Coronavirus (COVID-19): ad­vice for bachelor's ap­plic­ants

As the current circumstances can cause uncertainty and worries, the University of Helsinki wants to reassure applicants that we are doing everything we can to make the admissions process to our Bachelor's Programme in Science (for studies starting in autumn 2021) as smooth as possible.

On this page, you can find coronavirus (COVID-19) related questions and answers connected to the application round on 1 Dec 2020 – 15 Jan 2021 (admission group 1) and 17–31 March 2021 (admission group 2).

You can follow updates about the coronavirus situation at the University of Helsinki on our website.

As the Bachelor's Programme in Science only has one intake per academic year, with two separate admission processes and application periods, it will not be possible to start your studies in autumn 2021 unless you apply during the application periods on 1 Jan 2020 – 15 Jan 2021 or 17–31 March 2021.

If you apply and are offered a study place in the Bachelor's Programme in Science in spring or summer 2021, you only need to decide by 16 July 2021 if you accept it and start your studies in autumn 2021.

It means that by applying now, you keep your options open but do not have to make any decisions before 16 July 2021.

Please note that the correct application period depends on your previous education. You cannot select a preferred application period, nor can you submit an application during both application periods. More information about when to apply.

We do not charge an application fee. Also, if you are offered a study place and are liable to pay a tuition fee, we do not ask for any pre-payments. It only needs to be paid in full by 31 August 2021. It means that your financial risk is limited to the costs related to taking the SAT Subject Tests (a requirement for Bachelor’s Programme in Science, admission group 1), taking a possible language test and providing the required documents. Please notice that these costs cannot be reimbursed by the University of Helsinki in any circumstances.

The University of Helsinki is doing everything it can to limit the impact of COVID-19 on the admissions process and is committed to keeping the following deadlines: 

 Admission group 1:

  • Applications open on Tuesday 1 Dec 2020 at 8:00 (UTC +2).
  • Applications close on Friday 15 Jan 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +2).
  • The final deadline for arrival of the required application enclosures is on 29 Jan 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +2).
  • SAT Subject Tests must have been completed no later than 31 January 2021.
  • Admission results will be published the latest on 16 April 2021. 

 Admission group 2:

  • Applications open on Wednesday 17 March 2021 at 8:00 (UTC +2).
  • Applications close on Wednesday 31 March 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +3).
  • The final deadline for arrival of the required application enclosures is on 7 April 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +3).
  • Admission results will be published the latest on 9 July 2021. 

Please note that the University of Helsinki reserves the right to make changes to this schedule if the circumstances so require.

You can apply to the Bachelor's Programme in Science even though you would graduate after the application period, as long as you meet all the other requirements. If you are offered a study place, your acceptance will be conditional and you must only graduate by 31 August 2021 and provide the required documentation to prove it by the same date 31 August 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +3).  

If you apply and are offered a study place conditionally but cannot provide the required documents by the given deadline, you will lose the offered study place. We advise you to speak to your educational institution to determine if you will be able to complete your studies in time.

The University of Helsinki accepts several methods of proving your language skills in English, including two online tests that you can take from home: TOEFL iBT® Special Home Edition and IELTS Indicator. 

Find out more about proving your English language skills when applying to the Bachelor's Programme in Science.

We know that at the moment the COVID-19 pandemic is causing challenges for taking the SAT Subject Tests (a requirement for Bachelor’s Programme in Science, admission group 1) as capacity has been reduced in many test locations and test centres are even closed.

Unfortunately, after carefully evaluating several options, we have not found another solution that would be feasible and fair to all applicants, no matter of their location. Therefore, as we need a way to compare all the applicants on the same criteria, the SAT Subject Tests are required as previously:  you can be admitted in admission group 1 only if you have completed the SAT mathematics level 2 Subject Test AND the Subject Test in either physics OR chemistry. The SAT Subject Test scores must be at the University of Helsinki by 29 Jan 2021 at 15:00 (UTC+2). You cannot replace these SAT Subject Tests by any other test.

Please take care of your health and safety by taking the SAT Subject Tests only if the situation in your area allows it and there are open test centres near you. If this is not possible, we encourage you to apply in the next application round.

We are aware of the fact that the coronavirus situation can cause delays with getting the required documents in order, e.g. if your institution is closed.

Unfortunately, the University of Helsinki is not in a position to make any exceptions in the admissions process due to extenuating circumstances, including providing the required educational documents.  The deadline for delivering your documents are:  

  • Admission group 1: the final deadline for arrival of the required application enclosures is on 29 Jan 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +2).
  • Admission group 2: the final deadline for arrival of the required application enclosures is on 7 April 2021 at 15:00 (UTC +3).

However, at the application stage, copies of original certificates are accepted as enclosures, unless otherwise specified (e.g., some language tests and SAT Subject Tests). If you submit unofficial copies of the required enclosures with your application and you are admitted to the Bachelor’s Programme in Science, the admission decision will be conditional and you must submit officially certified copies. If you fail to submit officially certified copies of the required documents by the deadline, you, you will lose your place. 

In order to give you some additional time, we have pushed the deadline for delivering your officially certified documents forward as much as possible:  you must submit officially certified copies of your certificates by 31 August 2021, 15.00 (UTC + 3).

If you have difficulties with obtaining certified paper copies of your official educational documents, please check if your university provides verified electronic documents instead. We accept verified educational documents that are sent through certain international transcript services. We also accept electronic educational documents that we can verify using an electronic verification service offered by the degree-awarding institution. Please note, however, that uncertified PDF copies of educational documents are not accepted, even if they are sent from the university’s email address. Check our detailed information about electronic documents before submitting your enclosures.  

If your educational institution does not provide verified electronic documents, you must follow the regular instructions for submitting the required enclosures, including instructions on country-specific requirements. We advise you to speak with your educational institution to determine if you will be able to get the required verified documentation in time.

Required application enclosures for the Bachelor's Programme in Science.

If you apply and are offered a study place in the Bachelor's Programme in Science with studies starting in autumn 2021, you have to accept your study place by 16 July 2021. This deadline will be given to you in the acceptance letter that will be sent to you by e-mail.

At this point, it is difficult to tell what the situation will look like in autumn 2021. However, you can find information on the current effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on studies and teaching arrangements at the University of Helsinki on the Instructions for students –website: The effect of coronavirus on your studies – Q&A.

Please note that if you are offered a study place in the Bachelor's Programme in Science starting in autumn 2021, you only need to decide if you will accept it by 16 July 2021. By then there will be more information available about the teaching arrangements for autumn 2021.

You can ask our students directly about their experience of life and learning at the University of Helsinki during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chat with our students. You can choose to chat with students from the Bachelor's Programme in Science or other degree programmes.

In this article, students of the Faculty of Science talk about what it is like to be a new student in these exceptional times.