The Kingdom of Norway is Europe’s northernmost country,
sharing a long eastern border with Sweden and with Finland and Russia to the
north. The capital of Oslo lies close to the border with Sweden and is the most
densely populated area with around one million inhabitants. Norway is one of
the most beautiful countries in the world, known for its spectacular landscape
of soaring mountains and rugged coastline broken by vast fjords, glaciers and
island clusters. It is also the richest nation in the world, thanks partly to
oil and gas exports. Although not a member of the European Union, Norway is an
EEA partner with close links to the rest of the continent.
Norwegian Education system
The Norwegian school system can be divided into three parts:
Elementary school (Barneskole, ages 6–13), lower secondary school
(Ungdomsskole, ages 13–16), and upper secondary school (Videregående skole,
ages 16–19). The Barneskole and Ungdomsskole levels are compulsory, and are
commonly referred to as Grunnskole (literally translates to
Elementary and lower secondary school are mandatory for all
children aged 6–16..
Primary school (Barneskole, Grades 1–7, ages 6–13)
In the first year of primary school, students spend most of
their time playing educational games and learning social structures, the
alphabet, basic addition and subtraction, and basic English skills.
Lower secondary school (Ungdomsskole, Grades 8-10, ages
When the students enter lower secondary school, at age 12 or
13, they begin getting grades for their work. Their grades together with their
location in the country will determine whether they get accepted to their upper
secondary school of choice or not. From eighth grade, students can choose one
elective (valgfag) and one language. Typical offered languages are German,
French, and Spanish as well as additional English and Norwegian studies. A
student may take the Grade 10 exam in a particular subject early as long as he
or she has been granted an exemption from further instruction in the
elementary/middle school curriculum of that subject.
Upper secondary school (Videregående skole, Grades
VG1-VG3, ages 16-19):
As of 2017, graduation from videregående skole was at 73%.
Norway has about 3,500 compulsory schools, resulting
in an average school size of 150 students. By mandate of the
Parliament, no compulsory school has more than 450 students which
suits the population demographics very aptly. Oslo is the most densely
populated city in the region.
In terms of higher education, Norway has seven
accredited public universities, nine accredited specialised university
institutions, 22 accredited university colleges, two accredited
national colleges of the arts and several private institutions of
higher education, with either institutional or programme accreditation.
Norwegian academic salaries are determined by a salary scale
set by collective agreements between academic unions and state authorities.
This salary scale specifies a range for each level of academic job. The
candidate’s experience will determine where their compensation falls within the
range of their position. While every university uses a slightly different range
for each type of position, the salary grade and corresponding range is usually
specified in the job posting
The minimum annual salary for PhD students is 442,400 NOK,
which corresponds to salary grade 50 in the Norwegian state salary scale. In
2017, the average annual salary for a PhD student (stipendiat) was 456,165 NOK.
A person working in Teaching /
Education in Norway typically earns around 1,540,000
NOK per year. Salaries range from 747,000 NOK (lowest average)
to 2,550,000 NOK (highest average, actual maximum salary is higher).
Norway is, as quoted, one of the most beautiful countries in
the world by far and wide. In retrospect, Norwegian lifestyle with its
centralized benefits system, non-existent crime rate and a fair expenses vs
income ratio, is an ideal to look forward to! Applying to a Norwegian institute
just might turn your life into a great adventure!