Pursuing a degree in most European countries is expensive especially for international students. This is why most foreign students seek for scholarships to finance their studies. Fortunately, Norway is an exception as you can acquire a degree for free in certain institutions. Therefore, learn about the free universities in Norway.
One of the biggest challenges facing students is money to finance their education. For this reason, the dream of many students has died. While students who lack funding seek scholarships to finance their studies, it is not always easy winning a scholarship.
An alternative to pursuing education apart from scholarships is tuition-free schools. However, it is always hard to find tuition-free institutions where you can acquire high-quality education.
Norway appears to be one of the countries where students can acquire degrees without having to pay tuition fees. This is the major reason why international students choose Norway as their study destination. The schools that offer free education in Norway are mainly public institutions. In addition, students from any country
You can check the table of contents below so as to see the highlights of the article.
Can I study for free in Norway?
Yes. Public universities in Norway offer free tuition to both local and international students. However, students will have to pay registration fees, accommodation fees, and student fees.
Is university education in Norway free for international students?
Not all universities in Norway offer free education to international students. The institutions in Norway that offer free education to international students are public universities. If you wish to study in a private university in Norway, you will have to pay tuition and other fees as specified by the institution.
How can I get free university in Norway?
Gaining admission to a free university in Norway may not be very difficult. Like other university applications, you will have to meet the requirements for the degree that you wish to pursue in Norway. Keep in mind that only public universities in Norway offer free tuition to international students.
The basic requirements include academic transcripts, letters of recommendation, proof of the English language (TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson PTE, or Cambridge Advanced). International students who are non-native English speakers are required to meet the English language requirements.
If you have these requirements, search online for any of the free universities in Norway. Ensure that you visit the official website of the school you like to see if they offer the course of study and program that you wish to pursue.
Afterward, check if you meet the requirements of the institution and submit your application along with the requirements. Keep in mind that you may be required to pay a registration fee.
Make sure that you always check your email to know if the university has offered you provisional admission.
Top Free Universities in Norway
In Norway, only public universities offer free tuition to both local and international students. However, students are required to pay a semester fee of 30 – 60 EUR for the student union. The fee covers on-campus health and counseling services as well as sports and cultural activities.
Additionally, these free universities in Norway offer high-quality education and are funded by the Norwegian government.
The top free universities in Norway include:
- University of Bergen
- The Arctic University of Norway or University of Tromso (UiT)
- University of Oslo
- University of Stavanger
- Norwegian University of Science and Technology
- Norwegian University of Life Sciences
- University of Agder
- Nord University
- Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
- University of South-Eastern Norway
- Oslo Metropolitan University
- Østfold University College
University of Bergen
The University of Bergen (UiB) is a public university in Bergen, Norway that was founded in 1948. It is the second-oldest university in Norway and focuses highly on research. The institution has an enrolment of over 18,000 students and about 13 percent of this population are international students.
UiB offers academic programs in different fields. Students receive learning through several faculties including the Faculty of Fine Art, Music & Design, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Mathematics & Natural Science, Faculty of Psychology, and Faculty of Social Science.
The University of Bergen is one of the free universities in Norway as it does not charge tuition fees. UiB requires both local and international students to join the Student Welfare Organization. Each semester, students pay a semester fee of NOK 590 ($72). The semester fee covers cultural activities, childcare, refunds for many medical expenses, and accommodation.
According to the 2010 Times Higher Education World University Rankings, UiB was ranked 135th worldwide. UiB was ranked 181st in the world in the 2016 QS World University Rankings.
Arctic University of Norway
The Arctic University of Norway or the University of Tromso (UiT) is the northernmost higher institution in the world and it was established in 1968.
UiT is one of the largest research and the sixth-largest university in Norway. The university offers undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate degrees through various faculties. These faculties include Health Science, Science & Technology, Humanities & Education, Bioscience & Fisheries, Fine Arts, Law, and Sports, Tourism & Social Work.
The University of Tromso is one of the free universities in Norway as it is funded by the Norwegian government. UiT only requires students to pay a semester fee ranging from NOK 625 to $73. The semester fee covers registrations, examinations, student cards, student counseling, and student organization memberships. However, students on exchange status are exempted from this fee.
University of Oslo
The University of Oslo is a public research university in Oslo, Norway that was founded in 1811. This institution is the oldest higher institution in Norway. It has an enrolment of more than 27,000 students.
The University of Oslo focuses more on research. It is organized into eight (8) schools or faculties. These faculties include the Faculty of Dentistry, Faculty of Education, Faculty of Humanities, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Mathematics & Natural Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Social Sciences, and Faculty of Theology.
According to the Academic Ranking of World Universities, the University of Oslo is ranked 3rd in Norway and 58th globally. The 2016 Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked the University of Oslo 63rd in the world.
University of Stavanger
The University of Stavanger (UiS) is a public university in Stavanger, Norway that was established in 2005. In 2017, the university had an enrolment of 11,000 students.
UiS is one of the free universities in Norway as it is financed by the government of Norway.
The institution offers undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate degrees through its six (6) faculties including arts & education, social science, science & technology, health science, performing arts, and a business school.
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) is a public research university in Norway that was founded in 1760. Its main campus is in Trondheim while it has smaller campuses in Gjøvik and Ålesund.
In Norway, NTNU is tasked with offering education and research in the field of engineering and technology. The university offers academic programs in various fields of study including engineering, medicine & health sciences, natural sciences, architecture & design, social & educational sciences, economics & management, and humanities.
NTNU is one of the free universities in Norway as it does not require students to pay tuition fees. However, students are only required to pay a semester fee of NOK 50 ($68) which covers student welfare services.
In the 2017 Times Higher Education World University Rankings, NTNU was ranked 1st worldwide for having the largest corporate links due to its research partnership with SINTEF.
Norwegian University of Life Sciences
The Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) is a public research university in Ås, Norway that was founded in 1859. It has the highest number of international students (20% of NMBU’s enrolment) among other schools in Norway.
NMBU offers teaching and in-depth research that is geared towards the private sector in Norway.
Research at NMBU includes basic research and applied research, providing a foundation for education, research training, and research geared towards the private sector.
Students at NMBU are offered teaching and research training through its seven faculties. The faculties include biosciences, environmental sciences & natural resource management, veterinary medicine, chemistry, biotechnology & food Science, landscape & society, science & technology, and economics & business.
Students at NMBU do not pay tuition fees as the institution requires them to pay a semester fee of NOK 470 ($55). Hence, this makes NMBU one of the free universities in Norway.
University of Agder
The University of Agder (UiA) is a public university that was established in 2007. It has campuses in Kristiansand and Grimstad, Norway.
UiA is a home for both local and international students due to its high-quality free education. At the university, students are administered learning through six (6) faculties and a unit for teacher education. The faculties include social sciences, business & law, fine arts, health & sport sciences, humanities & education, and engineering & science.
The university requires students to pay a semester fee of NOK 800 ($93). In addition to this, students pay other fees such as accommodation NOK 3200 ($373) per month, books NOK 3500 ($409), and transportation NOK 520 ($60).
Nord University is a state higher institution in the countries of Nordland and Trøndelag, Norway that was founded in 2016. Its main campus is situated in Bodø and other campuses are in Mo i, Rana, Namsos, Nesna, Sandnessjøen, Steinkjer, Stjørdal, and Vesterålen.
The university offers 180 programs leading to the award of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in both academic and professional studies including biosciences & aquaculture, sociology, business, nursing & health sciences, and education & arts.
Nord University’s language of instruction is Norwegian but some programs are administered in the English language.
The school is one of the free universities in Norway as it requires students to pay a semester fee of NOK 725 ($85) which covers registration, examination, and students welfare organization.
Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
Western Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL) is a public university in Norway that was established in 2017.
The university offers academic programs on the bachelor’s, master’s, continuing education, and doctoral (Ph.D.) degree levels. HVL administers these academic programs through four faculties including:
- Faculty of Education, Arts & Sports
- Faculty of Engineering and Science
- Faculty of Health and Social Sciences
- Faculty of Business Administration and Social Sciences
Western Norway University of Applied Sciences provides free tuition by requiring students to pay only a semester fee and fees for excursions, whatnot, and field trips depending on the student’s course of study. International students at HVL are also required to pay a living cost of NOK 10,000 ($1,168) per month. Consequently, this makes HVL one of the free universities in Norway.
University of South-Eastern Norway
The University of South-Eastern Norway (USN) is a state-owned university in Norway that was founded in 2018. It has an enrolment of over 17,000 students.
Although the university is still new, it has campuses in in Bø, Telemark, Porsgrunn, Notodden, Rauland, Drammen, Hønefoss, Kongsberg and Horten.
USN offers 88 undergraduate programs, 44 master’s programs, and 8 Ph.D. programs in different fields of study. Measured in the number of students, USN is among the largest in higher education in Norway.
USN is one of the free universities in Norway because students do not pay tuition fees. The university only requires students to pay semester fees of NOK 929 ($108). The semester fee covers students’ welfare services. Students also pay a SAIH fee of NOK 40 ($5), although the fee is optional.
Oslo Metropolitan University
Oslo Metropolitan University (Oslomet) is a state university in Oslo and Akershus in Norway that was founded in 2018. The university was formed due to the merger of several former vocational colleges in Oslo.
Oslomet is organized into four (4) faculties including the Faculty of Health Sciences, Faculty of Education & International Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, and Faculty of Technology, Art & Design.
Oslo Metropolitan University also has several research centers such as Work Research Institute, Norwegian Social Research, Norwegian Institute for Urban & Regional Research, and National Institute for Consumer Research.
The university offers free tuition to both local and international students. Oslomet requires students to pay a semester fee of NOK 600 ($70) which covers student welfare services. In addition, students pay a copy fee of NOK 220 ($25) per semester and a SAIH fee of NOK 40 ($5). The SAIH fee is not mandatorily.
Østfold University College
Østfold University College (HiØ) is a university college in Viken county, Norway that was founded in 1994. It has two campuses including Fredrikstad and Halden.
HiØ offers 60 fields of study leading to the award of associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. These academic programs are offered through five faculties and a theatre academy. The faculties include:
- Faculty of Business, Social Sciences & Foreign Languages
- Faculty of Computer Sciences
- Faculty of Education
- Faculty of Engineering
- Faculty of Health and Social Studies
- Norwegian Theatre Academy
HiØ is a tuition-free university because it requires students to pay a semester fee of NOK 600 ($70). In addition, students will have to pay an accommodation fee of NOK 4,500 ($525) per month.
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