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Finland University Scholarships for International Students 2024

Last updated on December 19, 2023

Finland is a country located in Northern Europe known for its high-quality education system, innovative technology sector, and high standard of living. It offers world-class education with minimal or no tuition fees for international students. With its globally ranked universities, Finland provides an ideal destination for international students looking to pursue their higher education abroad on scholarships.Finland University Scholarships for International Students In this article, we will look at the top scholarships and funding opportunities offered by Finnish universities and the Finnish government for international students aspiring to study in Finland in 2024.

An Overview of Studying in Finland (Finland University Scholarships for International Students)

Finland has a long tradition of academic excellence and is home to some of the best universities in the world. Finnish higher education institutions are world-renowned for their high-quality education and research.

Some key aspects that make Finland an attractive study abroad destination:

  • Tuition-free education – Finland offers free education at all levels, including bachelor’s and master’s degrees at public universities for domestic and international students.
  • World-class universities – Finland has 14 universities featured in global rankings like QS and Times Higher Education. The University of Helsinki and Aalto University are the top-ranked institutions.
  • Innovative pedagogy – The Finnish education model focuses on interactive learning, critical thinking, and pushing students to their full potential.
  • Research opportunities – Undergraduate students can get involved in research projects and often publish in peer-reviewed journals before graduation.
  • Multicultural society – Finland has a very egalitarian society and the Finnish lifestyle and values promote openness to diversity.
  • Easy student visa – International students can easily get a residence permit for studies and even work part-time during their studies.
  • Part-time work opportunities – International students can work up to 25 hours a week to support their living, allowing them to gain work experience.

Finland provides an interactive, flexible, and cross-disciplinary learning environment to nurture the talents of international students. However, students may need to secure scholarships and funding to cover their living costs like accommodation, health insurance, food, etc.

Read More: Best Travel Insurance Policies in Finland

Next, we will look at the major government and university scholarships available in Finland for international students.

Finnish Government Scholarships for International Students

The Finnish government offers various fully-funded scholarships for international students from developing countries to pursue bachelor’s, master’s, PhD, and post-doctoral studies in Finland.

1. Finland Government Scholarship Pool

The Finland Government Scholarship Pool is the main scholarship program funded by the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture (EduFI) for students from developing countries. Scholarships are awarded for full-time master’s and PhD degree programs at Finnish universities starting in August/September 2024.

Eligibility: Citizens of developing countries (on DAC list) pursuing master’s or doctoral degree at Finnish universities.

Scholarship coverage:

  • Inclusive monthly allowance for living expenses
  • Full coverage of tuition fees
  • Insurance coverage
  • Return economy class air ticket

Application timeline: Typically opens in January and deadline in February/March

Application process: Online application via EduFI portal, documents include previous transcripts, research plan, 2 referee letters, proof of English, CV, passport pages etc.

2. CIMO Fellowships

CIMO (Centre for International Mobility) awards around 150 fellowships for international students and researchers annually to study in Finland for 3-12 months. It is aimed at postgraduate, doctoral and postdoctoral levels in all fields.

Eligibility – Students/researchers from any country (except Finnish citizens or residents) can apply. Basic eligibility is being enrolled in a university during the fellowship period.

Scholarship coverage – CIMO fellowship includes a monthly allowance of €800-1200 for living costs and insurance. Limited travel grants are also awarded.

Application timeline – Opens in January and deadline by end of March annually.

Application process – Online application with education background, research plan, CV, invitation letter etc.

3. Fullbright-Finland Grants

The renowned Fullbright program operates in Finland to facilitate educational exchange between scholars, professionals, and students from the USA and Finland.

Eligibility – Open to U.S. graduate students, professionals, and researchers to study/research or teach in Finland.

Scholarship coverage – Includes travel costs, living stipend for up to one academic year, accident and health insurance.

Application timeline – Deadline in August/September annually for programs starting the next year.

Application process – Online form, educational transcripts, 3 letters of recommendation, CV, research proposal and interview.

University Scholarships in Finland for International Students

In addition to government funding, many Finnish universities offer scholarships for international students at bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level. Here are some major ones:Finland University Scholarships for International Students1. University of Helsinki Scholarships

The University of Helsinki is the largest and highest-ranked university in Finland. It offers several scholarships for international students:

  • Master’s Program Scholarships – Partial merit-based scholarships awarded by each faculty, covers 25-100% of tuition fee of the program. Approx. 100 scholarships awarded.
  • Doctoral Program Scholarships – Covers living costs and full tuition fees, 10-15 scholarships awarded annually.
  • UH Partnership Scholarships – Awarded to students from the University of Helsinki partner universities to encourage student exchange. It covers tuition fees and partial living costs.

2. Aalto University Scholarships

The prestigious Aalto University offers the following scholarships for international bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral students:

  • Aalto University Scholarships – Covers living costs worth €10,000 per year for intensely talented international students. Around 50 awarded annually.
  • Aalto Science Institute Scholarships – Full tuition scholarship for master’s students majoring in science and engineering. Total 35 scholarships.
  • Mikkeli Campus Scholarship – Merit-based full tuition fee scholarship for bachelor’s and master’s students at Mikkeli campus.

3. Tampere University Scholarships

Tampere University awards the Tampere University Scholarship to a selected group of talented international students enrolled in bachelor’s or master’s degree programs at the university.

  • Up to 15 full scholarships are awarded annually covering both tuition fees and living costs.
  • The scholarship is initially awarded for the first year of studies, and can be extended for the full degree duration subject to satisfactory academic progress.

4. University of Oulu Scholarships

The University of Oulu has an International Scholarship Program to support talented international degree students. The key scholarships are:

  • Oulu University Scholarships – Awarded to 35 top students enrolling in undergraduate and postgraduate degree programs. It covers tuition fees and provides a monthly allowance.
  • President’s International Scholarships – Awarded to 3-5 students for master’s studies, and covers living costs and tuition fully.
  • Humanities International Master’s Scholarship – 5 full tuition scholarships for international students in humanities master’s programs.
  • UB Scholarships – Scholarships funded by private foundations and external donors open to degree students from specific countries or fields of study.

Apart from these, many other Finnish universities like LUT University, University of Jyvaskyla, University of Eastern Finland etc. also offer international student scholarships to support brilliant students and researchers from abroad.

Tips to Win Finland Scholarships for International Students

Here are some top tips to help you strengthen your scholarship application to study in Finland:

✔️ Start researching and applying early

Application deadlines generally fall between January to April annually. Start preparing your documents and researching scholarship options at least 12 months in advance.Finland University Scholarships for International Students✔️ Focus on academic excellence

Finland awards merit-based scholarships to students with outstanding academic achievements. Having a strong GPA, publications, academic awards etc. can make your application shine.

✔️ Prepare a persuasive personal statement

Convey your academic passion, research interests, career goals, and motivations to study in Finland. Align it with the scholarship program objectives.

✔️ Get strong recommendation letters

Ask professors or supervisors who know you well to write reference letters highlighting your skills, knowledge and potential for advanced studies.

✔️ Craft an exceptional research proposal

For doctoral and postgraduate research scholarships, the quality of your research proposal matters a great deal. Make it compelling and specific.

✔️ Show language proficiency

English is the language of instruction in Finnish universities. Take language tests like IELTS, TOEFL to prove you meet the minimum required score.

Read More: Hungary Scholarships Without IELTS

✔️ Highlight extracurricular activities

Things like volunteer work, sports, music, debate clubs portray you as a well-rounded student and stand out in scholarship applications.

Preparing an outstanding scholarship application takes time and effort. But winning a scholarship to study in Finland will make it easier to achieve your academic dreams!

FAQs on Scholarships for Studying in Finland

Here are answers to some common questions asked by international students about scholarships in Finland.

Are Finnish universities tuition-free for international students?

Finnish universities do not charge tuition fees for bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for citizens of EU/EEA countries. However, students from outside EU/EEA have to pay tuition fees ranging from €6,000-18,000 per year for English-medium degree programs.

PhD programs remain tuition-free for all international students in public universities.

Which exams are required to apply for Finland scholarships?

To apply for university scholarships in Finland, international students need to prove their English proficiency through standardized tests like IELTS or TOEFL. The minimum required scores are often 6.5-7.0 in IELTS and 79-100 in TOEFL iBT.

Some programs may also require GRE or GMAT exam scores in the application.

Can I work part-time along with Finland scholarship?

International students can take up part-time work up to 25 hours a week with their student residence permit even if they have a scholarship. Many students choose to work to gain professional experience and support their living expenses.

But full-time employment is not allowed during degree studies in Finland for non-EU students.

What is the cost of living in Finland for international students?

According to official estimates, students in Finland require around €700-1000 per month to cover cost of food, housing, health insurance, transport, household items, winter clothing and other living expenses. Rental costs are higher in cities like Helsinki.

Students from non-EU countries need to prove sufficient funds to cover the living costs when applying for student residence permit. Scholarships that provide a monthly stipend help international students meet the cost of living in Finland.

Does Finland charge application fees for scholarships?

Most Finnish universities and public funding agencies like EduFi, CIMO do not charge application or processing fees for their scholarship programs.

However, students have to cover visa costs, health insurance and flight tickets to Finland themselves in most cases.

When should I apply for Finland scholarships?

The application period for Finnish government and university scholarships generally opens around January and closes between March to June annually. The scholarship start date is August/September aligned with the academic year.

So it is best to apply 12-18 months in advance before your planned enrollment at a Finnish university to secure funding.

Pursuing higher education in Finland provides an outstanding learning experience for international students. With world-class research facilities, interactive pedagogy and merit-based scholarship options, Finland offers the right ingredients to nurture talent. I hope this article provided you with useful insights on Finland scholarships for international students to make your study abroad dreams come true!

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