Academic Year And Language of Instruction In Denmark

In schools, the academic year runs from August to June. While, in universities it runs from around September 1 to June 30, and is often separated into an autumn semester (with January set apart from exams) and a spring semester (with June set apart from exams). The language/medium of instruction is not limited to Danish alone.

Academic Year in Denmark

School Education:

Danish schools have school years that last from August of one year to June of the following year.

Higher Education:

In Danish universities, the academic year run from September 1 to June 30 and it is separated into the following two semesters:
  • Autumn semester (with January set apart from exams)
  • Spring semester (with June set apart from exams)
During the month of January, in the autumn semester, examinations are held. During the month of June in the spring semester, exams are held again. Since the year 2004, certain Danish universities and faculties divided the academic year into 4 quarters each of which consist of 8 weeks and an exam week. The quarters are separated from the next quarter by a one-week break.

List of Holidays in Denmark

  • January 1: New Year's/Day-Nytarsdag
  • Thursday before Easter Sunday:Maundy Thursday/Skrtorsdag
  • Friday before Easter Sunday: Good Friday/Langfredag     
  • March/April:Easter Sunday/Paskedag     
  • Day following Easter Sunday: Easter Monday/Paskedag     
  • 4th Friday after Easter: General Prayer Day     Store/Bededag     
  • 39 days after Easter: Ascension Day/Kristi Himmelfartsdag     
  • 7 weeks after Easter: Pentecost/Pinsedag     
  • 7 weeks 1 day after Easter:Whit Monday     
  • 25 December: First Day of Christmas/Juledag
  • 26 December/Second Day of Christmas
 Class/Semester Duration: September to June
 Long Vacation July 1 to August 31
 Fall Semester early August to early January (students may finish exams by late December)
 Spring Semester early January to late June

Languages of Instruction in Denmark

The two languages used for instruction in Denmark are English and Danish. Many non-Danish applicants can apply for programmes taught in English. This requires certain amount of proficiency in English. Those who want to apply for a programme taught in Danish, certain requirements for skills in Danish must be met.

For admission in programmes taught in Danish, students must attain satisfactory levels of proficiency in Danish. This can be attained when students pass the “Danish as a Foreign Language”/‘Studieproven i dansk som andetsprog’ or “Danish Test 2”/‘Danskprove 2’. Certain programmes require that you pass the “Danish Test 3” or ‘Danskprove 3’. 

Those who do not have proven Danish language skills, must take lessons in this language for a period of up to 4 years to learn the required level of Danish. More about this can be learnt at International students can take Danish lessons for free. They can first enroll in the English-taught undergraduate programme and then continue with the education in Danish at the graduate level once proficiency as been acquired to the required level in this language.

Citizen from other Nordic countries who know Danish, Norwegian or Swedish as part of their Upper Secondary Education are generally not required to demonstrate their proficiency in Danish. Those who wish to apply for the programme taught in Danish have to take the Danish Entrance: ‘Sog videregaende uddannelse’ at

Those who want to apply for English medium programmes need to go in for a separate entrance namely “Apply for Higher Education in English” at

General guidance on choice of education programme and application procedure at “Studievalg” and “eVejledning” provide an overview as well as ideas for making educational decisions. The former provides personal guidance through chat, text messages, email and telephone during the day and evening as well as weekends. Studievalg comprises 7 regional centres for personal guidance which also assist students via email or telephone. In case either of the 2 are not able to guide students, they direct them to specific institutions.

Academic year in Denmark is well organised. Language of instruction is not limited to Danish. English medium courses are also offered. This makes Denmark a very popular choice for international students.
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