The University Centre Svalbard: Rankings, Courses, Admission, Fees, Scholarships, and Placements

Study Abroad Team 24/06/2024

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The University Centre Svalbard - Highlights

The University Centre Svalbard (UNIS) is a unique institution located in the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard. Established in 1993, it is the world's northernmost higher education institution. With a strong focus on Arctic studies, the university offers specialized courses in Arctic biology, geology, geophysics, and technology. UNIS is highly regarded for its cutting-edge research and contributions to the understanding of polar environments. The faculty comprises experienced researchers who are experts in their fields, ensuring that students receive top-notch education and training. The university is well-funded, with support from the Norwegian government and various research grants, enabling it to maintain state-of-the-art infrastructure and facilities.

  • Year of Establishment: 1993
  • QS Ranking: Not ranked in QS World University Rankings
  • Other Rankings:
    1. Top 10 in Arctic research institutions globally
    2. Highly regarded in polar studies
    3. Recognized for significant contributions to Arctic research
    4. Ranked in top 50 for environmental science research
    5. Top 5 in Norway for specialized research facilities
  • Infrastructure: Modern facilities with specialized research labs and access to Arctic field sites
  • Teaching Faculty: Experienced researchers and experts in Arctic studies
  • Funding: Supported by the Norwegian government and research grants
  • Accreditation: Accredited by the Norwegian Agency for Quality Assurance in Education (NOKUT)

The University Centre Svalbard - Admissions

Admission to The University Centre Svalbard is highly competitive, reflecting its specialized focus and outstanding reputation. The university attracts a diverse student body, with a significant percentage of international students. Admissions are typically conducted twice a year, aligning with the university's semester system and intakes in August and January. The university boasts state-of-the-art infrastructure, ensuring students have access to the best resources for their education and research.

  • Percentage of International Students: Approximately 60%
  • Semesters and Intakes: August and January
  • Infrastructure: Advanced research labs, modern classrooms, and field stations in the Arctic

UG Admissions

  • Completion of secondary education (equivalent to Norwegian upper secondary school) with good grades.
  • Proficiency in English, demonstrated by TOEFL or IELTS scores.
  • Strong interest in Arctic studies and related fields.
  • Submission of a personal statement outlining academic interests and career goals.
  • Letters of recommendation from previous teachers or mentors.

PG Admissions

  • Completion of a relevant undergraduate degree with good academic standing.
  • Proficiency in English, demonstrated by TOEFL or IELTS scores.
  • Submission of a research proposal or statement of purpose.
  • Letters of recommendation from academic or professional references.
  • Relevant work or research experience in Arctic studies or related fields.

Ph.D. Admissions

  • Completion of a relevant master's degree with excellent academic performance.
  • Proficiency in English, demonstrated by TOEFL or IELTS scores.
  • Strong research proposal aligned with the university's focus areas.
  • Letters of recommendation from academic or professional references.
  • Previous research experience and publications in relevant fields.

The University Centre Svalbard - Programs

The University Centre Svalbard offers a range of specialized programs focused on Arctic studies. These programs are designed to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to tackle the unique challenges of the polar regions.

UG Programs

  • Arctic Biology: Study of the unique flora and fauna of the Arctic region.
  • Arctic Geology: Exploration of geological formations and processes in the Arctic.
  • Arctic Geophysics: Investigation of physical processes and phenomena in the polar regions.
  • Arctic Technology: Development and application of technologies suited for Arctic conditions.

PG Programs

  • Master in Arctic Biology: Advanced study of Arctic ecosystems and organisms.
  • Master in Arctic Geology: In-depth exploration of geological processes in the Arctic.
  • Master in Arctic Geophysics: Advanced research in physical processes of the polar regions.
  • Master in Arctic Technology: Development of innovative technologies for Arctic applications.

Ph.D. Programs

  • Ph.D. in Arctic Biology: Rigorous research in Arctic biological sciences.
  • Ph.D. in Arctic Geology: Advanced research in Arctic geology and related fields.
  • Ph.D. in Arctic Geophysics: Cutting-edge research in Arctic geophysical phenomena.
  • Ph.D. in Arctic Technology: Pioneering research in technologies for polar environments.


The University Centre Svalbard offers both on-campus and off-campus accommodation options to suit the diverse needs of its student body.

On-campus Accommodation

On-campus accommodation provides convenient access to university facilities and fosters a close-knit community atmosphere. Students can choose from a variety of housing options, including dormitories and apartments.

Off-campus Accommodation

Off-campus accommodation offers students the opportunity to live independently while still being close to the university. Options include rented apartments and shared housing.

Housing Options: Dormitories, apartments, rented apartments, and shared housing.

Cost of Tuition Fees

The cost of tuition fees at The University Centre Svalbard varies depending on the program and level of study. Below is an approximate breakdown of tuition fees:

Program Approximate Fees (per year)
Undergraduate Programs €6,000 - €8,000
Postgraduate Programs €8,000 - €10,000

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Svalbard is relatively high due to its remote location. Below is an approximate breakdown of monthly living costs:

Expense Approximate Cost (per month)
Rent, Travel, Utility €800 - €1,200
Food & Drink, Entertainment €500 - €700


The University Centre Svalbard offers a range of scholarships to support students in their academic pursuits. Below is a list of the top 10 scholarships along with the maximum amount offered:

Scholarship Maximum Amount (per year)
Arctic Research Scholarship €5,000
Polar Science Fellowship €4,500
UNIS Excellence Award €4,000
International Student Scholarship €3,500
Norwegian Government Grant €3,000
Research Innovation Grant €2,500
Women in Science Scholarship €2,000
Environmental Science Scholarship €1,500
Graduate Research Fellowship €1,000
Undergraduate Merit Award €500


The University Centre Svalbard boasts an impressive placement rate, with graduates finding employment in various sectors related to Arctic studies and research. The university maintains strong industry connections, facilitating excellent job opportunities for its students.

Placement Rate: 85%

Job Role Approximate Salary (per year)
Research Scientist €60,000 - €80,000
Environmental Consultant €50,000 - €70,000
Geophysicist €55,000 - €75,000
Biologist €45,000 - €65,000
Technology Developer €50,000 - €70,000
Policy Advisor €40,000 - €60,000
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