Higher Education in Iceland
For those students planning to study in the country, the first thing to consider is where to attend. With a small population, there are not numerous schools to select from for higher education. The largest university present is the University of Iceland. A second option is Reykjavik University. Both are located in the capital city and offer a wide range of study options including arts and humanities, business and economics, sciences, and health studies. Another option is the University of Akureyri. It is located in Akureyri, a city to the north. Other schools include the Agricultural University of Iceland and Bifrost University.
Studying in Iceland is not something new for foreign students. In fact, about five percent of all students here are from international locations around the world. Most of the universities are happy to allow students to come and study, especially because this helps to expand the range of knowledge and offers the schools larger class sizes. As a result of these larger groups of international students, many of the courses are now being taught in English. As compared to other countries, Iceland's educational system ranks as excellent, with the Program for International Student Assessment ranking the country the 16th best.
Students will need to have visas to attend college-level courses in Iceland. Canadian citizens will not need to hold these if they are traveling to the country for less than three months. Students who wish to study in the country must work directly with the Directorate of Immigration. A formal application for a visa must be requested. This will require a residence permit application, an active passport, a letter of acceptance from a school located in Iceland, plan reservations, as well as proof of financial ability to maintain health and needs during the student's time in the country.
An important aspect to note is that Iceland requires, as a component of the application for a student visa, for students to have health insurance in order to attend a school here. That means the student must obtain health insurance from a company licensed to operate in Iceland.
Applying for Educational Opportunities
To begin the process, students will need to apply directly to the university of his or her choice. Deadlines are in place, but these vary significantly from one school to the next. In terms of costs, students attending a public school will not have to pay a tuition. Rather, these schools charge a registration fee. This amount varies as well. However, if you plan to enroll in the University of Iceland, the largest for international traveling students, the cost for this enrollment fee is about ISK 60.000. This is about $500 USD. This is a fee paid annually for attendance in the school. Students also will need to pay for all accommodation out of pocket. This is not provided by the school.
Why Study in Iceland?
There are many reasons to study in this more remote country. It affords individuals to the ability to study glaciers and volcanoes upclose. The long daylight hours during the summer months can also be gripping, since it provides an opportunity for students to conduct various research studies. The community as a whole is welcoming of international students, the nightlife if vibrant, and the overall culture is one worth exploring.