Studying at the Open University

Open University students have different goals. You can:

  • Consider which discipline best suits you
  • Acquaint yourself with university-level study
  • Study for a university degree
  • Enhance your professional skills
  • Pursue a new career
  • Improve your general education
  • Get energised and enthusiastic

The studies follow the curricula of the University of Helsinki, and the content and level of the courses are equivalent to undergraduate studies. You cannot complete a full degree at the Open University, but you can incorporate your completed studies into a university degree if you later enrol as a degree student at a university or are currently a university student.

The courses have been planned to accommodate mature students. Teaching is organised mainly in the evenings and at weekends. The courses feature both distance learning and contact teaching, and most courses include elements of both. Some subjects can be studied completely online.

You can study in many ways: by attending lectures, participating in online courses, taking book examinations or combining several methods of study. The study programmes specify the method of completion as well as the time and place of each course. Teaching usually takes place once or twice a week in the evenings, sometimes on Saturdays also, so students can work while studying. The number of lecture hours varies across disciplines.

Open University studies are subject to a fee (Study fee 15 euros per credit). Summer courses are free of charge for undergraduate students of the University of Helsinki who are enlisted as attending students at the moment of registration.

Studying at the Open University is considered part-time in nature, so no financial aid for students is available.

Studying includes attending lectures, participating in discussions, studying for exams, completing a variety of written tasks, searching the literature and navigating the practical issues related to studying.

Study skills – planning your studies, revising, writing, information gathering, language and IT skills – are the key to successful studying. Studying always requires work, but can also be rewarding.

University-level study is independent, and much depends on your own initiative. You will not be alone with your studies, however. Your fellow students and teacher will support you through your studies.