Copenhagen, Denmark

Study Abroad in Denmark: Education in Denmark

As of 2003, the Danish education system follows the same two-cycle model as the rest of Europe, dividing study into undergraduate (Bachelor’s) and postgraduate (Master’s and PhD/Doctorate). This system serves to facilitate and encourage international mobility within Europe, as the qualifications are equivalent throughout all countries involved in the Bologna agreement.

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Danish institutions of higher education are categorized according to level of study and field of teaching:

  • Academies of professional higher education (Erhvervsakademier) offer short-cycle pre-Bachelor programs called Academy Profession degrees (detailed below)

  • University colleges offer 3-4 year professionally orientated programs (Professionshøjskoler) at a level corresponding to a Bachelor’s

  • Universities offer long-cycle programs and are either multi-faculty or specialize in fields such as engineering, technology and business

  • Universities of the arts offer long-cycle programs – they are regulated by the Danish Ministry of Culture and offer courses in visual arts, music, film, theatre and media

The types of degree available to you in Denmark are as follows:

Academy Profession degree (erhvervsakademigrad)

This is a pre-Bachelor’s qualification obtained after 1.5-2.5 years of study, depending on the amount of ECTS (European credits) required. Programs are geared towards employment in business, industry and science, and entail a work placement of a minimum of three months. Sometimes the Academy Profession qualification can be ‘topped up’ to become a Bachelor’s with a further 1.5 years of study.

Professional Bachelor’s degree (professionsbachelorgrad)

This degree takes 3 to 4 years to complete, depending on the chosen program. It caters to vocational professions, and all programs include a compulsory period of in-service training (for a minimum of 6 months). Taking a Professional Bachelor’s provides a gateway to a Master’s program in the same or a similar field. This is the degree that is awarded after ‘topping up’ an Academy Profession degree with an extra 1.5 years of study.

Bachelor’s programs

  • Bachelor’s degree: This takes 3 years to complete, and is awarded after 180 ECTS have been obtained. A Bachelor’s degree can be awarded in all disciplines apart from the liberal arts and leads onto a Master’s qualification in a similar field.

  • Bachelor’s degree within the arts: This program also takes 3 years and is awarded after 180 ECTS. It is a qualification in fine arts: architecture, design, music, etc. A degree in filmmaking or musical theatre is awarded after 4 years or 240 ECTS. Admission is usually conditional on passing an entrance exam.

Diploma degree (diplomuddannelse)

These are preparatory courses for students assuming highly qualified occupational functions. A Diploma degree must be undertaken before admission to a Master’s in such a field. The qualification is awarded after 2 years of part-time study (60 ECTS). Admission to the course requires a relevant educational qualification and at least 2 years of work experience.

Master’s programs

  • Master’s degree (kandidatgrad) : A Master’s degree usually takes 2 years to complete and requires 120 ECTS. However, certain programs such as medicine and veterinary medicine are longer, taking between 2.5 and 3 years to complete

  • Master’s degree within the arts: This qualification caters to the arts, is 2-3 years long and requires 120-180 ECTS. Music academies also offer a specialist degree of 2 to 4 years following the Master’s degree.

  • Master’s degree (adult/continuing higher education): This is the postgraduate equivalent of the diploma degree. It prepares students for assuming highly qualified occupational functions. Entry requirements are a Bachelor’s in the relevant subject matter, and at least 2 years of relevant work experience.

PhD programs

PhDs involve a research project undertaken independently. You need to have completed a relevant Master’s degree. PhD degrees are usually the culmination of 8 years of higher education and research. The PhD program itself usually takes 3 years (180 ECTS).

Study in Denmark - Overview

Over 30,000 international students choose Denmark as their study abroad destination every year. Click here to learn why.

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Student Visas

Do you need a visa to enter Denmark to study? Learn more about the student visa process, and what you need to enter the country, depending on your citizen status. You will also be required to bring certain documents with you to passport control at the airport, which we cover as well.

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Housing & Living Costs

No matter where you study abroad, it’s important to create a budget in advance so that you’re prepared. Therefore, we’ve detailed average living and housing costs so that you can get a better idea of what you would be paying as a student in Denmark.

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Tuition Fees & Scholarships

Tuition fees for degree programs in Denmark vary depending on the university and program. We've put together information on tuition fees and scholarships in this section.

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Language & Culture

Denmark is a country rich in history and culture. Find out more about what the country offers in terms of language, culture, and more!

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Application Process

All countries have specific admissions requirements for students to gain acceptance into a university. Learn more about the ins and outs of admission to programs in Denmark, and what you need to apply, depending on your citizenship.

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Ready to look at education in Denmark? Use our search engine to find and compare top programs in Denmark today!

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Last update: 29 Jun 2021


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