Scandinavia is Europe’s northernmost region, consisting of Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and Finland. Those four countries are home to some of the best universities in Europe and the world, and you can choose from more than 2,000 Bachelor and Master programmes in total.
At more than 10 million inhabitants, Sweden is by far the most populous country in the Nordics. Swedes are world-famous for their exports, be it furniture (IKEA), fashion (H&M), or music (from ABBA to Avicii). Their higher education is slowly becoming its next big export success: With quite a number of world-class universities, and around 1,000 Bachelors and Masters in English on offer, Sweden attracts countless international students every year. Citizens of the EU or EEA study tuition-free, all others should expect fees in the range of 8,000 to 15,000 euros annually, depending on the institution and the programme.
Learn more: Study in Sweden
Denmark is home to dozens of fine universities that offer world-class education. Many of their institutions follow a problem-based learning approach, fostering group work and real-world applications of education.
You get to choose from roughly 600 Bachelor and Master degree programmes in English, all of which are free for those from the EU/EEA and Switzerland. Everyone else will usually be charged somewhere between 6,000 and 16,000 euros per year.
Learn more: Study in Denmark
If you want to study in Norway in English, you can choose from more than 400 full-time Bachelors and Masters. While that seems like a small number especially compared to neighbouring Sweden, it still covers a broad range that should cater to every educational taste.
As in the other Nordic countries, citizens from the EU and EEA can study in Norway tuition-free. All others generally have to pay tuition fees, ever since a change of the rules in 2023. Depending on university and programme, those students should expect between €15,000 and €35,000 per year.
Whether you pay fees or not, student life in Norway can be quite expensive: The country may offer one of the highest standards of living worldwide, but it is also among the world's most expensive places to live. A half-liter of beer easily sets you back 3 euros and more - if bought in the supermarket, and possibly three times that in a bar. Nonetheless, Norway offers a unique study-abroad experience that is without doubt worth considering.
Learn more: Study in Norway
Whether or not Finland strictly counts as “Scandinavia” is actually up for debate. Many Finns make a strong case that their cultural and linguistic heritage is decidedly different and will thus be straight-up insulted if you call them Scandinavians, a reaction partly fuelled by centuries of Swedish occupation up until the early 19th century. Meanwhile, others - and not only members of the local Swedish minority - will be equally insulted if you imply they aren’t Scandinavians. To play it safe, you can always refer to the region as the “Nordics” or “Northern Europe”.
In any case, expect high-quality education. Finland has a particularly developed system of more practice-oriented universities of applied sciences (or polytechnics), contrasting the more research-oriented universities. There are roughly 500 programmes you can study in Finland. As in the other countries mentioned, citizens of the EU/EEA study for free; non-Europeans are usually charged in the range of 10,000 to 15,000 euros per year.
Learn more: Study in Finland2455 Programmes