How to apply for a residence permit for studies at a university or university college

You must have applied for and been granted a residence permit before entering Sweden.


You have received a letter of acceptance

To be eligible for a residence permit, you must have been admitted to full-time studies on a programme or course that requires you to be present at the university or university college.

Information about studying in Sweden at studyinsweden.seexternal link, opens in new window

Is your institution a university or a university college?

A list of institutions that count as universities or university colleges can be found on the website of Studyinsweden.

See if your institution counts as a university or a university college on studyinsweden.seexternal link, opens in new window

World Maritime University and Folkuniversitet are not recognized as universities or university colleges in Sweden. Nor are bible studies and similar religious studies or studies at a vocational school recognized as studies at a university or university college in Sweden.

Learn more about residence permit for studies at World Maritime University or Folkuniversitetet

If you are planning to study at upper secondary school or folk high school other rules applies.

Learn more about the rules for studies at upper secondary school and folk high school


Pay the tuition fee

If you need to pay tuition fees, you must have paid a portion of the fee before handing in your application.

More information on tuition feesexternal link, opens in new window


Fill out an application

You may apply online. In the application, you fill out information about yourself and your studies. You must also enclose a number of documents. If your family accompanies you to Sweden you can apply for their permits too in your online application.

Attach the following documents when applying for the first time

  • copies of the pages in your passport which show your personal details, the period of validity and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin
  • admission decision or letter of acceptance showing that you have been admitted to study a programme or courses full-time
  • the decision on admission as a doctoral student with information about the time of admission (if you are a doctoral student)
  • copy of document proving that you have comprehensive medical insurance coverage in Sweden (if you have been admitted to studies that last less than one year). If you are insured through the university or university college, attach a certificate to prove this
  • bank statement showing that you have the means to support yourself. This bank statement, which you are to attach to your application, should be dated in connection with the time of application and be translated into English or
  • documents issued in your name, showing that you have received a scholarship or similar (e.g. student aid), including information about the monthly amount and the period during which you will receive such funds or
  • documents proving that you have been awarded an educational grant (only applies to doctoral students) or have been employed as a doctoral student, with information regarding the amount and the period during which you will receive such funds.

If you need permission from the central bank or equivalent in order to bring money out of your country, you should also attach such a permit.

Make sure that the information on the documents you attach is clearly visible. Check that the numbers and characters at the top and bottom of the passport pages is clear and legible.

Learn more about the requirements for an online application

Permits for family members


Pay the application fee

In most cases you will have to pay a fee. When you apply online, you pay the fee with a credit or debit card in connection with the application.

More information about fees


The Swedish Migration Agency processes the application 

If you have applied online, the Swedish Migration Agency can start work on your application right away.

For the Swedish Migration Agency to make a decision about your application, all the details need to be filled in and all necessary documents attached. This means that the processing time will be shorter if all the necessary information is included from the start than if information is added afterwards.

Note that the Migration Agency may in some cases need to further examine your application even if you have included all the required information and documents.

Current waiting times


Visit the embassy or consulate-general

If you need an entry visa for travel to Sweden, visit the Swedish embassy or consulate-general as soon as you have been granted a visa, to be photographed and fingerprinted. This is so that you can be given a residence permit card and travel to Sweden. You need to do this even if you have had a residence permit card previously, as the information is not saved. Contact the embassy or consulate general before your visit.

If you do not require an entry visa, you can also travel to Sweden without a residence permit card, but you must be able to show a decision from the Swedish Migration Agency to enter Sweden. In that case you do not have to go to the embassy to get your residence permit card. You instead hand in the documentation for a residence permit card to the Migration Agency once you have arrived in Sweden. However, your permit must be granted before you travel to Sweden.

Find the closest embassy at Swedenabroad.comexternal link

List of countries whose citizens need an entry visa to travel to Swedenexternal link, opens in new window

More information about the residence permit card


You receive the decision

You will receive an e-mail stating that a decision has been made.

You must contact the embassy or consulate-general to get your decision, and possibly book an appointment for this. When you come to collect your decision, you must bring your passport. Some embassies and consulates-general will send the decision and residence permit card by the post. Contact the embassy or consulate-general for more information. Your university college or university will get an e-mail with information about the decision at the same time as you.

If you are going to study in Sweden as part of an education in another country, you cannot get a residence permit for studies unless you have been admitted to a university or university college in Sweden. Instead you can apply for a visitor's permit. If you are eligible for doctoral program and have been chosen to do research in Sweden, you can apply for a residence permit as a visiting researcher in Sweden.

Read more about visitor's permit

Read more about residence permits for visiting researchers

If you do not apply online

If you are not able to apply online, you must fill out the form Application for residence permit for students and doctoral students, number 105031, and submit it to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in your country of residence. The application form specifies which documents to enclose.

If there is no possibility to submit an application in your country, you must apply at the embassy or consulate-general closest to your country of residence. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before you submit your application for further information.

If your family is accompanying you to Sweden, each family member must submit their own application.

Application for residence permit for students and doctoral students, form number 105031 (in English)PDF

Application by co-applicants to students and doctoral students, form number 135011 (in English)PDF

Find the closest embassy at Swedenabroad.comexternal link

If you are applying at an embassy or consulate-general, you pay the fee when you hand in your application. For more information about the fee, contact the embassy or consulate-general where you are applying, as they do not have the same fees and terms of payment as the Swedish Migration Agency.

Last updated: 29 June 2016