Tips for Study Success

Studying at a Finnish university is sometimes very differ­ent from studying elsewhere. At the beginning, it might be confusing to build a schedule or coordinate all the courses and to take the responsibility in planning one’s own studies. “Academic freedom” means various things: it refers to independence of the universities, but it also refers to an individual student’s studies. Students are responsible for their own study plan and follow-up of their own learning and progress. Student and teacher tutors will help to get started with your studies.

Planning your studies

The purpose of study planning is to help students to accomplish a useful degree within a reasonable schedule. Student counseling assists you in decision making, choices, and problem solving.

In the initial stage you are assisted by tutor students, that is, people who have started before you. Later, you can turn to tutor teachers, International Coordinators in your home faculty. If needed, you can also turn to the University Study Counsellor.

Study counseling is also given by faculty Heads of Study Affairs, faculty office Student Secretaries, and the Student Services. Faculty Heads of Study Affairs also help in general issues related to studies. Student Secretaries assist in issues related to teaching schedules, exam registration, and the credit record. The Student Services assist in issues related to registration, student financial aid, and registration certificates. Study subject-specific aid is given by the respective teachers during their reception hours.

When planning your studies, use the faculty’s study guide and visit Weboodi or the bulletin board. You should also check the Language Centre’s pages at and, according to your personal interests, familiarize yourself with the supply of the other faculties.

Personal Study Plan is compiled degree specifically at the beginning of your studies, together with your teacher tutor.

Studying Skills

University students must have studying skills for example in the areas of information retrieval, academic reading (knowing how to focus on essential knowledge), and time management. You can learn information retrieval skills on the Scientific Information Retrieval course. Based on your interests, you can also take the Academic Studying Skills course.

Learning Strategies

By learning strategies we refer to the methods or practices employed in learning tasks, for example in preparing for a literature exam or a discussion. Students utilize various learning strategies when they acquire knowledge. The chosen strategy dictates the nature and method of learning. Students use strategies in processing and memorizing information and in recalling it from memory. They resort to learning strategies to facilitate learning, to speed it up, and to make it more pleasant.

There are surface- and deep-oriented students. Surface-oriented students focus on detail, and they often try to learn things by hard. They run the risk of forgetting things quickly. Deep-oriented students pursue to understand content and to create a bird’s-eye view of things. They are able to grasp things and to place them in larger contexts.

Students can also be holistically or serially oriented. A holistically oriented student can see larger wholes with a bottom line. From a larger whole the student proceeds to details. A serially oriented student starts from small details on the way toward a larger whole.

Learning Styles

There are different ways to learn. Most of us have a learning style based on one of the senses. We use all of the senses for learning, of course, but memorizing occurs optimally through particular stimuli.

Auditory learners get the best learning results by memorizing speech. They should participate in lectures as much as possible. Visual learners get the best results by memorizing figures and charts. They are advised to learn from figures and to draw up conceptual models. Kinesthetic learners get the best results through motion-based memorization. They should write notes on what they read.

Time Management

Time management is a key skill for university students. It is essential in order to make enough time for both studying and socializing. You must plan your time realistically by paying attention to your studying practices and the other sectors of your life. Thorough time management is beneficial, and you should stick to your plans as far as possible!

Forms of Studying

University students must know how to write scientific texts such as exam answers, study journals, and essays. The instructions below have been written by teachers in tourism research, but they apply to other subjects as well. Other study forms are also used, for example exercises and case studies. The relevant instructions are usually provided at the beginning of a course.