The University of Agder is a young university, earning its new status in 2007. We grew fast, and as a university, the amount of applicants through Samordna Opptak has grown with almost 100% since 2007. With 12 000 students, UiA is Norway’s 5th largest university. We are constantly working hard to develop the university further – to preserve our traditions of good teaching and a sense of closeness between the students, employees and the workplace.
The students at the University of Agder have, through many surveys and many years, proved to be among the country’s most satisfied. They really enjoy themselves. They highlight relevant and good educations, competent lecturers, the good terms surrounding the studies, and that the university and student village are “just the right size”.
The largest study programs at the University are job-oriented, such as nursing, engineering, elementary school teaching, and economics. The academic programs are also closely knit to the practical work life, organizations, cultural institutions, and the social life of Southern Norway. Job-oriented studies and professional studies are close at UiA. That means a shorter road between studies and the practical life.
The amount of professors and other lecturers with competence is rising. Our scientific employees put in a lot of personal effort to increase their own competence. One result is a great increase in research production – at the same time as we keep our focus on the students and their education: In this context, the production of research and study points makes UiA one of the country’s most effective educational institutions.
UiA are the first to introduce education in mechatronics (bachelor’s, master’s, and PhD) and renewable energy (bachelor’s). Southern Norway has world leading actors in offshore technology, who collaborate in developing the studies. The collaboration secures businesses the competence they need, and provides students with relevant education and exciting job opportunities.
UiA is allotted a Centre for Excellence in Higher Education (SFU): Centre for Research, Innovation and Coordination of Mathematics Teaching (MatRIC). MatRIC will be a national centre, which will lead innovation and research in teaching and education in mathematics for the natural sciences, engineering, economics and teacher education, and application programs. SFU is a national prestigious arrangement allotted to those who can exhibit excellent quality and innovative training in education.
Nearly 50 percent of those who apply to study at the University of Agder come from other regions, which contributes to higher population figures and competence development. UiA works closely with industries, public businesses and the cities in the region, both to secure a relevant workforce, relevant jobs, and relevant studies.
The University of Agder is particularly concerned with the fact that a good start is crucial to having a good time in university. Therefore, in collaboration with SiA (Studentskipnaden i Agder), STA (the Student organization in Agder), the board of the buddy system, and the student villages, we put a lot of effort into providing a good buddy system, start-of-studies-festival, startup courses, and specialized services. We wish that our students can continue to be among the country’s most satisfied – and a good start is not a bad beginning.
Since 1993, the University of Agder has offered studies and courses in very special surroundings at the study centre Metochi. Metochi is an annexed monastery on the Greek island Lesbos.
The last decade, the University of Agder has worked closely with NHO (the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise) and the region’s industries trades to accommodate the need for more women in technological fields. That has resulted in a record high number of women studying engineering and technology. “Girls and technology is an educational fairytale, that is extremely important to the industry in Norway,” says Kristin Skogen Lund, leader of NHO.
“The miniature hospital” at the Grimstad campus is one of Norway’s most modern and innovative educational environment in health-Norway. As a nursing student at Grimstad Campus you get a miniature version of health-Norway at your place of study, with access to the foremost technology in education.
Not one university in Norway offer as many options and great flexibility for this kind of education as UiA. We have the opportunity to offer this due to the university’s vast and good academic environment, which is integrated into the teacher educations. Did you know that the teacher educations at UiA date all the way back to 1839? That means that this university have 175 year old roots.
The music students at UiA are thriving with the newest of facilities in our studios, scenes and rehearsal rooms. Renowned musicians are lecturers, renowned musicians graduate, and UiA can now offer degrees as high as PhDs in performing rhythmic music. As the only university offering this in Norway, performing music students can choose to use a laptop as their instrument and work with electronic music.
The School of Business and Law at UiA is among the country’s leading business schools, making UiA the university with the most graduating business of commerce students in the country. UiA has offered education in business for 25 years, and a specializing PhD in economy, more specifically International Management, attracts doctoral students from leading institutions both in and outside Norway. The student activity for business students, Mercurius, was named the best in the country, and has an active student environment, which is responsible for Karrieredagen in Kristiansand and the industry conference Norge på nytt.
Recent numbers show that nine out of ten students enter the working life quickly and get jobs in the course of four months after graduating. We believe many of our students choose us exactly because our good academic environment, our reputation, and our profile as a vocational university. Many come to us to receive a concrete education that leads to many job opportunities.
n the spring of 2015, UiA was allotted a Centre for Excellence in outstanding innovation (SFI) within offshore mechatronic. Mechatronics Innovation Lab (MIL) is a part of the national infrastructure for pilot testing and experimental development of products, systems and services especially within the offshore industry but also within manufacturing and material processing industries. The purpose of establishing MIL is to strengthen Norwegian technology companies’ ability to innovate by offering a variety of required test services which today only exist abroad or do not exist at all. This will reduce the time-to-market when introducing new products and technologies and will, in turn, strengthen the competitiveness of the companies.
UiA owns the largest collection of beat art outside of the US, together with the secondary school Kristiansand Katedralskole Gimle. The art is open to be experienced by students, employees and visitors on a daily basis – as it is a part of the decorations on campus. The beat collection was donated to the university by Reidar Wennesland, a local doctor who had close contact with the art community in San Francisco, as some of the artists’ doctor and beneficiary.
Different educations offer different possibilities, and you can study for example economy in China, teaching in the Netherlands, biology in Australia, paramedicine in Greece, technology in Germany, music in Hungary, language in Spain, or nursing in Botswana. We offer exchange programs all over the world with our quality proofed exchange agreements.
The UiA campuses are designed after the American campus models, with everything in one place. Short distances, open areas, and many meeting places for students and employees. On campus, you have everything you need as a student: student housing, a book shop, a library, group meeting rooms, study halls, student activity areas, a cafeteria, health services, and a kindergarten for students with children. Both campuses are located central and close to the city and industries, as well as hiking areas and the sea.
The era of paper and pencil exams is ending. UiA is the first university in Norway to offer digital exams on such a large scale. Digital exams came into full force starting in the fall of 2014.
“All” of our students highlight the cafeteria as the most important meeting area at UiA, and it has been named the country’s best student cafeteria several times. Considering knowledge comes from human contact, we are very committed to creating meeting areas for students – no matter what they study or what year they are in. That is why both campuses have one cafeteria for all the students. Did you know that the cafeteria manager at the Grimstad campus used to be the sous chef at a Michelin star restaurant? Or that the Norwegian champion chef and barista from the student union Norwegian championships both work at the cafeteria in Kristiansand?
UiA is fortunate to have such a well-functioning student union. SiA (Studentsamskipnaden i Agder) has proved to be the best, based on national surveys, and works hard to fulfill the vision of contributing to making Southern Norway known for being the best place to study. SiA runs student housing, the student cafeteria, the book shop, the fitness center, health care services, student kindergarten, student activity houses, and other cultural events – like the start-of-study festival.
We get a little proud when the students say they experience an open door-policy at UiA. We are here for the students. We wish to be an open, informal and future-oriented university. Even though open doors are not something we decree, we place a lot of emphasis on good relations between students and employees.
Can you even get a better location than that of the Grimstad and Kristiansand campuses? Southern Norway have the highest amount of sunny days in Norway, and you get both sea and nature in close proximity. But just as important is it that Southern Norway is experiencing strong financial growth, being at the top in export and entrepreneurship, and offering exciting occupational prospects. The south is where you get the energy to create.
Dear students! We really admire your enthusiasm, spirit, curiosity, and sense of critique. You inspire, challenge, keep us in check and spread joy all around you! Nothing beats January and August, when the campuses are filled with students coming back from Christmas and summer vacation! We really do miss you during vacations – it gets too quiet here without you.