Exchange report - incoming students
Manhattan från en roof top bredvid Empire State Building (för nära och hög för att få med på fotot).
Home university: University of Otago
Study programme: Medicine
Exchange programme: INK
Semester: Spring semester 2014/2015

Arrival and registration

Unfortunately due to my arrival date and short time at KI, I missed the international student introduction day. However the information package and talking to previous students who had been to KI was sufficient to help me understand and navigate the city and the hospital initially.


I didn't contact the student health centre during my time in KI.


Housing arrangements were fine once I got my Key and Pincode correct.


I applied for housing via the KI housing website and was placed in the Varberg area which was great as it was close to Huddinge hospital where I would be based. The housing itself was good. Nice and warm, bright (it was summer), showers hot and the place clean and tidy. Kitchen was clean and all the students there were friendly.


My impression of the housing was good. however....


Upon arrival to the facilities at 10.30pm at night after travelling half way across the globe, I found that my pin code to get access to my door key was not correct and the next morning when I was emailed the correct pincode, there was no key inside.... Not such a good start, but luckily I was let into the building by my fellow students and ended up sleeping on the common room couch. I was however compensated by KI housing for the issues and stress and the rest of my stay was plesent and had a great time.

Leisure time and social activities

I didnt participate in arranged/organized social programmes. However it is easy to make friends and create your own activities within the house mates that are on your floor in KI housing


I chose to come to Sweden as part of my medical elective programe from New Zealand as we continually compare our helath system to the Scandinavian system.  My decision to come to KI was due to the fact that KI is one of the leading Medical Institutes in Scandinavia and also because my home town university has an exchange programme with KI and was lucky enough to get it. Furthermore my interest in progressive and new medical advancements made coming to KI an easy decision. Furthermore, who can say 'no' to the beautiful european summer!


Predeparture information was sufficient and the KI website was helpful for me to understand the programme and what to expect.


I was required to have an MRSA test which I completed in my home country in order for me to have patient contact.

Courses during the exchange period

ELAXX6 : Surgery 1
My course was only clinical and included following doctors during ward rounds and assisting in theatre. The content was whatever you decided it to be, so if you were to be in a Whipple Procedure, then the topic for the day would be Pancreatic surgery. This format was really nice as you could go leatn more about whatever you waanted and whatever interested you. There was no formal exam. The course was definately helpful to add knowledge and experience to my medical course. Teaching and supervision was what you made of it. Some days there could be none, and some days lots. it all depends on whats happening that day and how involved you want to get. It was really good that all the surgeons and theatre staff were extremely welcoming and helpful. not once did I feel uncomfortable or unwelcome in the theatres. Sometimes during the course I thought it would have been good to be formally attached to a team so that you had someone responsible for you.


Generally I really enjoyed staying in Sweden, Stockholm and learnt a lot from my time at Gastro Centrum . The only thing I would have liked to have happen differently would be the initial housing issue and maybe have a little more formal teaching, especially in surgical techniques and theory.



Language and Culture

No, but I wish I had a little.


Studies in general

As an english only speaking student I found thing quite difficult at first. Getting use to the layout of the hospital, getting to know who is who, as always when you go to a new place is somewhat challenging.


Overall I thought the Swedish study environment was lovely and relaxed. During my stay I was free to join any team I wanted and to see whatever caught my interest. All the surgeons from GastroCentrum were absolutely lovely and welcoming. I never felt unwelcome in their theatres.


The only thing I missed was a little more direction and guidence. Being able to plan your day as you please is really great! But it also means that quite often you will miss some interesting things that happen on the team.


Back in NZ most of our undergraduate studies is aimed at GP level and focused more on the medical aspect instead of surgery, therefore there was a lot to learn in a short space of time. Unfortunately as my medical school only had maybe one week of hands on practical surgical teaching, it made assisting in surgeries somewhat interesting, especially when asked questions.


Overall, I think both schools are very similar in terms of student expectations and participation.

I learn't a lot about the health system in Sweden and some of the technical  aspects of some pretty major abdominal surgery which is awesome.


Improvements... I think maybe just a bit more guidence during the first week or so would have made it much easier for a foreign student and also to maybe have a crash course regarding surgical techniques etc.