The University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS) is the world’s northernmost institution of higher education, located in Longyearbyen at 78º N. UNIS offers high quality research based courses at bachelor, master, and PhD level in Arctic Biology, Arctic Geology, Arctic Geophysics and Arctic Technology.
Semester studies (30 ECTS) are available at bachelor level in all four disciplines, and at master and PhD level in Arctic Geophysics. At Master and PhD level, UNIS offers 3-15 ECTS courses lasting from a few weeks to a full semester.
UNIS’ geographical location provides unique advantages, enabling students and faculty to use the high arctic nature as a laboratory for observations and data collection. Most courses include field work and/or excursions, and field activities are undertaken year-round.
Nearly 500 students from all over the world attend UNIS courses yearly. Evaluations show that students rate their UNIS experience as “awesome”. All courses are conducted in English.
UNIS is unlike other institutions found in UArctic's network. We do not offer any degrees within the bachelor, master or PhD level. Instead, our purpose is to provide research and field based courses where students are actively involved, gaining knowledge, experiences, and competences from working in Arctic environments – courses which increase awareness and interest in Arctic science.
We take students from around the world into the field, earning ECTS points that can then be used towards their degree at their home university. As such, the "programmes" that we offer are in fact just subject areas, in which students can search for relevant courses related to the degree(s) that they are working towards back home. Please be aware that relevant courses can be found in not only the most obvious subject area. We recommend all our students to get their UNIS courses approved by their home institution in advance.
Facts and figures
|Number of Academic Staff||65|
|Number of Students||500|
Research-based education of the next generation of Arctic experts
|Fields of Study Offered||Life science (others)
Physical science (broad programmes)
Engineering and engineering trades (broad programmes)
Environmental protection (broad programmes)
Environmental protection technology
- Bachelor Master PhD Arctic Geology
- Bachelor Master PhD Arctic Technology
- Bachelor Master PhD Arctic Biology
- Bachelor Master PhD Arctic Geophysics
- Bachelor International Bachelor Permafrost Summer Field School
- PhD Seminars in Arctic Ecology and Evolution (PhD)
- PhD Arctic Mycology (PhD)
- PhD Arctic Winter Ecology (PhD)
- PhD Biotelemetric Methods (PhD)
- PhD Arctic Marine Zooplankton (PhD)
- Master Seminars in Arctic Ecology and Evolution
- Master Arctic Mycology
- Master Biotelemetric Methods
- Master Arctic Marine Zooplankton