Number of students in higher education in Norway 2009-2019

Over the past decade, the number of students in higher education increased significantly in Norway. In 2009, there were approximately 235 students enrolled in higher educational institutions, but as of 2019, the number reached over 296 thousand. During this period, there were consistently more female than male students, and the gendered difference has only grown larger in recent years.

Universities and studying abroad

Higher education comprises different institutions such as universities, university colleges and scientific colleges in Norway. For Norwegians, universities are by far the most common institution when attaining a higher education. Most higher education systems are state-run, and the largest university is the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, located in the city of Trondheim. Whilst studying, many students choose to study abroad for a period of time, with the United Kingdom and Denmark being the most popular destinations in 2019.

Highest completed education

Despite the significant rise in the number of people who have and will acquire a higher education, the picture looks different when considering the whole population. In 2018, upper secondary education was the highest education completed among most Norwegians, and only ten percent of the population had obtained a long higher education of five years or more.

Number of students in higher education in Norway from 2009 to 2019

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Release date

March 2020



Survey time period

2009 to 2019

Special properties

Includes students who are registered in higher education in Norway and abroad.

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Statistics on "Education in Norway"

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