Aalto University
Aalto University

Aalto University is a multidisciplinary and innovative university located in Espoo, Finland, founded in 2010. It has good collaboration with SUTD and combines technology, art, and business in a unique way. It has a strong background in design and artificial intelligence education. Aalto University is recognized as one of Finland’s leading universities and ranked highly in international university rankings.

Aalto has 2 terms in one year, and 3 periods in each term, and there are plenty of courses available covering various topics. Different courses have different duration as well, ranging from 1-3 periods according to the number of credits and level of difficulty (usually). Thus we have the freedom to schedule our own study calendars as long as the total credits meet the standard. There are no restrictions on the number of courses we can take, and other departments also offer interesting programs that are open to the whole university (even for students from other universities as well).

Although English is not an official language in Finland, it pretty much seems so. Almost all Finns speak very very good English, and it is also the case in all Nordic countries. Therefore, finding English courses is never a problem in Aalto, and there are also many Finnish students taking English courses. Communication with other students or professors is smooth since everything can be communicated in English effectively. Similar to or better than Singapore, the hierarchy between professors and students is pretty flat. There’s no need for you to write “Dear Sir/Madam” etc. in the email, instead, you can just start by “Moi!” or “Hei!” (Hi in Finnish) and directly continue with the issues you wanna ask. While most of the undergrads are Finnish, there are lots of international students pursuing Master/Ph.D. degrees.

Personally, I have taken 11 courses, 35 credits in total (required minimum around 30). 6 credits go to Language courses (e.g. basic Finnish), and the rest for computer science-related courses (offered by the Department of computer science and the Department of electrical engineering). The workload is reasonable if you don’t aim to get 5.0 out of 5 for the grades. But passing is by no means considered a problem as long as you make some sort of effort. Generally speaking, if you are viewing this blog in order to plan for GEXP to Aalto, don’t worry so much about academic aspects. Everything will be fine.

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