Scandinavian Studies

Undergraduate study | Scandinavian Studies

Learn modern Danish, Swedish or Norwegian in the context of Scandinavian culture, past and present.

Why study Scandinavian Studies in Edinburgh?

Scandinavia's languages, and its history, politics and culture, have long had a considerable impact beyond the Nordic region.

Today, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish continue to expand in popularity. Scandinavia's screen and literary cultures attract global critical acclaim, and the socio-economic concept of the Nordic Model is widely studied.

Edinburgh is the only university in Scotland, and one of only two in the UK, to offer undergraduate honours programmes in Scandinavian Studies. This enables you to learn modern Danish, Swedish or Norwegian in the context of Scandinavian culture, past and present.

The University is also unique in Scotland in offering students a full academic year abroad within the four-year honours programme, regardless of whether you spend the year studying or working. If you are studying Danish, Swedish or Norwegian and another language, you will divide your time between two countries, broadening your skills and experience.

One of the most attractive characteristics of our degree is its flexibility. As well as lots of joint honours combinations, your first two (pre-honours) years will give you the option to study other subjects drawn from a broad list of disciplines. 

You’ll be part of a small, friendly community of staff and students at all levels who really value each other’s interests, input and expertise, and where there’s lots going on in the subject area. Edinburgh itself is a world-leading festival city with excellent cultural and research links to the Nordic nations, and a great Scandinavian scene.

Studying Norwegian [my chosen Scandinavian language] was the best choice I have ever made. The department is full of many kind people who share my passion for Scandinavian Studies. The course starts at beginners' level, but after a year I already felt fluent in Norwegian, with the help of amazing tutors, fellow students, and the Scandinavian community here at the university.

Lili, Scandinavian Studies and Spanish MA (Hons), 2023

QS World Rankings by Subject 2024

QS graphic on orange background, text reads #3 in the UK, World Top 10

The University of Edinburgh is ranked 3rd in the UK for Modern Languages.

Globally, we’re in the World Top 10 for Modern Languages.

The Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings are based on research citations and the results of major global surveys of employers and academics.

They are International Ranking Expert Group (IREG) approved.

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Other ways to take Scandinavian Studies at Edinburgh

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If you're not on one of our degree programmes, you can still learn Danish, Norwegian or Swedish with us!

As an undergraduate student of most subjects at the University of Edinburgh, you can take a Scandinavian language, or one of our cultural courses, as an outside subject in one or both of Years 1 and 2 of your programme, depending on your timetable. You don't need any prior knowledge of any of our subjects.

We also teach Icelandic as an Open Language course.

Find out more about outside subjects 

Browse Open Language Courses


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