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Language requirements

Entrance requirements for admission to higher education consists of both education requirements and language proficiency requirements in English and Norwegian. This page provides an overview of the language requirements, and how the requirements can be documented.

Recently edited : 28. November 2023

Documentation of English language proficiency

Proof of English proficiency is determined based on which country you have a background from. Each country with a country listing in the list of general study skills (GSU list) has a specification as to whether there is a requirement for documentation of English proficiency or not.

If a country is listed with English requirement “Yes”, refer to the list below to see what is required. Some countries or certain group of applicants may be exempted from the English requirements, and the exemptions are listed in the specific country.

Tests/course that meet English requirements

Applicants who do not meet the English proficiency requirements may take one of the following tests/courses:

In addition, you will have proof of sufficient English proficiency if you have:

  • A complete or incomplete undergraduate degree in English language and literature with courses in English language and literature that are equivalent to minimum 60 ECTS.
  • Completed a minimum of one year of upper secondary school or one year university studies taught in English in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, Great Britain or the USA.
  • Completed a master's degree taught in English.

In exceptional cases applicants may provide proof of English proficiency in other ways.

Documentation of Norwegian language proficiency

All applicants with education outside the Nordic region must document sufficient knowledge of Norwegian, cf. §§ 2- 2 of the Regulations relating to admission to universities and university colleges, as prescribed by the Norwegian Ministry of Education and Research, 15 January 2017.

Norwegian language proficiency must be documented by passing one of the following tests/courses:

  • Norwegian,written and oral exam from third year level in Norwegian upper secondary school
  • Norwegian Language test for adult immigrants from The Norwegian Directorate for Higher Education and Skills with the result B2 in all the four disciplines.
  • Norwegian for International Students, Level 3 at the universities.
  • 1-year course in Norwegian Language (60 ECTS) at Norwegian universities or university colleges.
  • Test in Norwegian - advanced level (Test i norsk - høyere nivå) with a minimum score of “pass” (bestått) in both the written and the oral test.
  • Folkeuniversitetet discontinued Test in Norwegian - higher level (also known as The Bergen test) in October 2022. You fulfil the requirement in Norwegian if you have passed the oral and written tests previously.
  • Language requirements in Norwegian - a new combination of tests: From the academic year 2023-2024, it is possible to combine the results of partial tests in Test in Norwegian, higher level (Bergenstesten) and the Norwegian Language test for adult immigrants (Norskprøven for voksne innvandrere). The following combinations are valid:
    • Passed written Test in Norwegian - higher level (Bergenstesten) + B2 or better on the final oral test in Norwegian from the Norwegian Language test for adult immigrants (Norskprøven for voksne innvandrere) or
    • Passed oral Test in Norwegian - higher level (Bergenstesten) + B2 or better on final tests in reading comprehension, listening comprehension and written presentation from the Norwegian Language test for adult immigrants (Norskprøven for voksne innvandrere)

Universities and university colleges may accept other proof of Norwegian language skills.

Applicants from the other Nordic countries with qualifications granting general admission to higher education in their home country, and who have studied their native language at the most advanced level at upper secondary school are not required to take a Norwegian language proficiency test.

If you are missing one year or two years of university education to satisfy the Higher Education Entrance Qualification (GSU), you can only meet the Norwegian language requirement with the examination in Norwegian at Vg3 level (393 hours) in Norwegian secondary schools. In other words, you cannot take the other options for Norwegian language examination in order to satisfy the Higher Education Entrance Qualification.