In Sweden, students can receive financial support while studying. It is called CSN. Under certain conditions, Nordic students who want to study in Sweden may receive financial support from Sweden instead.
However, the main rule is that Nordic students receive student finance from their home countries. If you are a citizen of another Nordic country, you should therefore contact the student finance agency in your home country for information about the possibilities for student finance for an educational programme in Sweden.
Nordic student finance agencies:
If you are a Swedish citizen on an upper secondary educational programme in Sweden, you are entitled to a type of student finance from the the Swedish Board of Student Finance (Centrala Studiestödsnämnden, CSN), called study allowance (studiehjälp). There are three kinds of study allowance: a student grant (studiebidrag), a supplementary allowance (extra tillägg), and a boarding supplement (inackorderingstillägg). You receive the student grant automatically if you are a Swedish citizen. You must apply for the other supplements.
If you are a Swedish citizen and want to do all or part of your upper secondary education in another Nordic country, you can receive support from CSN if the school is approved by CSN. You can read more about how to apply, and how much you can receive, on the CSN web pages about study allowance for upper secondary education.
If you are not a Swedish citizen, CSN will first assess whether you are even entitled to Swedish student finance. You apply on Form 4144 "Ansökan om studiehjälp/Uppgifter för rätt till svenskt studiestöd - för dig som är utländsk medborgare och under 20 år".
If you are not a Swedish citizen, generally you are not entitled to student finance from CSN. However, there are some exceptions. You can primarily apply for student finance from Sweden if you:
- Have a permanent residence permit in Sweden.
- Have the right of residence and have lived and worked at least half-time in Sweden in the past two years.
- Have the right of residence and have been married or cohabiting with a Swedish citizen in Sweden for at least two years.
- Have the status of refugee in Sweden.
- Have the right of residence and came to Sweden with your parents before your 20th birthday. Your parents must also work in Sweden.
- Satisfy the conditions of EU law.
You can read more about foreign citizens’ right to Swedish student finance on the CSN website.
In Sweden, vocational training, Higher Vocational Education, HVE (yrkeshögskoleutbildning, YH-utbildning) is recognised as an education that entitles you to student finance in the same way as university studies. You can find more information about student finance for students on HVE programmes on the CSN website.
If you come from another Nordic country
If you choose to take all or part of your education in Sweden, you can apply for student finance from your home country. Contact the student finance agency in your home country for information about whether they recognise the HVE programme you want to take in Sweden as an education that entitles you to student finance, and for information about how to apply for student finance.
How much does it cost to study on a higher vocational education programme?
Educational programmes at a higher vocational educational establishment are free of charge. This means that the establishment cannot charge tuition fees. However, you will have to pay for literature and other study materials in the same way as on a university programme.
If you come from another EU/EEA country to study in Sweden, you should contact the student finance agency in the country you come from. The agency in your home country can advise you on how to get student finance for an educational programme in Sweden.
If you are a citizen of another EU/EEA country, but have lived and worked part-time for at least two years in Sweden, or you have lived together with a Swedish citizen in Sweden for at least two years, you may be entitled to student finance in Sweden, CSN.
CSN for higher education consists of two different types of student finance: student grant and student loan. You can choose whether you only want to apply for the grant or if you also want to apply for the loan. You must repay the student loan. You can find information about how to apply for student finance on the CSN website.
On the Info Norden website, you can find more information about applying for student finance from the other Nordic countries:
Study in another Nordic country
If you want to study in one of the other Nordic countries, you must generally be a Swedish citizen to be entitled to student finance from Sweden.
If you are a citizen of another EU/EEA country, or a member of the family of an EU/EEA citizen, you may in certain situations be regarded as the equivalent of a Swedish citizen and thereby be entitled to student finance from Sweden. Contact CSN for more information.
Taxation of student finance in Sweden
If you receive Swedish student finance, the amount you receive is tax-free.
However, if you receive student finance from another Nordic country, taxation is decided according to the regulations that apply in the country in question. Student finance from another country is not taxed in Sweden.
Other finance schemes
You may apply for grants or scholarships from various programmes, funds or foundations for your studies, study periods in a different location, and internships.
If you are an official of a government agency, you can work in another EU/EEA country or in an international organisation. You can read more about this and other international opportunities, and how to proceed, on the website of the Swedish Council for Higher Education (Universitets- och Högskolerådet).
There are two discount cards for students in Sweden: Mecenat Card (Mecenatkortet) and Student Card (Studentkortet). The cards give you discounts and other benefits with a large number of companies throughout Sweden. Both cards are a collaboration between the student associations and various agencies in Sweden.
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NB! If you have questions regarding the processing of a specific case or application, or other personal matters, please contact the relevant authority directly.