1 Fulbright/Icelandic Ministry of Culture Award
Accepted Degree Levels
Grant PeriodAugust Start
Grant Length9 Months
The program is administered by the Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies.
The scholarships are intended for students of modern Icelandic. Students must have prior knowledge of Icelandic according to the requirements for BA study in Icelandic as a second language (Icelandic knowledge on the level with the courses Icelandic Online 1 and 2). The grant is available only to those commencing studies. Those who have already started the program are not eligible.
Icelandic as a second language is comprised of both theoretical and practical fields of study. On the one hand it is a language course, where students are trained in speaking, reading and writing modern Icelandic. On the other hand it delves into the more academic aspects of the Icelandic language, literature and history of Iceland. Subjects covered include morphology, syntax and phonetics of modern Icelandic. The students read both old and modern literature and learn about the history of Iceland from settlement to modern times. Additionally, students are introduced to translations.
As a rule, students are expected to follow the programme in line with their previous knowledge of Icelandic, whether they intend to complete the BA-degree or not.
Students that begin their studies in autumn are required to pass exams (30 ECTS) at the end of the term to be able to continue their studies for the spring term of the programme. The scholarship holders have to pass examinations in the end of the fall term to be eligible for the scholarship in the spring.
The application procedure is similar to other Fulbright grants. Applicants do not apply directly to the Árni Magnússon Institute for the grant, but through the Fulbright Commission. For additional information see: https://www.arnastofnun.is/en/about-scholarship.
Please note, however, that applicants must apply for admission to the University of Iceland. This is a separate application that must be submitted by 1 February to the university. Applicants must apply to the program or time, or your application will not be considered.
The online admission exam for the BA-programme will be held the second week of June.
Students with considerable prior knowledge of Icelandic may move directly into the second year by passing examinations held in August.
Students are eligible for dormitory housing at the University of Iceland, but are otherwise responsible for their own housing.
Since the Fulbright Program in Iceland is relatively small, the Commission is able to maintain close ties with grantees during their stay and provide a sense of community among Fulbright grantees. There are monthly grantee activities sponsored by the Commission, in addition to access to Fulbright alumni events and other social activities.
Special funding for disabled grantees:
Funding is available for US Fulbright students to Iceland with a disability, be it a structural or functional impairment or activity/participation limitation, that entails additional costs that are not covered specifically through the Fulbright Program. Funding may be available for a wide range of disabilities, including, for example, hearing, vision, or movement impairment. The funding could, for example, be used to assist with specialized housing needs, in-country transport, or specialized assistance. The extra funding amount will depend on need and will be decided by the Commission after consultation with the student. Funding is provided through the Bruce A. Fowler Mobility Fund.
Grant term mid-August through mid-May.
Grant Length: 9 months.
It is important that grant recipients arrive on time to Iceland. The autumn term begins in the latter part of August. An introductory session with new students will be held before the beginning of the academic year where the organisation and requirements for the study programme will be presented.
No Pre-Departure Orientation at present, but that could change.
In-Country Orientation is mandatory.
The Fulbright Commission hosts a mandatory in-country orientation at the end of August/beginning of September.
This cost-shared grant is for a student who has completed a Bachelor’s degree in the U.S. and is interested in studying modern Icelandic as a second language at the University of Iceland. The scholarship is intended for students of modern Icelandic. Students must have prior knowledge of Icelandic (see further info on the university website listed below). The grant is available only to those commencing studies. Those who have already started the program are not eligible.
Students committed to completing the degree program in Icelandic will be given priority. Preference will be given to a candidate under 35 years of age. For additional information see About the Scholarship on Árnastofnun's website.
Students who wish to continue the program after their first year of studies can apply directly with Árnastofnun. However, all Fulbright benefits cease at the end of the Fulbright grant period.
Dual American/Icelandic citizens are not eligible.
If the applicant has lived in Iceland previously, this may affect the evaluation, but it does not automatically disqualify an applicant.
Accepted Degree Levels
Special Application Instructions
In the Fulbright online application, in the Award Selection, please select Fulbright/Icelandic Ministry of Culture Award from the drop-down menu.
Foreign Language Proficiency
Additional Information: Students must have prior knowledge of Icelandic according to the requirements for BA study in Icelandic as a second language (Icelandic knowledge on the level with the courses Icelandic Online 1 and 2).
Please see the program website for details.
Fulbright Proposal Types
Please note that applicants must apply for admission to the University of Iceland.
This is a separate application that must be submitted by 1 February to the university.
Tuition fee is covered in the grant benefits.
The application fee for the University of Iceland is not covered.
It is the grantee's responsibility to inquire about tuition and fees and to make necessary arrangements.
Fulbright Iceland grants are for one academic year only. All Fulbright benefits cease at the end of the Fulbright grant period. However, the student can apply for a continued grant directly with Árnastofnun.
Students enrolled in the program will have access to university dormitory housing. The University of Iceland has an office that provides assistance with off-campus housing and has sites where available housing is posted. Additionally, the Commission will provide information on websites where housing is advertised and will pass on any adverts send to the Commission.
This is a cost-share grant. The main stipend is provided by the Árni Magnússon Institute, covering minimal subsistance requirements as set out by the Directorate of Immigration. The Fulbright Commission provides a top-up to ensure that the grant meets the standard amount of a Fulbright Iceland student grant.
1,000 USD travel grant
300 USD baggage stipend.
The Commission provides enrichment activities for grantees.
Iceland Country Overview
Iceland is a small Nordic country, an island republic in the North Atlantic, between the U.S. and the European mainland. Iceland is technologically advanced; English is widely spoken and Americans find Icelandic society and culture relatively easy to navigate.
Icelandic universities offer a variety of master´s programs that are conducted in English. There are also opportunities to conduct exciting research in English, although some research may require knowledge of the Icelandic language. In addition to our general grants, the Commission is very interested in projects that have relevance for the Arctic. Fulbright students who do their Fulbright in Iceland are generally pleased with their stay in Iceland and find it very useful for their academic journey, whether they are planning to study here, do independent research before going to graduate school, or do post-master´s or PhD research.
Student awards are for nine months, beginning between 15 August and 1 September.
Iceland has spectacular nature and offers an opportunity for unique outdoor experiences, including geothermally heated swimming pools, open year-round. There is also a vibrant cultural scene, for example great music and art. For those who plan to stay in Reykjavik, the city is small enough to be easy to navigate, but large enough to have a bit of everything. For those choosing a rural experience, small towns are welcoming and have a vibrant cultural life.
Since the Fulbright Program in Iceland is relatively small, the Commission is able to maintain close ties with grantees during their stay and provide a sense of community among Fulbright scholars and fellows. There are monthly grantee activities sponsored by the Commission, in addition to access to Fulbright alumni events and other social activities. Grantees are always welcome to stop by or contact the Commission.
Want to get a better feeling for being a Fulbrighter in Iceland? Take a look at Fulbright Iceland's grantee series, where alumni talk about their experience of being on a Fulbright grant in Iceland:
Fulbright Program Management Contact
Fulbright Commission/U.S. Embassy Website
Fulbright Commission/U.S. Embassy Contact
Additional Online Resources
University of Iceland, Icelandic language studies: https://english.hi.is/node/52390/#baprogramme
Facebook - Fulbright Commission Iceland: https://www.facebook.com/fulbrighticeland
Instagram - Fulbright Commission Iceland: https://www.instagram.com/fulbright_iceland/
LinkedIn - Fulbright Commission Iceland: https://www.linkedin.com/company/fulbright-commission-iceland/
Website - Fulbright Commission Iceland: https://fulbright.is/
U.S. Student Grantee Feedback- 2021-2022: https://fulbright.is/wp-content/uploads/2023/03/FY2022-Annual-Report-WEB.pdf#page=12