen of the EU, EEA or Switzerland this includes paying tuition fees for the first year or semester of study).
- can support yourself financially throughout the entire period of study (you must show proof that you have access to or funding of 7,300 SEK per month of your stay)
Specific information about the application for a residence permit, as well as application forms, can be found at the Swedish Migration Board.
Note: students from the Nordic countries and the EU/EEA do NOT need to apply for residence permits, but should rather (in the case of a non-Nordic EU citizenship) register with the Swedish Migration board upon arrival. Find out more on this page.
5: Come to Sweden
Once you've been accepted on a program and your residence permit has been processed, check out our guide to living in Sweden for information on how to prepare for your stay. It is usually a good idea to look for accomodation as soon as you can, especially if you are going to study in a large city.
I also recommend that you have a look at SwedenInTouch, Sweden's official community for international students (if you haven't already). There you'll find all kinds of tips from current and former students at Swedish universities. Your university's international office can also offer tips and advice.
This feature has been published by the Swedish Institute.