What to study at Stockholm University

Stockholm’s reputation for academic excellence and its long background in English language education makes it an ideal choice for foreign students looking to gain extra qualifications overseas.

What to study at Stockholm University

Although it is fair to say that Sweden’s standing predominantly lies in the fields of science and technology, there is still a wealth of options available for students at Stockholm University.


As Sweden’s largest higher education institution with more than 65,000 students, including those studying PhDs and 5,000 members of staff, the university is ideally placed to offer a large number of courses and more than 75 master’s degree programmes taught in English.


It is hardly surprising then that it has more than 2,000 international students on exchange, Bachelor, Masters’ or PhD studies.


The university has the largest faculty of science in Sweden offering over 30 Masters programmes. Naturally, given the dominance of this area, there are more courses on offer than in the other three faculties, but there is still much to choose from for prospective students.


For example, the Faculty of Humanities has a wide range of Masters courses, including a raft of languages, and more vocational options such as fashion, dance and media and communications among many others.


At the Faculty of Social Sciences there are more than 20 different Masters courses available in English, ranging from computer sciences and economics to project and strategic management, while in the Law Faculty, both international and domestic issues are well covered.


“There is always a strong interest in programmes and courses hosted by Stockholm University School of Business,” says Sebastian Lindholm from the department of marketing and press.

“In fact the Department of Political Science and the School of Business has a joint bachelors programme, taught in English, that has increased in popularity lately.

“It combines the knowledge of international relations and political science with the aspects of business and economics. It’s something that is very important in today’s world and the economic and political climate we live in,” he adds.


Whichever faculty or individual course is chosen, students coming to Stockholm University are guaranteed a first-class education, a fact borne out each year with the publication of global university rankings.

It is one of the 100 highest-ranked universities in the world, and one of the top 50 universities in Europe, according to several well-established university ranking tables. In the area of chemistry, it is also among the top 50 universities in the world, ranked 45th in this subject by the Academic Ranking of World Universities 2011.


With global competition ever stronger, the need to gain and maintain a solid international reputation is paramount, and it was with this in mind that the university announced this year an investment of 100 million kronor (15 million USD).


“The investment is being made to further strengthen our position in meeting the demands of a global research and education world,” says Kåre Bremer, Vice-Chancellor at Stockholm University.

“An internationally-oriented academic environment is important to improve the quality of both research and education. This means that researchers, teachers and students must be given the opportunity for international exchange,” adds Bremer.

In terms of the future, studying at Stockholm University is highly popular because of the opportunities it offers its graduates in their professional life.

Careful career counselling throughout the students’ stay is on offer, and because the university also has strong links with businesses in Sweden and further afield, the service is of great value to students.

“Studying something you are truly interested in will make you willing to dedicate more time and energy, which is crucial for becoming really good within your field,“ says study and career counsellor Tina Larsson.

“Since sufficient information about the different options is a must to be able to make an informed choice, it is always a good idea to talk to a study counsellor.

“The study counsellor of the department responsible for the programme helps students find out more about the outline of the programmes and give them information about career opportunities,” she adds.

What makes Stockholm unique is its long and continuing association with the Nobel Prize. Historically, the university has not only educated many Laureates in the literary and science fields, but the prizewinners traditionally hold a lecture in the university's Aula Magna each year.

And of course being at university is more than just about studying. Here, a great deal of weight is given to the social aspect of the life of students, both from Sweden and abroad.

Stockholm is a lively cosmopolitan city, which is mirrored on the campus itself and although numbers have fallen slightly since tuition fees are no longer free, the university is working hard to increase the number of international students and researchers active in Stockholm, by increasing exchange agreements with partner universities outside of the EU/EES/Switzerland.

What will not change, however, is the institution’s academic excellence and the fact that it can offer unparalleled opportunities in a city and country known for punching above its weight in terms of history, education, technology and the world of business.

Article sponsored by Stockholm University



IES chain blocked from opening four new schools

Sweden's Internationella Engelska Skolan (IES) chain has been denied permission to open four new schools in Gothenburg, Huddinge, Norrtälje, and Upplands-Bro, after the schools inspectorate said it had not provided pupil data.

IES chain blocked from opening four new schools

According to the Dagens Nyheter (DN) newspaper, the Swedish Schools Inspectorate (Skolinspektionen) has denied permission to the chain to open a new planned new school in Norrtälje, north of Stockholm, even though the building that will house it is already half built. The inspectorate has also denied permission to three other schools which the chain had applied to start in 2023. 

In all four cases, the applications have been rejected because the school did not submit the required independent assessment for how many pupils the schools were likely to have. 

Jörgen Stenquist, IES’s deputy chief executive, said that IES has not in the past had to submit this data, as it has always been able to point to the queues of pupils seeking admissions to the school. 

“The fact that Engelska Skolan, as opposed to our competition, has never had the need to hire external companies to do a direct pupil survey is because we have had so many in line,” he told DN.

“In the past, it has been enough that we reported a large queue in the local area. But if the School Inspectorate wants us to conduct targeted surveys and ask parents directly if they want their children to start at our new schools, then maybe we have to start doing that.”


According to the newspaper, when the inspectorate had in the past asked for pupil predictions, the chain has refused, stating simply “we do not make student forecasts”, which the inspectorate has then accepted. 

However, in this year’s application round, when IES wrote: “We do not carry out traditional interest surveys as we simply have not had a need for this,” the inspectorate treated it as grounds to reject its applications. 

According to DN, other school chain have been complaining to the inspectorate that IES gets favourable treatment and was excused some requirements other chains have to fulfil. 

Liselotte Fredzell, from the inspectorate’s permitting unit, confirmed that the inspectorate was trying to be more even handed. 

“Yes, it is true that we are now striving for a more equal examination of applications. Things may have been getting too slack, and we needed to tighten up.”