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Sweden:Mobility in Higher Education

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Overview Sweden

Contents

Sweden:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Sweden:Historical Development

Sweden:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Sweden:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Sweden:Political and Economic Situation

Sweden:Organisation and Governance

Sweden:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Sweden:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Sweden:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Sweden:Organisation of Private Education

Sweden:National Qualifications Framework

Sweden:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Sweden:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Sweden:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Sweden:Funding in Education

Sweden:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Sweden:Higher Education Funding

Sweden:Adult Education and Training Funding

Sweden:Early Childhood Education and Care

Sweden:Organisation of Programmes for Pre-Primary Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Programmes for Pre-Primary Education

Sweden:Assessment in Programmes for Pre-Primary Education

Sweden:Organisation of the Pre-Primary Class

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in the Pre-Primary Class

Sweden:Assessment in the Pre-Primary Class

Sweden:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Sweden:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Sweden:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Sweden:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Sweden:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Sweden:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Sweden:Organisation of Upper General and Vocational Secondary Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Upper General and Vocational Secondary Education

Sweden:Assessment in Upper General and Vocational Secondary Education

Sweden:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Sweden:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Sweden:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Sweden:Higher Education

Sweden:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Sweden:First Cycle Programmes

Sweden:Bachelor

Sweden:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Sweden:Second Cycle Programmes

Sweden:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Sweden:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Sweden:Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Distribution of Responsibilities

Sweden:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Sweden:Main Providers

Sweden:Main Types of Provision

Sweden:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Sweden:Teachers and Education Staff

Sweden:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Sweden:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Sweden:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Sweden:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Management and Other Education Staff

Sweden:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Sweden:Management Staff for Higher Education

Sweden:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Sweden:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Quality Assurance

Sweden:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Sweden:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Educational Support and Guidance

Sweden:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Sweden:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Sweden:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Sweden:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Sweden:Mobility and Internationalisation

Sweden:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Mobility in Higher Education

Sweden:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Sweden:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Sweden:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Sweden:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Sweden:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Sweden:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Sweden:National Reforms in School Education

Sweden:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Sweden:National Reforms in Higher Education

Sweden:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Sweden:European Perspective

Sweden:Legislation

Sweden:Institutions

Sweden:Glossary

Introduction

The Swedish Council for Higher Education (Universitets- och högskolerådet) manages the European and most of the nationally initiated mobility and scholarship programmes, many of which are open to both pupils/students and teachers/academic staff or educational institutions.

Student Mobility

Erasmus+ brings together previous EU programmes in the fields of Education, Training, and Youth. Students can go abroad for 3 to 12 months for studies or 2 to 12 months for traineeships. The same student may receive grants for studying or being trained abroad totalling up to 12 months maximum per each cycle of study. The interested student should apply to the international office and/or Erasmus+ office of his or her sending higher education institution.

Linneaus-Palme is an exchange programme for teachers and students of first- and second cycle programmes and courses to strengthen cooperation between universities in Sweden and developing countries. Student exchange may be one to two semesters of full-time studies and is intended to provide eligibility for credits on return. Scholarships are awarded both to outgoing Swedish students and teachers as well as to foreign students and teachers coming to Sweden. The programme is financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency. It is the cooperation between University departments that provides the fundamental basis for exchange within the exchange programme Linnaeus-Palme. The respective cooperating departments determine the selection of students and subjects. The department of the Swedish institution prepares the project application concerning resources for teacher or student exchange and which is thus the unit with operational responsibility. In order for students to be eligible for the Linnaeus-Palme grant his/her University has to have a project together with a Swedish University.

NORDPLUS Higher Education for teachers and students at Nordic universities, colleges and other higher education institutions builds on cooperation in networks, offering activitiets such as student and teacher exchanges. The programme allocates mobility grants to students and teachers and funds development projects, courses and seminars

Minor Field Studies is a programme enabling Swedish students to spend a minimum of two months in a developing country to do field work within subject areas of benefit for the development in the host country. It targets university and college students who have international interests and who wish to gather material for an undergraduate or postgraduate dissertation. The grant covers expenses for travel, insurance, food and accommodation. The educational institutions taking part administer the programme and grants. The programme is funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.

Sida travel grant are available for Swedish students or recent graduates who have been accepted for unpaid internship in international organisations with a connection to Swedish development work, such as the UN. The aim is to help increase the number of Swedes in international service by making it easier for young academics to gain experience which may qualify them to apply for future posts with international organisations. The programme is financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.

International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience (IAESTE) gives university and college students the opportunity to apply for a work experience placement abroad. The student can be abroad from 4 weeks and up to 18 months. The programme is primarily aimed at technology and science students, and over 90 countries participate in this exchange programme.

Support for international mobility

To obtain study assistance for studies abroad, a student must have been resident in Sweden for at least two continuous years within the last five years. There are some requirements imposed on students and the institution of higher education. There are no obstacles to paying study assistance when a student receives a scholarship for studying abroad.

Universities and university colleges are themselves responsible for assessing and validating exchange programmes. If the exchange takes place within the context of an exchange programme, a learning agreement is made in advance between the outbound student and the Swedish university/university college – normally the major part of the exchange studies are credited to the student's programme at the university of origin. If the exchange takes place in some other way, for instance if the students is a so called free-mover (not taking part in an organized exchange programme), a learning agreement can be established in advance or an assessment can be made retroactively.


Academic Staff Mobility

National policy goals regarding staff mobility in HE

Sweden participates in a large number of international cooperation projects in the area of education and research. The aim of these projects is to draw attention to and focus on individual issues as well as to exchange experience across national borders. The Swedish Higher Education Act states ”… in their operations higher education institutions should promote understanding of other countries and of international circumstances.”

In the Bill Knowledge without borders – higher education in the era of globalisation (Gränslös kunskap - högskolan i globaliseringens tid, 2008/09:175) the Government describes how to promote the internationalisation of higher education and specifically states increased HEI staff mobility as an aim. The same bill gave universities the task to increase staff mobility by local initiatives. Approximately 90 per cent of Swedish higher education institutions have a policy for internationalisation. Many higher education institutions reported in a 2008 study that internationalisation was increasingly integrated into the overall aims of the organisations. Despite this many higher education institutions still lack clear and measurable targets for internationalisation. The are big differences between institutions as well as within them as many faculties have their own targets for internationalisation.

The Swedish Council for Higher Education (Universitets- och högskolerådet) has the task to promote Swedish participation in the programmes and follow up, analyse and spread resuslts and experiences from the programmes to increase the quality of education. This includes the mobility of higher education staff. Close to 1000 higher education staff took part in international mobilities in 2011.

European mobility programmes for HE staff

Erasmus+ aims to boost skills and employability, as well as modernising Education, Training, and Youth work across Europe. Erasmus+  provides teaching opportunities for the teaching staff of higher education institutions and staff invited from enterprises. Training opportunities are also available for teaching and non-teaching staff employed in an higher education institution. 

National mobility programmes for HE staff

Nordplus Mobility of academic staff is promoted through the Nordplus Higher Education programme; for teachers and students at Nordic universities, colleges and other higher education institutions and builds on cooperation in networks, offering activitiets such as student and teacher exchanges. The programme allocates mobility grants to students and teachers and funds development projects, courses and seminars. Nordplus offers financial support to a variety of educational cooperation partnerships between partners in the area of lifelong learning from the eight participating countries in the Baltic and Nordic regions. Nordplus is the Nordic Council of Ministers' most important programme in the area of lifelong learning. More than 10,000 people in the Nordic and Baltic region benefit from it every year.

  • Managed by the The Swedish Council for Higher Education.
  • Financed by the Nordic Council of Ministers.

Linnaeus-Palme is an international exchange programme for teachers and students at higher education institutions with the aim of stimulating cooperation between universities and colleges in Sweden and in developing countries. The Linnaeus-Palme programme is financing 3-8 weeks of mobility for teaching staff; Swedish teachers going abroad, as well as foreign teachers coming to Sweden.

  • Managed by the The Swedish Council for Higher Education.
  • Financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida). The 2011 budget was over 40 million SEK.

The Visby Programme administrated by The Swedish Institute, supports institutional cooperation and individual exchanges at universities and university colleges, as well as in upper secondary schools. This includes student exchanges, teacher exchanges or research collaboration, and encompasses every field of study. The Visby Programme aims to support projects and network building to stimulate long-term co-operation between universities/university colleges or parts thereof (faculties or institutions), as well as between upper secondary schools, - in Sweden and one or more of the Baltic countries, Poland, Russia, Belarus and the Ukraine. Universities or university colleges can apply for funding for contact meetings/project planning in one of the countries in the program, and PhD students, researchers or teachers at institutions of higher education can apply for grants for short-term visits to actively take part in a conference. A university, or university college can also invite a PhD student, researcher or teacher for a study or research visit for two weeks to one month.

STINT the Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education (Stiftelsen för internationalisering av högre utbildning), was set up in 1994 by an act of the Swedish Parliament. Its mission is to promote internationalisation of Swedish higher education and research. The Foundation offers a range of funding and scholarship programmes in support of strategic internationalisation at higher education institutions. It is also an actor with competence and knowledge relating to international academic collaboration. STINT awards scholarships to post-graduate students and academic staff. 

To be considered for a scholarship, a student must have a Bachelor of Science degree or equivalent and high proficiency in English. The scholarship covers accommodation, insurance and other personal expenditures for a maximum of three terms of full time studies. STINT offers:

  • Institutional Grants and Institutional Grants for Younger Researchers are programmes that promote long-term collaboration. Within these there is support for research collaborations, the exchange of researchers, doctoral students and students in the latter stages of their studies. These last for a number of years, allowing joint activities to take place and lasting international networks to be formed. STINT also offers a stipend to enable doctoral students to spend one term abroad.
  • University lecturers can spend one term at an American liberal arts college. In this way Swedish higher education has a greater opportunity of utilising the experiences and ideas that the scholarship holders acquire in terms of how teaching and learning can be developed.
  • Scholarships to students from eminent universities in Ghana, China, Mexico and South Korea. This initiative is an attempt to strengthen the connection between the foreign universities and Swedish higher education.
  • Short-term grants which give Swedish researchers and teaching staff the opportunity to spend short periods abroad. STINT can in the same way help finance short teaching and research trips by foreign researchers and lecturers to Sweden.


Monitoring and Evaluation of Mobility in Higher Education

The Swedish Higher Education Authority (Universitetskanslersämbetet) is responsible for monitoring efficiency and analysing issues in the higher education sector, follow-up and horizon scanning. The authority is also responsible for official statistics on higher education and collects data on HEI staff mobility and the information is available through the agency’s online database that allows the user to search for number of HEI staff mobilities based on HEI, type of employment, mobility destination etc. The database is only available in Swedish.

In March 2010 the Government presented the bill  Focus on knowledge – quality in higher education (Fokus på kunskap – kvalitet i den högre utbildningen) which was enacted by the Parliamtent on 3 June 2010. The Government’s proposals and considerations were based on a policy that aims to grant the higher education institutions greater autonomy. One important premise is that the institutions themselves should take responsibility for the development and quality assurance of their activities. The responsibility for analysing their circumstances and processes should therefore rest with the institutions themselves. Detailed reports on HEI staff mobility is thus produces by the respective HEIs. 

The HEIs gather participant reports on behalf of the Swedish Council for Higher Education. The council produces a number of reports every year analysing particular programmes or aspects of internationalisation of education, most are only available in Swedish however. 

Salary, financial compensation and social security arrangements

HEI staff recieve their usual salary and pension scheme during their mobilities, along with the insurance from the respective HEI.

Reward mechanisms for staff participation

Staff who participate in mobilities have all the costs covered, including travel, accommodation and a food allowance. For some of the programmes, e.g Linneus-Palme, the participating HEI staff can obtain funding for an additional two week language course before the actual programme begins.