Courses for Exchange Students
UiB offers a large number of courses taught in English for exchange students.
- Course list academic year 2020/2021: You will find the course descriptions of most courses for exchange students in the course list.
- Norwegian language courses: These are popular among our exchange students. Read more about the courses and special considerations below.
- Exceptions: There are a few exceptions, which you can read about below under Course options not listed in the course list.
Unsure of which courses to apply for or how many? Explore the information in the tabs below and discuss your options with your home university before you apply. The normal workload per semester for a full-time student is 30 ECTS credits in Norway.
Course types - Open and restricted
There are two categories of courses:
- Open courses (faculty approval not required, you sign up from June/December), and
- Restricted courses (faculty approval required, you apply for them in Søknadsweb).
Open courses: These courses are open for all exchange students, but we expect that you check that you have the recommended previous knowledge yourself. You sign up for these courses when you get access to our online registration system in June/December.
Please note that some open courses might have limited capacity.
Restricted courses: Many courses require faculty approval, and you must apply for these courses in Søknadsweb. Admission to restricted courses will depend on
- Your academic background (you will find information about recommended and required previous knowledge in each course description)
- The number of places available in each course
- The exchange agreement you have been nominated on
- The timetables of all your courses combined
The relevant faculty/department will consider whether you can be accepted to the course in the application process, or you will have to get approval later.
Exception: Students applying to the Faculty of Law do not apply for restricted courses in Søknadsweb.
In the application
You apply for restricted courses in Søknadsweb. Exception: You do not apply for restricted courses at the Faculty of Law (course codes starting with JUS[xxx]). You sign up for these courses when you get access to our online registration system in mid-June.
If you plan to take open courses you do not apply for these courses in Søknadsweb. You sign up for these courses when you get access to our online registration system in mid-June/ mid-December.
Important: If you plan to only take open courses or courses at the Faculty of Law, you do not select any courses in Søknadsweb. Otherwise choose the restricted courses you wish to apply for.
The restricted courses you get admitted to will be listed in your study plan when you sign up for courses online in June/December.
Norwegian language courses
Short Introductory Course
The Short Introductory Course in Norwegian Language and Culture (NOR-INTRO) is especially suited for exchange students who wish to acquire basic knowledge of the Norwegian language and culture.
Completion of the Short Introductory Course is awarded with 7.5 ECTS credits, and most students will be able to combine this with their other courses.
Other Norwegian language courses
UiB also offers more extensive Norwegian language courses (15 and 30 ECTS):
- NOR-U1 and NOR-U1/2: Beginner's level. No required previous knowledge.
- NOR-U2, NOR-U3 and NOR-U4: Higher level. You must take a placement test to qualify.
When to sign up
You need information about how to register as a student at UiB before you can sign up. Signing up is on a first-come, first-served basis, so register early to be sure you get a place.
When to sign up:
Course options not listed in the course list
Fine Art, Music and Design
Most of the courses in these subject areas are not advertised in the course list. Read more about what our departments offer and contact the exchange coordinator at the Faculty of Fine Art, Music and Design if needed.
These courses are only for students nominated on an exchange agreement in the subject areas Fine Art, Music and Design.
Courses taught in Norwegian
You can apply for courses taught in Norwegian if you are proficient in one of the Scandinavian languages (Norwegian, Swedish or Danish).
- How to add these courses to your application: After you have applied in Søknadsweb, you must email the course code and title to email@example.com and upload documentation of your language proficiency in your application on Søknadsweb. We will add the courses to your application for you.
Alternative study options
If you are not planning to register for regular courses at UiB, you can indicate this by choosing among these alternatives in the course list at Søknadsweb:
- Clinical rotation: Choose this option if you are applying for a clinical rotation (only for students nominated on an exchange agreement in medicine or dentistry).
- UNIS Svalbard: Choose this option if you are applying to UNIS next semester. Apply to both UiB and UNIS by 15 April/15 October.
- Project/ study plans: Choose this option if you have organised to take part in other academic activities which will not be awarded with ECTS from UiB, for instance lab work with UiB staff or similar. Email the name of your contact person at UiB to firstname.lastname@example.org when you have completed your online application.
Locations of our campuses
The City Campus
The faculties of mathematics and natural sciences, social sciences, psychology, humanities, law and the Grieg Academy - Department of Music are all located in the city centre, within walking distance from each other.
The Møllendal Campus (Fine Art and Design)
Most of our new Faculty of Fine Art, Music and Design (except the Grieg Academy) is located in Møllendal. If you are to take courses in Møllendal and the city centre, make sure you have enough time between your lectures to get from one campus to the other.
The Health Campus
The Faculty of Medicine is located at our health campus at Årstadvollen, close to the Haukeland University Hospital. If you are to take courses at Årstadvollen and in the city campus area, make sure you have enough time between your lectures to get from one campus to the other.
See our Arrival and directions page for more information about how to get around on campus.
Q&A - questions and answers
What does the key content in the course descriptions really mean?
- ECTS credits: Tells you how many ECTS credits you are awarded for each course. A full work load for one semester is 30 ECTS credits in total.
- Teaching semester: Tells you whether the course is taught in autumn and/or spring.
- Course code:
- 100-level: Bachelor's level courses.
- 200-level: Can be included at both bachelor's and master's level.
- 300-level: Master's level courses.
- Number of semesters: Tells you if a course runs over 1 or 2 semesters.
- Language: Tells you which language the course is taught in.
- Schedule: Tells you when there are lectures and seminars/workshops. The schedules are released on 1 June for the autumn semester, and 1 December for the spring semester.
- Reading list: Lists the course literature for the current semester.
- Select semester: To make sure you get the most recent information, you can choose autumn 2020 / spring 2021 in the menu on the right.
Is it possible to take courses at more than one faculty?
Yes, that's possible! But beware of the following:
- Check if the courses you are interested in have required or recommended previous knowledge.
- If a course has a limited amount of places, students nominated on an exchange agreement in a relevant subject area may be prioritised.
- When you sign up for courses online in mid-June/mid-December, make sure to check the schedules in order to have enough time to get from one campus to another.
Exceptions! You can only take courses in the subject areas listed below if you are nominated for exchange through an exchange agreement in those specific subject areas:
- Medicine (including clinical rotation)
- Dentistry (including clinical rotation)
- Music - performance and composition
- Fine Art
What is the normal workload per semester?
30 ECTS: The normal workload per semester for a full-time student is 30 ECTS credits in Norway, and we recommend students to plan for approximately this amount of credits per semester.
Requirements from home university: Your home university decides how many credits you must complete each semester and how you must go about to get your exchange at UiB approved as a part of your degree. It is therefore important that you discuss your study plan with the exchange coordinator at your home university when you plan your exchange stay.
Requirements from UiB: We expect that you take approximately 30 ECTS in total every semester, unless you have agreed on another amount with your home university. You do not have to ask for permission from UiB to take more than 30 ECTS.
I need to know which courses I can take at UiB as early as possible, what should I do?
Be sure to make an effort when you add restricted courses to your application at Søknadsweb.
Read carefully about the required and recommended previous knowledge, and contact the relevant department if necessary (contact information is listed in the course descriptions).
You can assume that you will be able to sign up for any of the open courses, but please be aware that some courses may have limited capacity.
What kind of grading scale do you use?
In Norway we use the grading scale A-F, or “Pass”/”Fail”, in higher education. Please see our information website about the grading system for full details on what the grades mean.
In your transcript of records all your courses will be graded from A-F or with “Pass”/”Fail”.
We do not convert grades to other grading scales. When you order your transcript of records from Studentweb or the Diploma Registry after you have completed all of your exams, the transcript will contain a full description of the criteria for each grade.
What can students at third cycle (PhD students) take?
Third cycle students may take courses at master level or have individual research or training components if you have found a supervisor at UiB before our application deadline.
To indicate that you have arranged an individual study plan with UiB staff in your application, choose Other study plans instead of courses. Please email us the name of your UiB supervisor when you have completed your application.