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New students

Congratulations on your study place and warmly welcome to Centria! Thank you for choosing us! On this page we have gathered some important information for you regarding the start of your studies. Link to the orientation programmes will be added to this page during summer 2024.

Four students pictured in Kokkole centre

Meet Centria & Finland online event

We warmly invite all international students interested in starting their studies in Centria, to join and meet us at our online event.

A diverse group of students walking together and laughing in the Kokkola centre

Meet Centria & Finland 17.4.2024 – Watch the recording!

During the event, we will be focusing on providing interesting and useful information for future students, regarding how to get started with studies in Centria and how to prepare for their new life in Finland.

Family and friends are more than welcome to join as well.

Academic year 2024/25

Autumn term 26.8.–22.12.2024

Christmas celebration 19.12.2024

Spring term 7.1.–6.6.2025

Closing ceremony of the academic year 5.6.2024

Autumn break

  • Week 42: 14.–20.10.2024 (Kokkola)
  • Week 43: 21.–27.10.2024 (Ylivieska)

Christmas break 22.12.2024–6.1.2025

Winter break

  • Week 9: 24.2.–2.3.2025 (Kokkola)
  • Week 10: 3.–9.3.2025 (Ylivieska)

Teachers’ summer break 16.6.–10.8.2025

Group of students discussing in a classroom

Orientation days

During the orientation, you will be introduced to Centria’s practices. You get to know your own degree programme and your study group. You will get useful information about the progress of your studies and study practices.

The orientation programmes will appear on these pages during the summer of 2024.

Before studies start – Checklist for new students

Before starting your studies and arriving to campus there are a few things that need to be taken care of.

To confirm the offered study place mentioned in the acceptance letter, you have to accept it as soon as possible, but by the given deadline at the latest. You may accept only one study place leading to a higher education degree in education that begins in the same term. This rule applies to all higher education leading to a degree regardless of whether you apply in the joint application or in a separate application.   

  • Confirm the study place electronically with the link that will be sent to your email by opintopolku.fi. If you have Finnish online banking credentials, a mobile certificate, or a smart ID card and a reader, you can confirm the study place by logging into My Studyinfo -service from the link on top of the Studyinfo.fi front page. The My Studyinfo –service has instructions on how to confirm the study place electronically. Notice that you can only confirm one higher education study place starting in the same academic term. 

Make sure to confirm your study place by the given deadline or you will lose the offered place. Tuition fee-paying students must pay the tuition fee at the same time as they accept the study place. 

When accepting your study place to Centria UAS, you accept and confirm the conditions written in the acceptance letter.   

Your study place is conditional until Centria has checked your eligibility and your final original degree certificate has been checked after your registration. Centria may withdraw admission if you do not provide the certificates by the deadlines given or if you have given false information in the application process. Document forgery and misuse may lead to criminal responsibility and belong to police authority. 

Admission is also conditional for tuition-fee-paying students until the tuition fee has been paid.

This segment is meant only for non-EU/EEA citizens. 

After accepting the study place, and before applying for a residence permit, citizens of a country outside the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland are obliged to pay a tuition fee. Students starting their studies in August will pay one full academic year’s tuition fee, covering the expenses for the fall and spring semesters.  

Tuition fee-paying students must pay the tuition fee at the same time as they accept the study place. If the tuition fee is not paid by the deadline, your study right will be cancelled, and the study place is lost.   

Centria UAS uses Flywire to accept payments from international students worldwide.                   

This is the only accepted way to pay the tuition fee. You must pay the tuition fee in full; it cannot be paid in installments. You will receive the receipt of your payment from the Flywire system.

After you have accepted the offered study place (and paid the tuition fee, if you were required to), you are automatically enrolled as present for your first study year.  

Students pay tuition fees based on their study right, NOT on the amount of gained credits nor enrollments to courses. If person is a student of Centria UAS enrolled as present, he/she is obliged to pay tuition fees.  

  • Student can enroll for as many courses as he/she wishes, the tuition fees stay unchanged 
  • Student can gain unlimited amount of credits per semester, the tuition fees stay unchanged 
  • Student who decides NOT to participate in the education anyhow (no enrollments for courses, no credits gained), will still be charged the tuition fees, since the fees are based on the study right 

Centria UAS offers a scholarship as a waiver to all students who complete a certain amount of credit in the previous academic year so make the most of your study right. 

Please note that new students enroll for the study year at the same time as they accept their study place. Tuition fee-paying students must pay the tuition fee at the same time as they accept the study place. First year students can enroll as absent only for predetermined statutory reason.   

Tuition fee refund handling costs 

Please note that tuition fee refund is only based on negative residence permit decision. 

In the case of applying for a tuition fee refund, applicants will be charged 250 € to cover the refund administrative costs. The costs 250 € will be deducted from the refundable amount.   

Tuition fees and scholarships of students continuing their studies

The tuition fee for one academic year is 9500 €. Tuition fees for the second academic year are paid in halves. The first invoice to cover expenses for fall 2025 studies will be sent out in spring 2025. The second invoice to cover expenses for spring 2026 studies will be sent out in fall 2025. However, the second half of the tuition fees can be avoided if the student gets a scholarship.   

Centria UAS offers 50 % scholarship as a waiver to all students who usually complete 60 ECTS (study credits) according to their study plan in their academic year.   

Deferral

The offered study place is only valid for the programme you applied for starting in August 2024. Admission is under no circumstances transmissible to future years. Also, new fee-paying students are enrolled as present automatically for the study year at the same time as they accept their study place and pay the tuition fee.  

Students who are NOT citizens of an EU member state, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, or Switzerland have to apply for a residence permit if the studies in Finland last for longer than 90 days.  

To be able to come to Finland and take part in studies on campus, you need a valid residence permit. Since the residence permit process takes a long time, it is IMPORTANT that you apply for it as soon as possible! It is advised to apply right after accepting the study place and paying the tuition fee.   

Please notice that applying for the residence permit can be done in English by the student themselves. Just make sure to follow the instructions step by step. Find all important information concerning the student residence permit, including the instructions for applying, on the website of the Finnish Immigration Service. In any case, please pay attention to the requirements and carefully follow the application instructions just to be sure that your application is completed properly. Otherwise, your residence permit process might take a very long time.   

We recommend you to apply for a D visa to expedite your arrival to Finland. If you apply for a D visa, you can travel to Finland immediately after the following conditions are met: 

  • you have received a positive decision on your residence permit application; and 
  • the D visa sticker has been attached to your passport 

Your residence permit card will be delivered to you in Finland. On average, the D visa allows you to travel to Finland for 1–2 weeks earlier than usual. 

More information about the D visa you can find on this website.

Bachelor students starting their studies in the autumn of 2024 are required to be on campus by 16th of September. 

  • Please note that Centria UAS cannot influence the decisions or accelerate the process of/ made by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland regarding residence permits. 

Refund policy

If an applicant receives a negative residence permit decision and based on that is not able to start studies at the beginning of fall semester, the tuition fee can be under certain conditions refunded. 

  • In order to be able to get the tuition fee back, the applicant needs to send a copy of the negative decision from the Immigration Office to admissions@centria.fi, as well as attach a copy of an original payment receipt and a filled in Application for Refund. Also, the applicant must be able to prove that they have applied for the residence permit well in time (as soon as possible after receiving the admission letter and paying the tuition fee), to be able to start the studies at the beginning of the starting semester.  
  • The applicant is not able to apply for a tuition fee refund if the applicant has withdrawn the residence permit application by themself and that way interrupted the residence permit process and forced the Immigration Office to abort the application process.  
  • If a negative residence permit decision is received, the applicant should notify Centria UAS as soon as possible. Tuition fees will not be refunded after the given due date has passed.  
  • The detailed refund policy is always mentioned in the acceptance letter, which is sent to newly accepted students along with notification of student selection.  

Students (starting their studies in fall 2024) who wish to apply for the tuition fee refund after receiving a negative residence permit decision, will get a full refund of the tuition fee (after the handling fee deduction of 250 euros) if certain conditions are met. The negative decision as well as the notification of withdrawal must be submitted to Centria by 31st of August 2024 at the latest. After the deadline, full tuition fees will not be refunded even if a negative decision is received.  

Apply for a student apartment two or three months before the estimated time of arrival.   

Student apartments in Kokkola are rented by Tankkari Student Housing. All students studying in Kokkola can apply for Tankkari’s apartments. Rental homes can also be searched through rental agency sites and local real estate agencies.  

After you have accepted the offered study place (and paid the tuition fee, if you were required to), you are automatically enrolled as present for your first study year. Note, that if you are not required to pay tuition fee, you have to make the enrollment for study year yourself in Studyinfo, after accepting the study place.   

Your studies will start in August 2024 with an orientation week which includes getting to know people and functions of Centria, IT systems and all kinds of practical information which you will need to be able to start your studies effectively. If you have NOT received a residence permit and for this reason, you have NOT been able to arrive on campus by the start of the academic year (August 2024), your studies start in online distance learning mode. However, you are expected to arrive on campus as soon as you receive your residence permit. Online studies are available only until 16 September.   

If you wish to enrol as absent for your first academic year, it is possible to do so based solely on statutory reasons (military or civilian service in Finland, maternity leave, paternity leave or parental leave or due to serious illness or disability approved by a certified doctor) that prevents starting of your studies. Please contact the Admissions office (admissions@centria.fi) for more information.   

The document will have to be notarized or verified by a Finnish medical professional. Please contact Student Services (studentservices@centria.fi) if you need to enrol as absent. Please note that you need to inform Student Services and deliver the document before the 31st of August

Students must register at the campus Student Services by 16 September 2024 at the latest and present your original documents, residence permit and ID. Student Services will register your arrival. Your study place is conditional until Centria has checked your eligibility and your final original degree certificate has been checked after your registration. 

Please prepare to have the following documents with you:  

  • Official original identification document (e.g. passport)  
  • Original educational certificates (which you attached to your application)  
  • Your residence permit decision/card.  
  • Master students must have their original work documents (which were attached to your application)  

If you do not complete the registration process, your student selection will be cancelled (Law Universities of Applied Sciences Act §28 and §25). 

Centria reserves the possibility to charge a reasonable part of the autumn academic tuition fee to cover costs already incurred if the student does not start studies on campus on September 16, when the study place is cancelled. When reviewing request for discretionary refunds of academic year fees, factors unrelated to the student are also taken into consideration in case of arrival in the country.

Two female students laughing together in a park

Academic year and enrolment

Degree students must enrol as present (attending) or absent (non-attending) for each study year. Only students who are enrolled as present students have the right to pursue studies, to have credits entered in the record of credits and to receive guidance related to studies.

More useful information

If you are starting your studies in the middle of the academic year, please contact our Student Services (studentservices@centria.fi).

In the message, explain your need for the starting info or guidance. Also, tell your full name, date of birth, as well as the degree programme you will study in. The Student Services will review your right of study and send you a starting info or give you the name of the person who you should contact regarding the beginning of your studies.

If you are a citizen of an EU member state, Liechtenstein, or Switzerland you do not need a residence permit to stay in Finland. You can stay and work freely in Finland for up to three months. You need to have a valid identity card or passport. If your stay lasts for more than three months, you have to register your right of residence. You are recommended to register AFTER arrival in Finland. 

Here you can find a video with instructions on how to apply for the registration of an EU citizen’s right of residence in Enter Finland.

For students coming to study in Finland for more than two years, medical insurance covering the duration of the visa and the Schengen area is required in order to obtain a student residence permit. Comprehensive insurance cover means insurance which includes the types of treatment and costs that are covered by municipal health care services and the health insurance system. A residence permit cannot be issued for a period exceeding the period of the insurance cover.

  • For studies of less than two years in duration, a student must have private insurance which primarily covers the costs of medical treatment up to 100,000 euros.
  • When the duration of the studies is two years or more, a student will usually have a home municipality in Finland and is therefore entitled to municipal health care services. In such cases, it is sufficient for the insurance to primarily cover the cost of medicines (in practice the cover extends to doctor’s fees and costs of treatment and examination); up to 30,000 euros.

The student visa requirements also include yearly deposits as a proof of sustainable means of support. If later on, it is found that the student does not possess the funds originally stated when applying for the residence permit, the permit can be cancelled, and the student deported. 

A student applying for a residence permit needs to show that they have 6720 Euros for the next 12 months. 

The cost of living in Finland is a little higher compared to the rest of Europe. More information about the cost of living in Finland can be found at infoFinland’s website (Cost of living in Finland (infofinland.fi)).

It is difficult, if not impossible, for an international student to get a part time job in small cities like Kokkola, Ylivieska and Pietarsaari without knowing any Finnish. Therefore, it is crucial that you have taken care of your financial issues, so that you can afford to stay in Finland, even if you do not get a job during your studies. 

In this section, you will get a glimpse of what kind of budget you should expect. For expenses such as rent, food and personal costs, it is estimated you will need approximately 700‒900 euros per month (Fees and Costs | Study in Finland).

Living in a student apartment costs about 250‒450 euros per month. It is however possible that at times the student accommodation is full and you would need to rent an apartment in the general rental market. The rent of one-bedroom apartment is approximately 400‒650 euros depending on the square metres, location of the apartments and how new the apartment is.

You will also have to take into consideration any travels to your home country or private travel in Finland, as well as possible purchasing of a bicycle or a car, bed clothing, curtains and kitchen equipment for your apartment.

Financial aid for studies pursued in Finland is available to Finnish citizens and, under certain conditions, to citizens of other countries.

The Social Insurance Institution of Finland, Kela, provides students with a Study Grant and a Housing Supplement (both monthly). The student financial aid system also includes student loans guaranteed by the state.

More information

Meal subsidy

If you are in higher education, you are eligible for discounted meals at participating student restaurants. The subsidy is deducted from the price of the meal at the student restaurant. You pay the discounted price.

You can qualify even if you are not a Finnish citizen. If you are attending a higher education institution in Finland as an exchange student, you qualify for the meal subsidy for the duration of your exchange.

Centria UAS restaurants participate in the meal subsidy programme:

Banks are open on various schedules on Weekdays. Money can be exchanged at any bank in Finland, although it is wise to exchange large amounts at a time to avoid service charges. Major credit cards are generally accepted everywhere in Finland. Please note that some places don’t accept cash in Finland, for example Restaurant Sodexo in Talonpojankatu Campus.

International students can open an account in any bank in Finland by presenting one valid ID (passport) and a certificate showing that the student is enrolled to Centria UAS. To open an account, you need to visit the bank branch in person. More information in infoFinland’s website (Everyday life in Finland (infofinland.fi)).

Cash Machines (ATM) in Finland are called OTTO and NOSTO, and they are easily recognized by their orange- and yellow-coloured signs.

If you are moving to Kokkola or Pietarsaari with children, please contact our Integration Specialist Sofia Behluli (sofia.behluli@centria.fi). She can help you with finding the right family services. 

Download and register Centria’s Goin’ app, and be part of our community already before starting your studies with us!

Goin’ is a networking platform for our students to get to know your new study place, other students admitted to Centria and people already studying here. On the platform, you will find students who have similar interests, about to start the same degree programme with you, and come from the same country as you.

Further information and the invitation to the platform is sent to your email when you are offered a study place at Centria.

Students walking in the Kokkola old town Neristan

Integration services

Integration Services guide international degree students in settling into the Centria region, especially in the early stages of their life and studies in Finland. Through the link you can find a lot of practical information on the steps you need to take while moving to Kokkola or Pietarsaari.

When studies start

Students are expected to take care of coming to Finland and to Centria UAS by themselves. Centria UAS does not have any services concerning arrival of students.  

Arrival information

In Finland the working week is five days (from Monday to Friday) and office hours are usually from 8 (9) am to 4 (5) pm. Please notice this when planning your arrival in Finland, because in case you arrive during the weekend all offices will be closed (Student Services, banks etc.). If you do not arrive during office hours, make sure you’ll contact your landlord to make sure that they are able to arrange you the keys.

Transportation to Kokkola

Take the train to Kokkola from Helsinki or Tikkurila (nearer to Helsinki-Vantaa Airport and there is a train connection between the airport and Tikkurila station). The trains head up north (Oulu, Rovaniemi). Get off at Kokkola station. The trip lasts approximately 4 hours. For ticket schedules and prices see: Welcome on a journey together with us – VR.

It is also possible to get to Kokkola by plane from Helsinki to Kokkola-Pietarsaari airport. The flight lasts about an hour. See Kokkola-Pietarsaari public transport at: Kokkola-Pietarsaari public transport | Finavia.

Transportation to Pietarsaari

The nearest airport is Kokkola-Pietarsaari airport. Travel time from the airport to Pietarsaari centre by car is approximately 30 min. 

The nearest train station is the Pietarsaari-Pedersöre train station, approximately 15 min. travel time from Pietarsaari centre by car. From the train station there is a shuttle bus service to Pietarsaari centre. The timetable is available here.

For train connections, see Welcome on a journey together with us – VR.

For instructions on how to get your username and password, please visit Centria’s Password Reset Portal (choose Account registration option). It is possible to register your username starting from

  • 2 August, when study right begins in the autumn term
  • 2 January, when study right begins in the spring term

During your studies, you will need several digital tools. After you have received your user ID (username and password) to Centria, you can log in to itslearning learning management system via the Centraali portal or directly

In itslearning, you can find a workspace called Digistart. The idea of Centria Digistart is to familiarize you with Centria’s IT systems related to learning. You can begin Digistart right after you have got your user account, even if the studies have not yet started. This helps you when the actual courses start as you already know the learning tools Centria uses and their possibilities.

You will need 1‒5 hours to go through the material.

The course material is available during your whole study time.

Student tutoring is an important part of Centria’s guidance system. Student tutors are peer learners who will help you launch your studies as smoothly as possible. Their task is to provide comprehensive peer support to all students and they can be contacted about all kinds of matters; you can ask them anything!

Contact information

Do you have questions regarding arrival or the practical things you need to do before your studies start? You can contact Sofia Behluli of our Integration Services.

Sofia Behluli


Frequently asked questions

Is there something you are wondering about regarding studying at Centria? We have compiled answers to frequently asked questions.

Read more

Student’s Guide

Whether you are looking for information about support services or exchange studies you will find the information in the Student’s Guide.

Go to Student’s Guide