Private Higher Education Institutions

Private Higher Education Institutions in Sweden are Higher Education Institutions that are not run directly by the public sector. They can be run, for example, by a foundation, company or association. Some independent higher education providers are entitled to award the degrees described in the Annex 2 to the Higher Education Ordinance, in other words the same degrees as those that public-sector HEIs can award.  There are six private HEI  that can award doctoral or licentiate degrees.

The degree description and examination criteria  for private HEI are the same as for public HEI, and they are described in Annex 2 of the Higher Education Ordinance. Much of the rest of the HEO does not apply to private HEI.

Of the Higher Education Act, private HEI are bound by the requirements laid down for courses and programmes in Chapter 1. Otherwise, the HEA does not apply to private HEI. 

HEI that have the right to award qualifications are subject to the Act Concerning Authority to Award Certain Qualifications, stipulates that programmes are to be based on academic practice or artistic practice and on proven experience and that they are to be provided so that in other respects they fulfil the requirements laid down for courses and programmes in Chapter 1 of the Higher Education Act. It also regulates monitoring and evaluation of independent HEI, as well as revocation of the right to award degrees and the handling of unauthorised awarding of degrees. It also contains provisions about other aspects of the functioning of independent HEI, such as the handling of personal data.   

Private HEI can be organised and run differently from public HEI, and have their own regulations.

If you are enrolled at the private HEI, you can find out more about your conditions by reading the local regulation, or asking administrative staff, your student union, the Ombudperson for doctoral students, or your trade union. While in practice much of the regulations governing the prive HEI are similar to the legislation governing public HEI, there can be differences relevant for doctoral students. One such example is that the withdrawal of resources may be handled differently at the private HEI’s , it is therefore important that you familiarize yourself with these regulations.
You can read more about private HEI on the website of the Swedish Higher Education Authority (UKÄ), here.