Washington Signature
[ Search and Navigation ]   [ View Full Site ]
Offices & Services

Study Abroad

Finland: University of Oulu

The Washington College in Finland program is a full exchange program based at the University of Oulu. Founded in 1958, the University of Oulu is a young, rapidly developing institution.

Today, the University of Oulu is the second largest university in the country with an enrollment of approximately 11,000 students. Located about four miles north of the town center, the main part of the university is on the Linnanmaa campus, a complex of modern classrooms, libraries, offices laboratories, sports facilities and residence halls.

Bordered by Sweden, Norway, Russia and the Baltic Sea, the Republic of Finland is located in the northernmost part of Europe. Finland’s relatively remote geographical position has helped the country remain rich in vegetation and wildlife. You can still drink water from most lakes and rivers, observe the wildlife, and go fishing for pike, salmon, or trout.

With a population of 105,000, Oulu is the cultural, commercial and administrative center for the whole of central and northern Finland. Traveling is easy as all areas of Finland are accessible by train, bus or car; however, with the various sporting and cultural activities offered in the spacious Oulu region, students may not feel the need to wander very far.


Classes will be taught by University of Oulu faculty members. Exchange student advising will be done by the student’s respective department.


All well-qualified sophomores and juniors are eligible to apply for the exchange program with University of Oulu. This program is open to students in all majors. Students should meet the following prerequisites:

  • GPA of 2.75 or above. Strong academic record. Evidence of good character, maturity, and motivation.
  • Ability and willingness to adapt to a foreign environment.

The cost of international travel between the United States and Finland, local transportation while in Finland, health insurance, and personal expenses are the responsibility of the student applicant unless other arrangements have been made. Students should make an appointment to speak to the Director of Student Financial Aid to discuss the financial aspects of the program they plan to attend.

Living Arrangements

Students will be housed in residence halls of the Northern Finland Student Housing Foundation. Most of the units are apartments with shared kitchen and bathroom facilities and private single study-bedrooms furnished with desks, bookshelves, beds, closets, and drawers. Saunas, TV rooms, and laundrettes are also shared by the residents of each unit. The University of Oulu Office of International Relations will assist students in arranging suitable accommodation.


Students can take courses in the following disciplines: Finnish, Modern European Languages, Scandinavian Studies (Semester 1), Northern Cultures and Societies (Semester 2), Northern Women Studies (Semester 2), Japanese Studies, American Studies, and Northern Nature and Environment Studies.

Approximate Semester Dates

  • Semester 1: Early-September to mid-December
  • Semester 2: Mid-January to late-May or one academic year