How to Apply to an International University in Denmark in 2020

Denmark is one of the best places where you could study a Master’s degree. From the low, even free tuition fees — at least, for students from the EU/EEA and Switzerland — to the culture and landscapes, Denmark is one of the countries that can perfectly combine campus life and a welcoming atmosphere for international students.

If you wish to make the best out of your college years, you should know a few key facts about applying to a university in Denmark:

Popular degree subjects in Denmark

Danish universities cover a vast area of academic subjects, each taught with a perfect combination of theory and practice. Some of the most popular disciplines are:

Danish universities to consider for your studies

We covered the best universities in Scandinavia, but here is a short version of that list focused only on Danish universities:

Prepare to apply

Let’s put your mind at ease, and just straight up tell you: Denmark is awesome. Everybody speaks English, people are friendly and the system is quite easy to follow and use. Also, Denmark is third on the list with the happiest countries in the world.

Before you pack for Denmark, you should remember to check the VISA (this applies mainly to non-EU/EEA students). Although the process is easier than in other countries — looking at you, Australia — you should check to get all the documents and all your questions answered before you start applying for your Master’s programme.

A quick side note: check the website of your favourite university, because you will find more details there, along with e-mail addresses and phone numbers from the admission offices. They'll be more than happy to answer any questions you might have about the application process.

Where to apply for a Danish Master’s degree?

Denmark has a special website for applications, as well as a website full of information and trivia for you.

The actual application for undergraduate (Bachelor's) degrees will be on optagelse.dk, where you can apply for up to 8 programmes, all listed in the order of your preference. We recommend that you research and read all the information they have there, so you can go through the application process effortlessly.

To apply for a Master's you have to do it via each degree programme website. An excellent alternative is to find a degree in Norway on our portals. Free services like best-fit and the comparison tool will help you determine if you meet the admission requirements and easily see the differences between multiple study programmes.

Find Master's degrees in Denmark

Language requirements for a Danish university application

To study in Denmark, you will need a certificate proving your English language proficiency.

All Master’s degrees in Denmark require you to take a language exam and to have passed it with an ‘English B’ or an ‘English A’. We can’t stress this enough, but check your university or your programme page, because they are the only ones that will dictate your degree and what English test you should pass.

Usually, the tests accepted by the admissions offices are:

Apply to a Master's in Denmark

Required application documents

General application documents

All applicants, regardless of their status or chosen degree, need to send these documents, translated into English:

  • an internationally recognised Bachelor's degree of good standard or equivalent
  • proof of proficiency in English
  • proof of proficiency in Danish (if the programme is taught in Danish)

Specific entry requirements

Each programme can list different requirements, be it a special course you need to finish or a specific English proficiency grade. Applicants with foreign qualifications can apply for a Danish Bachelor's degree when they fulfil all the requirements, including getting a NemID.

All Danish people have a registration number or a NemID. If you’re a Danish citizen reading this article or you have a residence permit:

  • firstly, what are you doing here? You can read this on your own on the NemID website
  • secondly, you still have to apply on the Optalgese website, but you will skip a step

For international students without a NemID, you will receive an extra document, which you will have to print, sign and then send to the academic institution you are applying to.

For a Master's degree, things are simpler. Just follows the specific requirements on the website of your favourite programme(s). 

University application deadlines for Denmark

You should highlight these dates on your calendar with a red marker because these are the definitive deadlines on the Optagelse website:

  • start of February: online applications start
  • mid-March: deadline for all applicants with non-Danish exams
  • July: deadline for applicants with a Danish Upper Secondary Education
  • end of July: decision letter dispatch

The deadlines for applying to a Master's degree vary from one university to another, but these are the common dates/periods:

  • First session application deadlines: February-March
  • Second session application deadlines: September-October

Final steps after receiving your acceptance letter

After you receive your acceptance letter and can bask in the glory of studying abroad, you should check if you need to apply for a student VISA, as well as a residence permit. The residence permit you need for studying in Denmark has to be valid during your whole stay there.

Remember that VISA and residence permits requirements in Denmark depend on your origin country: more specifically, if you’re from EU/EEA or from a non-EU/EEA country.

You don’t need to worry: applying to a university in Denmark is easy and people are more than willing to help you. The process, even if it can feel difficult sometimes, is quite user-friendly. All you have to do now is research and start applying. As always, good luck and remember to have fun during your stay.

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