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Fancy a year in Norway?

Learn about Norwegian culture and language - see the country from the inside. A year at a Norwegian folk high school could be your chance of a lifetime – and an educational experience like none you are ever likely to come across elsewhere.

There are folk high schools in all the Scandinavian countries. Norway has 77 schools in all, spread across the country from the south to the far north. The students are mostly young adults aged between 18 and 25, the majority Norwegian but there are also international students from all corners of the world.

Offering a final diploma but no formal exams, no grades or degrees – and therefore no pressures – the folk high schools provide what many consider a year of pampering yourself, a year of personal growth and development. To some, it’s a way of rounding off their secondary schooling; to others, a well-spent gap year between secondary and higher education. Some schools also offer half-year courses (one semester).

The syllabus is mostly non-academic, and many schools specialise in such fields as the arts, handicrafts, sports and outdoor life, media, computers, international issues and many more subjects. Some schools are based on the Christian faith (kristne) and some on liberal, non-religious values (frilynte). The school year starts in August or January, with places awarded from 1st February. Applications are sent direct to your chosen school.

Although the schools are private boarding schools, they receive government funding and there are no tuition fees; you pay just for your board and lodging and for certain special expenses. There are also scholarships available, application deadline 1st November.  See more details on the link below.

Tuition is primarily in Norwegian, but you can expect staff and students to speak English. The following schools offer Norwegian language classes (School, County, Town/Place):

  • Agder Folkehøgskole, Vest-Agder, Søgne
  • Bakketun Folkehøgskole, Nord-Trøndelag, Verdal
  • Birkeland Folkehøgskole, Aust-Agder, Birkeland
  • Elverum folkehøgskule, Hedmark, Elverum
  • Follo Folkehøgskole, Akershus, Vestby
  • Fredtun folkehøyskole, Vestfold, Stavern
  • Hardanger Folkehøgskule, Hordaland, Lofthus
  • Haugetun Folkehøyskole, Østfold, Rolvsøy
  • Hurdal Verk folkehøgskole, Akershus, Hurdal
  • Høgtun Folkehøgskole, Møre og Romsdal, Torvikbukt
  • Jeløy Folkehøyskole, Østfold, Moss
  • Lundheim folkehøgskole, Rogaland, Moi
  • Møre Folkehøgskule, Møre og Romsdal, Ørsta
  • Nordmøre Folkehøgskule, Møre og Romsdal, Surnadal
  • Peder Morset folkehøgskole, Sør-Trøndelag, Selbustrand
  • Ringerike Folkehøgskole, Buskerud, Hønefoss
  • Rønningen Folkehøgskole, Oslo
  • Sagavoll Folkehøgskole, Telemark, Gvarv
  • Sandvik Folkehøgskole, Nordland, Mosjøen
  • Soltun Folkehøgskole, Troms, Evenskjer
  • Sund Folkehøgskole, Nord-trøndelag, Inderøy
  • Sunnfjord Folkehøgskule, Sogn og Fjordane, Førde
  • Sunnhordland folkehøgskule, Hordaland, Halsnøy Kloster
  • Svanvik Folkehøgskole, Finnmark, Svanvik
  • Trondarnes Frilynte Folkehøgskole, Troms, Harstad
  • Valdres folkehøgskule, Oppland, Leira i Valdres
  • Ål Folkehøyskole og kurssenter for døve, Buskerud, Ål

Click here for more details on the Norwegian folk high schools, such as a list of schools, scholarships, practical information and how to apply. This website also tells you more about what to expect and what you learn at a folk high school. 

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Photo: Kristin Svorte / Information Office for Folk High Schools

Photo: Kristin Svorte / Information Office for Folk High Schools

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