Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
‘Studentvalget’ is Norwegian for ‘The student elections’.
NTNU has an extensive student democracy with representatives on all levels, from the study programme councils to the university’s board of directors. These people are all working to promote your interests as a student, and are elected by you and the other 42 000 students at NTNU.
Student representatives are elected twice a year. Each year, students are elected to Studenttinget (the student parliament), the Welfare Council, the NTNU board of directors, and the Student Councils (Faculty- and department representatives).
All elections are done through NTNU’s internal election system: Ditt Valg aka ValgWeb.
All students at NTNU who have paid their semester fee, have the right to vote.
In order to run for Faculty or Department Representative, one must be registered in the Registry of Voters at the relevant department or faculty. It is a prerequisite that the candidate intends to be a student at NTNU during the period they are being elected for.
If you neither speak nor understand Norwegian at all; No, unfortunately.
If, however, you are quite or highly proficient in Norwegian; Yes, in most cases. Norwegian is the official working language at NTNU.
Cf. NTNU’s election regulation §4.2, all candidates for elected positions at NTNU must have documented proficiency in Norwegian, sufficient to carry out the duties of the position they’re running for. In other words, to run for a position, you need be proficient enough in Norwegian that you rarely or never experience any difficultes expressing yourself, being understood, or understanding the content of academically/profesionally worded documents in Norwegian.
Uncertain cases are decided by the relevant election board (Studenttinget’s election board for elections to Studenttinget, or the relevant Faculty Representatives for elections to the Student Council).
Absolutely! As long as you fulfil the requirements for proficiency in Norwegian as explained in the answer above, there are no obstacles to being a member of both Studenttinget and your Student Council. On the contrary, it is advantageous both to you and the students at your faculty; it ensures there is a representative in the student parliament (Studenttinget) who participates in debates affecting all students at NTNU, while simultaneously understanding the ongoing political processes and challenges facing students at your faculty.
What you need to consider is how much time you have at your disposal.
Both faculty and department representative are manageable positions while being both a full-time student and a member of Studenttinget, as long as you do not have too much else on your plate.
Studenttinget meets once a month – you always have one week to read through documents and prepare for each meeting. The length of cases and meetings vary, but are always manageable. Again, note that all documents and discussions are in Norwegian.
Faculty representatives are remunerated equivalent to a ~25% position at their faculty, and must expect to use a significant amount of time on this work alongside their studies.
Department representatives are remunerated between 60-80 hours each semester, and must also expect to use a fair amount of time on this work, though less than faculty representatives.
Studenttinget consists of 25 representatives – 21 from Trondheim, and 2 from Gjøvik and Ålesund, respectively.
Trondheim, Gjøvik og Ålesund is each their own constituency during the elections. Students in Gjøvik vote for their two representatives in Studenttinget, not for the representatives from the other two cities.
Travels to Trondheim for elected Studenttinget representatives from Gjøvik and Ålesund related to Studenttinget meetings or seminars are paid by Studenttinget.
Each of NTNU’s 8 faculties have their own Student Council (Studentråd). Several of these faculties have departments fully or partly localized in Gjøvik or Ålesund. It varies between the Student Councils whether they elect representatives independent of campus city, or have quotas for number of representatives from Gjøvik/Ålesund. See the website for the Student Council at your faculty.
Student Council members from Gjøvik or Ålesund tend to participate in Student Council meetings via Skype. Their travels to Trondheim for seminars with the Student Counil, however, is paid by the council.
The various positions and assemblies are elected for different periods of time.
Additionally, the student councils swap out half of their members each semester.
Studenttinget NTNU (the student parliament) is elected for one calendar year. It is elected in the fall, and accedes January 1st.
The Student Council at each faculty has 3-4 Faculty Representatives (FTV) who chairs the student council. Half of these positions are elected anew each semester. The same goes for the members of the student council, the Department Representatives (ITV), of which there are also 2-4 at each department. Therefore, elections for the student councils are held each semester.
NTNUs board of directors has 2 positions elected by the students. These are elected in the spring semester, and accedes August 1st.
The Welfare Council is elected for one calendar year. It is not elected by the students, but by Studenttinget, as the Welfare Council does not only work for NTNU’s students, but all students in Trondheim, and is owned by the student democracies of all universities and colleges in Trondheim. Therefore, Studenttinget elects NTNU’s representatives to the Welfare Council. All students at NTNU can run for a seat in the council, however.
NTNU has 8 faculties, each with its own student council. Each of these consist of 3-4 Faculty representatives (FTV), who chair the council, and varying number of Department representatives (ITV). It is up to each student council to organize elections of new FTVs and ITVs, and there is simply not enough room on one webpage for all the neccessary informatino about elections for 8 different faculties and 55 different departments, as well as Studenttinget’s election.
Therefore, check the website for your Student Council.