Visiting studies (free movers)

If your home university does not have a student exchange agreement with the University of Helsinki, but you would like to complete a part of your degree at the University of Helsinki (UH), you can apply for the visiting student status. The faculty you are interested in can offer a visiting student status (free movers, non-exchange programme students) at undergraduate, graduate or postgraduate level if you are a student enrolled and actively studying as a BSc/MSc or PhD student at a university outside Finland. These instructions apply to all faculties of the UH but there may be some faculty specific requirements. These requirements are listed below.

The prerequisite is that you will take courses or do an internship/thesis work/PhD research at the University of Helsinki and that the credits/courses/research completed at the University of Helsinki are approved as a part of your degree at your home institution.
You may also apply for the visiting student status if you have received a scholarship (e.g. fromEdufi, Fulbright Center or Erasmus+ training SMP) or if you present other compelling academic reasons.
As a visiting student you will receive credit units (ECTS) for all of your work but you are not able to obtain a degree from the University of Helsinki. The visiting student status is normally valid for a minimum of three months and a maximum of one academic year. Visiting students do not need to pay tuition fees at the University of Helsinki.

Please note that the demand for visiting student places is high. Due to the limited number of available places, we may not be able to accept all applicants.

For course work

For academic year or autumn semester
- April 15: citizens of non-EU/EEA-member states
- May 15: citizens of EU/EEA-member states, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland

For spring semester
- September 30: citizens of non-EU/EEA-member states
- October 15: citizens of EU/EEA-member states, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland

For internship/thesis/PhD students

There is no official deadline, but the online application should be filled in and submitted with all the required enclosures at least two months (EU/EEA citizens) or three months (non-EU/EEA citizens) before the planned period.

The academic calendar of the University of Helsinki can be found here.

To apply for the visiting student status, fill in the application in the Mobility Online application portal and upload all required documents (see below) to the system. Please choose the heading for visiting student applications from the top of the Mobility Online page. After filling in the application you will receive an automatic email sent by the system. Next you need to register to the system and fill in more information before the application is complete.

Please note:

  • You should apply for the visiting student status from the Faculty you plan to study/receive the credits in.
  • It is not possible to apply for a visiting student statys for courses provided by the the University of Helsinki Language Center.
  • All the requested documents must be in either in Finnish, Swedish or English. In case your home university does not provide transcripts in any of the aforementioned languages, you are responsible for translating the document yourself. Such a document needs to be either a certified translation of the original document or the sending institution needs to verify the translation with a stamp and a signature.
  • Applications that are not complete (e.g. there are documents missing) will not be processed.
  • Use of forged or invalid documents causes a cancellation of the student's admission.
  • Application documents are not returned to you.

Fixed-term right to study granted to visiting students is not intended for mobility between Finnish institutes of higher education. Instead, students enrolled at a Finnish institute of higher education as degree students should apply for the right to complete flexible studies (JOO scheme) or nondegree studies at the University of Helsinki.

The following documents (as pdf) must be uploaded to the Mobility Online application system by the deadline:

You will find information concerning the courses in English here.

The prerequisites for a visiting student status are that you have already secured a supervisor at the University of Helsinki and receive credits units (ECTS) for internship/thesis work/PhD research at the hosting unit. If you do not yet have a supervisor, you can use the TUHAT portal to look for a potential supervisor.

Following documents (as pdf) must be uploaded to the Mobility Online application system before the application can be processed:

  • Fully completed and signed application form (from Mobility Online)
  • a motivation letter
  • Certificate of Language skills or a clarification of sufficient language skills from the supervisor at UH. The faculty may ask you to demonstrate further evidence of sufficient language skills
  • Official transcript of credits in English, i.e. an official list of courses completed at your home university by the time of the application or authorized letter (or equivalent) from your home institution proving that you are enrolled as a student there
  • Preliminary Learning Agreement approved and signed by the appropriate person at your home university
  • Invitation letter in EnglishFinnish or Swedish (including dates for the visiting period and the estimated amount of credits received at the UH) from the academic contact person who has agreed to supervise your work at the UH.  (Not required from applicants to summer training at Veterinary teaching hospital)
  • The Learning agreement and an invitation letter from the UH supervisor may also be replaced with a research plan / agreement for traineeship (e.g. Erasmus+ traineeship (SMP)) approved and signed by the appropriate persons at your home and host university.

  • EDUFI fellowship or Fulbright scholarship receivers: please also include a copy of the decision or agreement for a scholarship.

NOTE: Training agreements should not be sent to the International Exchange Services nor to the Faculty Office before they are signed by all parties. Training agreements are signed and agreed upon by the academic host at the receiving unit, usually by the supervisor.

China scholarship Council and Edufi Fellowships applicants apply to the University of Helsinki according to the normal visiting student application deadlines listed above. During the funding application process, China Scholarship Council may ask for an acceptance letter from the University of Helsinki. Because University of Helsinki has its own application deadlines, which are different from CSC, applicants can get an invitation letter from  their potential supervisor at the University of Helsinki for CSC, which explains UH's application process. China Scholarship Council applicants are required to provide a certificate of language skills during the application process.

The Faculties at the University of Helsinki consider every visiting student application individually and make the admission decision on the basis of the fully completed application form and enclosures. The number of places for visiting students is limited and students coming via official exchange agreements are given priority. If you meet the requirements set by the University of Helsinki, your host faculty at UH will send you a confirmation of acceptance by e-mail. Please note that "Formally checked" on Mobility Online does not yet mean that your application has been accepted by the faculty.

Acceptance information is available about 6 weeks after the application deadline or submission of the application in the case of internship/thesis/PhD studies. 

Please note that during the time when applications are processed, it is not possible to answer individual questions concerning the status of your application. You can follow up the proceedings via your Mobility Online account.

Information for accepted students is available on our New Students website.

You can find information regarding housing in Helsinki here.

You are strongly recommended to have a good personal insurance. University of Helsinki does not provide insurance to incoming students unless they will be hired by the receiving institute. More information on insurances for students can be found here.

Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
Training at the Veterinary teaching hospital
When applying for clinical practice: In case you have not yet passed some of the clinical theory courses but will have by the time you start studies in Helsinki, you have to include a list of those courses in the application. You should also mention your previous and forthcoming clinical practice experience in the application.