Studying an LLM (Master of Laws) in Finland
Finland is the eight largest country in Europe and an attractive study destination for international students. It is a Nordic Republic, located in northern Europe and its neighbouring countries are Sweden, Norway and Russia. It has two official languages Swedish and Finnish. The capital city of Finland is Helsinki, which is a scenic city located on the shores of Baltic Sea and has a population of over 600,000. The Finnish way of life represents a unique combination of living in a Nordic democracy and a member of the European Union – it is a modern state, with a sophisticated urban life, however it still preserves its rich cultural heritage and diverse natural environment.Find LLM programs in Finland
While English is not the official language in Finland, it is widely spoken throughout the country, especially among younger people, so those who do not speak a word of Finnish or Swedish won’t have difficulties communicating! There is much commercial activity and industry, such as metal manufacturing and engineering, forestry jobs, paper product production and more recently technology industries. The public transport system is well developed and accessible which makes moving around within the country easy. As the country is sparsely populated – only 5.4 million people – traffic jams are rare.
Where to study in Finland
Finland has an educational system which is highly reputed worldwide. There are various institutions that offer LLM programs in Finland including Åbo Akademi University, University of Eastern Finland, University of Helsinki, University of Lapland, University of Turku.
The specialisations offered by the Finnish universities include international human rights law, European energy law and policy, business law, public international law, international and comparative law and law and information society.
Admissions and applications
Students are eligible to apply for a Master of Laws provided they have a bachelors degree in law. The admission is based on the application forms submitted – there is no written test. Students must satisfy the academic criteria for the specific program and university they are interested in attending. They are advised to consult the website of the specific school of their choice. For programs taught in English, it is also mandatory to satisfy that you are proficient in English. This can be done through achieving a successful score in an English language test such as IELTS or TOEFL.
Tuition Fees and Living Costs
The costs of studying for an LLM in Finland are lower than in some Western countries, for example the UK or USA. On average the tuition fees range from €8,000-€10,000, however, this figure obviously varies from institution to institution so check the exact amount on the website of your preferred university.
The cost of living depends on the area of Finland that you choose to live in and the difference cost of living between cities and other more rural locations can be significant. And the capital city, Helsinki, is the most expensive place to live. The cost of living will also depend on personal lifestyle, whether you live in student halls, shared accommodation, eat out or cook yourself and on what social activities you enjoy doing. We estimate that on average a student would require approximately €500-700 per month.
Visa requirements and Immigration
EU citizens do not require a visa to study in Finland. All non-EU citizens must obtain a residence permit for study longer than three months. Students must consult the Finnish embassy/consulate in their home country to obtain information regarding visa requirements.
In order to obtain a visa to live and study in Finland, you must provide proof of admission into a Finnish institution, as well as the ability to support yourself financially during the course. In order to ensure that you get the visa in time it is highly recommended that you apply at least eight weeks before the start of your course date.
What to do in Finland when you aren’t studying
Finland is extremely scenic and as a result nature forms an integral part of the Finnish life. There are vast expanses of great outdoors – forests, lakes, islands and coastline – and these add up to make outdoor activities and water sports a popular recreational activity. In terms of student life outside campus, there is much to see and explore. There are a number of exciting activities available to students including skiing, golfing, fishing, lake activities like water skiing, boating and kayaking. The winters offer students a whole host of winter sports such as skiing, snowboarding and ice hockey. If eating out is your thing you’re bound to enjoy Finnish cuisine, and there are numerous restaurants, cafés, bars and clubs – particularly in Helsinki – to suit each individual’s taste.
Due to its northern location and proximity to the North Pole, the days in summers can be extremely long – while in the winter they are very short. In Finnish Lapland, the northernmost part of the country, the sun doesn’t set for around eight weeks in summer, whereas in winter it doesn’t rise above the horizon for several months!
Finland experiences four distinctive seasons which can result in extreme conditions. While summers are warm, winters can be extremely cold with lots of snow! International students – especially those from warmer climes – will want to be prepared for the weather conditions.
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