If you are looking to get a quality education in medicine from renowned medical schools in Norway at little or no cost, then your best bet is to study in one of the best medical schools in Norway. In this article is a list of the top medical schools in Norway with their various study programs and requirements.
The country Norway, also known as the Kingdom of Norway is a Scandinavian country that comprises mountains, glaciers, and deep coastal fjords.
Oslo, the capital, is a city of green spaces and museums. Norway is a high-income nation with a vibrant private sector and a substantial safety net.
One thing that has made Norway a popular study destination for students is its tuition-free state (public) universities and the fact that on a global recognition level, some of the best medical schools are in Norway.
Medicine is one of the most expensive degree programs that can be attained with little or no cost at all and at a shorter duration as it only takes about 6 years compared to the usual 8 (4 years of undergraduate + 4 years of postgraduate study).
Without a doubt, healthcare in Norway is cutting-edge and as compared to other OECD countries, Norway has a high proportion of medical doctors, a ratio of 4.8 for every 1,000 people.
If you are looking to be part of this respected industry, then here are some aspects to keep in mind about studying medicine in Norway:
Norwegian Medical Schools Requirements
Applicants must present a high school diploma (translated to English or Scandinavian) and must have completed additional subjects to study medicine in Norway. These include Mathematics, Chemistry, and Physics.
Due to the high number of applicants and the limited number of slots for the program, high grades are required in order to be considered for admission into any of the Norwegian medical schools. Some schools may require prior learning and work experience of applicants.
Since subjects are taught in Norwegian, proficiency in the language is required of foreign students as well. As for the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, proficiency in both English and Norwegian is required.
International students must submit their application through the Norwegian Universities and Colleges Admission Service NUCAS.
What is the Language of Instruction in Norway Medical Schools?
Medical schools in Norway use Norwegian as the primary language of instruction and as such, require proficiency in the Norwegian language for all medical school applicants. This requirement can be met by taking any of the following exams:
“Vg3-level” Norwegian (exam) or Norwegian as a second language (exam) at a third-year level. OR
Norwegian for International Students, Level 3 – NOR-0030 Norsk for internasjonale studenter, Trinn III 3 (15 ECTS). OR
1-year (60 ECTS) program in Norwegian language and culture for foreign students, which can be obtained at a university. OR
450 points in the written test in Norwegian – advanced level (Test I Norsk – høyere nivå, skriftlig or ”Bergenstesten”). Although Norwegian is primarily used for teaching, some courses may be taught in English in some universities as listed below:
At the University of Oslo, for example, there is an international semester, Module 6, which is taught in the English Language.
At the University of Tromsø, students undergo a seventh semester called an ‘International Semester’ which was developed for exchange students, all teachings and examinations done in this period are delivered in English.
Medicine in Norway
Medical education in Norway takes 6 years to 6 ½ years (with elective semester) to complete. This leads to a Candidate of Medicine (Cand. Med.) degree, which is equivalent to the Doctor of Medicine degree in other countries.
The Cand. Med. degree provides the theoretical, practical, and behavioral skills to become a physician.
It covers the biological, environmental, social, and mental factors of human health, as well as the topics of a health service organization and health economics. As part of the training, students need to undergo clinical service in primary health care facilities and specialist hospitals.
While most medical schools in Norway follow the same pattern and curriculum, a few follow a different curriculum.
For instance, at the University of Tromsø, the first 4 years of medical school are devoted to lessons about the structure and function of the human body.
While the fifth year of study includes an 18-week immersion in somatics and psychiatry. This includes an 8-week rotation as a general practitioner as well.
For the last year, students are deployed to the University of Northern Norway and the Nordland Hospital.
The University of Oslo, it follows a unique curriculum named Oslo 2014. This includes 8 modules, the Examen Philosophicum, elective subjects, and a thesis.
About 10% of medical students are allowed to pursue a career in research. The University of Bergen, for example, offers a Medical Student Research Program that includes research training on top of the Cand.
Med. Curriculum. This requires a thesis and an additional year to complete for a total of 7 years of schooling.
To become a medical doctor in Norway, all Cand. Med. graduates need to undergo a 1 ½ year internship (turnustjeneste) to be a legally authorized physicians in Norway.
Today, this has been incorporated as the first part of the specialization track. As such, a Cand. Med. graduate can earn authorization to practice as soon as he/she receives a diploma.
It is also worthy of note that entry into the Medical Schools in Norway is difficult and highly selective as universities only have limited intakes or slots per year.
The acceptance rate ranges between just 116 to 220 applicants for each academic year.
The List of the Best Medical Schools in Norway
- University of Oslo
- University of Bergen
- Norwegian University of Science and Technology (University of Trondheim)
- UiT the Arctic University of Norway – The University of Tromsø
- Norwegian University of Life Sciences
- Norwegian School of Sport Sciences
- University of Stavanger
- Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
- University of Agder
- Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet)
1. University of Oslo
The University of Oslo (originally named Royal Fredrick University), in Norwegian: Universitetet I Oslo is a public research-intensive university located in Oslo, Norway.
It is the oldest and highest-ranked university in Norway. Established in 1811, the University of OsloMet has consistently ranked among the top universities in the world, as one of the leading universities in Northern Europe and the best medical school in Norway.
The University of Oslo Faculty of Medicine is the oldest and largest research and educational institution in medicine in Norway and was founded in 1814 with all the professional programs in Medicine being taught almost entirely in Norwegian except for the international semester, Module 6, which is taught in the English Language.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #1 in Norway
- #32 in Europe
- #125 in the World
Programs offered: The major programs offered by the faculty are Clinical Medicine, Basic Medical Science, Health, Society, and Molecular Medicine.
Admission requirements: Entrance requirement for admission consists of both education requirements, language proficiency requirements in English and Norwegian and specific requirements in mathematics, physics, and chemistry.
Tuition: There are no tuition fees for the University of Oslo for both local and international students although, students are required to pay a small semester registration fee of NOK 550.
2. University of Bergen
The University of Bergen, in Norwegian: Universitetet I Bergen, is a public research university located in Bergen, Norway.
The Faculty of Medicine was initially established in August 1946 and in January 2008 it merged with the Faculty of Dentistry.
The Faculty of Medicine does not offer any bachelor’s degree programs or professional degree programs taught in English as the language of instruction is Norwegian.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #2 in Norway
- #72 in Europe
- #223 in the World
Programs offered: The University of Bergen Faculty of Medicine offers the following programs: Bachelor’s degree programs: Bachelor of Dental hygiene and human nutrition.
Master’s degree programs: Biomedical Sciences, Manual Therapy, Human Nutrition, Clinical Nutrition, Global Health, Health and Society.
Postgraduate studies: odontology and The Qualification Program for dentists with dental education from countries outside the EU/ EEC areas.
Integrated Master’s degrees/Profession studies: Cand.med.-degree program, Master of Dentistry, Master Programme in Pharmacy.
Admission requirements: You must have a minimum grade average comparable to a Norwegian C. A Norwegian C is a good grade, comparable to an American B and a Second Class Upper in the British system.
Tuition: The University of Bergen offers quality tuition-free education to all students, regardless of citizenship from around the world.
However, students are encouraged to pay a semester fee of NOK 590. This includes a voluntary payment to the Norwegian Students’ and Academics’ International Assistance Fund (SAIH) whose work is to promote education in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
# Norwegian University of Science and Technology (University of Trondheim)
The Norwegian University of Science and Technology, in Norwegian: Norges teknisk-naturvitenskapelige universitet, NTNU is a public university and the largest in Norway that is highly research-oriented, having its main campus in Trondheim earning the name the University of Trondheim and other smaller campuses in Gjøvik and Ålesund. The institution of higher learning was established in 1760.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #3 in Norway
- #101 in Europe
- #292 in the World
Programs offered: Audiology, Human Movement Science, Medicine, Nursing, Occupational Therapy, Paramedic Science, Physiotherapy and Radiography.
Admissions requirements: Undergraduate Requirements:
Students must have a high school certificate or diploma from a recognized school or institute.
International undergraduates are required to submit either of the following exam scores to prove their English proficiency:
Minimum Undergraduate Score: TOEFL iBT: 90 or above, TOEFL PBT: 600 or above, IELTS Academic: 6.5 or above, PTE Academic: 62
Graduate Requirements: Students must have completed a four-year undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline from a recognized institution or university.
English Tests Minimum Graduate Scores: TOEFL iBT: 90 or above, TOEFL PBT: 600 or above, IELTS Academic: 6.5 or above, PTE Academic: 62
Tuition: There are no tuition fees at NTNU. But students need to cover their own living expenses and all international students who are not citizens of EU/EEA/EFTA countries must have enough funding to live in Norway in order to be granted a student visa.
# UiT the Arctic University of Norway
The University of Tromsø – The Arctic University of Norway, in Norwegian: Universitetet i Tromsø is a state university in Norway and the northernmost university in the world. Established in 1968, the University of Tromsø is a modern, broad, high-tech university with outstanding degree programs at bachelor’s, master’s, and PhD levels and is ranked amongst the best medical schools in Norway.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #4 in Norway
- #182 in Europe
- #525 in the World
Programs offered: pharmaceutical studies, nursing, clinical medicine, clinical dentistry, medical biology, psychology, community medicine, and pediatric and adolescent mental health. Visit the program page to see all.
Admissions requirements: Make sure you meet the formal admission requirements: Basic Education, Proof of English Proficiency, Proof of Financial Ability and/or Average Grade scores before applying. Average grade requirements are available at NOKUT.
Tuition: Like all Norwegian public institutions, there are no tuition fees at UiT.
# Norwegian University of Life Sciences
The Norwegian University of Life Sciences, in Norwegian: Norges miljø- og biovitenskapelige universitet, NMBU is a state university located in Ås, Norway.
It has the Veterinary medicine Faculty as the only core medical faculty. The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine is Norway’s only veterinary educational institution and provides expertise in veterinary medicine and veterinary population medicine.
The faculty educates veterinarians, veterinary nurses and doctoral students in Veterinary Science and research, Veterinary medicine, and related biomedical disciplines.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #5 in Norway
- #289 in Europe
- #907 in the World
Programs offered: Preclinical Sciences and Pathology, Paraclinical Sciences, Production Animal Clinical Sciences and Companion Animal Clinical Sciences.
Admissions requirements: The minimum entrance requirements for admission to higher education in Norway are set by NOKUT and can be found in The Nokut GSU list.
This list states the basic requirements for admission to higher education in Norway. See all requirements here
Tuition: There are no tuition fees since it is a public (state) school.
# Norwegian School of Sport Sciences
The Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, in Norwegian: Norges idrettshøgskole, NIH is a public university located at Sognsvann in Oslo, Norway. The school was established in 1968 and has the national responsibility for education and research related to sports sciences at the Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate levels.
The Department of Sports Medicine currently offers study in physical activity and health and confers the title “Physical Activity and Health Advisor NIH”.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #6 in Norway
- #311 in Europe
- #976 in the World
Programs offered: The major areas of concentration include, physical activity and health, Women’s exercise and health, Prevention of sports injuries, Active rehabilitation of musculoskeletal disorders, and fitness.
Admissions requirements: The Norwegian School of Sport Sciences(NIH) have countries that they partner with, within and outside Europe. A major qualification is the nomination of students by the partner institutions. Only nominated students can enroll in NIH.
# University of Stavanger
The University of Stavanger (Universitetet I Stavanger) is a state university located in Stavanger, Norway. UiS was established in 2005 when the former Stavanger University College (Høgskolen I Stavanger; HiS) received university status.
The Faculty of Health Sciences aims at training world-class competent healthcare professionals for health services in a state of constant transition.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #7 in Norway
- #401 in Europe
- #1323 in the World
Programs offered: Public Health, Quality and Health Technology, caring and Ethics.
Admission requirements: Please refer to the country list to find specific admission requirements for the country where you have completed your secondary education.
Tuition: The University of Stavanger is a state university and does not charge tuition fees. All students are required to pay a semester fee per semester, with the exception of exchange students.
# Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, in Norwegian: Høgskulen på Vestlandet or HVL is a Norwegian public institution of higher education, established in January 2017 through the merging of formerly independent colleges across five campuses: Bergen, Førde, Haugesund, Sogndal, and Stord. The institution can be traced back to 1839 way before the merger.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #8 in Norway
- #445 in Europe
- #1522 in the World
Programs offered: Health and Caring Sciences, Health and Functioning.
Admissions requirements: You must be nominated by your home university before you can apply for admission. Undergraduate admissions requirements can be seen here.
Tuition: You do not pay any tuition fees when studying at HVL.
# University of Agder
The University of Agder, in Norwegian: Universitetet I Agder is a public University formerly known as Agder College which was established as a university college (høgskole) in 1994 through the merger of the Agder University College and five other colleges, with campuses in Kristiansand and Grimstad, Norway.
Ranking: For Medicine:
- #9 in Norway
- #471 in Europe
- #1674 in the World
Programs offered: Public Health, Sport and Nutrition, Health and Nursing Science, and Psychosocial Health.
Admissions requirements: The general basis for admission into the university of Adger and other universities in Norway is called Higher Education Entrance Qualification. See requirements for all degree programs taught in the English language here
Tuition: There are no tuition fees at the University of Agder but International degree-seeking students must pay a semester fee of approximately NOK 800 per semester with the exemption of exchange students.
# Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet)
Oslo Metropolitan University, in Norwegian: Oslomet – storbyuniversitetet is a public research university in Oslo and Akershus in Norway.
It is the result of the merger of many former vocational colleges in the Greater Oslo Region and is one of the best medical Schools in Norway that offers the most comprehensive portfolio of study programs within health and social sciences.
Programs offered: Bachelor’s programs: Biomedical Laboratory Sciences, Dental Technology, Pharmacy, and Radiography. Master’s program: Biomedicine. Ph.D. program: Health Sciences.
Admission requirements: Various countries’ admissions requirements are available on the NOKUT list.
Tuition: Education is free in Norway. All you’ll pay to study at OsloMet is a 820 NOK registration fee.
Does Norway Have Good Medical Schools?
With a very high-performing medical system, medical schools in Norway are considered excellent around the world, ranking very highly at a global level.
Can I Study Medicine in English in Norway?
Although Norwegian is primarily used for teaching, some courses may be taught in English. A seventh semester called an ‘International Semester is included in the curriculum for some schools.
How Many Years is Medical School in Norway?
Medical education in Norway takes 6 years.
Is it Hard to Study Medicine in Norway?
The universities have a limited slot for students per year. This is the most difficult part, getting accepted into medical school.
Is MBBS Free in Norway for International Students?
Norwegian public universities don’t charge any tuition fees. This applies to all international students, regardless of their country of origin.