Accepting the study right and relocating to Finland

Got accepted as a doctoral student? Your next step is to accept your place of study and to enroll. Once that is done, you can start planning on moving to Finland and getting settled in Helsinki.

NB! Please note that the ongoing coronavirus situation effects relocating to Finland and starting your doctoral studies. For more information, please see further down the page.

When you are accepted as a doctoral student at the University of Helsinki you will receive an acceptance letter from your faculty. In the acceptance letter you will find instructions on how to accept your place of study and how to enroll for your first year as a doctoral student.

If you don't accept the place of study by the deadline given by the faculty, you will lose your right to study at the University of Helsinki.

Please note that a first-year student may register as non-attending for the first academic year for the following reasons only:

  • service under the Conscription Act (1438/2007), Non-Military Service Act (1446/2007), or Act on Women's Voluntary Military Service (194/1995);
  • maternity, paternity or parental leave;
  • the student cannot begin studies due to being incapacitated by personal illness or injury.

When your right to pursue a doctoral degree is registered in the student information system, your basic personal information is also registered. Also the information on which doctoral programme you belong to as well as the information on the activity of your studies, i.e. are you completing your studies full- or part-time, is registered in the student register.

If you have been granted a study right as a doctoral student already earlier, you can find more information on annual registration in the Instructions for Students -service.

One place rule will be extended to cover all education leading to a university degree. This change will affect programmes that begin on August 1, 2016 or later. This rule of one study place per term concerns all degree programme application options.

The main points are:

  • If you are offered more than one study place at a higher education institution leading to a university degree starting at the same term, you may accept only one of them.
  • This change affects also postgraduate studies of the licentiate and the doctor.
  • A place of study granted through a university-to-university transfer within Finland is not governed by this rule.
  • Accordingly, you may be completing several on-going degree programmes simultaneously, but only if your admission to these programmes has been granted in different terms.

Please note that the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) situation effects both relocating to Finland and the start of the spring semester in general.

With a certificate of student status you can prove that you are an attending doctoral student at the University of Helsinki. A certificate of student status will be sent by post to all applicants whose address is abroad, after their information has been saved in the university's student register.

Students residing in Finland can upload a certificate of student status from WebOodi after their study right has been registered and they have activated their user account. Further information on uploading the certificate from WebOodi is available in the Instructions for Students -service.

Once you have accepted the offered study place, your information will be saved to the University of Helsinki student register Oodi within a few weeks. You will be notified by email once your information has been saved. After this, you can activate your user account for the University of Helsinki IT systems. For further information on how to activate your user account, please see the instructions for new doctoral students in the Instructions for students -service.

After accepting your study place, it's time to start planning on relocating to Finland. The University of Helsinki Uni Arrival Advisor is an electronic service that will help you find your way to information related to e.g. immigration, insurance, taxing issues, public transportation and other important things you need to take into account when moving to a new country. Through the service you will get a personal checklist that guides you through the process of arriving in Finland and settling in Helsinki step by step.

Immigration and residence permits

  • Citizens of EU, Liechtenstein and Switzerland intending to reside and work in Finland for longer than three months must register their right to reside in Finland at the Finnish Immigration Service MIGRI.
  • Nordic citizens must register at the Local Register Office within one week from arrival in Finland in case their stay exceeds 6 months.
  • Citizens of other countries must apply for a residence permit if the intended stay in Finland is longer than three months. As a rule, all doctoral students apply for a residence permit for scientific research, independent of their source of funding. The residence permit needs to be applied for before arrival in Finland.
  • The residence permit is applied for from the Finnish Immigration Service MIGRI. You will need a hosting agreement from the University of Helsinki as a part of your residence permit application.
  • If you need a hosting agreement, please contact the Doctoral Student Services of your home faculty. Contact information for Faculty Doctoral Student Services is available in the Instructions for Students -service.
  • MIGRI letter for new postgraduate students arriving from abroad (pdf, opens in a new window)
  • Requesting a Finnish Identity Code in the immigration process is recommended for all doctoral students.