Appraisal of applications for degree-awarding powers

The Swedish Higher Education Authority (UKÄ) decides which higher education institutions are to be entitled to award a degree.

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The appraisals of degree-awarding power applications undertaken by UKÄ examine whether the education provider meets the necessary prerequisites for the students to be able to achieve the qualitative targets for the degree.

Process for appraising degree-awarding power applications

Process for appraising degree-awarding power applications

Assessment material

Reviews are based on the HEI’s application and interviews with programme representatives. All assessment material for the review is to be weighed together.

1. HEI applications. Applications for degree-awarding powers are submitted to UKÄ. Independent higher education providers, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the Swedish Defence University submit their applications to the Government, which then normally sends the application to UKÄ for review and report.

2. Interviews. The written application is supplemented with interviews with programme representatives. Interviews with students are conducted if the programme is already being offered at a closely-related degree level or within a field or subject that can be considered closely related to the degree being applied for.

Reviews, reports and decisions

The assessment panel’s task is to report whether the programme fulfils the assessment criteria for the reviewed aspect areas and perspectives. It will do this based on the application, interviews and any supplemental information. In the case of a negative report, the assessment panel’s determinations and reasoning must clearly present what is judged to be inadequate. In its report, the panel recommends whether to grant or deny the application. UKÄ’s position is based on this report and recommendation for a decision, and on UKÄ’s deliberations. Before UKÄ’s final decision, the report will be sent to the HEI for review.

All aspect areas and perspectives must be judged as satisfactory for the application to be granted. In cases of a smaller but well-defined issue, where measures to remedy the issue are deemed within reach, UKÄ can extend the review period. The deadline to submit additional information is six months.

UKÄ makes decisions on degree-awarding authorisation for state HEIs, except for the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the Swedish Defence University. For independent higher education providers, the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and the Swedish Defence University, the assessment panel and UKÄ’s determination and recommendation to approve or not approve the application will be submitted to the Government.


UKÄ considers it important to follow-up its reviews, including reviews of degree-awarding applications. Forms of follow-up for reviews of degree-awarding applications are currently being developed.