Study Cities in Nordic Countries
Results from Eurostudent VI have been used to compare students’ situation in different countries. In this report, we use results aggregated on town-level to compare 10 student towns in Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland. Of Norwegian towns we include Oslo, Bergen and Trondheim. For Sweden we look at Stockholm, Linköping and Lund. Amongst Danish towns we look at Aalborg and Aarhus. Finland is represented by the towns Tampere and Turku. The report maps students’ experience of housing conditions in the different towns, their economic situation and paid work alongside their studies, as well as satisfaction with their studies.
Overall, the findings in this report show that differences at national level are also reflected when we analyse different towns: the student towns are closer to towns in the same countries rather than to student towns in another Nordic country. This holds for most of the indicators we compare.
How students live, varies between towns. It is more common to live together with other students in the Norwegian towns compared to the other student towns, where it is more common to live alone. The Finnish towns Tampere and Turku have the highest shares of students being satisfied with different aspects related to their accommodation, both its cost, condition and travel time to campus. In both towns, more than 90 per cent of the students are satisfied with the accommodation’s location. The two capital cities included in the report, Stockholm and Oslo, differ in students’ satisfaction with travel time. Where Stockholm has the lowest share of satisfied students with 57 per cent, 72 per cent of the students in Oslo are satisfied.
Looking at students’ economic situation and comparing monthly costs with income from public student support, we find that in several of the Swedish towns, the median monthly student support is higher than the monthly living costs. In the Norwegian, Danish and Finnish towns, on the other hand, the living costs are higher than the amount of student support. Oslo has the highest median living costs with more than 10 000 Norwegian kroner. Being able to cover living costs is also an important motivation for having paid work alongside the studies. This holds especially for the Finnish towns Tampere and Turku where more than 90 per cent of the students who work during the semester have paid work to cover their living costs. The share of students working to cover their living costs is also significant in the Danish and Norwegian towns, where between 72 per cent (Trondheim) and 81 per cent (Oslo) of the working students say the same. The town with the lowest share of students working to cover their living costs, Linköping, is also the town with the highest share of working students having a job that is relevant for their studies.
When it comes to students’ experience of their studies, we see differences between student towns when it comes to satisfaction with quality of teaching and how the studies are organized. The Norwegian towns have the lowest share of students being satisfied with the quality of teaching. All in all, the share of satisfied students is higher among master students compared to bachelor students. In all towns, the share of students being satisfied with the quality of teaching is higher than the share of students being satisfied with how their studies are organized. Looking at students’ assessment of preparedness for the labour market, in Linköping 8 in 10 students regard their chances on the national labour market as good, compared to only half of the students in Bergen. Linköping is also among the towns with the highest share of students seeing their chances on the labour market abroad as good, together with Tamper and Turku. In all towns, more than half of the students see their chances as good. The share of students reporting good chances on the international labour marked is lower in the Norwegian towns Bergen and Oslo with 25 per cent, as well as a quarter of the students answer that they cannot assess their chances on the international labour market.