For students attending the Master's Programme in Bioentrepreneurship Study Abroad

To have the opportunity to experience another culture from the inside is an interesting developmental and instructive process. Studying abroad means not only academic development, it also provides insights and experiences you will profit from in your future life both professionally and personally. You will also make lifelong friends and many other interesting contacts.
An exchange student should be flexible and have a capacity for taking the initiative.

Hands with a world map painted on them.
Credit: Pixabay CC0. Photo: Pixabay CC0

Study abroad

The deadline for application to our exchange program is Friday January 27th, 2023 at 11AM. Registration will open mid January and the link is available here.

For students interested in going abroad in semester 4 to do the 30 ECTS research project outside our bilateral agreements there is no need to apply in January since you will be going abroad as freemover. You will however need to have finalized all paperwork latest 4-6 weeks before your departure (this includes even receiving your visa when applicable). Only students doing their internship within the European Community will be awarded a scholarship. To receive an Erasmus scholarship you need to be abroad for at least 60 days.

Please observe that due to COVID-19 exchanges might be canceled by our partner universities.

Here you can read more about exchange studies (English) or here (in Swedish).

If you wish to read your fellow students' travel report please visit this page.

Partner University

When studying the Master's programme in Bioentrepreneurship there are plenty of opportunities to spend part of your studies abroad. The programme has only one formal exchange agreement, with the University of Auckland.

Two students can apply to go there in semester 4, for their Master's thesis, to do their project. However, a large part of the students spend either the practical placement 2 course and/or the Master's thesis as "freemovers" in companies/organisations abroad. 

We have no limitations to which countries you can go to as freemovers, as long as you can find a suitable project at a company/organisation as well as a project specific supervisor. All the projects however, need to be approved by the Programme Director. You will be insuranced via Karolinska Institutet while abroad and may be able to receive an Erasmus+ traineeship scholarship if your project will be done in a country within the European Union.


What Do Exchange Studies Involve?

Studying abroad within the framework of an exchange programme means that the student spends part of his/her period of education at one of the partner universities. As a Bioentrepreneurship student you will focus on collecting data for your Master's Thesis. 

Can I Go At Any Time During My Studies?

You will travel abroad during the Spring semester.

How Long Can I Study Abroad?

We have a bilateral agreement with the University of Auckland. When going on exchange to Auckland you will receive an INK stipend. Condition: you need to be abroad a minimum of 5 weeks. Information about the INK travel stipend can be found here.

What Is Expected of an Exchange Student?

Studying abroad for a period requires a lot of preparation. There are many aspects to consider – before, during and after the study period. You will receive advice and help from the Programme Director and the International Coordinator during your planning. However, remember that the responsibility for the success of your preparatory work and your foreign studies is your own and that you will have to do a lot of work on your own.

Once you have accepted an exchange place, the International Coordinator will nominate you to the partner university.  After you have been nominated you will be contacted by the partner university where you will begin to discuss your project. Once you have accepted the place, compelling reasons are required to withdraw your application.

In your capacity as a representative of Karolinska Institutet it is also important that you are a good ambassador during your stay abroad.

How are Exchange Studies Credited at KI?

Collecting data for your Master's thesis abroad, requires a supervisor both at KI and at the partner university. Your project plan should be approved at KI before you start your work. Contact the Programme Director for your programme for further information.

Is Accommodation abroad Included?

As an exchange student, your host university can sometimes help you to arrange accommodation. However, access to student residences is limited in certain places and it is therefore important that you apply for accommodation as soon as you receive your acceptance notice from the host university. 

What Will my Financial Situation be during my Exchange Studies?

As an exchange student at a partner university you should not pay any tuition fees at the host university (this does not apply to "freemover" students). However, if you currently pay tuition fees at KI, you will also pay the KI tuition fee for the period of your exchange study. Even if tuition fees do not apply to you in Sweden, other expenses may arise, such as registration fees, student union fees, insurance fees and costs for course literature and other materials.

Swedish Students and Students with Permanent Residence Permits

If you fulfil the requirements for a Swedish governmental student grant from CSN, you are entitled to receive it during your studies abroad. Students who collect data abroad for the Master's thesis should apply for an ordinary student grant irrespective of the length of their stay. You will be registered in Ladok as a student at KI during the period, not as an exchange student. For more information see the CSN website

Travel Grant

Once you have been accepted by the partner university you can apply for the KI travel grant. The amounts are fixed annually. For the current academic year the grant is 5000 SEK for 6 weeks abroad, if you stay 12 weeks or longer the grant is 8000 SEK. Hereyou can read more about the INK travel grant.

Language Skills and Language Courses?

KI does not require a language test if you want to become an exchange student; it is your responsibility to have adequate language skills before you begin your exchange studies. 

You can brush up your language skills by taking language courses through an adult education organisation (e.g. ABF, Medborgarskolan or Studiefrämjandet, Stockholm University) or you could attend an intensive course in your country of study (e.g. a summer course). Certain partner universities also organise language courses at various levels, however, a fee might be charged. If you are going to study abroad and you want to apply for a student grant for language studies, you should check with CSN that the school has been approved.

What are Exchange Reports?

A student who has completed exchange studies within the framework of the Master's Programme in Bioentrepreneurship must write an exchange report upon returning. When the travel report has been assessed by the international committee the student will receive the last installment of his scholarship corresponding to 1.000kr.

Since 2010, the reports are easy accessible on the web

And Finally

Remember that it takes a long time to obtain information and organize everything for an exchange study period abroad. So start collecting information and get yourself ready in good time:

It is your own responsibility to prepare yourself as well as possible before you depart!

You must decide where and what you want to study, which can be quite time consuming and requires preparation time.

Don’t forget  the unique opportunity you have to learn more about the country and university you plan to go to from exchange students from the partner university who are currently studying at KI. 

You are more than welcome to approach MF (Medical Students' Union) and Global Friends if you want to become a mentor.

How to Apply

The application form is available only online. You will be able to upload all the necessary documents to apply for exchange studies (CV, transcript of records, motivation letter and if applicable research experience) on our online database. The link to the application database can be found higher up in this page.

What to Include in Your Application

Application Form
From January 2022 the application form is only available online.

Curriculum Vitae (CV) in English
Your CV should be well written and easy to understand. You do not need to send any supporting documentation, but should be prepared to produce it on request. A recommended CV site is Europass CV.

Transcript of Records
A "Transcript of Records" in English from the Ladok register should be included in your application. It can be obtained by yourself directly from "Ladok on Web". No stamp or signature is required on this document.

Motivation Letter in English
Your personal statement of motivation should be written in English and be a maximum of one A4 page in length, and is an important part of your application. Present yourself briefly in the introduction and state why you wish to take part in an exchange. Experience and special interests referred to in the letter should be relevant to your application. Under certain circumstances, special factors that have made it difficult to acquire association and work credentials may be taken into account.

An incomplete application will be given lower priority or not be processed at all. Applications that arrive too late will not be dealt with in the first application round.

A letter of reference is no longer required to apply for exchange studies.

Vacant Places

Are you interested in applying for a vacant place? If after the first round of nominations there are vacant places, these will be published here later on in the Spring semester.


To be nominated for exchange studies in semester 4 the student has to have 60 ECTS from semester 1 and 2 and be registered for semester 3 on September 15. 

Is it Difficult to be Nominated to Exchange Studies?

The programme has set a number of selection rules for exchange studies within the Master´s Programme in Bioentrepreneurship. You must meet a number of these basic requirements:

  • Study Results: your competence to continue your studies at KI at the time of your departure.
  • Language Skills: your mastery of the language of instruction at the foreign university or how you plan to acquire the necessary language skills.
  • Good Ambassador: you have to be a good ambassador for KI. As an exchange student from KI, you will be representing KI at the host university. 
  • Statement of Motivation: your statement should demonstrate that you are motivated to study abroad, and if applicable provide evidence of interest in a particular course, university, country etc.

Assuming you fulfill the basic requirements, you will then be given priority after consideration of the following criteria:

  • Study Results: better study results will receive higher priority (0-5 points).
  • Active Participation: in any of KI’s associations such as MF, Global Friends and BUS (0-2 points)
  • Research: experience in relevant fields. If you are claiming research credentials, you must enclose certification from your research supervisor or the equivalent with the application. (0-3 points)
  • Motivation Letter: (0-1 points)
  • Other Commitments: Other involvements and credentials of interest will be taken into consideration, for example, activity in other associations. (0-4 points)
  • Interview or Decision by Lot: if it is difficult to distinguish between applicants, the international committee may contact them for an interview or decide priority by lot.

How is the Selection Done?

Once the application period has expired, the programme will make its choice in accordance with the above rules and rank the students in order of preference. The places will be allocated in order of priority – you will be nominated to the partner university that you have accorded with the highest priority at which a vacant place is still available. Unfortunately, it sometimes happens that all places are taken, in which case you will be allotted a reserve place. The agreed exchange places will be distributed in proportion to the quantity (number of places) in the various programmes.


As soon as a decision has been taken you will be informed that you have been nominated for exchange studies and will then you will receive further information and directions from the International Coordinator. You yourself will be applying to the university abroad with a recommendation from KI. You should also contact the relevant Programme Director for further information and to discuss a draft plan for your studies.

General rules

Important information regarding application, waiting list and second round of application

Deadline to apply for exchange studies in the academic year 2023-2024 was Friday January 27th at 11am. Only complete applications are assessed by BIONK. No individual extensions will be granted.

Acceptance of nomination

After BIONK has assessed all applications, they are ranked based on the criteria set by the international committee. Successful applicants will receive an offer of exchange (nomination) by email and a deadline to accept/reject their nomination.

As an applicant you have the following options:

  • Accept their nomination
  • Reject their nomination
  • If not having been nominated to the firsthand choice of university, the applicant can accept their nomination and be placed on a waiting list for a higher alternative as listed in the application

If the applicant does not fulfill the course eligibility criteria to be nominated for exchange, i.e. having passed all taken courses, the applicant will receive a conditional nomination. This eligibility criteria will be checked again on April 15 for exchange during the Autumn semester 2023 and on September 15 for exchange during the Spring semester 2024.

As soon as an applicant accepts their nomination, the international coordinator will nominate the applicant to the allocated host institution; the applicant will have to apply to the partner institution according to the rules stated in the information sent by the partner institution.

Waiting list

During the first two weeks of May the international coordinator will assess if any of the applicants placed on the waiting list can be offered a higher alternative. After this assessment, all applicants on the waiting list will be informed if any of their higher alternatives have become available and they will be offered the opportunity to be nominated to a higher ranked alternative or to keep the original nomination.

After this step the student will no longer be able to change to any other host institution. It is not permitted to reject a nomination awarded in the first round of applications and then re-apply in the second round. Any such application will not be assessed.

Second round of applications

Those who did not apply for exchange in the first round have the opportunity to apply for exchange in the second round of applications. In mid-May the list of places still available after the first round will be published online, and a second application round will be announced.

During the first week of the summer break, students who did not participate in the first application round can apply in the second round, and exchange study places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

Until accepted by our partner university it is possible to withdraw from the exchange program. Please consider though that the later you withdraw, the fewer chances you will give to a fellow student to be nominated instead of you if there is a tight application deadline to the partner institution. After being accepted you will only be able to withdraw due to issues related to health, family problems or financial problems.


Only one exchange per academic year is possible. 

You cannot postpone an exchange place to next academic year unless you have a valid reason for doing so. 

If you are awarded a scholarship, you have to follow the rules that apply to the scholarship (see Travel Grant Application Form for Exchange Students).

Within Erasmus+ you can receive the scholarship in total up to 12 months per academic level (i.e. Bachelor, or Master).

During your exchange period you must be a good representative for KI and market KI in the best possible way. See Code of Conduct for exchange studies.

You have to hand in your exchange report after your exchange period has ended. The deadline is September 1 every year, but you are strongly advised to write and hand in the report directly upon return from your exchange.

It is important that you understand that under no circumstances you have been accepted for exchange studies at the university abroad until you have had definitive notice from the partner university (Letter of Acceptance). Please do not make any travel arrangements until you have received such letter!


Master's students often have good opportunities to carry out an internship/traineeship abroad, provided that you are registered as a student during the time. These internships are often unpaid, and you will have to finance the travel and accommodation on your own (Karolinska Institutet CANNOT help you finance them). However, it can be a very good start for your future career.

You should discuss your plans with the responsible teacher of your study programme in advance, if it is possible to link the internship with your Master's thesis. Otherwise, you could perhaps apply for an internship during the summer period.  Please contact your international coordinator for further information regarding summer internships or internships after graduation.

Below you will find links to different organisations that accept internship students - Karolinska Institutet is not responsible for any of these placements. If you are accepted to a placement within the EU (Switzerland excluded, as well as Sweden as you are studying here), it is possible to apply for the Erasmus+ Traineeship.

The Carter Center

Child Family Health International


European Commission

Global Placements (an EU-funded site that collects interns and internships all over the world)

Health Action International (The Netherlands)

International Labor Organisation (Switzerland)

Médecins Sans Frontières (New York HQ)

Novo Nordisk

Pina Palmera, Mexico (volunteers wanted within the field of Public Health Sciences)





UN Women

The World Bank

The World Federation of Public Health Associations

World Food Programme


Erasmus+ Traineeship

As a student at Karolinska Institutet you can apply for the scholarship to do a traineeship period at a company, organisation or a research group at a university within the EU/EES countries. You apply for Erasmus+ Traineeship Practical Placement scholarship on a first come, first served basis - minimum 4-6 weeks before the planned internship will take place. You can also apply for a traineeship during the summer months or after graduation. Read more online. If you are interested in external funds you can read more about it here.

European Funding Guide

The European Funding Guide gives you tips on external scholarships to apply for as well as traineeship opportunities in Europe. The service requires a registration but claims to be free of charge (funded with the support of the EC).

HIMSS Scholarship

The HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) Foundation annually awards scholarships to HIMSS student members who have achieved academic excellence and have the potential to be future leaders in the healthcare information and management systems industry.

The Nordic Africa Institute

The Nordic Africa Institutet usually announces scholarships for Masters students (regardless of citizenship), intended for research and preparation of research projects in Africa. 


The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control offers a traineeship programme targeted towards recent university graduates (minimum a Bachelor degree) who are at the beginning of a new professional career. The purpose of the programme is to provide trainees with an understanding of the Centre and its role within the activities of the European Union, while also providing an opportunity to acquire practical knowledge and professional experience. Final date to apply is posted online.

External Funds

If you will be collecting data for your Master's thesis at a university that is not on the partner university list, you might consider applying for external funds. Please note that most of the information is in Swedish.

Carl Erik Levins travel grant. Information and application in Swedish. 

Erasmus+ Traineeship scholarship (only valid in certain countries)

Göteborgs universitet has compiled a vast list of possible scholarships to apply 

Karolinska Institutet Foundation Scholarships 

Länsstyrelserna (The County Administrative Board) has a good database to search through (in Swedish)

Medicinska Föreningens samstiftelse för studieresor

The Nordic Africa Institute 

Through SEB you can find scholarships for travel (“resa”) and medical research (”medicinsk forskning”), in Swedish

A few scholarships can be found through Uppsala Universitet 

Best Travel Report 

Every student going abroad as officially nominated is requested to write a travel report. All students allowing us to publish their travel reports with their name and email address compete for the Best Travel Report of the Year award which includes a money prize. Here you can read about the latest winners.


Here you can read the international coordinator's presentation about exchange studies (application, stipend, insurance, freemovers)


International Coordinator

Giulia Grillo Mikrut

International coordinator
UF Central Administration

Programme director

Madelen Lek

Programme director
Unit for Bioentrepreneurship (UBE)
C7 Department of Learning, Informatics, Management and Ethics
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