Being a student at UiA
Being an international student can be a great experience! Making friends, going out, seeing places, being free, but you should not forget that you are here to study. It is important that you are aware of the following:
Freedom and responsibility
Norwegian students enjoy a lot of independence, something that can be confusing and difficult to deal with for students unfamiliar with this type of educational system. Some courses may only have one lesson per week and attendance in class is not always compulsory. Students study at home or at the university and prepare independently for exams and have to ensure they hand in any compulsory assessments / essays on time. They make good use of learning resources such as the library, Fronter, etc. UiA encourages every student to start working regularly with their subjects early in the semester in order to be able to prepare as much as possible for the exam period at the end of the semester.
The study environment at the UiA is very informal. Small seminars and working groups constitute essential parts of the study programmes. People generally call each other by first name in Norway, also between students and teachers. However, informal does not mean unprofessional. At the UiA we work to have an ambiance of respect between the university staff and the students. One way of showing this is not to disrupt the teacher when lecturing or to listen when a fellow student is talking and always switch off the mobile phone during a lecture or while in the university study rooms.
The UiA promotes critical thinking, openness and reflection. Students are encouraged to participate actively in study groups and debates. As a student at the UiA you should be organised and prepared for your lectures/tutorials or labs. Read all the necessary materials in advance, in order to be able to actively participate in a discussion with your teacher. Do not feel intimidated. Get involved and ask questions! Approach your advisors or teachers to discuss your concerns. They are there to help you!
Study in Norway