Finland is known as a country that puts a lot of effort into cherishing equity and equality at all levels. As a result, Finns and people of other nationalities who reside in Finland expect to have a voice and to enjoy relative autonomy. This blog post highlights the aspects that prove this statement.
The concept of equity and equality trickles down in universities, so it is easy for anyone to become the master of their own Master’s once they become part of the Finnish education system. Based on my personal experiences and observations, there are a few hidden aspects that contribute to the uniqueness of Master’s studies in Finland.
A tailor-made study plan
Of course, at a university level, students all around the world usually have freedom to choose what they want to study, even though there are still some limitations. Similarly, most of the courses in my study programme, Early Language Education for Intercultural Communication, are obligatory. However, there is still room for students to choose the courses that are personally meaningful and relevant to them. Some Master’s programmes even allow the students to do most of their studies selectively. It is also possible to discuss with the supervisor if we want to obtain the credits by other means, such as writing a report on school visits and being involved in voluntary activities. This may be allowed if the alternatives are related to the objectives of the study programme. Internships or traineeships can also be counted as a part of studies.
Facilitative environments for learning mobility
During the first few months of my Master’s studies in Finland, I spent some time orientating myself with how the system worked. I gradually noticed how much effort the university put into getting the best out of every student. This has shown me how they appreciate each student as an individual.
Clearly, the process of learning is not expected to occur only in the classroom. Students are provided with different kinds of learning spaces that are not limited to only fixed tables and chairs. Bean bags, special seats for people who want extra privacy and study rooms are all located in the buildings that students are free to use. A special library access badge is also available for those who want to use the service outside of normal working hours, such as late evenings and weekends.
Feedback - both positive or negative - is valued at Finnish universities. Students are asked, or sometimes even required, to give feedback at the end of each course. Most of the time, I was personally contacted by the professors or the related personnel when I gave a comment that needed clarifications. There is also a "Feedback Week" in which campus users are encouraged to give their opinions on the campus, the canteens or even the student dormitories. I see this feedback system as an effective means of gathering students’ opinions and another way to show that they are being respected in the university system.
All in all, studying in Finland is a heavenly experience for people who want to be the master of their Master's. This system is learner-centered and truly for the benefits of all the students.
Learn more about studying in Finland
Finland University serves as a gateway to one of the finest Finnish multidisciplinary Universities on offer. If you are interested in studying in Finland and would like to find out more, the downloadable Finland University guide provides a quick starting package about how to apply for International Master’s Degree Programmes and Scholarships at the member universities of Finland University.
Interested? Download the guide and learn more!