The Scholarship Exchange in Iceland program provides two students per year near-full scholarships to spend an academic year at the University of Iceland, a public research university in Reykjavik, and the country's oldest and largest institution of higher education. It is a progressive educational and scientific institution, renowned in the global scientific community for its research. The University of Iceland also holds a leading role in sustainable energy and environmental research.
The exchange between the University of Iceland and the University of Minnesota was established in 1982, and is generously supported in part by the Val Björnson Icelandic Exchange Scholarship, funded by individual donors and Icelandic heritage groups in North America and alumni of the program.
Read more about being an exchange student at the University of Iceland.
A wide variety of courses are available in social sciences, humanities, law, health sciences, natural sciences, engineering and teacher education. The principal language of instruction at the University is Icelandic; however, most faculties offer some courses in English that are open for exchange students.
Course selection must consist of 30 ECTS credits per semester, where at least 60% of courses are within a student's major.
You must register for the equivalent of 15 UMN credits per term. You receive resident credit for the courses you take, your grades factor into your University of Minnesota GPA and each course appears on your transcript with an A/F grade. See the Grade & Credit Conversion Scale for more details.
Housing & Meals
Housing is usually arranged in a university dormitory, generally in single rooms with shared kitchen and bath. Homestays and apartments can also be arranged independently.
Reykjavik is an expensive place to live. Fortunately, a living stipend is available to cover some of the cost of housing. The stipend may vary slightly from year-to-year, but students can expect to receive approximately ISK55,000 (approximately $555) per month.
Dates & Deadlines
- Spring 2022: Closed
- Academic Year 2022-23: February 1, 2022
- Spring 2023:* TBD
If the deadline falls on a weekend, submit your materials on the following business day.
*If the two academic year spaces do not fill, we will accept applications for spring semester.
Academic Year: Late August - May
Spring: Early January- May
Program dates are subject to change. Start date may vary depending on academic focus, as the academic calendar varies somewhat from one faculty to another. Contact our office or consult your University of Iceland acceptance materials for arrival date information before purchasing your airfare.
Use your University of Minnesota internet ID and password to log into the Education Abroad application system. Your student account will be charged a $50 application fee.
Once you submit your application, you will receive an email notification confirming that your application was received. Submitted applications are assigned an application checklist, which will include the following items:
- Application Essay
- Advising Appointment with the Exchange Coordinator
- 1 Academic Recommendation
Application Review Process
This scholarship exchange program can be very competitive, and we encourage you to have a second-choice program in mind when applying. After the application deadline, the GO Minnesota selection committee will review applications and nominate finalists within 2 weeks. If nominated, you will be assigned a confirmation checklist, which you will complete to confirm your participation in the program.
Nominated students will be required to complete the University of Iceland's application, and they will make the final acceptance decision. More information on this will be sent to nominated students.
If at any point you decide not to continue with the application process, log into the Education Abroad application system and submit a cancellation request.