Nationals in Sweden have the opportunity to get free higher education. But the tuition-free rules also cover students who are citizens of Switzerland, Nordic countries, and EU or EEA countries, given that Sweden is a member of the EU.
But when it comes to Ph.D. programs, it is free for all students, regardless of nationality.
All this goes to say that there are indeed free universities in Sweden. Still, only a selected category of students can access this free higher education at specific universities.
If you fall within the eligibility bracket, finding the best free University in the state would require time and effort. That is why we have researched enough to put together the best free universities in Sweden today that would appeal to locals and international students.
Let’s get right into it.
Top Free Universities in Sweden
Note that some of these ‘free’ universities would still have a quoted tuition expense. Aside from being public, what makes some of these institutions accessible is the existence of scholarships and funding options available to enrollees. When they qualify, the scholarships fully fund their tuition expenses, making education accessible.
This is an excellent opportunity for non-EU or non-EEA students who can not afford the average tuition of 7,500 – 25,500 EUR/year for a Bachelor’s or Master’s program at most Swedish institutions. Here is our top recommendation:
- Linköping University
- Karlstad University
- Mid Sweden University
- Malmö University
- Uppsala University
- Mälardalen University
- Stockholm School of Economics
- Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
- Örebro University
As you’d see in the review detail, some of these universities are free primarily because they provide fully funded scholarships dedicated to international students applying to Master’s degree programs like the Scholarships provided by the Swedish Institute as well as the Scholarships offered through the Visby Programme where qualified students do not pay any tuition simply because they are studying courses related to sustainability, innovation and corporate social responsibility.
Ranking among the top 200 world’s best universities in electrical and electronic engineering, material science, and sociology, Linköping University is affiliated with many companies to fund its research.
The free Sweden university is a public university with a campus in a southern Swedish city. The University is famous for its successful hockey and football teams.
Here, students from the EU, EEA, or Switzerland do not need to bother about tuition fees. This University is also free if you have a permanent Swedish residence permit.
While Linköping University is a free tuition school, enrollees from other countries outside eligibility would have to pay tuition fees within the range of 80,000 to 136,0000 krona, depending on the program offered.
Karlstad University is a state university based in the Karlstad region of Sweden. It is free for eligible categories of students and offers up to 40 educational programs, 30 program extensions, and 900 courses. The courses focus on technology, teaching, humanities, social studies, science, health care, and arts.
The University was founded as Karlstad campus Gothenburg University in 1967 but eventually became independent a decade later.
Karlstad University has about 16,000 students and 1,200 employees, with three faculties and several departments through which courses are administered.
Mid Sweden University
Mid Sweden University is an excellent choice for anyone looking for tuition fee universities in Sweden for international students. It is a state university in the geographical center of Sweden that is fully funded.
With its campuses in the cities of Östersund, the University manages three faculties with eight departments with about 12,500 students and 1000 staff.
This University was established in 1993 and is famous for its wide range of web-based distance education.
Malmö University may be a relatively young university compared to other free Swedish Universities. However, it still ranks fourth on Forbes’s list of the most inventive cities in the world.
The institution is known for its multidisciplinary, challenge-based approach to education, research, and collaboration. Opening its doors in 1998, Malmö University offers programs on internship elements and project work in close cooperation with regional authorities, local initiatives, and international companies.
It is a teaching ground for more than 1,800 international students. It is a good choice for international students since their undergraduate and postgraduate programs are taught in English.
Students outside the EU, EEA, and Switzerland tuition-free privilege would have to pay between 80,000 and 425,000 Swedish kronor as tuition costs.
Depending on the chosen program, one semester or full-time study at Uppsala University will cost between 50,000 to 72,500 Swedish krona. However, students within the EU, EEA, or Switzerland can enjoy tuition-free education here.
The school is undoubtedly one of the best when it comes to tuition-free universities in Sweden.
It is one of the first Nordic universities with research-led teaching that allows students to experience the highest standards of intellectual rigor.
Uppsala University operates with three disciplines: humanities and social sciences, medicine and pharmacy, and science and technology.
With about 16,000 students and 1000 staff, Mälardalen University is Sweden’s first environmentally certified college according to international standards.
Abbreviated at MDU, the Swedish University is located in Västerås and Eskilstuna and has six research specializations ranging from education to science and management. It administered its programs through 4 faculties that are further segmented into varying departments.
The Mälardalen University is an excellent choice for students looking to further education in Sweden on a tight budget.
Stockholm School of Economics
- Stockholm School of Economics Admission Requirement Page
- Stockholm School of Economics Free Tuition Details page
Stockholm School of Economics charges 150,000 to 165,000 krona for a master’s program to students, not from the EU, EEA, or Switzerland.
It is an ideal free university for international students because it offers full and partial scholarships for those who wish to pursue an MSc program.
The Stockholm School of Economics is situated in the city district of Vasastaden and is known as Europe’s leading business school.
Students who study in this school take advantage of the strategic location of this school, given that Vasastaden is the country’s most modern and open city.
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
- Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences Admission Requirement Page
- Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences Free Tuition Details page
The support budget drawn from the Swedish Ministry for Rural Affairs funds students’ tuition expenses at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. This makes it different from other state-owned universities in Sweden.
The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences has its head office located in Ultuna, with several campuses in different parts of Sweden.
Meanwhile, the University has its main facilities in Lomma Municipality, Skara, and Umeå.
This Institute has four faculties and boasts over 4,435 students, 1,602 academic staff, and 1,459 administrative staff.
Lastly is the Örebro University. The Government of Sweden 1999 granted the 12th University in Sweden the privileges of a university but eventually became the 7th medical school in the area.
This University has three faculties that are further segmented into seven departments to manage the 17,000 students and 1,100 administrative staff. It is one of Sweden’s popularly recommended cheap, free universities that does not have depreciating education standards despite its affordability.
How Can International Students Study For Free in Sweden?
The free education policy in Sweden may not apply to all categories of prospective students. However, international students can still study for free by applying for scholarships, especially ones handed out by Swedish universities.
Besides scholarships, there is also an opportunity for an international student to study without tuition in Sweden through bursaries funded by foundations and private organizations.
Can I Work Full-time While Studying in Sweden?
You can not work while studying in Sweden until you have a work permit. The permit has to come along with your residence permit for studies at a university or college in Sweden. There are also work permits for students who want to work in the country after completing their education.
Keep In Mind…
Now that you have walked through some of the best free universities in Sweden, you need to remember that students from the EU/EEA are entitled to free education in these universities only.
However, even if you aren’t in such an eligibility bracket, you can still take advantage of various scholarships and financial assistance offered by private and public Swedish institutions.
In other words, free universities in Sweden sometimes mean they’d be public or state-owned. Another thing to remember is that you can work and study simultaneously in Sweden without any legal pressure.
Sweden is one of the best study-abroad destinations for international students, not just Swedish citizens.
Most of the courses are taught in English, and many Sweden residents can communicate well in English, so that integration won’t be a problem.
Please share this with your peers who might need help choosing which free University to study in Sweden.
Thanks for reading.