Sweden is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe, bordered by Norway and Finland. It is the third largest country in the European Union by area, with a population of about 9.5 million. So what does Sweden have to offer an international student?
High Quality, Unconventional Education
Studying in Sweden is different from studying in other countries because Swedish universities have an open climate with a strong focus on group work. The Swedish education system focuses more on your academic interests than pushing you to achieve a grade. Swedish universities work to prepare you for a successful future; the job market values ambitious, innovative, and perceptive team players, so Swedish universities attempt to instill these qualities in their students. Degree programs in Sweden offer students the opportunity to mix study and practical work, so that they have first-hand experience in their field when they graduate and enter the job market.
The education system in Sweden is student-centric. Relationships between students and teachers are relaxed and informal; as a student in Sweden, you will be expected to address your teachers by their first names. Swedish universities prize personal initiative and independent thinking; if you choose to study in Sweden, you will be expected and required to take an active role and contribute with your opinions and ideas in lectures, seminars, and group discussions. This will give you the opportunity to develop your individual strengths and cultivate you academic abilities.
In the 2010 edition of the Academic Ranking of World Universities compiled by Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Sweden has three universities in the top 100 and eleven in the top 500.
Almost everyone in Sweden speaks English nowadays; 89 per cent of Swedes are bilingual, so international students from English-speaking countries need not worry about not being able to communicate if they don’t speak Swedish.
Highly Innovative Country
Sweden is one of the world’s most modern countries, and the birthplace of many successful corporations. A number of successful inventions have resulted from research at Swedish universities and companies, including the computer mouse, Bluetooth, the pacemaker, the ball bearing, the dialysis machine, and internet applications such as Spotify and Skype. These recent inventions are built on a long history of excellence in academia and research in Sweden. Sweden is the home of the Nobel prize and several highly acclaimed universities dating back to the 15th century. This innate creativity has established Sweden as a strong nation within design, fashion, and music. It is one of the largest music-exporting countries in the world.
Free Tuition for Students from EU Countries
If you are an international student from a European Union country, you have another good reason to study in Sweden: tuition is free. Although the cost of living can be high in Sweden, it more than evens out when you factor in free tuition. With the rising costs of tuition in other countries, more and more students are applying to schools in Sweden. Last year, Lund saw 78 per cent increase in degree applications from the UK.