Norway ranks 10th for international students, 2nd for careers

A ranking of European countries based on their attractiveness for foreign students handed Norway a top ten spot, while the Nordic nation came second overall for career prospects.

Norway ranks 10th for international students, 2nd for careers
Photo: Syde_Productions/Depositphotos

The study, released on Wednesday by, placed Germany at the top of the list for students heading abroad to continue their education, with the UK, Netherlands, France and Norway’s neighbours Sweden rounding out the top five.

Thirty European countries were scored in three categories: education, costs and life and career.

Norway scored 55.4 points out of 100 for attractiveness to international students, in comparison with top-placing Germany’s 83.2.

In the life and career category, Norway fared even better – here the Nordic country scored 17.2 points out of twenty, coming second only to the United Kingdom’s 17.5.

“All in all, Norway is a great destination for foreign students from elsewhere in Europe and the world. Norway scores high for 'Life & Career' thanks to very low unemployment among the tertiary educated, a very high score in the UN's World Happiness Ranking and a high proficiency of English among its population,” Gerrit Blöss, CEO of, told The Local.

“In summary, not only does Norway offer a good quality of life, but for foreign graduates the outlook of finding a job after university is very good in comparison to elsewhere in Europe,” the CEO said.

Perhaps not surprisingly, Norway found itself outside of the top ten on rankings for cost, which were topped by Hungary and Poland.

Although Norway does not charge tuition fees for undergraduate, Masters or PhD programmes, the survey also takes general living costs into its overall assessment.

Norway fared well in terms of quality of life, likelihood of getting a job after graduating, international university rankings and the number of courses taught in English.

The University of Oslo came 67th on last year’s Shanghai Ranking of the world’s universities.

Blöss said that the trend of students moving to other European countries to continue their education was likely to strengthen.

“Two significant political developments will influence global higher education for years to come. First, there is the Trump presidency, driving international students away from the US to other countries – in many cases, Europe,” said Blöss.

“And then there is the upcoming Brexit, of which neither the timeline nor the consequences are foreseeable. Many prospective students expect deteriorating conditions in the UK, and they are starting to look for study-abroad experiences elsewhere in Europe,” he said.

A full summary of the findings can be found here.