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Language Policy Guidelines for Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences

Approved by the Board 11 June 2013.

Statutes and regulations:

Act Related to Language Use in Public Service (11.04.1980), with Regulations on Language Use in Public Service (05.12.1980)

Act Relating to Universities and University Colleges §1-7. Responsibility for the Maintenance and Development of Norwegian for Professional Purposes: "Universities and University Colleges are responsible for the maintenance and development of Norwegian for professional purposes"

Regulations concerning study programmes and examinations at the Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences (HiOA).

Main principles

1. Both official forms of Norwegian (bokmål and nynorsk) are the main languages at HiOA.

2. In parallel with Norwegian, English is the main language used for international purposes.

3. The language of administration is primarily Norwegian.

4. Students and staff are strongly recommended to develop their language skills in Norwegian and English. HiOA will make provision for the acquisition of necessary language skills for both students and staff, to enable their active participation in international professional settings.

5. Students and staff will respect linguistic diversity and use inclusive language.

6. HiOA will encourage awareness amongst students and staff, on the ethics of, and power implications in the choice of language used in professional contexts.

7. Important information regarding HiOA’s activities is to be disseminated, as far as possible, in both Norwegian and English. Signposting, emergency and security information on HiOA premises are to be shown in Norwegian and English.

Education

8. Norwegian is the principle language of instruction at HiOA. Swedish and Danish are regarded as equivalent languages for instruction. English is the language of instruction for international courses of study.

9. Syllabus material should principally be in Norwegian when appropriate. Parts of the syllabus should be in English. Swedish and Danish may be represented.

10. All degree programmes at HiOA should include courses in English. Courses taught in English are not to be provided in Norwegian.

11. Unless otherwise specified in the plans for programmes of study or courses, students may choose to present their written examinations in Norwegian, Swedish or Danish. Students can apply to present their examinations in English or another language than the ones mentioned, when this is feasible within the programme of study or course plan.

Research and Development

12. Academic criteria and possibilities for communication with relevant national and international academic fora will dictate the choice of the language of publication.

13. English is the main language for publishing internationally. Doctoral dissertations and Master’s theses will normally be published in Norwegian or English, depending on the target readership. Where publishing in Norwegian, a synopsis in English should be provided, and vice versa.

14. HiOA strongly encourages the writing of academic journal articles and articles in other media, also written in English. HiOA actively promotes the development of academic writing skills.

Requirements concerning employee language skills

15. Staff employed in teaching and research positions are required to possess language skills in Norwegian and/or English. The Danish or Swedish languages are regarded as equivalent to Norwegian. For positions advertised internationally, Norwegian language skills at the time of employment are required only in certain cases. Requirements for language acquisition are specified in the wording of the job description.

16. Administrative staff at HiOA should be competent in Norwegian and English. Requirements for language acquisition are specified in the wording of the job description.

17. Employees without adequate skills in Norwegian or another Scandinavian language must be offered Norwegian courses so they can learn the language within three years from the start of their employment, where this is necessary for the performance of their professional duties. The equivalent is required for skills in professional English.