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Sweden – New degree structure proposed

The Swedish government recently presented an education bill entitled "New world - new university". The aim of the bill is to make "higher education in Sweden more international and more attractive."

The bill includes a proposal for a new degree structure. The new structure would be comprised of three cycles: a three-year undergraduate degree, a two-year Master’s degree and a four-year doctoral degree programme. The bill also proposes to allow universities the discretion to grant PhD’s after five years of graduate studies, as the second year of the new Master’s degree would be research focused.

The current one-year Master’s degree (Magisterexamen) will continue to exist. The most controversial part of the proposal involves university colleges having to apply for permission from the National Agency for Higher Education (Högskoleverket) to award the two-year Master’s degree, unless they already have the right to offer PhD’s in a specific discipline. The existing civil engineer degree – civilingenjörsexamen – will also continue to exist alongside the new system. The bill will be presented to Parliament this autumn.

According to the Swedish Government, the new internationally compatible degree structure "is proposed to make it easier for students to obtain employment both in Sweden and abroad. Fairer, clearer and simpler admission rules will send a signal to aspiring students that learning pays and will open up education to more people."

Swedish Government
The Swedish Institute