Study abroad in Finland at the listed free universities in Finland for international and national students. Learn how to apply, cost of living, and admission requirements.
The wonderful eye-catching features in Finland make international students to explore while studying in Finland. If your course involves forestry or Urban exploration and planning, you are lucky, Finland serves as a good educational and tourism hub for those who visit the country seeking answers under any of the above mentioned capacities.
Is it Tuition Free to Study in Finland?
It is enough bad news that Finland started introducing tuition fees to certain programs undertaken by foreign students, it wasn’t like that before. Tuition was completely free for all students regardless of where you came from and your course of study. If you choose to study in their local language they may consider you for tuition waiver.
Now those programs charge a cheap amount of tuition fees from non-European international students. But PhD programs are still completely tuition free for all non-nationals of Finland.
How to Attend College for Free in Finland
Finland, among its Scandinavian neighbours, is known for providing its people with an outstanding quality of life. It is also listed in the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) as one of the best performing developing countries.
In contrast to many other European or Western nations such as the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia, the lower living costs in Finland are also a big draw. It is their lower tuition fees that make Finland an excellent place for EU and international students to obtain quality education and experience a new country and community, where students can either study for free or at slightly lower costs than in other countries. We will be exploring ways to research for free in Finland in this article.
Fortunately for students all over the world, you can study and attend school in Finland either for free or for very little money, whether you want to pursue your Bachelor’s, Master’s or PhD degree. You can attend school for free in Finland if you are an EU (European Union), EEA (European Economic Area) or Swiss resident. If you are an international student, although, sadly, as of 2017, Finland no longer provides free tuition, you can still apply for scholarships. Some university scholarships will totally cover your tuition expenses, according to Study EU, while some can give up to 50 percent off.
There are different fees for each institution, so be sure to check their official websites to see what their fees, foreign student programs, and scholarship choices are. It’s also important to note that you are always expected to pay for your own living expenses and food coverage, even though your tuition costs are covered. Student union fees ranging from 80-100 Euros might also need to be charged.
1. First Apply to Universities in Finland
You need to first apply to universities in Finland in order to study in Finland for free. Using Degree Finder is a perfect way to do so while finding out what degree you want to seek, which you can find on the official websites of many institutions. The University of Helsinki, for instance, has one which you can access here.
The next step is to analyze the academic qualifications and requirements for applying for your degree or program of choice. Consult the official university website when in doubt, where there is normally a “Contact” section to talk directly to the university. In general, the academic year starts in September for the fall semester and in January for the winter/spring semester, with enrollment periods typically beginning in November prior to the start of the year. Remember to consult your university of choice to confirm submission deadlines.
Not to be afraid of those who don’t speak Finnish, several universities offer English courses. Often, either in Finland or elsewhere, you are expected to take an English entrance exam. The evaluation is either the IELTS or the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) (International English Language Testing System).
Be sure to apply for either a student residence permit or a short-term visa if you are admitted to your school of choice. Short-term visas are available only if your studies are 90 days or less, but if you are applying for longer-term education, residency permits are valid for two years and are required. For more information about visas, refer to the website of the Finnish Immigration Service.
2. Prepare the required documents for admission
It is important to bear in mind that Finland has two types of academic institutions: UAS (Universities of Applied Sciences), which are more oriented on the practical needs of the labor market, and more academically inclined universities. Be sure to check out the official website here for foreign students interested in studying in Finland.
Required documents differ depending on whether a UAS or a university is the school you are looking at. UAS usually requires copies of completed or in-progress credentials, official document translations, original diplomas and official translations, certificates of jobs, and applications for special entry examination arrangements. The school you have applied for will provide you with a list of necessary documents for universities after you have already begun your application.
Furthermore, evidence of financial stability is often needed as well. This can include bank statements, one-year cost of living value, a source of revenue, salary structure if you are working and studying etc. For more information concerning these papers, consult your university of choice.
And if you are a foreign student, tuition fees are not charged if you are applying for a doctorate.
3. Apply for Scholarships
Unfortunately, if you are a non-EU or EEA indigene, it is difficult to escape tuition fees. International fees are applicable, but not to worry, you can apply for loads of online scholarships so that you can study for free in Finland. To apply for scholarships, directly link to the websites of the university to see which scholarships you are eligible for.
For example, on the University of Helsinki website, whether you are a non-EU/EEA or a Swiss citizen, they provide you with a step-by-step guide to applying for scholarships. They clearly specify on their website that your scholarship application can be the exact same as your Master’s application for a Master’s program. Keep in mind that scholarships are awarded on the basis of academic merit most of the time. In accordance with your degree or program application, scholarships are generally requested.
Free Universities in Finland – Admission Requirements and How to Apply
Foreign students expecting to study in Spain must possess certain eligible characteristics, find out from reading that article. Another thing is that you have to learn to prepare your application essay. For undergraduate program you will need to show high school certificate. For masters and PhD, you will present your first and second degrees respectively. Thesis is also compulsory for PhD depending on your field of study. Please visit the school’s website to know how and when to apply for admission.
Language Requirement in Finnish Universities
English language requirement
Students from EU countries can be excused from proof of English language proficiency, if they can show written letter from their former school’s head that your program was taught in this language.
If your previous studies was done in English, you have to show evidence, if not, the following test scores are accepted.
- IELTS; a minimum score of 5.5
- TOEFL; score 550 paper-based test/ 213 computer-based/ 79-80 Internet-based test
Matriculation Examination in Finland
Finland make international students to take their matriculation examination. This is also taken by their indigenes as well, so no one is exempted. Just pass the examination or take aptitude test provided by your school of choice; that can be used to substitute for the matric exam.
Affordable Cost of Living in Finland for International Students
To cut down on cost of living in Finland, make wise choices like living in campus accommodations, or sharing your house with a colleague to slash the rent in two. The cost of living is about 500 to 850 Euros monthly. It takes into consideration feeding, house rent, transport, airtime, electricity bill etc. You can even take from there and buy drinks, or see a movie; it shouldn’t be all the time though.
Free Universities in Finland for International Students
- University of Art and Design Helsinki UIAH
- Åland Polytechnic
- University of Applied Sciences
- Central Ostrobothnia University of Applied Sciences
- Diaconia University of Applied Sciences
- EVTEK University of Applied Sciences
- HAAGA-HELIA University of Applied Sciences
- Mikkeli University of Applied Sciences
- North Karelia University of Applied Sciences
- Oulu Polytechnic – University of Applied Sciences
- Pirkanmaa Polytechnic – University of Applied Sciences
- Rovaniemi University of Applied Sciences
- Satakunta University of Applied Sciences
- Savonia University of Applied Sciences
- Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences (SeAMK)
- South Carelia Polytechnic
- Sydväst Polytechnic
- HAMK University of Applied Sciences
- Helsinki Polytechnic Stadia
- HUMAK University of Applied Sciences
- Jyväskylä University of Applied Sciences
- Kajaani University of Applied Sciences
- University of Vaasa
- Helsinki University of Technology
- Lappeenranta University of Technology
- Tampere University of Technology
- Hanken Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration
List of Prominent Universities in Finland
- The University of Eastern Finland
- The University of Helsinki
- Aalto University
- The University of Turku
- The University of Oulu
- The University of Vaasa
- Lappeenranta University of Technology
- Hanken Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration
Low Tuition Universities in Finland
- Finnish Academy of Fine Arts
- Sibelius Academy
- Theatre Academy
- Kemi-Tornio University of Applied Sciences
- Kymenlaakso University of Applied Sciences
- Lahti University of Applied Sciences
- Laurea University of Applied Sciences
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