Student unions are independent associations that work on behalf of students on the issues important to them. Membership in a student union is not required - you can decide yourself if you want to join.
The main task of student unions is to work in support of students and their interests. Some examples of focus areas are:
- student influence
- quality of education
- student housing
The student unions are independent of universities and university colleges and have their own organisation and finances.
You can decide yourself if you'd like to be a member of a student union - it's not required. Members are expected to pay a fee for membership and the amount can vary from union to union.
SFS - an umbrella organisation for student unions
The majority of Sweden's student unions are members of Sveriges förenade studentkårer (SFS) - the Swedish National Union of Students. SFS represents student unions' interests in relation to Parliament, the government, political parties, and government agencies who work with higher education issues such as:
- Universitetskanslersämbetet (The Swedish Higher Education Authority)
- Centrala studiestödsnämnden (The Swedish Board of Student Finance)
- Universitets- och högskolerådet (The Swedish Council for Higher Education)
SFS monitors and spreads information regarding education, research and student welfare issues that impact students.