Have you ever wondered which the most welcoming universities in Finland are? Well, the purpose of this article is just that – to list the universities in Finland with the highest acceptance rates and provide a brief overview of each of them.

Finland has the 14th best higher education system in the whole world. Also, higher education in the country is absolutely free for local students, students from the EU, the European Economic Area, and Switzerland. Last but not least, non-EU students who enroll in graduate or undergraduate programs taught in the local language or in Swedish are also exempt from paying tuition fees.

Which University Has the Highest Acceptance Rate in Finland?

The university in Finland that has the highest acceptance rate should be either University of Eastern Finland or the University of Oulu. The University of Eastern Finland has an estimated acceptance rate of 21% while the University of Oulu has an estimated acceptance rate of 20%.

In order to increase your chances of admission, make sure to apply to a wide range of universities in Finland, and if you want to increase your chances even more, try to look at courses offered by institutions in countries other than Finland.

Universities in Finland with High Acceptance Rates

1. University of Eastern Finland

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 21%

Our top university with the highest acceptance rate in Finland is a relatively young university in Finland. It was founded in 2010, following the merger of the University of Joensuu and the University of Kuopio. Despite having more than 15,000 students, seven percent of whom are international, the University of Eastern Finland has only four faculties.

This university is one of the best places in Finland to earn a degree in Philosophy. The Faculty of Science and Forestry also offers a large number of Master’s programs taught in English. Based on past admission reports, we could estimate the school’s admission rate at about 21%.

2. University of Oulu

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 20%

Established in 1958, this is a medium-sized university in Oulu, Finland with about 13,000 full-time students. Its main campus is in Linnanmaa, less than 5 km from downtown Oulu. The academic focus is on Business, Engineering, and Economics.

The university offers more than twenty Master’s programs taught in English, but all of its undergraduate programs are taught in Suomi – the local language in Finland. This is also one of the best places in Finland to pursue a degree in Arctic Studies.

An interesting fact about the University of Oulu: this is the alma mater of Finland’s former President and Nobel Prize laureate for 2008 Martti Ahtisaari. With a pretty high average acceptance rate of 20%, this university in Finland is competitive.

3. University of Turku

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 17%

Located in Turku in southwestern Finland, this is one of the oldest universities in the country with roots going back to 1920. With an annual student enrollment of just under 20,000, this is also one of the largest universities in Finland. The share of international students is just over 10%

This is one of the best places in the country to pursue a degree in Humanities. If you do not speak the local language, you can choose from a wide range of Master’s programs that are taught in English. Last year, it had the third-highest acceptance rate in Finland and the average acceptance rate was around 17%. However, in some faculties such as the Faculty of Law, it was as low as 4%.

4. Aalto University

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 15%

This university came into being in 2010 when the Helsinki University of Technology merged with the Helsinki School of Economics and the University of Art and Design. Named after Alvar Aalto, one of Finland’s greatest architects of all time, the university now has more than 17,000 students that are taught in six different schools. The academic focus is on Design & Architecture, Business, Chemical Engineering, and Science.

This university is very welcoming to foreign students, as it offers as many as seven Bachelor’s Programs taught in English. Not surprisingly, over 20% of the university’s full-time students come from non-EU countries. It is not particularly difficult to secure admission to Aalto, as the university’s latest acceptance rate is about 15%.

5. University of Helsinki

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 13%

Located in Finland’s capital, Helsinki, this university is also the oldest, the biggest, and the most popular higher education institution in the country. For several years now, the university has resided among the Top 100 Universities in the World and its beginnings can be traced back to 1640.

This is a medium-sized university with just over 22,000 full-time international students, and about six percent of them are from countries outside the EU. As of fall 2019, the Faculty of Science with the University of Helsinki has launched its Bachelor’s Program in Science taught entirely in English – the only undergraduate program in English offered by the university so far. However, the options for a Master’s degree taught in English are numerous. This is a rather competitive university with an average acceptance rate of about 13%.

6. Tampere University

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 9%

Located in the very heart of the city of Tampere, this is Finland’s second most popular university. It was established following the merger of the University of Tampere with the Tampere University of Technology at the beginning of 2019. Tampere is Finland’s third-largest city with students making up five percent of its population.

The university currently has about 20,000 full-time students and six faculties. About five percent of them come from abroad. The new school has stepped on the strong academic traditions of the original University of Tampere, which was established in 1925.

This university offers only two Bachelor’s Programs taught in English – Early Childhood Education and Science and Engineering. However, there are more than twenty Master’s Programs to choose from with English being the language of instruction.  This is a highly selective university with a most recently reported admissions rate of about 9%.

 7. University of Jyväskylä

  • Estimated Acceptance Rate: 7%

We conclude our list of universities in Finland with the highest acceptance rates with the University of Jyväskylä. Located in Jyväskylä, the largest city in central Finland, this university has long-established traditions dating back to 1934. Now, it has over 15,00 full-time students and five percent of them come from abroad.

The university offers a wide variety of Master’s Degree Programs taught in English. The most popular of them are Biological and Environmental Science, Cognitive Computing and Collective Intelligence, and Corporate Environmental Management.

This is a highly selective university with an average acceptance rate of just 7%. The famous Finnish designer and Architect Alvaro Aalto, mentioned above, is one of the most famous alumni of the University of Jyväskylä.


I hope that this article on universities in Finland with high acceptance rates was helpful. If you are interested in studying in Europe, make sure to check out Available Programs in Europe for International Students.