Education and learning

Higher education

På forelesning
After completing upper secondary school, students can continue their studies at a university or college.

Most universities and colleges in Norway are public and students are not charged any tuition. Tuition is paid for by the government. It is, however, common for students to pay a minor semester or enrolment fee. There are also a number of private colleges in Norway. Students of these colleges are required to pay a co-payment for their studies.

The costs of public schools and university are paid for by the government and education is free of charge for all students. Students are, however, required to pay for their own supplies at both public and private schools. This includes required textbooks and basic supplies.

Although universities and colleges are free, most students require financial assistance for other expenses. That is why most students take out a student loan from the Norwegian Educational Loan Fund to pay for rent, food and other necessities while studying. This makes it possible for all those with an interest in a higher education the possibility to finance their studies, regardless of their family’s financial situation. Many students also work a part-time job to pay for living expenses.

Equal educational opportunities

A modern society is dependent on high employment levels, technology, production and innovation. That is why Norway needs a highly educated population. The government facilitates education by, among other things, offering equal education opportunities to all.

About 30% of adults in Norway have higher education. More and more young people take higher education, and the level of education in Norway is rising steadily. Women currently make up more than 60% of students and have a slightly higher level of education than men.

All those with university admission certification from an upper secondary school can apply for admission to a college or university.

The Norwegian Universities and Colleges Admission Service Samordna opptak coordinates admission to colleges and universities.


Financial support for students

The Norwegian Educational Loan Fund (Lånekassen) offers scholarships and loans to students in Norway and to Norwegian students studying abroad.

The Norwegian Educational Loan Fund contributes to:

  • Eliminating inequality and promoting equal opportunity that gives all persons the right to an education regardless of geographical circumstances, age, gender and financial or social circumstances.
  • Making sure education takes place under satisfactory working conditions in order to ensure effective educational activities.
  • Providing society access to educated workers.

Adults can also apply for scholarships and/or loans for primary, secondary and upper secondary education.