Applying to Undergraduate Programmes in Denmark (EU/EAA)
Students with diplomas from an upper secondary educational institution in EU and EEA countries can apply for admission to undergraduate higher education programmes in Denmark. These applicants will be considered on equal terms with Danish applicants and must meet the same entry requirements.
Applications to undergradute higher education in Denmark are assessed locally at the institutions but coordinated centrally. Consequently prospective students do not apply directly to any single educational institution, but through the national admission website: www.optagelse.dk
The website opens on 1 February. The deadline for applications is 15 March at 12 noon (CET) (note postage handling)
You will receive response to your application(s) 28 July (but read below for more).
It is mandatory to use www.optagelse.dk . If you are disabled and therefore unable to use the digital application system, you may contact the educational institution to be exempted and get a permit to send an application by mail. In that case the educational institution will provide paper forms.
Your educational background determines which kind of programmes you can apply for. Many undergraduate programmes require a full upper secondary education as a basic entry requirement. It is however possible to apply for some educations with other qualifications, e.g. a number of single subject courses. Besides the entry requirement regarding your educational background some programmes have additional admission requirements.
Information and details about the programmes can be found in our section on study programmes. If the specific admission requirements are not immediately apparent from the description of the programme, we recommend you consult the website of the responsible educational institution. All admission requirements can also be found at the programme at optagelse.dk.
Examples of specific requirements could be:
- Subjects passed on a certain level. Danish education use levels A, B and C, A being the highest.
- Subjects passed with a certain minimum grade
- The diploma in total passed with a certain minimum GPA
- Passed admission test/ interview
It is necessary to meet both the entry requirements in general and the specific admission requirements to be able to apply for a programme. If you do not meet the specific requirements, you may pass a supplementary course to be eligible for admission. In Denmark these courses are only offered in Danish.
Note: The results from any supplementary courses will not be considered as a part of your GPA. Thus, you cannot improve the GPA from your upper secondary education through later courses.
Regulations of Admission (Quota 1 and Quota 2)
There are certain general rules concerning the application for undergraduate higher education programme. On most educational programmes the applicants are separated into two quotas; 1 and 2.
Citizens from EU and EEA with a qualifying exam can be assessed in both quotas. If you have another access basis, e.g. single subject courses, you need to be assessed in quota 2.
In both cases (quota 1 and 2) the application deadline is 15 March, 12 noon. If you finish your exam in June, you can apply before the deadline anyway. In this case you can attach the diploma to your application on optagelse.dk before the 5th of July, 12 noon.
In quota 1 you will only be assessed on basis of the result of your qualifying exam (an upper secondary education); your grade point average (GPA). You must upload your diploma to your application at optagelse.dk. The educational institution will convert your GPA to the Danish 7 point grading scale, in order to compare your GPA with the GPA’s of the Danish applicants. This requires that your upper secondary school exam can be equated to a Danish upper secondary school exam.
The assessment in quota 1 is based on the principle of descending order of grade point averages. This means that applicants with the highest grade point averages are admitted until all the seats are taken. The last applicant’s grade point average is the minimum GPA for admission, and this is first known when the entire admission process is completed on 28 July. The minimum GPAs can therefore vary from year to year depending upon the number of applicants, the GPAs of these applicants and the number of available study places.
If you have an upper secondary school leaving certificate (high school exam), you can check the list below to see if you are eligible for entry into Danish higher education: Foreign qualifications for entry to higher education.
Especially for applicants with an upper secondary education diploma
If you apply for a higher education programme within two years of completion of your upper secondary education, your GPA will be multiplied by a factor of 1.08 in quota 1. It is a condition that the education is completed within the prescribed time. The educational institution that you apply to decides whether you can get the bonus and they will calculate the new GPA including the bonus. You may have the two-year deadline extended due to certain circumstances, e.g. long-term illness.
A diploma from an upper secondary education will never expire in order to apply for a higher education programme in Denmark. If you have more than one diploma, it will always be the first diploma issued, which forms the basis for assessing in quota 1.
Two different groups of applicants can apply through quota 2:
You have an upper secondary education: If your GPA is not high enough for admission in quota 1, you can apply through quota 2 and be assessed on your other qualifications as well. Your application will automatically be assessed in quota 1 simultaneously, so you only have to apply for each programme once.
You have other qualifications than an upper secondary education: You can apply for some programmes based on other qualifications, e.g. single subject courses. However, this is only an option for specific programmes, e.g. some professional bachelor degree programmes and Academy profession programmes.
Criteria in quota 2
Each educational institution sets the criteria for admission through quota 2 for each programme. The criteria express the range of qualifications on which the educational institution evaluates the applicant. You do not need to meet all these qualifications, but the more qualifications you meet, the greater is your chance of admission. Please notice that some programmes might have specified minimum criteria that you have to fulfil. Some educational institutions request a motivational essay as a part of a quota 2 application.
You will find more information on the specific criteria on the website of each educational institution. There you will also learn more about which kind of information and documentation they need to assess your quota 2 application. It is very important to do a thorough study of the requirements (criteria and documentation) to be sure that your application can be assessed in quota 2. If you apply for the same programme at different educational institutions, please note that they might have different quota 2 criteria.
Admission Test and Interviews
Some programmes only admit applicants through quota 2. These programmes have admission tests, interviews or a combination. The test or interview will take place after 15 March, 12 noon. It is mandatory to attend the test or interview in order to maintain a possibility to be admitted.
Please note that some programmes with admission tests require that you produce different kinds of written material and attach it to your application before the application deadline 15 March, at noon. Learn more on the website of the single educational institution.
When you apply for admission at a programme, you are allowed to apply for a Standby place as well. This is a prioritized waiting list with a limited number of students. If you are offered a Standby place, the educational institution will offer you a place if they get some cancellations within the period from July until mid-August. Holding a standby place, you are not guaranteed a place the same year as this depends on the number of cancellations. However, if you are not admitted, you will receive a pre-approved admission for the following year.
Please be aware of the consequences by applying for a standby place. If you are offered a standby place at one programme, you will not get any other offers from any lower-prioritised programmes although you could have been admitted. Therefore, you risk having to wait another year to start your education, if you apply for and are offered a standby place.
By applying for a stand by place, you do not impair your chances to be admitted directly to the programme. You will primarily be assessed for a place directly – if this is not possible, you will be assessed for a standby position.
Remember! You will only be offered a stand by place, if you have applied for one.
Starting in Summer or Winter
Most higher education programmes only have study start once a year: in August or September. However, a limited number of programmes also have an additional study start in January or February. Whether this holds for the programme you are applying for can be seen from www.optagelse.dk in connection to each education.
The application deadline will be 15 March in both cases. The educational institutions distribute the study places and decides whether you will have a start in summer or winter. During the application process, you can make a statement of the preferable start. The educational institution will make the final decision.
However, some programmes have a separate application for both winter and summer. If you choose this, you only apply for the specific start.
Special regulations for holders of a Master’s degree
If you already have a Master’s degree and wish to apply for an undergraduate higher education programme in Denmark, you will be subject to restrictions. Thus, you will only be admitted to a specific programme if there are vacant places after finishing the admission procedure. You can seek exemption from this rule in connection to your application at Optagelse.dk.
Studying in Danish and English
Most non-Danish applicants apply for a programme taught in English, which requires a certain level in English. If you want to apply for a programme taught in Danish, you must meet requirements of your skills in Danish.
For admission into these programmes you must prove a satisfactory level of proficiency in Danish by taking the test called ‘Danish as a Foreign Language’ (‘Studieprøven i dansk som andetsprog’) or ‘Danish Test 2’ (‘Danskprøve 2’). Some programmes may require that you have passed ‘Danish Test 3’ (‘Danskprøve 3’). If you do not have any proven Danish skills, you may need to take Danish lessons for a period of up to 3 years in order to obtain the required level in Danish.
Read more at ufm.dk.
Note that as an international student you can take Danish lessons for free. In this way you may enroll first in an English-taught undergraduate programme and then continue your education in Danish at the graduate level once you have achieved the required Danish language skills.
Read more about learning the Danish language
Citizens from other Nordic countries with passed courses in Danish, Swedish or Norwegian included in their Upper Secondary Education usually do not need to prove their skills in Danish.
If you want to apply for a programme taught in Danish, you will have to use the Danish Entrance: ‘Søg videregående uddannelse’ at www.optagelse.dk
You can receive general guidance on the choice of education programme and application procedure at ‘Studievalg’ and ‘eVejledning’. The guidance counsellors can help you to get an overview and ideas for your education choices.
eVejledning offers personal guidance by chat, email, and telephone daytime, evening and weekends.
Studievalg consists of 7 regional centres. They offer personal guidance during opening hours and also by email and telephone.
For specific questions about an education programme, you must contact the educational institution directly. Both Studievalg and eVejledning will refer you to the institution if they are not able to give an answer to your questions.
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