Erasmus exchange destinations
The faculties make the field-specific Erasmus agreements. The degree programme students of each respective faculty take precedence in the exchange admission process. More information on the Erasmus destinations can be obtained from your faculty’s mobility coordinator. The Exchange Destinations page features a temporary list of the University of Tampere exchange destinations. In the autumn of 2017, we will be implementing a new mobility system, which will enable you to browse available exchange destinations.
Information on the Erasmus programme
What is the Erasmus+ programme?
For students, the Erasmus+ programme provides an opportunity to participate in student exchange at foreign institutions of higher education and intern at companies or organisations involved in the programme. Degree students in all fields, regardless of their nationality, can complete an Erasmus-supported student exchange or internship period in an EU country, EEA country (Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein), Turkey or Macedonia. Erasmus exchanges and/or internships can last for a total of 12 months maximum for each of the three degree levels (bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctoral degree). Read more about the rights and responsibilities of Erasmus students in the Erasmus Student Charter. More information about Erasmus work placement.
For educational institutions, the Erasmus+ programme is an opportunity to cooperate with international partner schools. Through the programme, staff members of institutions of higher education can participate in teacher or other exchange at a foreign partner school. Other staff members can also complete exchange periods at foreign companies. More information on Erasmus teacher and staff exchange can be found on the university intranet. Contact person for staff exchange: Coordinator of International Education Laura Lalu.
The university applies for financial support for the Erasmus+ cooperation via a joint application to the Finnish National Agency for Education, which manages the Erasmus+ programme in Finland. The programme funding distributed by the Finnish National Agency for Education comes from the European Commission. The University of Tampere has more than 500 Erasmus student exchange positions in more than 200 European universities. This means that everyone interested in Erasmus exchange is sure to find a suitable destination!
Who is eligible for exchange?
Students approved for Erasmus exchange must have completed at least one year of studies and possess the academic and practical capabilities required for studies abroad. It is very important for exchange students travelling abroad to know the language of the country of destination. You should systematically work on your language proficiency before the exchange period by participating in Language Centre courses, for example.
More often than not, those who travel abroad for exchange are third or fourth year students who have already visualised what they want to achieve through their studies. However, there is nothing stopping you from completing an exchange period at an earlier or later time. Students at the early stages of their studies are naturally more likely to be able to transfer credit from the studies completed abroad, whereas students who are further along may be able to leverage the exchange period in their theses. As a general rule, any studies you complete abroad during an Erasmus exchange will be fully recognised as part of the degree you are completing at your home university.
Degree programmes started in 2012 and later include or can be supplemented with an internationalisation module, which can be completed by participating in internationalisation activities in Tampere and completing foreign-language courses or by travelling abroad for exchange studies or an internship. The established and financially supported Erasmus student exchange is an excellent alternative for completing the internationalisation module.
The availability of Erasmus student exchange positions exceeds the demand. There is plenty to choose from and positions are left unfilled each year. However, you should still take extra care in choosing your exchange destination. If you decide to travel abroad for exchange and use your time and effort there efficiently, every bit of that investment is sure to pay off in the end.
In the Erasmus+ programme, students can undertake multiple Erasmus study or internship periods during their studies. Erasmus exchanges and/or internships can last for a total of 12 months maximum for each of the three degree levels (bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctoral degree). During the transition phase, exchange and internship periods completed at the same degree level during the old Erasmus programme will be taken into account. For example: if a student has completed a 6-month exchange period as part of their bachelor’s degree within the Erasmus programme, they can undertake a further 6-month period within the same degree on the Erasmus+ programme (exchange or internship).
The degree cycle stage of a student completing a student exchange is determined based on the degree the student was completing when the exchange period began. Therefore, a student who will complete their bachelor’s degree in the spring can apply for a master’s level exchange for the autumn, for example, if they will be a master’s degree student in the autumn. In addition to the Erasmus programme, it is possible to take advantage of other exchange programmes.
The Erasmus programme is an excellent alternative for postgraduate students as well. During postgraduate studies, you can spend 12 months on an Erasmus exchange or internship. Under the Erasmus exchange programme, studies at foreign universities are free of charge and students are eligible for the Erasmus grant. It is a good idea to ask the supervisor of your dissertation for tips on suitable exchange destinations. Erasmus exchange arrangements are based on field- and level-specific Erasmus agreements. Doctoral students can find out more about possible exchange destinations from their faculties’ mobility coordinators.
What does the programme offer to the student?
Foreign exchange will also provide you with an excellent opportunity to improve your language proficiency. Through an Erasmus exchange, you can study the “smaller” European languages, which are always in demand. The exchange programme and the international expertise gained through it is sure to be an asset on the job market.
The Erasmus exchange will open up a wealth of future opportunities for you. It will improve your capability to work in an international environment, expand your horizons and help you understand cultural differences as well as your own background and nationality. The exchange will also give you the chance to discuss your field with other European students, take advantage of a different course offering and experience a differing academic culture. You may also gain the opportunity to study an entirely new field by selecting a new and interesting minor subject unavailable at the University of Tampere.
Utilising the exchange period in your studies
Applications to host universities must often be appended with an ECTS transcript, which can be obtained from the Registrar’s Office. Even if the transcript is not required, you should take it with you as it can help you select courses of the correct level at the host university. NettiOpsu can also be used to print out a transcript of records in English or send a PDF transcript to an e-mail address of your choice.
Before applying for an Erasmus exchange position, you should look into the course offering of the host university. This will help you to ensure that you will be able to complete genuinely useful and interesting studies during your year or semester abroad. When studying abroad, you can also supplement your degree with course units or modules that are not offered at your home university. They can be included in your degree’s free choice studies. Being proactive is important in determining the course offering of the host university, since not all universities may have made their teaching schedule available early on. This means that you must actively look for course information through websites or by contacting the host university directly. Your faculty can provide you with the contact information of the hosting department.
A variety of measures have been implemented to facilitate the comparability of studies: new two-tier degree programmes and the ECTS system have been adopted, information on Finnish curricula has been prepared and bulletins on the Finnish degree system have been posted on the English-language Curricula Guides website (link). The website features English translations of Finnish degree programmes. However, comparing studies completed in various countries remains a difficult task. In addition to this, many systems are very rigid: degree curricula do not include optional courses or free choice elements. If may be easier for you to gain access to advanced level courses, seminars and special courses if you can demonstrate that you have completed a lower university degree at your home university.
Each student going abroad for Erasmus exchange must complete a Learning Agreement, i.e. a study plan, for the exchange period regardless of whether or not the host university requires the document in the application phase. The electronic Learning Agreement document is sent to all students selected for Erasmus exchange along with other Erasmus documents. Please fill in the document with care. Discuss your plans with your HOPS instructor and request a signature for the Learning Agreement from the faculty’s mobility coordinator. With the Learning Agreement, you can also ensure your right to complete your planned studies at the host university. Once you have arrived at the host university, you can make changes using the Learning Agreement edit form based on more specific information on the teaching schedule. After the exchange, you must return the approved Learning Agreement (part I and possibly part II) to the International Office. Please note that the Learning Agreement is one of the mandatory exchange documents.
There are two main types of credit transfer: inclusion and substitution. The inclusion of studies in the degree means incorporating studies completed at a foreign institution of higher education directly into the degree as free choice studies. Studies completed abroad can also be used to substitute for courses in the University of Tampere curricula. The aim is that eligibility for substitution be evaluated flexibly on the basis of the level and scope of the studies. The studies completed do not need to be completely identical in content to the courses being substituted. More information on credit transfer from studies completed abroad.
Applying for the programme
The Erasmus application process involves two phases. First, you must apply for an Erasmus exchange position through your faculty. The first application period for Erasmus exchange is between January and February. At the beginning of the application period, the Centre for International Education will arrange an Erasmus info event where you can receive information on applying for Erasmus exchange and hear previous Erasmus exchange students talk about their experiences. See How to Apply.
Not all Erasmus exchange positions will be filled during the first round of applications, which means that supplementary applications are opened in the spring and early in the autumn. These enable students to apply for exchange positions through degree programmes or faculties other than their own. At this point, you should contact the mobility coordinator of the faculty that interests you to find out which disciplines you are entitled to study at the host university under the field-specific agreement made by the faculty in question! See application periods.
In the second phase (once the faculty has approved you as an Erasmus student and delivered your contact information to the host university), you will fill in the host university’s own application form to be delivered with appendices (e.g. ECTS transcript and Learning Agreement) to the university in question, which will then approve your application as the hosting party and send you an official letter of approval. Please note that your exchange will not be confirmed until you receive an official letter of approval or e-mail message from your host university. Many universities have made an online application form available on their website. Foreign universities’ application periods for students applying for the autumn semester usually end between April and July. At this stage, you should consult the faculty arranging the exchange for information on looking for housing in the city of destination and on any possible orientation courses.
If you would like to study abroad for an entire semester, you should start the process in the autumn semester of the year preceding your exchange year and obtain as much information as possible on the various alternatives. The application periods of many institutions of higher education do not begin until spring, but the application process is slow and overcoming the various bureaucratic hurdles may take surprisingly long – in other words, it pays to get started well in advance. In addition to this, finding out about the education on offer may take time if you do not have access to guides or informative websites.
If you are applying for exchange for one semester only, please check with your faculty’s mobility coordinator when you should submit your application. Most institutions of higher education have later application periods for applicants who wish to study abroad for the spring semester only, for example.
Be prepared to spend an entire semester or academic year at the host university, including orientation and exam periods, to get the most out of your exchange studies. For example, in the Nordic countries orientations and possibly even studies begin as early as August, and the exam periods take place in January and June. In many Southern European countries, however, the academic year does not begin until October and the exam period falls on June and July. Please take this into account when planning your exchange period, applying for a summer job and making other arrangements.
Although the faculties handle the official correspondence and obtain letters of approval and information on the host university for students, the importance of being active with the preparations cannot be stressed enough. If you feel that you have been waiting for the approval or other information for an unreasonably long time, notify your faculty’s mobility coordinator, because every exchange student should receive a letter of approval as well as information on housing, education and possible orientation and language courses, etc. before their departure.
Erasmus+ programme’s online language tests and courses
The Erasmus+ programme entails a web-based language proficiency test and language courses. Language tests are carried out if the student’s primary working language will be English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Greek, Swedish, Danish, Polish, Czech, Bulgarian, Croatian, Hungarian, Romanian or Slovak. The purpose of the language test is to provide you with information about the level of your language skills and to measure the development of your language skills during your time abroad. The language test is obligatory for all students partaking in the Erasmus+ programme, and only native speakers of the language of study are exempt. Students must complete the obligatory test before the exchange period and after their return.
The student and the University of Tampere are both informed of the results of the language test, but they are not provided to the host university. Based on the results of the online language test, the University of Tampere provides students with licences to online language coaching courses for independent language study. The exchange cannot be cancelled based on the test result, but students are provided with the opportunity to work on their proficiency through the language course. In contrast to the language testing, taking the online language course is voluntary.
Language tests and courses are carried out via the European Commission’s OLS online service (Online Linguistic Support Tool). Students require a license to take the language test and course. The University of Tampere distributes and coordinates licenses for the OLS online service. The University’s Erasmus coordinator monitors the completion of tests and courses. Students will receive details by e-mail when they are granted a language test licence, along with a link to use to take the test after the first grant instalment has been awarded. Licences for the language courses will be sent later. The second part of the test must be completed after the exchange.
Language courses for all languages covered by the OLS system (English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Greek, Swedish, Danish, Polish, Czech, Bulgarian, Crotian, Hungarian, Romanian or Slovak) should take place through the system – other language courses are no longer supported in these languages (for example intensive language courses offered by the host university before the semester).
Please note: Certificates or credits are not awarded for online language courses, nor can they be used to substitute for courses held by the university’s Language Centre.
More information on OLS language tests
Erasmus grant in the 2017–2018 academic year
All students approved for the programme will receive a grant once they have filled in and submitted the electronic grant agreement. The grant amount varies slightly each year. In the 2017–2018 academic year, the grant amount is based on the duration of the exchange in days. In addition to the exact length of the exchange, the grant amount is also influenced by the destination country. The Erasmus grant is €290/month and €9.66/day for extra days beyond full months for the following countries: Ireland, UK, Italy, Austria, Liechtenstein, Norway, France, Sweden and Denmark. For countries with a lower cost of living, the Erasmus grant is €240/month and €8/day for extra days beyond full months. These countries are the Netherlands, Belgium, Bulgaria, Spain, Iceland, Greece, Croatia, Cyprus, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Portugal, Poland, Romania, Germany, Slovakia, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Turkey, Hungary and Estonia.
The exchange must take place during the semesters of the host university. The grant is paid for the period which the student must be present at the host university. In other words, you must enter the first day on which you must be present at the destination (start of the semester or welcoming event of the orientation week, for example) as the start date of the exchange period and list the last day you are required to be present (last day of the exam period, for example) as the end date . Remember to check when the host university’s semester is set to begin officially, when the education will begin and when the possible final exams will be held. Erasmus grant is not paid for intensive language courses if the language to be studied is one of the OLS system languages. The amount of the Erasmus grant is ultimately determined based on the actual duration of your exchange!
The Erasmus grant is not regarded as taxable income, nor is it counted as part of your earnings in any monitoring of income in relation to student financial aid. The university’s payroll services automatically inform the Tax Administration of the Erasmus grant. However, you must also list the Erasmus grant in your tax declaration.
According to the ECTS system, each semester and academic year is equivalent to 30 ECTS credits and 60 ECTS credits, respectively.
The Erasmus grant is paid in two instalments: the first instalment will be paid before your departure and the second instalment will be paid after your return, once you have delivered the Letter of Confirmation regarding the duration of the exchange to the Erasmus office along with the signed Learning Agreement, submitted the travel report via NettiOpsu, completed the second part of the OLS language test and filled in the e-mail assessment form. Please note that the Letter of Confirmation must not be signed at the host university before the end of the exchange – no more than a week before the end.
The first instalment amounts to 80% of the total grant. The remaining 20% will be paid in the second instalment, unless the duration of the exchange period changes. If the Letter of Confirmation indicates that the actual exchange period has been shorter than intended, the second instalment will be smaller. If the exchange period has been significantly shorter than intended, the second instalment will not be paid and you may be required to return some of the grant funds you have already received. On the other hand, if the actual exchange period has been longer than intended (14 days or more), the second instalment will be paid in an amount that ensures that the total sum corresponds to the total grant to which you are entitled based on the exchange period. Payment of additional grant funds requires the grant agreement to be amended.
The purpose of the grant is to cover the travel costs and compensate for the differences in living costs. The grant is paid approximately one month before the beginning of the exchange period, in August–September for those who are leaving for the autumn semester or the entire academic year and in December–February for those leaving for the spring period, depending on the start date of the semester. Please note that the grant will be paid to your Finnish bank account.
If you decide to cancel or discontinue your studies abroad and return to Finland earlier than planned, please notify the university’s Erasmus coordinator and your faculty’s mobility coordinator immediately. Since the length of the exchange period affects the amount of grant to be paid, the grant must be paid back either fully or partially in some cases.
Erasmus exchange periods must last no less than 90 days or a full semester. Exchange periods shorter than three months are not eligible for the grant. If you would like to extend your exchange period to the spring semester, please contact the University of Tampere faculty that arranged the exchange and the international affairs office of the host university to confirm the extension no later than 30 days before the planned end of the original duration. Once the continuation of the exchange has been agreed upon with both faculties, notify the Erasmus coordinator of the matter to ensure that your grant coverage can be extended to include the second semester. This requires a change in the grant agreement.
The Erasmus grant can be awarded to a student for a total of 12 months at each three degree levels (bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and doctoral degree). Naturally, you can also apply for financial support for your exchange period from a variety of funds and foundations that provide such study grants. Information on these grants is available on the SYL website. However, funding from multiple separate programmes managed by the EU or the Finnish National Agency for Education cannot be used for the same exchange period.
If you intend to travel abroad for Erasmus exchange and have special needs (disability, illness or other physical or mental ailment that requires special support), you are eligible to receive an additional accessibility grant from the Erasmus programme. In these cases, you should contact the Erasmus coordinator. If you need special arrangements related to housing, mobility or studies, it is also advisable to reserve more time for making the preparations. Students who have underage children are also eligible for additional financial support. More information on additional grants is available on the Funding page -> Extra grants for exchange students and interns.
Erasmus student documents
Return the following documents to the Erasmus office within a month of the end of your exchange period. You can take the documents to the office personally, mail them to the address ‘Erasmus-toimisto, päätalo A110, FI-33014 Tampereen Yliopisto’, or send e-mail to the address erasmus(at)uta.fi.
- Students leaving for exchange must fill in the Learning Agreement 2017-2018 part I, docx before their departure. Please read the instructions for filling in the Learning Agreement, pdf carefully.
- Exchange students must fill in Learning Agreement 2017-2018 part II, docx during their exchange, if there are changes to the original information. Handed in together with part I.
- The Letter of Confirmation, pdf must not be signed before the end of the exchange – no more than a week (7 days) before the end.
- Travel reports on Erasmus exchange periods are submitted through NettiOpsu in the section International Exchanges. Please read the instructions first!
- Erasmus assessment form: students who have returned from their exchange period abroad are sent an invitation to fill in an electronic assessment form (Erasmus participant report) towards the end of the exchange. The form is accessible only to those who have received an invitation.
- After your exchange period, complete the second part of the language test via the OLS system. You will receive an invitation for this, too, automatically by email.
Remember to take care of credit transfer for your studies at the faculty once you receive an official transcript of records from your host university.
University’s Erasmus contact person: Noora Maja, erasmus(at)uta.fi (grants)
Advice regarding applications and exchange locations: faculties’ mobility coordinators