Why Study in Sweden? Bachelor / Master Programes Available Maximum no of Universities are Govt. Programs Available in Feb & August Intake Currently, some 30,000 foreign students are studying in Sweden Part Time work allowed for students – 20 Hrs / Week International Students are allowed to stay back for Job search Visa Sweden has three universities in top 100 and eleven in top 500 of the 2010 edition of the Academic Ranking of World Universities compiled by Shanghai Jiao Tong University Strong links to research; Sweden is one of the world’s most committed investors in basic research. Sixty percent of university students are women. Many students studying in Sweden come from abroad – approximately 20% of new students – making Sweden one of the world’s most inclusive countries for education. Sweden has a number of large multinational corporations, such as telecom provider Ericsson, automotive companies Volvo and Scania, household appliances corporation Electrolux, bearing manufacturer SKF, and high-tech engineering groups Sandvik and Atlas Copco. Sweden has a long and proud history of academic excellence, with outstanding universities dating back to the 15th century. Sweden is the home of the Nobel Prize, the world’s most prestigious academic distinction. Swedish universities offer around 600 masters programs in English, ranging from human rights law to mechanical engineering. Many students studying in Sweden come from abroad, making Sweden one of the world’s most exclusive countries for education. English is spoken by all, Many Swedish companies use English as their official working language. High Visa Success for Genuine Students It is a big step to study abroad, and the options are almost limitless. So what makes Sweden stand out as a study destination? Innovation and creativity run deep Sweden is a safe and modern country in northern Europe, and it has accrued a spectacular reputation as an innovator and creative force. Sweden’s famed corporate brands — like Volvo, IKEA, Ericsson, H&M and Saab — complement its cultural brands — like Ingmar Bergman, Abba, Astrid Lindgren, Bjorn Borg, August Strindberg, The Cardigans and Greta Garbo. Standards are high Sweden has a long and proud history of academic excellence, with outstanding universities dating back to the 15th century. Sweden is the home of the Nobel Prize, the world’s most prestigious academic distinction. Today, Sweden’s reputation for innovation is built on close cooperation between industry and academia. Swedish universities are renowned for their investigative research and independent thinking, and this reputation is cemented with rigorous quality control and nationally certified degrees. Sweden has one of the most ambitious educational evaluation programs in Europe, aimed at maintaining this competitive edge. Choice Swedish universities offer around 600 master’s degree programs in English, ranging from human rights law to mechanical engineering. Programs are structured in response to student demand — the result is a student-centric education system, with open, informal relations between students and teachers, and where personal initiative and critical thought are prized. Foreign students are welcome Many students studying in Sweden come from abroad — 8.5% of the student body, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) — making Sweden one of the world’s most inclusive countries for education. But there is room for more: the number grew by over 80% over the last 4-year period. There are now PhD candidates from some 80 countries working towards their degrees in Sweden. Sweden’s educational policy is based on the recognition that a multicultural student body is a resource. Competition for places is keen, but students of all nationalities may apply, given the right credentials; and degree equivalency for past studies is granted on a flexible basis. Scholarships are available The Swedish Institute grants hundreds of scholarships every year to help foreign students make their stay in Sweden more affordable. Currently, tuition fees for everyone are fully subsidized by the state. Sweden’s public spending on education is the OECD’s highest, at 4.9% of GDP. And because it costs to live in Sweden, foreign students can work while studying. English is spoken by all Almost all Swedes speak fluent English. Many Swedish companies use English as their official working language. Foreign students find that this prevalence of English makes adapting to their new surroundings much easier. Accommodation For many people, studying abroad will be their first experience of living away from home for a longer period. This can be a daunting prospect for anyone, especially in view of the demands associated with being a full-time student while trying to gain a foothold in a new culture. It is therefore important that your living environment is comfortable and affordable; you should give yourself plenty of time to make all the necessary arrangements before leaving for Sweden. Exchange students If you are an exchange student in the Socrates/Erasmus programs you will receive assistance with accommodation arrangements from the host academic institution. Be sure to confirm this with your contact person before you leave for Sweden. Free movers If you are a free mover, i.e. a person applying on an individual basis, or if you need to arrange your own accommodation for any other reason, you should keep a few things in mind: There is no national system which handles requests for student accommodation. The local student union at your university fulfils this function, though it is not required to guarantee you accommodation, and may not in fact be able to help you. The availability of accommodation varies considerably from place to place. Usually, there is plenty of accommodation available at schools located in smaller and middle-sized cities or towns. Unfortunately, the situation is more difficult in the larger cities, especially in Stockholm and Goteborg, and in the traditional student cities of Lund and Uppsala. Often, the number of students exceeds the number of rooms that universities and university colleges have on offer and waiting times are long. However, there are alternatives. In addition to contacting your student union, you can also try contacting student housing providers directly. Associations and companies that provide student housing have set up a website for locating local housing providers. If you are a student or guest researcher at Stockholm University, Karolinska Institute, KTH (the Royal Institute of Technology) or Stockholm School of Economics, The University Accommodation Centre offers furnished apartments and rooms. To sign a lease for student accommodation, you must be able to prove that you are already studying or that you have been admitted to an academic institution. When you want to move out you must give at least one month’s written notice. Other rules may also apply. You can rent a flat in the private market. Though usually more expensive, it is a viable option for some students. It is not uncommon for students to share a bigger flat with several rooms. You may also be able to rent a single room privately. Other sources of information are local newspapers and message boards at your university. Whether provided by student unions or by third parties, accommodation catering expressly for students is often the preferred option, however. Student flats or rooms tend to be less expensive than private alternatives; they give you a chance to meet fellow students and participate in social activities, and they are often close to lecture halls, libraries and other facilities. Depending on availability, you can choose to live by yourself or in a shared student flat where you will have your own room but share a bathroom/toilet. Flats can be furnished or unfurnished. Student dormitories Many students prefer to live in a student dormitory. This can be an enjoyable experience as it gives students from around the world an opportunity to get to know each other and make friends. But it can also be demanding. Students living in the same corridor may have very different cultural backgrounds, different habits and ideas about how to do things. Most dormitories have 10-15 single rooms in each corridor. A kitchen is shared by 4-15 students. Female and male students live in the same corridor. Often there is also a communal television room. A single room must not be occupied by more than one person – a rule which is strictly enforced. Students are responsible for cleaning their own rooms and the communal kitchen. Although rooms are let with basic furniture, there are no blankets, pillows, sheets, towels or light bulbs. Some utensils may be available in the communal kitchen but you will usually have to bring your own plates, cutlery, pots and pans, etc. Some student unions rent these. Most student housing areas have launderettes. There is a booking list and a small fee is payable for the use of a washing machine. Rent for accommodation must be paid in advance. How much do I have to pay? Below are some examples of the average monthly rate for student accommodation (Prices in SEK at 2007 levels. 1 Euro = approx. SEK 10). Please note: due to the shortage of student housing in the older university towns/cities (Uppsala, Lund, Stockholm and Goteborg) prices in the private market are likely to be higher there. For universities located in smaller towns, accommodation prices range from SEK 2,000 to SEK 3,500 for a room. For universities located in medium-sized towns, accommodation prices range from SEK 2,300 to SEK 4,300 for a room. For universities located in cities, accommodation prices range from SEK 2,500 to SEK 4,500 for a room. To find out the precise availability and prices for student accommodation, contact the student union at your university or University College. A few tips regarding accommodation The situation with regard to accommodation for students is problematic in many parts of the country, sometimes very much so. There are simply not enough rooms and flats to go round. Fortunately, there are still towns and cities where conditions are better and where all or most students do get accommodation in time. If you are not guaranteed accommodation as part of your exchange program or through some other agreement, it is vital that you approach your local student union as soon as possible. Remember that the situation will vary according to where you choose to study. Some universities or university colleges have more rooms than others. At some schools, the student union will guarantee you accommodation if you apply in time; others have special queues for newly arrived students. A good tip is to check for special offers for foreign students with the international desk at your educational institute.