Here is a quick guide about Norway, information about Norwegian students and hopefully some good tips for your recruitment in Norway
Contact EducationUSA Norway
EducationUSA Norway is split between the U.S. Embassy Oslo and the Norway-America Association (NORAM).
Jane Vaseghi, Education and Research Advisor at the U.S. Embassy Oslo – firstname.lastname@example.org, +47 21 30 89 26
Kristina Haarberg, Director of Scholarship Programs and Communication, The Norway-America Association (NORAM) – email@example.com, +47 23 35 71 60
Tips for recruitment
When is the best time to come and recruit Norwegian students?
- The academic school year is from August to June. The fall semester is August to December and in October, most of the high schools will have autumn leave. Contact EducationUSA for more information if you are considering traveling at this time of the year.
The spring semester starts in January and ends in June. During these months, there are holidays such as winter holidays in February, and Easter holidays in March/April. Contact EducationUSA for more information if you are considering traveling at this time of the year.
- Typically, the schools have their exams at the end of the semester, therefore their time schedules will be limited to minimal space for presentations and visits from American colleges or partners of u.s. etc.
Challenges for students
- Complicated application, little help from Norwegian high school counselors (Common App)
- SAT only offered in Oslo, at Skagerak high school or sometimes in Stavanger. ACT is only offered in Oslo.
- TOEFL is offered in Moss (an hour outside of Oslo) but is also available in Oslo.
- IELTS is offered in Oslo, Stavanger, Bergen, Haugesund, and Trondheim.
- Grants and loans from Lånekassen do not cover all of the tuition at most HEI in the U.S.
Young people who have completed Primary/Lower Secondary education or similar, are entitled to three years of Upper Secondary Education. After completing three years of Upper Secondary Education, students will have higher education entrance qualifications, a vocational qualification or lower-level qualifications. To be admitted to a university or a university college you need higher education entrance qualifications (Vitnemål/diploma) A vocational qualification does not entitle you to admission to a university or a university college. Students who have completed vocational training can take a supplementary year to gain higher education entrance qualifications.
Read more about the Norwegian school system here.
All students will have completed a minimum of 11 years of English courses by the time they graduate high school, and it is an elective subject for two years. Some will therefore have had English for thirteen years.
There are 25 IB Diploma Programme high schools in Norway, several close to Oslo.
Funding opportunities for Norwegian students
In Norway, education is free if you attend public universities and colleges. Students may apply for funding to pay for housing costs, study abroad fees etc, and if you attend a private university in Norway you may also apply for loans. If a student decides to study abroad, there are funding avaliable from the government to pay for room&board and tuition. Norwegian families will most likely not have saved up to support their children financially for education, and almost everyone is dependent on the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund (Lånekassen).
Norwegian students may receive government funding from the Norwegian Educational State Loan Fund (Lånekassen) for their studies in Norway or abroad.
Lånekassen’s objectives for educational support are:
- to give the same possibilities for education, regardless of economic and social background, geographical aspects, age, gender, and physical disabilities
- to ensure that the society and the workforce have access to competence.
- to secure a satisfactory work environment for education
- to make studies efficient.
Who gets funding and how much?
Lånekassen provides grants and loans to Norwegian students for higher education, both in Norway and abroad (up to total of eight years). Foreign citizens may receive support for education in Norway under certain conditions.
For students that want to study abroad, grad or exchange, Lånekassen partly covers their stay abroad.
- Room & board (same wherever they study)
- Tuition (based on the cost of tuition, up to a certain maximum)
- Tuition support
- Supplementary grant (given to students attending high cost & high ranked universities)
- Supplementary tuition loan (extra loan to cover tuition if cost is higher than Tuition Support and Supplementary grant (if applicable) combined)
- Travel expenses (to cover their flights to/from hometown)
Practical information for your Oslo visit
Oslo Airport to Oslo city center:
- You can use the speed train “Flytoget”, 204 NOK one way.
Use platform 2 at the Airport Train Station.
- You can also travel by the local train, it takes a few minutes more and fewer departures, but it is more affordable.
Train and metro:
- In the Oslo region, there are two companies that have merged their ticket payment together, VY and Ruter.
- For you as a customer, this means that you can either buy a ticket for the same train at VY ticket booth and in-app, or you can use Ruter. One benefit with Ruter is that this company controls all of the public transportation in Oslo. This means that you can buy a ticket from Ruter that can last your whole trip to Oslo.
- You can also take a Taxi from Oslo Airport Gardermoen til City Centre. As of the price you’ll have to pay for one trip, approx 100$, it’s quite expensive.
- Uber is not legal in Norway; therefore, we would recommend that you use the transportation methods listed above.
You can pre-book your stay here in Oslo. Follow this link to get the best options for hotels in the city Centre of Oslo.
- Radisson Holbergs Gate
- Thon Hotel Opera – close to the railway station, where all public transport is close by.
Traditional Norwegian cuisine in Oslo
Dovrehallen is a traditional Norwegian bar and dining place. At Dovrehallen you will get historical Norwegian cuisine in a place with rich history.
- What you can eat at Dovrehallen, follow this link.
Elias mat og sånt is the place to visit if you want the best of the best when it comes to fresh commodities. This café/restaurant can offer you a great dining experience with meat from Norwegian reindeers and elks.
This is the oldest restaurant in Oslo, Engebret have been serving delicious food since 1857, and is most definitely a traditional Norwegian café. Take a look at what they have to offer at their café in the heading.
Authentic fish restaurant in Oslo:
Lofoten Fish Restaurant is a modern twist of serving both traditional Norwegian fish food and also accommodates the modern human being. They use fresh commodities from the sea, and this can be enjoyed in a modern environment.
Things to do in Oslo
- Visit the national art gallery
- Visit Akershus Fortress
- Visit the Park of Vigeland
- Visit the Museum of Vikings and Kon-Tiki at Bygdøy
- Visit Holmenkollen Ski Facility
- All of these places are travelable via the Ruter app.
- If you want to explore Oslo, this is the way to do it. With Oslo Pass, you can get easy access to most of the museums and places to see. Follow the link to get amused.
Norway and Oslo questions…
Do Norwegians speak English?
Definitely. Almost all Norwegians are fluent in English, and even if they’re reserved and quiet, don’t take that as a reproach — that’s just the Norwegian way. They’re likely used to English speakers and will be happy to accommodate.
How large is Norway?
One word: Very. The country is technically a bit smaller than California, but its coast is twice as long — about 2,700 km, or 1,700 miles (that’s Seattle to San Diego). If you include the fjords in that number, its coast is over 25,000 km, or 16,000 miles, longer than the entire coastline of the United States. If islands are also included, we’re talking nearly 60,000 km, or over 37,000 miles of water. So, yes, Norway is quite large – but keep in mind its population is only about five million people.
May I drink the water?
In Norway is completely safe to drink the tap water, the water is from local springs and is thoroughly filtered. It most likely the most natural water you can find in the world.
Do people tip in Norway?
The short answer is yes, for good service at restaurants (usually 10-15%). If you’re paying with a card, the machine will prompt you to enter what amount you want to pay, and this should include the tip. Elsewhere, tipping is less common, and you don|t need to tip in taxis, hair dressers etc.
Are credit cards accepted in Norway?
Yes! You may use VISA and Mastercard everywhere and often American Express are sometimes accepted at chain hotels etc. You don’t really need cash in Norway, you will be able to pay by card everywhere and receive receipts.
But what is the currency?
The krone, or NOK, is the currency in Norway. Check the exchange rate here.
What should I prepare for in terms of weather?
Norway is a Nordic country which means colder climate, rain and wind. But our houses, buildings and public transportation is well heated.
For Oslo average temperature.
Will I need to get a rental car?
If you are just visiting Oslo, we really advise you not to book a rental car. Oslo Central is very hard to drive in, and the city is quite compact with great public transportation opportunities.
For the other cities, high schools and universities are often located in the city centers and you will likely be able to walk to your different venues.
Any other question? Don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
- Fire: 110
- Police: 112
- Ambulance: 113
Practical information regarding living expenses in Norway as of September 2018. This chart gives you an indication of pricing when it comes to ordinary household items.
Other things can be more expensive, like eating and drinking at restaurants, clothes, tourist attractions. But in favor of the price level, most of the things of experiences you pay for will have an extraordinary quality.