A quaint norwegian schoolhouse surrounded by scenic fjords and mountains

How To Become An International School Teacher in Norway?

If you’re considering a career in teaching and are looking for an exciting international opportunity, becoming an international school teacher in Norway could be just the adventure you’re seeking. Norway offers a high quality and innovative education system, and there is a demand for qualified, experienced teachers from around the world. In this article, we will explore everything you need to know about becoming an international school teacher in Norway and the steps you need to take to make your dream a reality.

iPGCE or iQTS – Pathways and Benefits in Norway

Before embarking on your journey to become an international school teacher in Norway, it’s important to understand the different pathways available to you. Two popular options are the international Postgraduate Certificate in Education (iPGCE) and the international Qualified Teacher Status (iQTS). The iPGCE is a recognised qualification that allows you to teach in international schools worldwide. On the other hand, the iQTS is specific to teaching in England, but it can be advantageous for obtaining teaching positions in Norway as well.

Both pathways have their own unique benefits. The iPGCE provides you with a broader understanding of teaching in an international context, while the iQTS allows you to gain solid teaching experience and knowledge that can be transferred to the Norwegian education system.

Whichever pathway you choose, it’s essential to research the specific requirements and benefits of each option to determine which one aligns best with your career goals.

Teaching in Norway offers a unique experience due to the country’s progressive education system. Norwegian schools focus on student-centric learning, encouraging independence and critical thinking among students. As an international school teacher in Norway, you will have the opportunity to witness this approach firsthand and incorporate it into your teaching practice.

Furthermore, Norway’s emphasis on work-life balance and teacher well-being makes it an attractive destination for educators. With shorter working hours and generous holiday allowances, teachers in Norway have the time and resources to focus on professional development and personal interests outside of the classroom. This supportive environment can contribute to job satisfaction and overall well-being for teachers pursuing a career in the Norwegian education system.

Why become a teacher in Norway?

Now that you have an idea of the pathways available to you, it’s time to delve into why becoming a teacher in Norway is such an appealing prospect. Norway consistently ranks highly in education rankings, and their focus on student-centred learning and inclusive classrooms creates an enriching teaching environment.

Furthermore, teaching in Norway offers a competitive salary and excellent benefits. Teachers in Norway enjoy a high standard of living, with healthcare, childcare, and generous vacation time provided. They also benefit from professional development opportunities and a supportive work culture.

Beyond the professional advantages, living in Norway affords a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in Norwegian culture and experience the breathtaking natural beauty of this Scandinavian country.

One of the unique aspects of teaching in Norway is the emphasis on work-life balance. Norwegian schools typically have shorter school days and longer holidays compared to many other countries, allowing teachers to have more time for personal pursuits and relaxation. This balance contributes to the overall well-being of teachers and enhances job satisfaction.

Additionally, Norway’s education system places a strong emphasis on innovation and creativity in teaching methods. Teachers are encouraged to think outside the box and implement new approaches to engage students effectively. This freedom to experiment and innovate keeps the profession dynamic and exciting, fostering a culture of continuous improvement.

What qualifications do I need to teach in Norway?

To teach in Norway, you will need a recognized teaching qualification from your home country. Additionally, you may be required to obtain authorization from the Norwegian Education Directorate. The exact requirements may vary depending on the school and location, so it’s important to research and consult with relevant authorities to ensure you meet the necessary criteria.

Teaching in Norway offers a unique opportunity to experience the country’s progressive education system, which places a strong emphasis on student welfare and individual development. Norwegian schools are known for their inclusive approach, where students of all abilities are supported to reach their full potential.

Furthermore, teaching in Norway allows educators to immerse themselves in the country’s rich cultural heritage and stunning natural landscapes. From the vibrant city life in Oslo to the picturesque fjords in the west, Norway offers a diverse range of experiences for teachers looking to broaden their horizons.

What’s the hiring process for becoming an international teacher in Norway?

The hiring process for international teachers in Norway typically involves submitting an application, attending an interview (which may be conducted via video call), and providing references. It’s crucial to highlight your international experience, adaptability, and your ability to work within an intercultural environment. Demonstrating your commitment to professional growth and ongoing learning will also strengthen your application.

Once hired, the school may assist you with the necessary paperwork for obtaining a work visa or residency permit. It’s important to familiarize yourself with the immigration requirements well in advance to ensure a smooth transition to your new teaching position in Norway.

Moreover, when applying for a teaching position in Norway, it can be beneficial to showcase your proficiency in the Norwegian language. While many international schools in Norway offer classes in English, having a basic understanding of Norwegian can enhance your communication with students, parents, and colleagues, and demonstrate your dedication to integrating into the local community.

Additionally, familiarising yourself with the Norwegian education system and its emphasis on student-centred learning approaches, inclusivity, and digital literacy can give you a competitive edge during the interview process. Highlighting how your teaching philosophy aligns with these principles can showcase your suitability for the role and your potential contribution to the school’s educational ethos.

Living as an international teacher in Norway

Living as an international teacher in Norway offers a unique cultural experience. Norwegians value a healthy work-life balance, and you’ll have ample time to explore the stunning landscapes, engage in outdoor activities, and immerse yourself in the local community.

It’s essential to familiarize yourself with Norwegian customs and social norms to build positive relationships with your colleagues and students. Norwegians appreciate punctuality, honesty, and respect, so adopting these cultural practices will contribute to a harmonious work environment.

Norway is renowned for its high quality of education and commitment to lifelong learning. As an international teacher, you’ll have the opportunity to witness firsthand the innovative teaching methods and inclusive educational practices that have made Norwegian schools stand out on a global scale. Embracing this progressive approach to education can enrich your own teaching style and inspire creativity in the classroom.

Furthermore, living in Norway means being surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty, from majestic fjords to snow-capped mountains. Take advantage of your weekends and holidays to explore the great outdoors, whether it’s hiking in the summer or skiing in the winter. By immersing yourself in Norway’s stunning landscapes, you’ll not only stay active and healthy but also gain a deeper appreciation for the country’s unique environment and conservation efforts.

Cultural Insights for International Teachers in Norway

As an international teacher in Norway, understanding and respecting the local culture will greatly enhance your experience. Here are some cultural insights to keep in mind:

Norway, known for its stunning natural landscapes and rich history, offers a unique cultural experience for international teachers. The country’s commitment to sustainability and environmental conservation is deeply ingrained in its societal values, making it an ideal place for those passionate about eco-friendly living.

  • Norwegians value equality and inclusiveness, so strive to create an inclusive classroom environment where each student feels respected and valued.
  • Norway has a relatively flat hierarchy, so maintain a collaborative approach with your colleagues and superiors.
  • Embrace the Norwegian concept of “dugnad,” which refers to the collective effort of community members in achieving a common goal. Participating in school or community activities will help you integrate and form connections with locals.

Furthermore, Norway’s rich cultural heritage, including its Viking past and traditional Sami culture, provides a wealth of opportunities for learning and exploration. By immersing yourself in the local customs and traditions, you can gain a deeper appreciation for the country’s history and its people.

Cost of Living in Norway

Living in Norway can be expensive, especially in cities like Oslo. It’s essential to budget and plan accordingly to make the most of your salary. However, the generous benefits and high standard of living compensate for the higher expenses. Furthermore, the magnificent natural landscapes and outdoor activities are often free or low-cost, allowing you to enjoy the beauty of Norway without breaking the bank.

Popular International Schools in Norway

Here are some popular international schools in Norway:

  • Oslo International School – Located in the capital city, this school offers a comprehensive international education from pre-school to high school.
  • International School of Stavanger – Situated in Stavanger, this school provides an international curriculum for students aged 3 to 18 years.
  • Trondheim International School – Located in Trondheim, this school is renowned for its diverse and inclusive learning environment.

These are just a few examples, and there are several other international schools in Norway that provide excellent education options for both local and international students.

Challenges for International Teachers and How to Overcome Them in Norway

Teaching in a foreign country can come with its own set of challenges, but by embracing these challenges, you can grow both personally and professionally. Here are some common challenges faced by international teachers in Norway and strategies to overcome them:

  • Language Barrier: While many Norwegians are fluent in English, learning some basic Norwegian phrases will help you navigate daily life and establish rapport with locals.
  • Adapting to a Different Education System: Familiarize yourself with the Norwegian curriculum and teaching methods to ensure a smooth transition. Networking with other international teachers and seeking support from your school can also help you navigate the system effectively.
  • Integration and Loneliness: Join local clubs or organizations that align with your interests to meet new people and form connections. Taking part in community activities will help you integrate into Norwegian society.
  • Cultural Adjustment: Embrace the Norwegian way of life, including their love for nature and outdoor activities. Engaging in outdoor pursuits is a fantastic way to bond with colleagues and students.


Becoming an international school teacher in Norway presents an incredible opportunity to shape young minds in a progressive educational setting and experience the unique culture of this Scandinavian country. By following the pathways, understanding the qualifications, and embracing the challenges along the way, you can make your dream of teaching in Norway a reality. So, start your journey today and embark on a rewarding career that will leave a lasting impact on both you and your students.

Take the Next Step in Your International Teaching Career with IPGCE

Are you ready to overcome the barriers to becoming an international school teacher in Norway and enhance your career prospects? IPGCE is here to support your journey. With our International Postgraduate Certificate in Education, you can deepen your professional development, increase your chances of interview callbacks by 50%, and connect with a global network of educators. Embrace the opportunity for career progression with a program that has helped others achieve a 45% boost in promotion rates and a 30% salary increase. Don’t let isolation or a lack of understanding of global education systems hold you back. Join the UK’s #1 Teacher Training Course and become part of a community that is 65% more adaptable in international educational settings. Join the IPGCE program today and take a significant step towards a fulfilling international teaching career in Norway.

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