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.
If you are to support yourself with your own funds, you must submit your application no earlier than three months before the date you are applying for a residence permit from. This is because you will be able to show that you can support yourself close to the beginning of the study time and that your actions will not get too old. This does not apply if you will receive a scholarship to cover your means of support.
You can apply for a residence permit online. In most cases you will need to pay a fee.
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.
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.
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.
If you are planning to study at upper secondary school or folk high school other rules applies.
Pay the tuition fee
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.
Enclose 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
- Notice of admission from an institution of learning in Sweden that shows that you have been definitively admitted to full-time studies on a program or courses that require your presence in Sweden. Full-time study means 30 higher education points per term.
- The decision on admission as a doctoral student with information about the time of admission (if you are a doctoral student)
- A certificate with the details of the doctoral studies, issued by the place of study (if you are a doctoral student). You may refer the place of study to the Migration Agency’s checklist for these certificates. Checklist for a certificate for a first-time permit for doctoral studies.
- Copy of documents showing that you have comprehensive health insurance in Sweden (if you are admitted to studies for less than one year). If you have an insurance through the university or college, you must send confirmation of such. If your notice of admission indicates that you are covered by a health insurance from the university or college and you apply through our web application, you can instead attach your admission letter as proof of health insurance
- Bank statement showing that you have the means to support yourself. This bank statement, which you are to enclose 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 enclose such a permit.
Make sure that the information on the documents you enclose is clearly visible. Check that the numbers and characters at the top and bottom of the passport pages is clear and legible.
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. The card must be enabled for Internet payment. Contact your bank for more information.
The Swedish Migration Agency processes the application
If you have applied online, the Migration Agency can start work on your application right away.
For the Migration Agency to make a decision about your application, all the details need to be filled in and all necessary documents enclosed. 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.
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 have your picture and your fingerprints taken. 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 previously had a residence permit card, as the information is not saved. Not all embassies or consulates-general have the possibility to take your picture and your fingerprints. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before your visit for more information.
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 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.
You receive the decision
You will receive an email 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 email 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
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.
If you do not apply online
If you are not able to apply online, you must fill out the form First-Time application for a residence permit for students and doctoral students, number 113011, and submit it to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in your country of residence. The application form specifies which documents to enclose. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before you submit your application.
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.
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 Migration Agency.