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Living and studying in Sweden

Living and studying in Sweden and at KTH may differ from what you’re used to. When you have arrived and started your life in Stockholm there are a few things to sort out, for example getting a student discount card and a Swedish bank account. On this page we have collected some important things to know about living in Sweden, and differences in studies compared to other countries.

Living in Sweden

When you move to a new country there are a few things to sort out, for example getting a student discount card, getting a Swedish bank account and how healthcare works. Here we have collected important things to know to get you settled.

Living in Sweden

Student discount card

The academic year at KTH

The academic year at KTH is divided into two semester. Each semester consists of two study periods, each comprising three or four parallel courses during seven weeks of scheduled lectures, laboratory work, group work and smaller tutorial sessions.

A semester at KTH

The academic year

Information during your studies

You are responsible for making sure that you are up to date regarding information about your studies. Find an overview of KTH's digital channels to provide you with information.

Information during your studies

Influence your education

As a student in Sweden you have the right to influence your education. We encourage you to take an active part in developing your education. You have experience and knowledge if there is something that could be done differently.

Influence your education

Quick facts

Population: 10 million
Capital: Stockholm (2,3 million people)
Language: Swedish, English widely spoken
Currency: Swedish krona (SEK)
Time zone: GMT+1

Student discount card

As a KTH student, you can access student discounts through a digital student discount card from Mecenat. Discounts include many stores and brands in Sweden, and maybe most importantly Stockholm Public Transport (SL). SL provides various means of transport within Stockholm county: buses, subway, commuter trains, trams and boats. You are eligible for student discounts at SL, but only after you have received your Mecenat card with an SL-logo . You are entitled to the SL-logo if you are registered for at least 75% of a full semester's activity (22,5 ECTS).

A digital Mecenat card will automatically be ordered for you once you have registered for your courses, and you can have it on your smartphone via the Mecenat app. If you need support, please email the student union THS at karx@ths.kth.se .

How to get a student discount card (mecenat.com)

A group of friends hanging out in Stockholm's Old Town.
A group of friends hanging out in Stockholm's Old Town.
Cherry blossoms in Kungsträdgården during spring.
Cherry blossoms in Kungsträdgården during spring.

Lecturers are on a first name-basis

Formal titles are not very common in Sweden, and instead you will call your teacher by their first name.

You need to register for courses and exams

You will need to register yourself for courses and exams, and apply for programme courses each semester.

Registrations and other ways to administrate your studies

Lectures, seminars, laboratory work and group projects

While you will often spend a few hours every week in lectures, seminars and labs, a lot of your time will be independent studying or group work. At KTH, learning to work together is an integral part of education. You will get to explore your ideas and apply them in collaboration with others from around the world. Group dynamics and the ability to work across teams can play a significant role in the outcome of ideas, projects and innovation.

Course credits

The credit system used in Sweden is the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). Full-time studies means that you will take 30 credit points (högskolepoäng in Swedish) each semester, which equals 30 ECTS. One week of full-time studies equals 1.5 credit points.

Stockholm during sunset
A view of Riddarholmen during sunset.

A semester at KTH

A semester at KTH consists of several courses, usually three or four. Each course involves lectures, seminars, laboratory work, group projects and individual studies. As hands-on experience is regarded as an essential element of learning, laboratory sessions constitute an integral part of studies at KTH. Your overall course grade is determined by written or oral examinations twice a semester. Exercises and laboratory work may also form part of the examination. If you fail, there will be a second chance at the end of each semester.

Find semesters and courses in the programme syllabus

The academic year

The academic year at KTH is divided into two semester. The autumn semester starts in late August/early September and runs until the middle of January. The spring semester begins in the middle of January and runs until the beginning of June. Each semester consists of two study periods, each comprising three or four parallel courses during seven weeks of scheduled lectures, laboratory work, group work and smaller tutorial sessions. These are followed by one week of own work, free from scheduled education before the exams take place in October, January, March and June. Re-examination takes place in January, April and June.

Academic year and important dates

Aurora borealis in central Stockholm during winter.
Aurora borealis in central Stockholm during winter.
Two friends going for a swim during summer.
Two friends going for a swim in Nacka, Stockholm during summer.

Exams and re-exams

Exams are taken at the end of each course, and not at the end of the term. Some courses include optional partial exams. You also have the opportunity to take a re-exam if you do not pass your exam. KTH has many different types of examination such as written exams, digital exams and project work. You also need to register for exams before taking them.

Examination and exams

Grades

KTH generally uses a seven-grade goal-related grading scale (A, B, C, D, E, Fx, F) for courses. A–E are grades corresponding to a pass, with A being the highest grade. The grade Fx is not a final grade, and indicates that the result is close to a pass and may be upgraded to a pass. For degree projects, the grades pass (P) and fail (F) are used.

Examination results and grades

Cheating and plagiarism

What is considered cheating and plagiarism at KTH can differ from universities in other countries. It is important that you understand what is considered plagiarism so you can avoid it. KTH has put together a guide and advice for students on how to avoid plagiarism.

Cheating and plagiarism

Images:

Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se, Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se, Cecilia Larsson Lantz/imagebank.sweden.se, Oscar Nord/unsplash.com, Jann Lipka/imagebank.sweden.se, Tina Axelsson/imagebank.sweden.se