There are as many reasons to choose distance studies as there are distance courses to choose from. The most common reasons students choose distance studies are the following:
- they have a family and children.
- they want to combine work and studies.
- they've been working a few years and want to build on their previous education, or finish a programme.
- they want to take an extra course not offered at their campus.
Much freedom - and responsibility
Distance studies are more flexible and less regimented (strict) than other studies. This means a lot of freedom to study when and how you'd like; at the same time, this type of freedom can be demanding. Remember that full-time studies mean that you should study approximately 40 hours each week. You have the responsibility to use all this time in the best possible way.
With or without meetings
There are different types of distance courses and programmes. You can have all of your studies as distance studies, or just some of them. Some courses are completely web-based. In that way, you don't need to travel to the university, university college or local study centre - not for introductory meetings or examinations. Other courses have required meetings or virtual meetings over the internet. Be sure to find out how the distance course you're interested in works before applying.
Local study centre
A local study centre is open for all students who plan on distance studies. Here you can find guidance, facilities, computers with an internet connection, video conferencing, web cameras, printers and copying services.
You can often take your written examinations at a study centre. The study centre can most often arrange for you to have access to facilities and equipment outside of normal office hours.
Find your closest study centre at Nitus (in Swedish)
Quite a few distance courses and programmes offer optional meetings. You don't have to participate and the information given there will always be available in another way for the student who wishes to stay home.
Some distance courses and programmes have mandatory meetings. The university decides how many mandatory meetings each course will have. It's important to check this information before you apply. If you can't make the meetings, you shouldn't take the course. Remember that if there are mandatory meetings and you need to travel to the university, you'll be responsible for any costs involved with the trip.
Computer and internet
When you study a distance course, in most cases you need a computer and access to the internet. For some courses, it may be required that you have access to certain computer programmes. In other cases, the university may provide you with the computer programmes you need.
With some distance courses, contact between the students and teacher takes place using a web camera. It can be helpful to be able to see and hear your classmates and teacher and a web camera is easy to use.
Universities and university colleges use different types of learning platforms. A learning platform is like a classroom in a computer. There, you can find assignments, class lists, discussion forums and group work. All learning platforms work a bit differently but contain the same basic functions.
Distance studies from abroad
All courses that do not require mandatory meetings can be studied from another country. All that is needed is a computer and internet connection. You also have the right to financial aid in the same way you would if you were studying in Sweden.
If you wish to start a distance course from another country, it's a good idea to find out what is mandatory, such as web meetings. These types of scheduled meetings can occur in the middle of the night if you're in a country that's quite far away. Also make sure to find out where you can go to take required examinations - it might be at a Swedish consulate or embassy.
Application and information
You apply for distance courses the same way you apply for courses on campus - via Universityadmissions.se or Antagning.se. If you only want to see what courses are offered as distance courses, be sure to click open more search options and check that you only wish to see distance courses in your search results. You can select distance courses with no required meetings, if you'd like. More information about the course can be found on the websites of the universities offering the courses.