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?

Scandinavian languages and cultures are rapidly expanding in popularity, with television, film and literature, in particular, attracting global critical acclaim.

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

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 (including a regular seminar series featuring visiting speakers), all within a School passionate about languages, literatures and cultures from around the globe.

You’ll be based at the heart of the University of Edinburgh in a world-leading festival city with excellent cultural and research links to the Nordic nations, a thriving Scandinavian scene, and fantastic libraries, language learning facilities, and collections.

I very much enjoy the diversity and complexity of my courses. I am able to learn not only the languages but also get to know Scandinavian culture. I am pushing myself to my limits each and every day. I have not had a day in Edinburgh yet after which I haven’t felt like I have learned something new and fascinating.

Gabriela LisMA (Hons) Scandinavian Studies and Politics student

Your learning at a glance

  • You can take Scandinavian Studies as a single honours subject, or jointly with one of a wide range of other subjects. Many of our degree combinations are unique in the UK.
  • It doesn’t matter if you’re a complete beginner. Our staff, most of whom are native speakers, are experienced in the accelerated teaching of language skills and you’ll progress in no time.
  • You’ll specialise in the modern language of either Denmark, Norway or Sweden but, whichever you choose, you’ll also gain an understanding of the other two.
  • You’ll engage with a broad range of subjects in your first two years, and specialise thereafter. Our courses are taught by research-active staff who will pass on the same passion and world-class expertise that gained us excellent results in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014.
  • You’ll complete a four-year MA degree, with your third year spent in full, or in part, in either Denmark, Norway or Sweden.

I loved how the department was so small. This not only meant that we all knew one another and developed friendships whilst we studied, but it also felt like all the different subjects of Scandinavian Studies were at our fingertips - jumping from literature to Vikings to contemporary Norwegian affairs was all in a day’s work!

Bruce ThomsonMA (Hons) Scandinavian Studies graduate


What and how you’ll study

Degree combinations, teaching methods, and a year-by-year guide to your learning.

Where might Scandinavian Studies take you?

Career opportunities for Scandinavian Studies graduates.

Find out more and apply

If you’d like to study on any of our undergraduate programmes, you must apply through UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. There’s lots of information about the application process on the University of Edinburgh website, including detailed entrance requirements and fees.

Go to the University of Edinburgh web page on how to apply for undergraduate study

Visit us

Our undergraduate Open Days are a great chance to find out about student life in Edinburgh from the people who know it best: our students and staff. Our next Open Days will be for students wishing to start their undergraduate degree in 2021. The Open Days scheduled for 26th September and 10th October 2020 are currently still planned to go ahead. The University is also working to develop an online alternative for prospective students thinking about starting university in 2021.

Keep up to date with Open Day information on the University of Edinburgh website 

Student representation

Find out more about class representatives and student representation in our School (secured)