Exchange report - incoming students
Home university: Kobenhavns universitet
Study programme: Medicine
Exchange programme: Erasmus
Semester: Spring semester 2011/2012
Name: Johanna Bjurström
Email address:

Arrival and registration

Unfortunatly I was could not attend the introduction day, as my exams in Copenhagen were not yet completed. However the course secretary of the psychiatry course of St Görans hospital gave me all the information necessary for my first course, and I arranged a meeting with the international coordinator and was well informed and received all the documents I needed to fill in. 
Regnperiod och blöta gator i Wandegeya


I arranged my housing private. I was fortunate and borrowed my parents apartment in Stockholm so unfortunately I cannot come with any advice. 
Utanför Akamwesi hostel

Leisure time and social activities

Due to have grown up in Stockholm I was not very active socially through the schools activities, apart from making new friends in my class. However I felt very welcomed by global friends, and I believe that if I would have wished to participate I would have felt well-informed on how to do so. 
Gorillatrekking i Bwindi


I chose to go on an exchange to KI for several reasons. Karolinska was not the most exotic option for me, as I am born and raised in Stockholm. But as I have lived in Copenhagen and studied there for five years, I was curious as to what medical school in my hometown was like. And I saw it as an excellent oppurtunity to see more of my family and old friends. 
   But apart from wanting to spend time in my hometown, Karolinska attracted my attention due to its good reputation. Not only in general as a medical school, but also more specifically by my friends at my home university who had tried the exact same exchange I applied for previous years. They were impressed by how well-organized the curricula was and how well the school takes care of its students. 

I appreciated the thoughtful introduction package that was sent to me, and I also got in touch with several af the employees at KI, not only the international coordinator, but also the different course managers and secretaries. I felt that they all replied quickly and tried their outmost to be helpful. For example by accepting that I would be one week late for the start of the semester and helping me arrange my exchange so that I would miss as little as possible. 

I needed to get MRSA tested prior to my departure, apart from that the admin work was simple and uncomplicated as my school had made this exact arrangement with KI before.  
Så här glad och förväntansfulla var vi när vårt äventyr startade! =)

Courses during the exchange period

D9XX01 : Clinical Medicine- Neuro, Senses and Psyche
Psychiatry St Göran: Good teachers, good seminars and lectures. The clinical placements on the wards were ok, but many days less eventful. Appreciated Länsakuten and Karsudden. Beroende: Very grateful for this course, it is a very important topic that I don't believe is covered as well at my home university. ENT: Very intense with many mandatory elements. But good seminars and excellent student-patient teachings. Should have been a day or two longer so that the surgical part was covered. Ophtalmology: Well organized, perhaps not as good quality of the seminars but many helpful tool for e-learning and good clinical education. Very nice environment. Neurology: Good first days of lectures, good idea to pack them all together before clinicals work. Very good teachers, seminars, student-patient teachings. The practical exam seemed a bit unneccesary. Why call it an exam if it is impossivle to fail. We were twelve students with one patient so we were only asked to show one small part of the neurological examination and it didn't matter it was performed correct or not.
På high risk delivery (några timmar gammal baby)


My general impressions were excellent. I enjoyed experiencing a swedish medical school and I appreciated being so well taken care of. 

From the top of my head, I can't think of anything I would have wished was different. Perhaps making sure that excahngestudents can access the computer systems and changing rooms as the swedish students. 

Thank you for a good semester in Stockholm!
Det är bra att ha varandra!

Language and Culture

I spoke fluent swedish before my exchange.
Alla barn var väldigt nyfikna på oss muzungus! =)

Studies in general

The semester I attended at KI consisted of psychiatry, neurology, ENT and ophtalmology. I liked the composition of the semester and I thought the schedule in general was well-organized and planned. The curricula and what was expected of the students was always very clear. The teachers were all good, and always had the perspective of what we needed to know for our exams/early careers in mind. My impression was that the students have a big influence on the studies and that their evaluations are taken to mind by the school.

I think the biggest difference between my school in Copenhagen and KI was how well-organized KI is and how much of the education was mandatory. Almost everything during the semester was mandatory, in copenhagen it is not. Part of me thought that it was a bit too much, I believe that grown medical students should be able to take responsibility for their own education and attend what they personally think that they benefit from. Meaning that if you would rather study a topic on my own instead of attending seminars I think that should be up to me. 
On the other hand, with the clinical education and the seminars being mandatory the teachers were always sure that the students would show up. And therefore I think they tried harder to make the lessons worthwhile and the clinical education kept a very high standard. The way that the wards booked patients especially for the students and how you received immediate feedback impressed me and was very valuable. 

Overall, I was very happy with the studies at KI. The school makes it easy for its students to sort out the essentials, and at the same time simplify the practicalities around the studies so that there is time and energy for learning beyond the curriculum covering the learning goals for the exams.   
På kirurgavdelningen tillsammans med head nurse