Scan Magazine, Issue 82, November 2015

Page 50

Scan Magazine | Special Theme | Education in Norway

Education Special: Norway

Gain friends and knowledge for life When you first encounter the concept of a Norwegian folk high school, it might seem a bit odd. What is it really? Do the pupils learn anything or do they just play sports and paint pictures for their grandparents to enjoy? The answer is that they most certainly have the option to do so – but if they wish, they can strengthen their more classical education in subjects such as languages and politics too. By Sara Asoka Paulsen | Press photos

Norway has 79 folk high schools spread across the scenic country. The boarding school element is incorporated into the concepts of most modern folk high schools, at least for international students, and you can even take classes in Norwegian and learn about the local culture. This only adds to the positive experience for locals and international students alike.

The key element of a Norwegian folk high school is that the students have themselves chosen to go there, and there are no exams to stress them out. It is all about creating an environment where people feel free to acquire new knowledge out of sheer curiosity and interest. But despite the fact that there are no exams, you walk away with a diploma and a whole lot of life experience.

The original concept of the folk high school came from Denmark and the ideas of N.F.S. Grundtvig and spread to all the Nordic countries. Today, there are more than 400 folk high schools in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland.

A stay at a folk high school is most commonly used as a productive gap year for young people to find themselves and perhaps figure out what they may want from a future career. Most pupils attending Norwegian folk high schools are in their

50 | Issue 82 | November 2015

twenties: young adults who need a break from their studies, for example. With a concept somewhat similar to that of a boarding school, everybody eats together and sleeps in dorms. The teachers normally live at the school, so there is always someone nearby to give comfort or whom you can talk to on a rainy day. This, and the fact that these schools are all about being a part of a community, where everybody has a shared responsibility to make each other feel safe. This creates a cosy and homely ambiance and a place where you are certain to make friends for life.

For more information, please visit:

Turn static files into dynamic content formats.

Create a flipbook
Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.