Known to be the best place to spot the famous Northern Lights, and often called a “Land of a thousand lakes”, Finland has more than what you can imagine. Are you aware of something like a World Happiness Report? And guess what, Finland has topped in more than 150 countries based on factors like social support, corruption and life expectancy. This is also seen in school systems, where the emphasis is laid on a happy, harmonious and healthy learning environment instead of test scores. If you plan to study in Finland, you will live in a safe country where everyday life and nature are closely associated with each other. Want to know the Finnish way of studying? Here’s our blog to know about why, how and where to study in Finland.
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Why Study in Finland?
Are you aspiring to learn from the best in the world? Then, a study in Finland is worth considering. Not, yet convinced? You’ll be happy to know that education in Finland revolved around a very basic ideology that “the nature of students is to know more about the world around them and experiment with what they learn.” Keeping this in mind, the country has proven track-record as the place of a world-class education. The egalitarian principle of universal education has caught the attention of international students planning to study abroad. The teachers are not just proficient in their subject area but experts in training and learning. Getting a Finnish degree means having a high level of dedication and competence in your field of study. Universities offer a blend of formal and extracurricular learning aiming to unlock the maximum potential of its students. Not to forget, Finland has a booming gaming sector and strong ICT module. So, experience the cutting-edge digital technology that makes learning fun!
Study Programs in Finland
Finland Education System for higher education offers more than 400 bachelor’s and master’s degree program majorly taught in English. Also, there are options for doctoral study and research. The undergraduate degree courses that are taught in English are offered by the Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS) while the universities administer the graduates courses. Below is a table to showcase the different levels of higher education in Finland, required ECTS credits and duration of courses:
|Level of Study in Finland||*Eligibility||ECTS Credits||Duration|
|Bachelor’s Degrees||Upper secondary school certificate and school-leaving document.||210-270||3.5 to 4.5 years|
|University Master’s Degrees||Completed a university-level bachelor’s degree or equivalent.||120||2 years|
|UAS Master’s Degrees||In addition to having a bachelor’s degree, students should have gained at least 2 years of work experience.||60-90||1 to 1.5 years|
|Doctoral (PhD) Degrees||Completed a master’s degree in a related field of study.||240||4 years|
*These are general eligibility conditions which may vary from one degree to another, so remember to check the details from the official website of the university you are interested in. And for non-native English speakers, IELTS or TOEFL scores are important to demonstrate their English-proficiency level.
While going through the table, you must come across the term “ECTS Credits”. What do you understand by the ECTS credits? In general, it shows the total volume of learning based on the set learning outcomes and their related workload. For example, 1 full-time academic year is equal to 60 higher education credit, where 1 credit corresponds to 25 to 30 hours of workload.
|Art, Design & Media||Business & Management|
|Computer Science & IT||Engineering & Technology|
|Environment & Agriculture||Humanities|
|Law||Medicine & Health|
|Natural Sciences & Mathematics||Social Sciences|
Top Universities to Study in Finland
Finnish universities are situated in world-class cities with gorgeous natural attraction providing quality education to students across the world. Your study in Finland offers a chance to stay in a transparent and civic society, where learning is always a priority. And yes, what could be better than finding inexpensive or tuition-free courses in a Nordic country in the Northern EU. Learn more about the renowned universities in our list below along with their location, world ranking and the percentage of international students:
|University||Location||Percentage of International Students||THE World University Rankings 2021||QS World University Rankings 2022|
|University of Helsinki||Helsinki||5%||98||104|
|University of Oulu||Oulu||6%||301||408|
|University of Turku||Turku||6%||351||287|
|University of Eastern Finland||Joensuu and Kuopio||6%||401||499|
|University of Jyväskylä||Jyväskylä||5%||401||333|
|LUT University||Lappeenranta and Lahti||19%||470||470|
|Åbo Akademi University||Turku||16%||601||571|
Top Public Universities in Finland
Listed below are the top public universities offering academic degrees to international students –
- University of Helsinki
- Abo Akademi University
- Aalto University
- Tampere University
- University of Jyväskylä
Finland Grading Scale
Universities in Finland follow a grading mechanism in which they use a scale of 0-5. The determiners are used as following –
- Grade 0 – Denotes a fail
- Grade 1-5 – Denotes a pass, while 5 denotes outstanding performance
Want to get admission to your dream university abroad? Then, Register Here!
Study in Finland: Education and Living Costs
Ever thought how expensive is it to study in Finland? International students have to pay a minimum of EUR 6,000 which can go up to EUR 18,000 per year at prestigious universities for full-time bachelor’s or master’s course. However, doctorate courses are usually tuition-free.
Other conditions of fee exemption include those students with an EU Blue Card or permanent or fixed-term residence permit. Moreover, an exchange student may not have to pay the tuition fee. Also, if you choose to study in Finland, either in Finnish or Swedish, then you may be exempted from tuition charges.
When we talk about the cost of living, how much money you spend majorly depends on the place where you study in Finland, your lifestyle and of course your spending habits. Choosing to study in Helsinki, the capital city can be a little expensive than smaller towns like Oulu. Your average cost of living can vary between EUR 700 to EUR 1,000 per month. Getting a student residence hall or dormitory can be a real money saver.
Part Time Jobs in Finland
While studying in Finland, students often find it difficult to manage the expenses. A number of students often take up part time jobs to meet their expenses requirement. Students in Finland can work for up to 25 hours a week while studying during the semester and, during the summer months. There is no limit on the number of hours a student can work for. Students working in Finland usually make around 9 to 13 euros per hour depending on the working hours and the job sector. Usually evening shifts pay better compared to other shifts. Job sectors like software engineering and information technology pay really well for students.
Students often take up the following part time jobs –
- Working in a restaurant
- Delivering food or newspapers (common part-time jobs for both Finnish and international students)
- Managing hotels, restaurants, ferries, shopping malls or company offices.
To ease the financial burden of pursuing higher studies in Finland, students might opt for scholarships. Let’s take a look at some of the scholarships you can avail for studying in Finland:
- Finland Government Scholarships for International Students
- University of Helsinki International Student Scholarship Grant
- University of Turku Postdoctoral Research in Science and Medicine
- CIMO Doctoral Fellowship for International Students
- University of Oulu Masters Scholarships for International Students
- Aalto University Scholarship
- University of Helsinki Scholarships for International Students
- University of Tampere Scholarships for International Students
- EDUFI Fellowships Program for Young Doctoral Students
- Protein Science International Masters Scholarship at University of Oulu Finland
Work in Finland
Besides, offering tremendous opportunity to study in Finland, the country aims to invest in people, knowledge and innovation through opening a wide range of jobs for graduates students. Finland is amongst few nations that love talent from every corner of the world. They look for students who want to work in Finland with visa and work permit applications. But, why should you choose to work in Finland?
- The greenest country in the world.
- Employee-friendly working hours.
- Focusses on skill development at work.
- 3rd in the Global Gender Gap Index Ranking 2020.
Finns are known to be hardworking people and at the same time, they known how to enjoy relaxing in the lakeside cottage, relish multifarious sportling and cultural activities. Working part-time ensures more financial freedom and a chance to understand the Finnish working life better. However, it is important to note that international students can work with certain limits like part-time work or practical training included in the degree cannot exceed more than 25 hours per week. And, no restrictions to work full-time during holidays.
Now the question is what types of jobs are available in Finland for students? An ideal job would be something related to your field of study and of course your abilities. So, if you are in your masters, going for an internship or research work can really help you in your master’s thesis. Working in restaurants, cafeteria, coffee shops, ferries, libraries, shopping malls and companies offices is common for both Finnish and international students. The best way to build your skills and be active in job-seeking is to build healthy connections with your professors or consultants. Getting yourself acquainted with social platforms like LinkedIn can also benefit you.
Applying to Study in Finland
Application to study in Finland are either made online directly to the concerned university or via the University Admissions Finland (UAF). College deadlines may vary but usually, the applications for fall intake are taken in the month of November to January. While at some polytechnics, students can apply between August to September to enrol in the spring semester, but only for selected programs. It usually takes a month to process the application, thus is recommended to apply for the visa as soon as you receive the letter of acceptance from your dream university.
Student Visas for Finland
As an Indian student wanting to study in Finland, you need to have a valid passport and a visa to enter a new country. The Single-entry visa enabled the entry to the Schengen zone once and for up to 90 days in any 180-day period while the Double-entry visa increases your entry to twice. Other than this, there is a Multiple-entry visa granted for various consecutive visits to the Schengen area and the total duration of the stay cannot exceed 90 days in a 180 day period and this is valid for a maximum of 5 years.
In case you wish to extend the validity of your visa while in Finland, you need to contact the local police authorities there.
Application Process and Entry Requirements
- Complete your application to the school you wish to attend. You can download an application from the university’s official website or request in person from the university to wish to attend.
- To study in Finland, you need to submit academic transcripts from all institutions you have attended since secondary school.
- You need to provide a copy of their passport as well as their passport-sized photograph.
- Some colleges require that essays and SOPs be written to the best of your ability.
- LORs (academic and professional)
- Submit the proof of English-language proficiency tests.
- A copy of birth certificate as well as a certified translation showing the birthplace of parents.
- You must have health insurance.
- Proof of capability to cover all the abroad expenses (somewhere EUR 30 per day). A bank certificate showing the guarantee of sponsorship or grants must be shown as proof.
Are you planning to stay in Finland for more than 3 months? Then, you will need a residence permit. Remember to apply for the residence permit before you move out to study in Finland. Your application will be transferred to the Finnish Immigration Service and you’ll be later called for an interview.
Best Cities in Finland
While planning to pursue higher studies in Finland, students might be confused about the cities. Well, to help you with that, we have listed the best cities in Finland in this section, to help make your university selection process easier –
How much does it cost to study in Finland?
The minimum tuition for English-taught degrees in Finland is 1,500 EUR/year while the average tuition fees is around 5,000 – 18,000 EUR/year.
Is Finland good for international students?
Finland is considered to have one the best education systems in the world. Added advantage for international students in Finland is that the education is completely free and is state funded.
Is living in Finland expensive?
To live in Finland and pursue studies, one needs around 700 – 900 EUR/month, depending on the city mainly. Helsinki is the most expensive city, while Laaperanta, Pori and Tampere are known as the most affordable student cities
So, what are you waiting for? Its time to bring your passion to study in Finland and discover why it is a great place to pursue your higher education. If you are interested in studying in Finland and would like to find out more, Leverage Edu can help you in choosing the right course and university, besides helping in services like student visa, loan, financing, scholarships, accommodation, work opportunities and what not!