Programme contacts

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2017/18 academic year and are for the first year of the programme only.

UK & EU fee
£TBC (2017/18 - see below)
Overseas fee
£17,710 (2017/18)

Various funding options are available, including student loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students whose household income falls below a certain level may also be eligible for a non-repayable bursary or for certain scholarships. Please see the Fees and funding pages for more details.

Departmental scholarships

The Scholarships and Funding website lists scholarships and funding schemes available to UCL students. These may be open to all students, or restricted to specific nationalities, regions or academic department.

UCL’s four-year Icelandic BA is the only degree programme of its kind outside Iceland. The programme aims to develop your interest in, and knowledge and understanding of Iceland and the Nordic world, in areas including other Scandinavian languages, literature, culture and history. Your third year is spent abroad at the University of Iceland.

Degree benefits

  • Spend a year abroad at the University of Iceland in Reykjavik.
  • A broad range of module options, including Viking Studies, Old Norse, modern Scandinavian languages, literary studies, film studies, history, and cultural studies, together with the opportunity to acquire proficiency in a second Scandinavian language.
  • The Department of Scandinavian Studies at UCL is unique in the UK in having specialists across the areas of language, politics, history, medieval studies, literature and film.
  • Access to the largest and oldest Scandinavian library in the country, and the state-of-the-art facilities within the UCL Language Space.
Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: School of European Languages, Culture and Society.

  • 74% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.

Students must take a total of 4 course units (cu) each year.

Year One

Compulsory Modules (3.0cu)

  • SCAN1004 Basic Modern Icelandic (1.0cu)
  • SCAN1001 Basic Danish/ SCAN1002 Basic Swedish/ SCAN1003 Basic Norwegian (1.0cu)
  • SCAN1303A or B Histories and Cultures of the Nordic Region (term 1 or 2) (0.5cu)
  • SCAN1401 Introduction to Old Norse (0.5cu)

Optional Modules (0.5cu)

  • ELCS1*** first-year level module (0.5cu)

Optional modules (0.5cu)

  • SCAN1102 Introduction to Linguistics and the Scandinavian Languages (0.5cu)
  • SCAN1201 Nordic Storytelling (0.5cu)
  • SCAN1303A Histories and Cultures of the Nordic Region (term 1 only) (0.5cu)*
  • SCAN1303B Histories and Cultures of the Nordic Region (term 2 only) (0.5cu)*
  • SCAN1402 Vikings and Material Culture (0.5cu)

*if not taken as part of one of the 3.0cu of compulsory modules

Year Two

Compulsory Modules (2.5cu)

  • SCAN2001 Intermediate Danish/SCAN2002 Intermediate Swedish/SCAN2003 Intermediate Norwegian (1.0cu)
  • SCAN2004 Intermediate Modern Icelandic (1.0cu)
  • SCAN2402 Intermediate Old Norse (0.5cu)

Optional Modules (0.5cu)

  • ELCS6*** Any intermediate-level ELCS module (0.5cu)

Optional Modules (1.0cu)

  • SCAN2* optional modules
  • SCAN7* optional modules
  • SEEF* optional modules (subject to availability)

Year Three (Year Abroad)

Final Year (BA Icelandic)

Compulsory Modules (2.0cu)

  • SCAN4004 Degree-level Modern Icelandic (1.0cu)
  • SCAN4202 Crime and Small Communities in Nordic Literature (0.5cu)
  • SCAN4401 Advanced Old Norse (0.5cu)

Optional Modules (2.0cu)

  • ELCS4*** Any advanced-level ELCS module (0.5cu)
  • SCAN4* optional modules
  • SCAN7* optional modules

Final Year (BA Icelandic with Danish or Norwegian or Swedish)

Compulsory Modules (2.5cu)

  • SCAN4001 Advanced Danish/SCAN4002 Advanced Swedish/SCAN4003 Advanced Norwegian (0.5cu)
  • SCAN4004 Degree-level Modern Icelandic (1.0cu)
  • SCAN4202 Crime and Small Communities in Nordic Literature (0.5cu)
  • SCAN4401 Advanced Old Norse (0.5cu)

Optional Modules (1.5cu)

  • ELCS4*** Any advanced-level ELCS module (0.5cu)
  • SCAN4* optional modules
  • SCAN7* optional modules

Entry requirements

A Levels
Foreign language preferred.
English Language at grade B, plus Mathematics at grade C. For UK-based students, a grade C or equivalent in a foreign language (other than Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew or Latin) is required. UCL provides opportunities to meet the foreign language requirement following enrolment, further details at:
IB Diploma
A score of 16 points in three higher level subjects, preferably including a foreign language, with no score lower than 5.
UK applicants qualifications

For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:

Equivalent qualification

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme

Pass in Access to HE Diploma, with a minimum of 28 credits awarded with Merit in the Level 3 units.

D3,M1,M1 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects. Foreign Language preferred.

ABB at Advanced Highers (or AB at Advanced Higher and BBB at Higher). Foreign Language preferred.

Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A-Levels at grades ABB. Foreign Language preferred.

International applications

In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.

Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates

The Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are intensive one-year foundation courses for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.

Typical UPC students will be high achievers in a 12-year school system which does not meet the standard required for direct entry to UCL.

For more information see:

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.

The English language level for this programme is: Advanced

A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.


Upon graduation you will be fluent in Modern Icelandic, and also have knowledge of other medieval and modern Scandinavian languages. Historical and literary studies will develop cultural awareness, and you will be trained in organising, presenting and interpreting complex information, in effective written and oral communication, and in independent and group work.

Many of our graduates find they are able to use their Nordic languages in a variety of contexts, such as working for a Scandinavian company. Recent graduates have also entered translating, publishing and teaching.


First career destinations of recent graduates (2012-2014) of this programme, and of related Scandinavian Studies programmes, include:

  • Computer Repair Specialist, Apple
  • Full-time student, MA in Theoretical And Applied Linguistics at the University of Cambridge
  • Full-time student, MPhil in Anglo Saxon, Norse and Celtic at the University of Cambridge

*Data taken from the 'Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education' survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2012-2014 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers and UCL Innovation and Enterprise can help you find employment or learn about entrepreneurship.

Application and next steps

Your application

Your personal statement should reflect your interests, hopes and goals, especially as related to your proposed degree. Some knowledge/experience of Icelandic culture, and an explanation of how this has motivated you to learn more, is expected. We do not necessarily require a language at A level or equivalent, but expect you to demonstrate an enthusiasm and aptitude for language learning.

How to apply

Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.

Application deadline: 15 January 2017


If your application demonstrates that your academic ability and motivation make you well suited to our degree and you receive an offer, then we shall invite you to a post-offer Open Day, where you can experience the sort of teaching which we offer and life in SELCS.

Our admissions process aims to assess your linguistic abilities and attainment as well as cultural awareness, motivation for study and intellectual potential. We may interview candidates by telephone in order to establish a level of language ability.

For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students

How to apply button