Student checklist | Open University

By selecting a degree programme you are able to see the general content as well as the possible degree programme-specific content. You do not have to select a degree programme to see the Open University's instructions.

Check schedules and other details

The course page of your course features the study schedule, teaching locations, course literature as well as information on the learning objectives, contents and mode of completion for the course. The course page will also have a link to the relevant online learning environment (Moodle or MOOC).

Activate your University of Helsinki user account

In connection with your enrolment, you will receive a username and password for the University of Helsinki information systems. Your user account gives you access to the online learning environment Moodle as well as the digital resources of the Helsinki University Library. You will also receive access to Microsoft’s Office 365 services along with a email address for the duration of your studies.

The username will not be sent to you separately, but rather you will gain access to it by activating your user account well before your studies are due to begin. 

Please note that you can activate your account on the day following your registration. At the earliest, the user account may begin to work one hour after you activated it. However, it can take up to 24 hours before the user account works. These delays are caused by data transfers occurring between various systems. The activation of the user account requires in-person or strong electronic identification.

Read more: University of Helsinki user account and instructions for activating the account

Please note, that as a rule, MOOC courses (Massive Open Online Courses) do not require a University of Helsinki user account, and in such cases, one will not be granted. 

Log in to the online learning environment (Moodle or MOOC)


Start using the email address

As a student at the open university, you will be granted access to Microsoft O365 services and a email address for the duration of your studies.

You can access your email by logging in at with your University of Helsinki username and password. Note that the username is exceptionally written in form

NOTE! By default, all study-related emails will be sent to your address unless you specifically direct your emails to another address.  

Read more: The email and other digital services 

Make a plan

Depending on your course and teacher, university studies can involve in-person or online lectures, reading, taking notes, written assignments, online discussions, groupwork and examinations.

Studying is rewarding and motivating, but it is also often hard work. We recommend you start planning how you intend to make room for your studies alongside the other activities and responsibilities in your life.

Remember that it is also possible to develop as a learner! The study skills page features tips for engaged reading and essay writing among other topics. 


Find the necessary course literature or other material

The Helsinki University Library is also available to open university students. Get a Helka library card for the Helsinki University Library in good time and start looking for your course literature. Also explore the Library’s instructions, training sessions and other services.

Digital e-books and articles are becoming increasingly common as course material. You can access digital resources with your University of Helsinki user account (see above: Activate your University of Helsinki user account) The digital resources can be accessed through the Library’s Helka database.

You may also be able to find your course literature in other libraries in your area or libraries of other institutions of higher education.


Take the examination or submit the learning assignment

Courses are usually completed through examinations, written assignments or a combination of the two. More information about the mode of completion is available on the course page and the online learning environment of the course. Examinations may be organised at the facilities of the University or its partner institution, or online.  

Congratulations, you have completed a course or study module!

You can browse your completed studies in the My Studyinfo service service or in the University of Helsinki's student information system Sisu

Please note that My Studyinfo service displays the status of open university students’ study rights as incomplete. Nevertheless, the course completion is final.
If you have completed all courses included in a study module, you may request that they be compiled into a study module. However, this is not necessary.
Read more: 

Special arrangements to support learning

As a student at the open university, we may support you through special arrangements in some learning situations. For example, you may be entitled to extended exam time limits or the use of a personal assistant. 

For special arrangements, you must provide the university with a doctor's certificate or an expert report (psychologist, speech therapist, physiotherapist, etc.) which explains which special arrangements you need and why.

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Instructions for students in adult education centres, summer universities or folk high schools

The practices, instructions and services listed here also largely apply to you if you are engaged in the University of Helsinki’s open university studies through one of our partner institutions (adult education centers, summer universities or folk high schools). The main difference is that your registration has two steps:  

  • You must first register with the institution organizing your studies.  
  • After this, register online as a University of Helsinki open university student. If necessary, you may request instructions on how to do this from your institution.  

When you register as an open university student, you will receive a University of Helsinki user account, access to the online learning environment Moodle and the digital resources of the Helsinki University Library, and your completed studies will be entered into the University of Helsinki’s student records. 

Refer to the contact person at your institution for all instructions on registering for the open university. The contact person can also answer your questions regarding the arrangements of your studies and the practices of your institution

Contact us

The open university’s teachers, education advisors, study advisors and the IT-Helpdesk can help you with any questions you may have.  

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