Denmark offers a safe and high standard of living but at a relatively higher cost than neighboring European countries. While students from EU/EEA member countries and Switzerland can avail themselves of free education in many universities in Denmark, non-EU/EEA students need to pay tuition fees ranging from €6,000 to €18,000 annually. However, there are also many affordable universities in Denmark for international students. On the bright side, the country offers excellent and free health care services for students.
Danish university students can speak English quite well. Still, international students may benefit from using the Danish language when socializing with the locals or when trying to get a part-time job to supplement their budget for living costs. Many universities offer optional Danish language courses for students taking up full English-taught degree programs.
Another interesting thing about Danes is that they are considered the happiest people in the world. It is mainly because of the high quality of life, free education, and high satisfaction rate among citizens resulting in very low crime rates in the country. That’s why even if it’s a bit more expensive than other countries, Denmark is still popular among international students.
Cheap Universities in Denmark
1. University of Southern Denmark
- Tuition Fees for Undergraduate Programs: €6,200 – €13,900
- Tuition Fees for Graduate Programs: €8,500 – €13,900
The University of Southern Denmark opened in Odense in 1966. The 55-year old university now has four other campuses in Esbjerg, Kolding, Slagelse, and Sønderborg. Over the years, the university has become an international institution that actively participates in global initiatives, including the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2030.
This affordable university in Denmark is home to around 30,000 students. Roughly twenty percent of them consist of international students. The steady increase in the number of incoming students from other countries every year is because the university offers over 70 full-time English-taught programs under five faculties: Business & Social Sciences, Engineering, Health, Humanities, and Science.
International students interested in a Master’s Degree in Engineering major in Mechatronics or Electronics may qualify for a scholarship from the Danish Government. It covers the total cost of the tuition and provides a monthly allowance to successful applicants. The university also allows students to get part-time jobs as long as they comply with the rules set by the Danish Government.
2. University College of Northern Denmark
- Tuition Fees for Undergraduate Programs: €7,470 – €11,916
- Tuition Fees for Graduate Programs
The University College of Northern Denmark (UCN) is a pretty young university launched in 2008 with the integration of various colleges and business academies in Hjørring, Thisted, and Aalborg. Currently, UCN offers Academy Profession Degrees, top-up programs, and Bachelor’s Degrees.
Non-EU/EEA students need to pay tuition fees when enrolling at UCN. However, this cheap university in Denmark offers scholarships to outstanding applicants in the form of a tuition fee waiver for the whole duration of the study program. As a result, the university now hosts roughly 1,400 international students.
The university also offers students equal opportunities to pursue part-time studies in partner universities outside Denmark through the Erasmus+ exchange program or undergo internships in partner companies abroad.
3. Aarhus University
- Tuition Fees for Undergraduate Programs: €8,000 – €15,300
- Tuition Fees for Graduate Programs: €8,000 – €15,300
The history of Aarhus University (AU) is an affordable university in Denmark that began in 1928 as the University Studies in Jutland. It is a large university comprised of a network of schools and faculties spread all over the country. The campuses of AU collectively have around 33,000 students—over 10% of which are international students—spread across five faculties.
The university is among the top 3 in Denmark, top 25 in Europe, and top 100 worldwide, according to several world ranking bodies. This international recognition is further strengthened by the university’s globally competitive teaching staff and researchers who are satisfied with AU’s impressive working conditions and excellent work-life balance.
Students appreciate how openly they can interact with their professors and get helpful feedback about their academic performance in an informal but productive environment. In addition, AU offers future career services to domestic and international students who want to work in the country after graduation.
4. Roskilde University
- Tuition Fees for Undergraduate Programs: €8,700 – €18,000
- Tuition Fees for Graduate Programs: €8,700 – €18,000
Roskilde University (RUC) officially opened in 1972, offering project- and problem-based learning methods in an interdisciplinary environment. These learning and teaching strategies are employed in RUC’s undergraduate and postgraduate courses by the entire university population comprising roughly 9,000 students and 800 staff.
Students at the RUC spend half of their time doing coursework, while the other half is spent doing projects to provide them with hands-on experience in dealing with real problems. RUC believes that allowing students to collaborate and share their knowledge in problem-solving can help them achieve democracy, development, freedom of thought, and tolerance.
RUC welcomes around 200 incoming exchange students every year through various exchange programs and allows them to experience the university’s unique teaching and learning method. Overall, this method has helped the university secure a spot among the top 150 universities worldwide, according to the Times Higher Education Young Universities Ranking.
5. University of Copenhagen
- Tuition Fees for Undergraduate Programs: €10,000 – €17,000
- Tuition Fees for Graduate Programs: €10,000 – €17,000
The University of Copenhagen (UCPH) is the oldest learning institution in Denmark. Launched in 1479, UCPH has made significant contributions to the history of the country itself. Currently, the university offers courses under six faculties: Health & Medical Sciences, Humanities, Law, Science, Social Sciences, and Theology.
This affordable university in Denmark hosts over 39,000 students—more than 10% of whom are international students—and roughly 9,500 academic and administrative staff. The university welcomes more than a thousand incoming exchange students every year and sends another thousand outgoing as part of its internationalization initiative. The university also promotes international staff mobility and has received positive feedback for its family-friendly environment.
The University of Copenhagen is the top university in Denmark based on world rankings and is among the top 50-100 universities worldwide. Currently, it is the 7th best university in Europe. In addition, it has produced nine Nobel Prize awardees and other world-famous scientists, such as Tycho Brahe, Neils Bohr, and Hans Christian Ørsted.