Everything for International Students to Know about Academic Programs at Karolinska Institutet

Explore the vibrant world of Karolinska Institutet, where international students dive into top-notch medical and health sciences programs. Discover a global community committed to innovation, research, and making a real-world impact. Your academic adventure in Stockholm awaits!

Everything for International Students to Know about Academic Programs at Karolinska Institutet
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If you're dreaming of embarking on an academic adventure that not only promises world-class education but also an unforgettable international experience, then you're in the right place. Today, we're diving into the heart of Stockholm, Sweden, to explore the exceptional academic programs offered at Karolinska Institutet (KI) for students from all corners of the globe.

Karolinska Institutet is not just a prestigious medical university; it's a vibrant community where innovation, research, and passion for healthcare and science come alive. Whether you're aspiring to become a medical practitioner, a research scientist, or a health professional, KI offers a myriad of programs designed to cater to your academic and professional aspirations, all while providing a supportive and multicultural environment.

Bachelor's Programs at Karolinska Institutet

Karolinska Institutet (KI), a leading medical university, offers a Bachelor's Programme in Biomedicine for international students, conducted entirely in English. This programme stands out for its close integration with cutting-edge biomedical research, providing a comprehensive education in the biology and pathology of the human body, alongside an understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind major global diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, infections, and neurological diseases​.

The Bachelor's Programme in Biomedicine at KI is designed to provide a deep understanding of human biology and medicine, aiming to contribute to improved human health. The curriculum follows the Bologna Declaration principles, focusing on student-centred and outcome-based education. It includes compulsory courses, a significant amount of individual project work, including a degree project, and advanced elective courses.

Entry Requirements and Application Process

To be eligible for this programme, you must meet both general and specific entry requirements. The general entry requirements necessitate that you have completed an upper secondary school/high school education that qualifies you for higher education in your country. Specific requirements include courses equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary level courses in Biology 2, Chemistry 2, and Mathematics 4, or their equivalents, along with proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary course English 6. Proficiency in English can be demonstrated through certain upper secondary school studies, certain university studies, or an internationally recognized English test such as TOEFL or IELTS.

Applications are processed through University Admissions in Sweden. There are two key application rounds: one ending on January 15 (for all international applicants and those needing a visa) and another on April 15 (primarily for EU/EEA applicants and nationals). It's important to note that non-EU/EEA citizens should not apply in the second round due to insufficient time for residence permit processing.

Fees and Scholarships

Tuition fees for non-EU/EEA students amount to 540,000 SEK for the entire programme, with the first installment being 90,000 SEK. However, students from the EU/EEA or Switzerland are not required to pay these fees. An application fee of 900 SEK applies to all students outside the EU/EEA. Karolinska Institutet also provides information on scholarships which can be applied for to help cover the costs​.

For detailed information on the application process, specific entry requirements, and more about what the program offers, visit the official Karolinska Institutet website or the University Admissions in Sweden website.

Master's Programs at Karolinska Institutet

Karolinska Institutet offers a variety of Master's programmes, all taught in English, catering to students from across the globe. These programmes are designed to equip students with advanced knowledge and skills in various domains of the health sciences. The application period for these programmes runs from 16 October 2023 to 15 January 2024​.

Entry Requirements

To apply for a Master's programme at Karolinska Institutet, candidates must have a Bachelor's degree (equivalent to a Swedish 180 ECTS Bachelor's degree) from an internationally recognized university. If you are in your final year of studies, you can also become conditionally admitted on the condition that you meet the degree requirement by the start of the programme. Additionally, proficiency in English equivalent to the Swedish upper secondary school course English 6 is required. Most Master's programmes have programme-specific entry requirements, which can be found on the webpage of each programme​.


For international students outside the EU/EEA, Karolinska Institutet offers a limited number of tuition fee scholarships through the Karolinska Institutet Global Master's Scholarship program. These scholarships are awarded based on merit. The institute also participates in the Swedish Institute's scholarship schemes, which cover tuition fees and living expenses for students from specific countries outside the EU/EEA​.

PhD Programs at Karolinska Institutet

Karolinska Institutet (KI) is renowned for its comprehensive doctoral (PhD) programs, offering an environment where world-class research and specialized research environments foster the development of doctoral students. These programs cover a wide array of fields, including:

  • Allergy, Immunology and Inflammation
  • Biology of Infections and Global Health
  • Cardiovascular Research
  • Cell Biology and Genetics
  • Development and Regeneration
  • Epidemiology
  • Health Care Sciences
  • Metabolism and Endocrinology
  • Neuroscience
  • Public Health Science
  • Tumor Biology and Oncology

KI has established formal collaborative agreements with various universities and research institutions worldwide, enhancing the doctoral education experience through international collaborations. These agreements often facilitate short-term PhD student exchanges, joint degrees, and research collaborations. For instance, there are opportunities for short-term research experiences with the University of Toronto in Canada and exchange programs with the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Moreover, strategic partnerships with institutions like The University of Tokyo and RIKEN in Japan, as well as collaborations with universities in Singapore, Tanzania, the United Kingdom, Uganda, and the USA, including the NIH, provide doctoral students at KI with a broad spectrum of international research opportunities.

KI also participates in several European and global networks to enhance the doctoral education experience. These include the Erasmus+ program, which allows for student and teacher exchanges within Europe; the Eurolife network, facilitating exchanges with nine prestigious European institutions in the field of Biomedicine and Medicine; and the NeurotechEU, aiming to create a trans-European network of excellence in brain research and technologies. Additionally, KI is a member of NorDoc, the Nordic Doctoral Training in Health Sciences network, which offers doctoral students free access to courses across the participating universities​.

For more detailed information about the doctoral programs, including specific requirements, application processes, and the vast international opportunities available, you are encouraged to visit the official KI pages on Doctoral Education, Becoming a PhD Student​​, and International Collaboration within Doctoral Education​.


Whether you're drawn by the allure of cutting-edge research, the promise of impactful healthcare innovations, or the warmth of a diverse academic community, Karolinska Institutet stands ready to welcome you with open arms. With its rich array of programs, dedicated faculty, and supportive environment, KI is not just a stepping stone but a launchpad for your future career and personal growth.

So, to all aspiring scientists, healthcare professionals, and curious minds from around the globe, consider this your invitation to explore, learn, and thrive at one of the world's leading medical universities. Karolinska Institutet is not just a place to study; it's a place to change the world, one discovery at a time. We can't wait to see the mark you will leave on the world.

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