General about the study plan
If you have not yet read about the teaching offered at your target university, do it now! This is often the most challenging part of the whole process, but do not get discouraged. Select an appropriate number of courses that are suitable for your degree at the University of Helsinki. Read more on how to plan the studies for exchange from here.
The number of courses to be entered in the study plan at the application stage:
European destinations: 30 ECTS per semester irrespective of the duration of the semester.
Other destinations: See the minimum requirements for exchange studies in the introductory text for the target university in the section Exchange opportunities around the world.
You will find information on comparisons between the credit systems in different counties under the section "How will the number of credits be converted?"
Find out which courses you can complete at your destination, for example, as follows:
- Read the target university’s website and search for courses available to exchange Students. Select courses in a field covered by the exchange agreement.
- University bilateral agreements outside of Europe: See the courses available at your target university in the section Exchange opportunities around the world.
If you cannot find information on courses by following the instructions above, you can contact the target university’s exchange coordinator.
Target universities may have restrictions on what courses exchange students are allowed to study. For example, the host university may require that you have completed your Bachelor’s degree before you can study Master’s level courses.
Remember that a plan is always just a plan. Learning agreements must often be drawn up based on the courses the target university offered in the academic year before your exchange. The more compulsory courses you intend to substitute for exchange studies, the more detailed your learning agreement should be.
The degree you are including your studies to can also be the degree (Master's degree) you are planning to attend after your Bachelor’s degree. In some cases, it may be good to do two Learning agreement plans. The second plan can be made in a free format as a word document.
- In many study programmes, it is possible to complete the optional study module abroad. See more information under the section recognition and validation.
- If you intend to substitute a certain compulsory course in your degree with studies completed abroad, ensure the substitutability of the course already at the planning stage, for example by contacting the teacher in charge of that course.
Creating a study plan (learning agreement)
In the exchange application, the study plan of your exchange studies for your primary destination (i.e. learning agreement) is drafted in Sisu. Add optional exchange studies into your primary curriculum as study drafts. You can consult our Instructions for making a study plan. Add compulsory studies to be completed during a student exchange to the timeline in Sisu. You can consult our instructions for adding compulsory studies to Sisu. There is no need to make a separate attachment to your plan since a student exchange specialist will look at your plan in Sisu. Contact the International Exchange Services and Education Cooperation if have problems with doing your Sisu study plan.
The study plan in Sisu does not have to be fully ready to be suitable for an exchange application. However, it must include the following studies:
- All the exchange studies you plan.
- All compulsory courses of your degrees that you have completed and also the ones you have not completed yet.
- All of your credits that count towards your degree and have been registered by the date of making the exchange studies application (including any credits earned that you do not intend to use for your degree).
If you plan to study during your exchange for both your bachelor’s and your future master’s degree please make a plan in Sisu that shows you’ll be in an exchange during the completion of both degrees. In some cases, you may want to draft two alternative study plans, one of which you can add as a separate attachment. Do this, for example, if you plan to apply to a master's program or field of study other than your primary master's option.
If you are applying to more than one university, make a study plan for your first exchange destination in Sisu. Make the study plans for the other exchange destinations, one per destination, separately, and attach these as PDF documents in your application in Mobility Online. Each study plan must indicate where you want to place the exchange courses in your degree requirements at the University of Helsinki after your return when you apply for the transfer of the exchange credits. Please indicate in your application if you are planning to replace compulsory courses in your degree requirements with studies at an exchange university. For optional studies, list the names of the courses, and the number of credits for each course you intend to take at the exchange university. See an example of a study plan.
Language studies during exchange studies
- The Language Centre is responsible for the recognition of the compulsory language studies included in the degree. Instructions of the Language Centre. Plan courses into Sisu's timeline.
- Language studies completed in other universities in Finland or abroad can be included in Language Centre modules upon agreement with the module coordinator. Plan study courses during the exchange into Sisu as study drafts.
- You can also include exchange studies in your degree as optional studies. Draw them up in Sisu as study drafts.
Making thesis work during exchange studies
If you plan to work on your thesis during the exchange, attach the Agreement for Thesis work form (docx.) as an attachment to the application instead of a study plan. You may do thesis work only in exchange destinations in Europe (Erasmus+ and Nordplus) and some unit-level destinations outside of Europe (Faculty and unit bilateral agreements). When applying for the exchange placement from the University of Helsinki, preliminary approval from an exchange coordinator at the host university is sufficient. However, you must find an academic co-supervisor from the host university before the beginning of the exchange period.