International PhD Scholarship in Norway

Unveiling International PhD Scholarship Opportunities in Norway

Embrace the Opportunity to Thrive

Embrace the opportunity to delve into cutting-edge research, collaborate with renowned professors, and contribute to a vibrant academic community in Norway. With dedication, a well-defined research plan, and a thirst for discovery, your PhD studies will be a transformative experience that shapes your future as a successful researcher and leader in your chosen field.

Delving Deeper into Specific Scholarship Opportunities


The first part of this guide provided a comprehensive overview of PhD scholarship opportunities in Norway for international students. Part 2 dives deeper into specific scholarship programs and explores strategies for identifying the perfect scholarship that aligns with your research goals and financial needs.

National Scholarships 

  • Quota Scheme:

The Quota Scheme, offered by the Norwegian Centre for International Cooperation in Education (SIU), provides scholarships for students from specific countries outside the EU/EEA to pursue Master’s and PhD degrees in Norway. Research if your home country participates in the Quota Scheme and explore eligible programs at participating universities.


NORPART is a scholarship program funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. It focuses on partnerships between Norwegian universities and universities in specific developing countries. Explore if your home country participates in NORPART and identify potential PhD programs offered through this collaboration.

University Scholarships

Many Norwegian universities offer merit-based PhD scholarships specifically for international students. These scholarships typically consider academic excellence, research potential, and alignment with specific research projects or faculty expertise. Here’s how to find relevant scholarships:

  • University Websites:

Each Norwegian university website typically maintains a dedicated scholarship page. Explore these pages to discover PhD scholarship opportunities offered by the university and its various departments or research groups.

  • Research Groups and Faculty Websites:

Individual research groups and faculty members might advertise PhD positions with scholarship funding on their websites. Identify professors whose research aligns with your interests and explore opportunities within their research groups.

  • Funding and Scholarship Portals:

Online portals like Scholarship Portal or PhDPortal, list scholarships offered by various institutions, including universities in Norway. Utilize these platforms to search for relevant PhD scholarships.

Strategies for Identifying the Perfect Scholarship 

Here are some key factors to consider when identifying the perfect PhD scholarship in Norway:

  • Research Alignment:

The scholarship should support research projects aligned with your academic background, research interests, and long-term career goals.

  • Financial Coverage:

Research the scholarship’s financial coverage. Ideally, it should cover tuition fees, living expenses, and potentially travel costs associated with research activities.

  • Application Requirements:

Carefully review the application requirements for each scholarship. Ensure you meet the eligibility criteria, including academic background, language proficiency, and any specific research experience requirements.

  • Application Deadlines:

Meet application deadlines for your shortlisted scholarships. Submit all required documents well in advance to avoid missing out on opportunities.

Crafting a Winning Scholarship Application

Securing a PhD scholarship in Norway hinges on a well-crafted application that showcases your academic excellence, research potential, and suitability for the chosen program. Here’s a breakdown of key elements to ensure your application stands out:

Strong Academic Background:

  • Highlight your academic achievements, including your Master’s degree transcripts with excellent grades.
  • Mention relevant coursework, research projects, publications (if applicable), and any academic awards or distinctions you’ve received.

Compelling Research Proposal:

  • Develop a well-structured research proposal that outlines your intended research topic, methodology, expected outcomes, and potential contribution to the field. Tailor it to the specific research group or project you’re interested in. (Refer to Part 4 for details on crafting a compelling research proposal)

Statement of Purpose:

  • Craft a compelling statement of purpose that elaborates on your research interests, motivations for pursuing a PhD in Norway, and how the chosen program aligns with your academic goals.
  • Demonstrate your passion for research, highlight relevant skills and experiences, and showcase your potential to contribute meaningfully to the research group.

Letters of Recommendation:

  • Request strong letters of recommendation from professors familiar with your research capabilities and potential for success in a doctoral program.
  • Choose professors who can speak to your research experience, work ethic, and ability to contribute to a research team.

Language Requirements:

  • Meet the language requirements specified by your chosen program. This typically involves demonstrating proficiency in English (or Norwegian, depending on the program). Include relevant language test scores in your application if required.

Additional Documents:

  • Ensure you submit all required documents by the deadline. This might include transcripts, CV, research proposal, statement of purpose, letters of recommendation, language test scores, and any additional documents specified by the scholarship or program.

Tips for a Winning Application:

  • Proofread and Edit: Thoroughly proofread and edit your application materials for any grammatical errors or typos. A polished application creates a positive first impression.
  • Clarity and Conciseness: Present your information clearly and concisely. Adhere to word limits for essays or statements of purpose.
  • Highlight Achievements: Quantify your achievements whenever possible. Use data and metrics to demonstrate the impact of your research or academic contributions.
  • Tailor Your Application: Tailor each application to the specific scholarship and program. Demonstrate how your research interests align with the faculty expertise at the chosen university.

Developing a Compelling Research Proposal

A strong research proposal forms the cornerstone of your PhD scholarship application in Norway. It showcases your research prowess, critical thinking skills, and ability to design and execute a successful research project. Here’s a guide to crafting a compelling proposal:

1. Define Your Research Topic:

  • Clearly define your research topic within the broader field you’re interested in.
  • Ensure the topic aligns with your academic background and research interests.
  • Consider the feasibility of the research within the timeframe of a PhD program.

2. Identify a Research Gap:

  • Demonstrate a clear understanding of existing research in your chosen field.
  • Identify a specific research gap or unanswered question that your project aims to address.
  • Explain the significance of this gap and how your research will contribute to new knowledge or understanding in the field.

3. Develop a Research Question and Objectives:

  • Formulate a clear and concise research question that guides your project.
  • Develop specific research objectives that break down the main question into manageable steps.
  • Ensure your objectives are measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART criteria).

4. Outline Your Research Methodology:

  • Describe the methods you will use to collect and analyze data for your research project.
  • This might involve literature review, surveys, experiments, fieldwork, or a combination of methods depending on your field.
  • Justify your chosen methodology and explain how it’s best suited to address your research question.

5. Anticipated Outcomes and Contribution:

  • Explain the expected outcomes of your research project.
  • What new knowledge or insights do you anticipate contributing to the field?
  • How will your research findings benefit academia, industry, or society at large?

6. Ethical Considerations:

  • Address any ethical considerations associated with your research methodology.
  • This might involve obtaining informed consent from participants, data privacy, or responsible use of research materials.

7. Timeline and Work Plan:

  • Develop a realistic timeline for your research project, outlining key milestones and deliverables.
  • Demonstrate a clear understanding of the time commitment required for each research stage.

8. Budget and Resource Requirements:

  • If applicable, outline your budgetary needs for the research project.
  • This might include costs for equipment, travel, materials, or participant compensation (if any).

9. References:

  • Include a comprehensive list of references used in your research proposal.
  • This demonstrates your familiarity with existing literature in your field.

10. Tailoring Your Proposal:

  • Tailor your research proposal to the specific scholarship or research group you’re applying to.
  • Highlight how your research aligns with the faculty expertise or ongoing projects within the chosen group.

Maximizing Your Research Experience in Norway

Earning a PhD scholarship in Norway grants you access to world-class research facilities, renowned faculty, and a vibrant academic community. Here’s how to make the most of your research experience:

Active Research Participation:

  • Actively participate in your research group from the outset.
  • Attend lab meetings, contribute to ongoing projects, and demonstrate your research skills and initiative.
  • Seek opportunities to present your research findings at group meetings and receive feedback from your peers and supervisor.

Collaboration and Networking:

  • Build strong relationships with your supervisor, fellow PhD students, and professors.
  • Collaborate with researchers in your field, both within and outside your university.
  • Attend conferences, workshops, and seminars to network with experts and stay abreast of the latest advancements in your field.
  • Leverage your international network to initiate collaborative research projects with scholars from your home country or other institutions.

Developing Research Skills:

  • Take advantage of training opportunities offered by your university or research group.
  • This might involve workshops on data analysis, scientific writing, project management, or advanced research methodologies specific to your field.
  • Hone your communication skills by presenting your research at conferences or writing articles for academic journals.

Disseminating Your Research:

  • Present your research findings at conferences and workshops relevant to your field.
  • Publish your research in peer-reviewed academic journals to contribute to the broader scientific community.
  • Consider co-authoring papers with your supervisor or collaborators to gain valuable publication experience.

Personal and Professional Development:

  • A PhD program is not just about research.
  • Seize opportunities for personal and professional development.
  • Develop transferable skills such as critical thinking, problem-solving, time management, and leadership skills.
  • These skills will benefit you not only during your PhD but also throughout your future career.

Cultural Integration:

  • Embrace the opportunity to live and learn in Norway.
  • Participate in university events, explore Norwegian culture, and connect with local communities.
  • Learning the Norwegian language will enhance your experience and facilitate integration into Norwegian society.

Additional Considerations:

  • Mental Health and Well-being:

A PhD program can be demanding. Prioritize your mental and physical well-being. Utilize university support services, maintain a healthy work-life balance, and build a network of friends and colleagues who can offer support.

  • Career Planning:

Start thinking about your future career aspirations early on. Utilize career counseling services offered by your university and explore potential career paths aligned with your research expertise.

  • Dissemination Beyond Academia:

Consider ways to communicate your research findings beyond academic circles. Engage with the public through science communication events, write articles for popular science magazines, or create online content that explains your research to a broader audience.