Exchange report - incoming students
Norge: Oslo.
Home university: Makerere University
Study programme: Medicine
Exchange programme: INK
Semester: Autumn semester 2019/2020
Name: Maria Nakitende
Email address:

Arrival and registration

 Fortunately, I arrived at KI a day prior to the start of the intensive Swedish language course which would then be followed by introduction day events. In regards to the arrival arrangements, the international coordinator at KI was very helpful in securing means of transport for me from the airport to a temporary place of residence for that day since I arrived late in the evening, a time at which I could not access the key service of my booked accommodation. 

 The introduction day program, too, was well organized. The sessions were very informative, insightful and interesting that they got me well versed with my new study environment. It was after these that I attended my appointment for the MRSA screening at the student health Centre. The contact was very friendly and hospitable. She gave me a clear and elaborate description of the procedure she was going to perform i.e. MRSA screening and performed it in a very fast and careful manner.

 I greatly appreciate the hospitality, support and information provided by Global Friends on getting me well acquainted with my new study environment despite the fact that I never got to meet my assigned friend, reason being, I got to know her mid-way during my exchange program and due to our equally busy schedules at that time, all plans we made to meet were in vain. 


 With the help of the KI international coordinator, I managed to book Jagargatan as my place of residence through KI Housing prior to my arrival in Stockholm. The cost per month, in my point of view, was fair and affordable.


 Upon my arrival at Jagargatan, the standard of the place exceeded my expectations: I was assigned to a room on the sixth floor which was clean, spacious and well organized with a comfortable bed and beautiful view, the general cleanliness of the whole floor including the shared common rooms was great, the social life with the fellow exchange students was more than satisfying and it was well situated for my clinical rotations in regards to the location and distance to and from the hospitals that I was attached to. It was either a 5 to 10 minutes’ walk or a 20 to 30 minutes’ drive by bus or metro depending on which hospital I was going to. 

 Furthermore, the KI Housing staff were always available to address any concerns that arose.

Leisure time and social activities

Having got my accommodation in a place with mostly exchange students and continuously received updates from MF on various social activities organized for KI students, social life in Sweden was more than fun for me.

 It was filled with interactions with various people from different cultures, learning and appreciating so many interesting things about their cultures and making of new friends. 

 What I loved most about the Swedish culture was FIKA time.


 Going on exchange studies is a program organized for fourth year medical students in my home university, however it is not mandatory. In my case, I took up this opportunity because I wanted to have an experience of medical practice and education in a different society and appreciate an approach to learning that is different from the one I was used to.Furthermore, I wanted to broaden my knowledge and skill base, appreciate other cultures including their values and expand my expand my network of friends.

 At first KI took longer than other international universities to open its admissions for exchange programs for students in my home university. However, when it did, I chose to apply for it because of the student friendly and interactive learning environment plus the accommodative and hospitable society that were highly spoken of about it by fellow students and my lecturers in various departments that had studied there before. Not forgetting, KI’s well-known reputation of being among the best universities in the world offering a wide range of medical education and academic research greatly contributed to my reasons for choosing it.

 Fortunately, the staff of the international office at my home university, in addition to the international coordinator at KI, greatly helped with the application process and provided me with all the information and KI website links with useful information that I needed to successfully fill out my application, book my travel documents and dates, book my place of residence and fully acquaint myself with the nature and expectations of study abroad. I must say that the information provided on these webpages was well-organized, very elaborate, precise and up-to-date.

 In regards to vaccinations and certificates, I was only required to do the MRSA screening at the KI student health Centre prior to the commencement of my clinical rotations in the hospitals. This was done in the first week of my exchange studies.

Courses during the exchange period

ELAX16 : Obstetrics and Gynaecology
This was a very interesting rotation for me. Despite the fact that it was similar to the one I had done in my home country in regards to course content, I managed to get exposure to and build my confidence in working with various practical modalities that are not often used back home. The examination format was different from the one I was used to, however, I liked it because through preparing for it, it helped me appreciate so many aspects about research which I previously had minimal interest in. I did appreciate the readily available support from the course coordinators and supervisors whenever any concerns arose.
ELAXX6 : Surgery 1
This too was similar to the one done in my home country however, I mainly rotated in the department of Plastic Surgery which is usually given minimal time compared to other surgical departments back home. This allowed me to strengthen my knowledge and skills in this particular surgical field. Similarly, the examination format was different but very helpful in strengthening my research confidence and the supervision was great.


Of all the semesters I have so far completed during my medical education, I must say that the one I had at KI has been the best and most memorable. I appreciated the practice of medicine in a different society, met and made so many new friends from various cultures and most importantly, it opened my mind to the new ways of thinking and improving healthcare service delivery in my home country. I'm glad I chose KI.

Language and Culture

 At the start of my exchange studies, I took the 3-day intensive Swedish language course that was organized before the introduction day. 

 At first I was quite scared about how challenging it would be to learn a new language however upon the completion of my first day of the course, I was more than eager to continue learning mainly because of how fun, interesting and easy the tutor made the Swedish language seem during the interactive sessions we had with him. 

 Learning Swedish was very helpful in communicating with people around Stockholm especially in the hospitals when I encountered some patients who had trouble speaking English.

Studies in general

During my exchange program, I took 2 clinical rotations in two different hospitals. Both of them were similar to those done in my home country, however they used more technological modalities than were often used back home. In both rotations, I was assigned a supervisor who oriented me at the start of each rotation and assigned me to various residents or senior doctors that I would work with on each day. I always worked with one resident or senior doctor in clinics or ward round and a team including other healthcare personnel in theatre whenever there was a scheduled surgery.

 I found the student-teacher interaction to be very friendly and interactive. The hospitality, amiability, down-to-earth and willingness to teach nature exhibited by my supervisors, residents, senior doctors and everyone in the hospital greatly boosted my learning by allowing me to freely and comfortably ask questions whenever I didn’t understand particular concepts. 


 Similarly, the patients with whom I interacted were very friendly and respectfully allowed me to work on them under the supervision of the attending doctor. This greatly aided my learning as I learnt and perfected various skills with continuous practice.

 Generally, I found that the less emphasis put on titles and hierarchy among doctors in the hospitals allowed more friendly interactions between students and teachers which greatly boosts creativity and responsibility among students.