Scandinavian Languages and Literatures

University of California, Berkeley

About the Program

The graduate program in Scandinavian is designed for future scholars and teachers in the fields of Scandinavian language, literature, and cultural history. The department's strengths lie in the areas of the modern literatures and film (Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish), in Old Norse and medieval studies, and in intellectual and cultural history. The department is willing to consider applications from students with special interests in areas such as Scandinavian film, art, and history, as long as literary studies remains a major point of comparison. Prospective applicants interested in such areas may consult the graduate adviser or other faculty members and should detail their interests when applying for admission in their statement of purpose.

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Admission to the University

Applying for Graduate Admission

Thank you for considering UC Berkeley for graduate study! UC Berkeley offers more than 120 graduate programs representing the breadth and depth of interdisciplinary scholarship. The Graduate Division hosts a complete list of graduate academic programs, departments, degrees offered, and application deadlines can be found on the Graduate Division website.

Prospective students must submit an online application to be considered for admission, in addition to any supplemental materials specific to the program for which they are applying. The online application and steps to take to apply can be found on the Graduate Division website.

Admission Requirements

The minimum graduate admission requirements are:

  1. A bachelor’s degree or recognized equivalent from an accredited institution;

  2. A satisfactory scholastic average, usually a minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.0 (B) on a 4.0 scale; and

  3. Enough undergraduate training to do graduate work in your chosen field.

For a list of requirements to complete your graduate application, please see the Graduate Division’s Admissions Requirements page. It is also important to check with the program or department of interest, as they may have additional requirements specific to their program of study and degree. Department contact information can be found here.

Where to apply?

Visit the Berkeley Graduate Division application page.

Admission to the Program

The department offers an integrated MA/PhD program, in which the MA constitutes the first phase in a trajectory leading to the PhD. Applications are not accepted for the MA degree only. We accept applications from students holding a bachelor’s degree from Berkeley or elsewhere, and from those who hold a master’s degree. The best preparation for those with a limited background in Scandinavian Studies is acquisition of at least one Scandinavian modern language, familiarity with classic Scandinavian literature, and literature theory.

Doctoral Degree Requirements

Normative Time Requirements

Total Normative Time

Total normative time is six years.


Courses Required
SCANDIN 201A/201BOld Norse4
SCANDIN 215Literary and Cultural Theory4
SCANDIN Courses per specialized study list for major and minor concentrations
SCANDIN 300AMethods of Teaching Scandinavian Languages3
SCANDIN 300BTeaching Practicum1
SCANDIN 301Scandinavian Teaching Methods3
Select one of the following:2
Introduction to Theories and Practices of Teaching College Composition [2]
Methods of Teaching Literature and English Composition-Comparative Literature [2]
Teaching Rhetoric [2]
Other suitable preparation for Reading & Composition courses


Literature and Culture:




DANISH 1ABeginning Danish4
DANISH 1BBeginning Danish4
SCANDIN 100AIntermediate Nordic Languages (section 103, intermediate Danish)4
SCANDIN 100BIntermediate Nordic Languages (section 103, advanced Danish)4


FINNISH 1ABeginning Finnish4
FINNISH 1BBeginning Finnish4
FINNISH 102AIntermediate Finnish4
FINNISH 102BIntermediate Finnish4


ICELAND 1ABeginning Icelandic I4
ICELAND 1BBeginning Icelandic II4

Old Norse

SCANDIN 201AOld Norse4
SCANDIN 201BNorse Literature4


NORWEGN 1ABeginning Norwegian4
NORWEGN 1BBeginning Norwegian4
SCANDIN 100AIntermediate Nordic Languages (section 102, intermediate)4
SCANDIN 100BIntermediate Nordic Languages (section 102, advanced)4


SWEDISH 1ABeginning Swedish4
SWEDISH 1BBeginning Swedish4
SCANDIN 100AIntermediate Nordic Languages (section 101, intermediate)4
SCANDIN 100BIntermediate Nordic Languages (section 101, advanced)4

Contact Information

Department of Scandinavian

6303 Dwinelle Hall

Phone: 510-642-2979

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Department Chair

Kate Heslop

6411 Dwinelle Hall

Graduate Student Services Advisor

Seth Arnopole

6313 Dwinelle Hall

Head Graduate Advisor

Timothy Tangherlini

6407 Dwinelle

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