Frequently Asked Questions

About Applying

How to apply to become an exchange student at UTU?
When are the application deadlines?
Where do I send my enclosures?
How long does the application process last?

About Studies

What can I study as an exchange student at UTU?
Where can I receive information on courses?
What is the language of instruction and what is required of me?
How many courses should I take?
How can I study Finnish before I start my studies?
Can I study Finnish language while studying in Turku?

About Practical Matters

When should I arrive?
Will I receive a Certificate of Enrolment?
Will I be entitled to student benefits?
How can I apply for housing?
Do I need a visa or a residence permit?
Do I need a health/travel insurance?

About applying

HOW TO APPLY TO BECOME AN EXCHANGE STUDENT AT UTU?

1.       Fill in the Electronic Application Form

2.       Submit the required enclosures: a Transcript of Records, a Certificate of the Exchange Status (=nomination) and a Certificate of Language Skills.  

Please see the application form and enclosures.

WHEN ARE THE APPLICATION DEADLINES?

  • For ERASMUS students: 31 May (Autumn Semester or Academic Year) and 1 November (Spring Semester). 
  •  For the Non-EU/EEA students 15 April (Autumn Semester or Academic Year) and 15 October (Spring Semester).

WHERE DO I SEND MY ENCLOSURES?

After submitting the application form, you should send the enclosures to:

International Office, University of Turku, FI-20014 Turku, FINLAND.

Erasmus students can choose to send enclosures as e-mail attachments to international@utu.fi

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HOW LONG DOES THE APPLICATION PROCESS LAST?

After you have submitted the application and the required enclosures, it takes about 3-4 weeks to process the application. All the applications which arrive by the deadline will be processed in May/June and students will be notified by 15 June at the latest. Applications for the Spring Semester, which arrive by October/November, will be processed in November. After processing the application, an Information Package will be sent to you by post. The package includes a Certificate of Admission, Guide for Exchange Students and map of Turku. Please read the material carefully before arrival.

During the summer months of July and August, delays can be expected due to the summer holidays of the personnel. The International Office will be closed between 23 December and 2 January during the Christmas holidays. For these reasons, it is extremely important that the applications arrive on time.

About studies

WHAT CAN I STUDY AS AN EXCHANGE STUDENT AT UTU?

Please check the courses offered in English: Programmes and Courses

The course selection at the University of Turku is quite free and students can take courses at several faculties, with some restrictions, provided that they meet the prerequisites for the course.

WHERE CAN I RECEIVE INFORMATION ON COURSES?

Courses can be found online: Programmes and Courses

If you need more information on your studies, please contact the Departmental Contact Persons. Due to the large number of enquiries, we cannot always answer very detailed questions on a short notice. Please read the information on our web pages first.

Usually the courses are announced only a few weeks before the semester starts. Therefore, students are advised to use the latest available information, which will be the course information of the current Academic Year.  Everyone will have a chance to make changes to the Learning Agreement during September/ January. 

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WHAT IS THE LANGUAGE OF INSTRUCTION AND WHAT IS REQUIRED OF ME?

There are several programmes and courses at the University of Turku where the language of instruction is English. Most exchange students participate in these programmes.

The language of instruction in other programmes is Finnish.

A good command of the language of instruction is required. You should enclose to your application a language certificate (Language Assessment Sheet) of the language you are going to study in. However, this is not required from native speakers.

In many courses, some previous knowledge of the subject is required.

HOW MANY COURSES SHOULD I TAKE?

You should always discuss the requirements with your own coordinator at your home university. The University of Turku does not require a specific amount of credits to be done.

Credits at the University of Turku are equivalent to ECTS credits (European Credit Transfer System). 60 ECTS credits equal a full year's work load and 30 ECTS equal one semester. However, in practice many exchange students gather fewer credits.

HOW CAN I STUDY FINNISH BEFORE I START MY STUDIES?

You can start learning by using Finnish courses on Internet, for example with UUNO portal.  

CAN I STUDY THE FINNISH LANGUAGE WHILE STUDYING IN TURKU?

Yes, the University of Turku offers a wide range of Finnish Courses. See more information on Language Center.  Turku School of Economics has separate Finnish courses for its exchange students. 

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About practical matters

WHEN SHOULD I ARRIVE? 

The Academic Year is officially divided into two semesters: 1 August - 31 December and 1 January - 31 July. Teaching periods run (in most faculties) from the first week of September to Christmas  (mid-December) and first week of January to end of May. During the summertime, teaching is normally not available.

Accepted students are expected to be present at the Orientation Course, which is arranged at the beginning of each semester (in August and in January). The Orientation Course helps you to adjust to the Finnish student life and to living in Turku.

Teaching normally starts right after the orientation. One exception is the Faculty of Medicine where studies start at the beginning of August.

Please note that arrival during weekends and holidays is not recommended, because the Housing Offices will be closed.

Your student tutor will meet you upon arrival if you have agreed on it with her/him.

WILL I RECEIVE A CERTIFICATE OF ENROLMENT?

The University of Turku will automatically provide you with this certificate upon registration. Registration should be done immediately after arrival in Turku.

Letter of Confirmation stating the final dates of your exchange period will be provided only if you personally visit the International Office before leaving. Especially Erasmus students need this certificate with exact dates of the exchange period!

WILL I BE ENTITLED TO STUDENT BENEFITS?

Yes, if you are a formal exchange student, you can join the Student Union by paying a membership fee (voluntary for exchange students). After joining, you will be able to purchase student card which entitles you to certain benefits. This includes e.g.

  • free basic health care
  • specially priced lunches at student cafeterias 
  • discounts on local buses and long-distance transportation.
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HOW CAN I APPLY FOR HOUSING?

The University of Turku is not responsible for student accommodation. Students should apply for housing themselves by filling in the online application on the web page of the housing companies well in advance before arriving to Turku. 

DO I NEED A VISA OR A RESIDENCE PERMIT?

Citizens of EU/EEA-countries need a residence permit only if they stay in Finland for more than three months. In order to apply for it, they must register at the local police station before the three-month-period expires. EU/EEA-citizens do not need a visa.

Citizens of the Nordic Countries:  do not need a residence permit or a visa.

Non-EU/EEA students: need a visa or a residence permit in most cases. They need to apply for these before arriving in Finland. Students should always check this information with the nearest Finnish diplomatic mission. 

For more information, please see Student Recidence Permits

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DO I NEED HEALTH / TRAVEL INSURANCE?

We strongly recommend that all students take a private health insurance which is valid during their study period in Finland. Only with a proper health insurance can all the costs be covered if you become ill during you stay in Finland!

EU/EEA-citizens who have a European Health Insurance Card (or an equivalent E-128/E111 social security form) are entitled to municipal health care at the same prices as Finnish citizens. However, the health care is not free of charge

Students who come from the Nordic Countries can always receive the basic health care but for more extended care they should have the European Health Insurance Card.

Exchange students can join the Student Union and have the FSHS services (Finnish Student Health Services). Please note that these health care services are only available during the daytime and week days and do not cover emergency care.

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