With its rich crude oil reserves and highly developed economy, Norway is one of the richest countries in Europe. Despite its vast territory, this northern country is sparsely populated. Just over five million people identify themselves as Norwegians and most of them live in the capital, Oslo, and in the country’s second-largest city of Bergen.

The purpose of this article is to establish which are the Norwegian universities with the highest acceptance rates. All in all, there are nine comprehensive universities in Norway, along with eight specialized universities and twenty-three university colleges.

Universities in Norway with High Rates of Acceptance

1. Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Norwegian University of Science and Technology is one of Norway’s biggest specialized universities with the main academic focus being on sciences and the development of new technologies. It has thousands of students who are being trained in undergraduate and graduate programs in the fields of natural sciences, economics, medicine, and architecture.

Established back in 1910, it is one of the oldest technical schools in Norway. NTNU assumed its current name and status in 1996. It branched out and expanded its faculties in the cities of Gjovik, Trondheim, and Alesund.

The average acceptance rate of this university is 35-40%, which is a very high acceptance rate for a university in Norway, and some less popular faculties accepted over 50% of all applicants during the latest admission cycle.

2. University of Agder

This is one of the youngest higher education providers in Norway, founded under its current name in 2007.  The University of Agder is a relatively small university with a total of six faculties that are distributed over two main campuses – Kristiansand and Grimstad.

Unlike most Norwegian universities, the University of Agder offers a good number of bachelor’s and master’s programs taught in English. Some of the most popular ones are Development Studies (undergraduate), Coastal Ecology (master’s degree), and Mechatronics (master’s degree). With a high average admission rate of 35-40%, this university in Norway accepts a lot of students.

3. University of Bergen

Established back in 1946, this is the second biggest and most important university in Norway. There is substantial historical evidence that the University of Bergen established itself as a leading educational center as far back as around the year 1150.

If you are planning to study at this university, keep in mind that none of its bachelor’s programs are offered in English. Therefore, the applicants from abroad are required to present their scores on the Norwegian Language Test – Advanced Level (Bergenstesten).

4. University of Stavanger

The University of Stavanger was established in 2005. The academic focus is on feeding experts and qualified professionals to Norway’s ever-expanding oil industry. Not surprisingly, some of the most popular programs at the university are Petroleum Engineering (Bachelor, 3 years), and two Master’s Programs in the same field for 2 and 3 years respectively.

The university’s Faculty of Health Sciences is also very popular among the young Norwegians, who come here to pursue a degree in Nursing, Paramedicine, and Midwifery. The University of Stavanger has a high acceptance rate of 25-30%.

5. Nord University

Next on our list of universities in Norway with high acceptance rates is Nord University. Established in 2016, Nord University is one of the newest higher education schools in Norway. This is a relatively small university but very open to applicants from abroad.

Some of the most popular Bachelor’s Programs taught in English are Biology, Bachelor in Circumpolar Studies, and Bachelor in English Studies and Culture.

Many young people also come to this university to earn a Master’s Degree in Bioscience, Business, or their special program – Nordic Master in Sustainable Production and Utilization of Marine Bioresources. The last one epitomizes the strong bond that the Norwegian people have with the sea and the efforts they make to preserve its resources.


*There is no published estimated acceptance of Norwegian universities for international students available. We’ve estimated the acceptance rates of Norwegian universities by their rankings, by the number of international students, and through third-party sources like ranking sites.*

FAQs about Studying in Norway

Are Universities in Norway Hard to Get Into?

Yes, universities in Norway are hard to get into but don’t worry too much since the admissions council is not extremely selective. The estimated acceptance rates of institutions in Norway lie between 20% ~ and 40%, which means that it is competitive. If you have done well in high school and participated in extracurricular activities, you will have a good chance of being admitted.

For the top-ranking universities in Norway, the acceptance rates fall below 10%, which means that the admissions council is highly selective. If you choose to apply to universities with a low acceptance rate, make sure to prepare a backup plan just in case.

Which University in Norway Has the Highest Acceptance Rate?

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology has the highest acceptance rate among Norwegian universities. Also known for short as NTNU, this institution has an estimated acceptance rate of 39%, and closely following NTNU, there is the University of Agder (36%) and the University of Bergen (29%).


We hope that this article on universities in Norway with high acceptance rates was helpful. If you are interested in studying in Europe, make sure to check out these Open Courses and the various educational opportunities on the Norway Page.

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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