10 reas­ons to study at the University of Helsinki

The University of Helsinki, one of the top 1% universities in the world, is the oldest and largest academic institution in Finland. With our wide range of multidisciplinary study options, you can build a degree that is truly yours and become part of a community that can make a difference - with the power of knowledge.
1. A wide range of mul­tidiscip­lin­ary de­gree pro­grammes

The University of Helsinki offers bachelor, master and doctoral degrees with English as the language of instruction. Our multidisciplinary approach, academic freedom and thousands of courses enable you to tailor your degree based on your interests and strengths. You are also welcome to study with us as an exchange or visiting student.

With our search tool, you can explore our degree programmes in English, Finnish and Swedish as well as courses and modules from the Open university.

2. For a bet­ter world

As one of the world’s leading multidisciplinary research universities, we believe that the power of knowledge can change attitudes, people and society – for the world

Our goal is to produce high-impact knowledge that contributes to solving global challenges, e.g., our clinical biobank forms the basis for world-class genetic research. Our degree programmes are linked to research efforts that are key to building a better, more sustainable world.

The University of Helsinki wants to be a pioneer in sustainability. Our Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science (HELSUS) aims for interdisciplinary solutions to global sustainability issues, and we will be carbon neutral by 2030.

As sustainability expertise is a basic skill for future professionals, sustainable development perspectives are part of our degree programmes and courses. A multidisciplinary sustainability course is also available to all our students.

When studying with us, you can have an impact too – study for the world.

3. At the top in in­ter­na­tional university rank­ings

As the University of Helsinki places around the 100th place in the majority of the most important rankings, it elevates us to the top 1% of the world's universities. Usually, we rank among the top 50 universities in Europe and mainly hold the first position in Finland.

We are the only Finnish university in the League of European Research Universities (LERU), an association of 24 leading European research-intensive universities, as well as in UNA Europa, an alliance of 11 leading European research universities.

4. In­ter­ac­tion with top re­search­ers in an in­ter­na­tional en­vir­on­ment

Our teaching is provided by researchers well-versed in their discipline, teaching the topics of their research. Students learn from world-class scholars, developing strong research skills, and can build networks in an international environment. Around 30% of the research and teaching staff come from outside Finland. Out of 30 800 students, 7% are international. In addition, the University of Helsinki receives ca 1000 exchange students yearly.

The hierarchy is flat, and the professors and teachers are easily approachable for discussions and informal consultations. In many fields, students have the opportunity to complete their thesis in collaboration with research groups. 

This interaction between students and researchers is an essential part of academic life at the University of Helsinki. From the beginning of their studies, students are part of the academic community.

5. In­spir­ing study en­vir­on­ments

The University of Helsinki operates on four campuses in Helsinki within 10 km easily reachable by public transport. In addition, there are 6 research field stations around Finland and one in Kenya as well as a research farm at the Viikki campus. 

The diverse learning environments are ranked to top positions globally by our international students: state-of-the-art laboratories and versatile classrooms, historical buildings, a network of research stations for field courses, and comprehensive ICT services with electronic learning platforms as well as study materials distributed through e-channels. 

Instead of buying your study materials, you can use the library resources for free. The campuses have modern libraries with about 73.5 shelf-kilometres of printed books and journals, plus e-resources that can be accessed remotely.

Every campus has student restaurants serving low-cost meals. Think Company, the entrepreneurship society of the University of Helsinki, operates on every campus. UniSport offers affordable sports services at many locations and Think Corner is a public meeting space of science at the City Centre Campus. 

6. Sup­port for your ca­reer

Graduating from a top 1% university gives good opportunities for your future professional life, and building your career begins already during your studies.

The University of Helsinki offers many services related to career and working life. The curriculum of our degree programmes always includes career orientation-related content, and either a compulsory or an elective traineeship period. The Career Services give guidance and counselling, organise work-related courses and events, and facilitate mentoring groups. 

International degree students can apply to a UNITalent group mentoring programme and a trainee programme (Master's students only). They aim to support building professional networks in Finland and gaining insight into Finnish working life.

Together with the City of Helsinki, we also offer support for students interested in entrepreneurship. The various programmes of Helsinki Think Company and Helsinki Incubators offer a stimulating and safe place to try out ideas from the beginning to advanced idea development.

7. Vibrant stu­dent life with good be­ne­fits

Student life in Finland offers many extracurricular opportunities, an important part of your study experience and social life. 

The student community at the University of Helsinki is very active. Thousands of events are organised by more than 240 student organisations operating within the Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY). Whatever your interests are, you are likely to find like-minded people and the right activities for you.

Although life in Helsinki might not be the cheapest, students in Finland are entitled to various services and benefits that make life easier. For example, you get access to affordable student housingbasic health care services, low-cost sports facilities and student-priced meals. You also get numerous discounts, e.g. on public transport fees across the country or tickets to events and attractions.

8. Equal­ity and re­spect for di­versity

The everyday activities and interactions of the University of Helsinki community are guided by the 2021-2030 strategy, founded on our shared values of truth, Bildung, freedom and inclusivity. The last one safeguards our equality and translates into diversity and respect for others.

The University is committed to promoting equality and diversity while preventing discrimination in all its operations. The work is not yet done, but we actively strive to create a healthy studying and working environment. 

The Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY) also has two contact persons. They offer guidance and support to students who have encountered harassment, bullying, discrimination or any other kind of unequal treatment. Many other student organisations have their harassment contact persons too.

9. Helsinki, a great city for stu­dents

When choosing a university, it is important to get the location right too. Helsinki, the capital of Finland, is a compact, safe and modern seaside city that offers the excitement of its rich urban culture full of events, contrasted against the relaxing energy of its scenic nature and clean air. A third of the city is covered in green areas and the gorgeous archipelago comprised of around 330 islands is only a short bus ride away.

The public transport system has been named the second-best among European cities and gives you easy access around the metropolitan area. Helsinki is regularly highly ranked in the list of the most liveable cities in the world.

With several higher education institutions and 70,000 university students representing more than 10% of the city’s population, student needs and services are taken seriously. Your social calendar fills up with ease.

Helsinki is a homely, tiny metropolis close to nature.
10. Ex­per­i­ence the world-fam­ous Finnish education sys­tem

The education system in Finland is considered one of the best in the world. An equal school system, high regard for teachers and top-quality teaching have played a significant role in making it a success.

The University of Helsinki is internationally renowned for the same elements: high-quality teaching, research, and innovation. Research-based and learning-oriented teaching is central to carrying out our most important mission – the education of academic experts.

Our teaching is based on the latest research provided by researchers. In addition to relevant research-based knowledge, diverse teaching and assessment methods are utilised promoting students’ learning, the development of scholarly thinking and the establishment of expertise.

At the University of Helsinki, you can experience the key elements of the Finnish education system first-hand.

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