Combining theory and practice - workplace training forms an integral part of the programmes.
- Hundreds of programmes available nationwide.
- The largest number of programmes offered is in the field of Business Finance, Administration and Sales, along with Manufacturing Technology. Other prominent areas include IT, Hospitality and Tourism, Health Care and Agriculture.
- All programmes are at a post-secondary level and qualify for student financial aid from the Swedish Board of Study Support (CSN).
- After graduating from an HVE programme, students are qualified to go straight into employment.
- Standards are set high in HVE programmes. Students are highly goal-oriented, looking to further themselves professionally.
- Some programmes charge tuition fees, although most of them are free of charge.
Higher Vocational Education is delivered in cooperation between education providers and those employers and industries affected by the programme. All programmes therefore have a strong emphasis on workplace training.
Employers and industry representatives play a significant role in the planning of an HVE programme and influence on its content. Employers and industry contribute to and influence the programme content by taking part as lecturers, joining in projects, welcoming study visits and by offering work placements.
Options in higher vocational education
There are several options for higher vocational education (HVE) qualifications and their arrangements.
Read more: Options in higher vocational education
Table of contents
How does it work?
A programme normally has several periods of workplace training (LIA). These periods make up approximately 25% of programme content.
Workplace training gives the students the opportunity – even during their studies – to learn a great deal about the profession they are aiming for and offers an opportunity to combine theory with practice. At the same time, the employer has the opportunity to get to know a potential future employee.
Workplace training provides excellent opportunities to build up a network of contacts with potential employers.
Higher Vocational Education is at a post-secondary level.
Programme duration is from six months and up. Most are between one and two years in duration.
Duration is specified through HVE-credits (YH-poäng), where five credits correspond to one week of full-time studies. 100 HVE-credits correspond to six months of full-time studies, 200 HVE-credits to one year of full-time studies, 400 HVE-credits to two years of full-time studies etc.
Students may not automatically transfer credits from an HVE programme into further studies at university. Each university has the right to decide whether credits can be transferred or not.
In order for an HVE programme to result in an award on graduation, it must have a minimum duration of one year.
The following awards exist:
- Higher Vocational Education Diploma (Yrkeshögskoleexamen)
- Advanced Higher Vocational Education Diploma (Kvalificerad yrkeshögskoleexamen)
The Swedish National Agency for Higher Vocational Education
The Swedish National Agency for HVE has regulatory oversight of the programmes. There is a specific law and an ordinance regulating the operations of the Swedish National Agency for HVE and of providers of HVE. There are also ordinances which regulate both provider obligations and programme design. The Swedish National Agency for HVE inspects and audits the quality of the programmes and handles student feedback and complaints.
What are the entry requirements?
There are certain entry requirements that need fulfilment to enrol on a Higher Vocational Education programme. This is referred to as eligibility. In a situation where there are more applicants to an HVE programme than there are study places, a selection has to be made to decide which applicants will be offered a study place.
Entry requirements may be different for different programmes, as prior knowledge is taken into consideration for each programme. There are also different types of selection procedures in different programmes.
Each education provider (school) handles their own admissions process in their programmes. You need to contact the education provider directly to find out what the exact requirements are for the programme of your choice.
Higher Vocational Education eligibility
To fulfil the entry requirements for HVE, you must have the prior knowledge equivalent to upper-secondary education. However, the rules are generous and applicants of varying backgrounds are given an opportunity to demonstrate fulfilment of entry requirements.
General entry requirements for HVE are met if you:
- have received a school leaving certificate from a full national upper-secondary school programme, or a school leaving certificate from adult education at upper-secondary level,
- hold Swedish or foreign qualifications equivalent to the requirements stated under 1,
- are a resident of Denmark, Finland, Iceland or Norway and there fulfil the entry requirements for study programmes equivalent to the Swedish HVE programmes, or
- hold Swedish or foreign qualifications, or if you have through practical experience or other circumstance obtained the prerequisites needed in order to fulfil the programme requirements.
Specific entry requirements
Many HVE programmes require specific prior knowledge beyond the general entry requirements. These may vary in different programmes. It may involve completion of specific courses from a national programme at upper-secondary level or specific professional experience. Contact the education provider (school) directly to find out what the specific requirements are for the programme of your choice.
Knowledge of Swedish
If your first language is other than Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Icelandic or Faroese, you must have the necessary knowledge of the Swedish language. The education provider tests and determines whether you have the necessary knowledge.
Some programmes offer opportunities for extra-curricular support if your first language is other than Swedish in the form of job-related Swedish language training.
Should you not fulfil the formal entry requirements, there is still a chance to gain entry to a programme. The education provider may, under special circumstances, exempt the applicant if he or she is judged capable enough to fulfil the requirements of the programme and to practise the profession for which the programme prepares. Contact the education provider to find out whether this opportunity is available for the programme of your choice.
Selection and admissions
In a situation where there are more applicants to an HVE programme than there are study places, a selection has to be made among the applicants.
Selection procedures vary in different programmes. You may be asked to take a written test or go to an interview. Grades, prior education or professional experience may also be taken into consideration.
Each education provider (school) handles their own admissions process in their programmes. If you have any questions regarding admissions, please contact the education provider directly.
How do I apply?
Send your application directly to the school you wish to apply to. Final application dates vary in different programmes.
There are many different HVE providers and each of these handles their own admissions process. Contact the school directly for information and application forms.
Because of the close connection to employers and industry, an HVE programme may start at any time during the year. Most programmes, however, start in August/September. The final date to submit an application is usually in April/May.
For access to the programme syllabus, enquiries regarding eligibility, selection or applications, contact the education provider.
What student financial aid is availiable?
Post-secondary students receive student aid, which may be increased (extra child allowance as well as supplementary or additional loans).
At present, student aid is approximately 9 000 SEK per month, of which the allowance is approximately 30 %.
Foreign citizens studying in Sweden are normally only entitled to financial aid if they have moved to Sweden for another reason than to study, and meet certain criteria.
Recognition of prior learning – validate your skills
If you do not have the necessary formal qualifications, recognition of prior learning is a way to qualify for a study programme. It may also be a way to be awarded credit transfer for parts of a study programme.
Knowledge and skills can be acquired both through formal education (for example upper secondary school or university courses) and from work, association activities or non-formal education (for example leisure-time courses). The skills and knowledge you have acquired can be mapped and assessed via interviews and tests in a structured manner. This is called recognition of prior learning.
Qualify even if you do not have academic grades
If you do not have formal qualifications, recognition of prior learning is a way to prove that you have the necessary prior knowledge and are qualified to join the study programme. Find your study programme at yrkeshogskolan.se and contact the education provider (school) for more information.
If you need an upper secondary school qualification before you can apply for with a higher vocational education programme, contact your municipality for more information.
Credit transfer for parts of a study programme
If you have formal qualifications, it is possible to apply for credit transfer for parts of a study programme that you have been admitted to. Contact the education provider for more information.
Several national authorities work with recognition of prior learning:
Swedish with a Vocational Focus
Some occupations in the labour market may require you to have specific professional language skills. In order to gain such skills, it may be possible for students to receive language training in Swedish with a Vocational Focus (SMY). The purpose of learning Swedish with a vocational focus is for you to gain the language skills required for the particular profession you are training for. This may make it easier for you to get a job after graduation.
What to do: Contact the school and ask about Swedish with a Vocational Focus. The education provider (school) assesses whether it is possible to offer SMY.