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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Other dimensions of internationalisation in early childhood and school education


13.Mobility and internationalisation

13.4Other dimensions of internationalisation in early childhood and school education

Last update: 27 November 2023

European, Global and Intercultural Dimension in Curriculum Development

Single Structure Education

The aims and tasks to be pursued by Swedish schools, including the ones related to internationalisation, are listed in the national curricula and syllabi.

The Curriculum for the compulsory school, preschool class and the leisure-time centre 2022 (Läroplan för det obligatoriska skolväsendet, förskoleklassen och fritidshemmet, Lgr22) as well as the Curriculum for the preschool 2018 (Läroplan för förskolan) has an introductory section on fundamental values and tasks, prescribing an 'international perspective in education' aiming to prepare pupils for life in a culturally diverse society with increasing cross-border contacts.

The school should work to enable pupils to communicate in foreign languages. Pupils should be capable of communicating in Swedish and English, both in the spoken and written language, and also be given opportunities to communicate in some other foreign language in a functional way,

According to the curriculum the school head is responsible for developing the school's international links, and ensuring that school staff is aware of the international agreements that Sweden has undertaken to observe in education. 

According to the curriculum the school should promote understanding of other people and the ability to empathise. Concern for the well-being and development of the individual should permeate all school activity. No one should be subjected to discrimination on the grounds of gender, ethnic affiliation, religion or other belief system, transgender identity or its expression, sexual orientation, age or functional impairment or other degrading treatment. All such tendencies should be actively combated. Xenophobia and intolerance must be confronted with knowledge, open discussion and active measures. The internationalisation of Swedish society and increasing cross-border mobility place high demands on the ability of people to live with and appreciate the values inherent in cultural diversity. Awareness of one’s own cultural origins and sharing in a common cultural heritage provides a secure identity which it is important to develop, together with the ability to understand and empathise with the values and conditions of others. The school is a social and cultural meeting place with both the opportunity and the responsibility to strengthen this ability among all who work there.

Upper Secondary Education

The curriculum for the upper secondary school (Läroplan för gymnasieskola 2011) states that schools should help pupils develop an identity that can be related to and encompass Swedish as well as Nordic, European and ultimately global values. International links, education exchanges with other countries and working experience in other countries should be supported. The education should create international solidarity and prepare pupils for a society that will have close cross-cultural and cross-border contacts.

According to the curriculum pupils must gain a sound understanding of the central elements of Swedish, Nordic and Western cultural heritage, knowledge of international cooperation and global interdependence and ability to asses events from Swedish, Nordic, European and global perspectives.

The school head is responsible for ensuring that the school's international contacts are developed and that school staff is familiar with the international agreements that Sweden has undertaken to observe in education.

Partnerships and Networks

The European as well as many national programmes for mobility in education are administered by the Swedish Council for Higher Education (Universitets- och högskolerådet). This is where you will find the following: 

  • Support and information regarding international cooperation and academic exchange across the entire educational spectrum.
  • Nordic and European exchange services for state officials and training in preparation for the EU's civil service exams. 
  • Admissions regulations and admission processes for institutions of higher education. 
  • Administration of the Swedish Scholastic Aptitude Test and information regarding studies at the higher education level.
  • Evaluation of foreign academic qualifications.

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