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Specific selection criteria for competitive situations

The selection criteria has been developed by International Affairs and approved by Åbo Akademi’s internationalization group. The selection criteria applies to all international affairs agreements.

Åbo Akademi University wants to send the most suitable students to our partner universities. The following basic requirements for student exchange are as follows:

  • Exchange studies refer to full-time studies at the host university for at least one semester or one academic year.
  • All registered students who meet the application criteria can apply for an exchange study place. Students must have paid the student union fee when the application is submitted and be registered as present at ÅA throughout the exchange.
  • The exchange places are primarily intended for students at bachelor and master’s level.
  • Students studying at masters level who will only study at Master’s level at ÅA, should have at least 15 ECTS of masters level studies completed on the last day of the application period.
  • Studies abroad must be transferred to the degree at ÅA either as subject studies, specialized studies, or as an additional subject. Some studies may be able to be transferred back as “free choice” studies. Preliminary study plans must be pre-approved by the academic coordinator for the subject already at the application stage. The student is responsible for following the curriculum as well as notifying the course coordinators of any changes.
  • Applicants should show certificates of language proficiency in the language that studies are instructed in at the host university (according to specific criteria for different programs), or a proposed plan of how to obtain sufficient knowledge in the language before the studies start at the host university.
  • Study progress at ÅA also plays a role in the selection process. Specific requirements for minimum amount of studies are stated if there are any.
  • Letters of recommendation must be attached for specific programs / agreements.

Situations of competition

The purpose of the selection criteria is to clarify what is seen as “merit” in competitive situations. The meaning of competition situation is when there are more applicants for exchange to a certain university, that the number of places that are available for ÅA students at that university/exchange program.

When evaluating applicants, a comparison of the selection criteria will be made. If, despite the points, the candidate can not be chosen, a draw will be made. Applicants are assessed on the basis of their qualifications available of the application date. Incomplete applications will not be processes. The decision of the selection cannot be appealed. Rejection of an application is not justified.

Credits registered by the last application date will be counted in the basis of the assessment. In addition, the written personal motivation letter (statement of purpose), the students’ motivation for and benefit from studying abroad, the choice of universities and the planned studies connected to the students’ education program will all be assessed.

  • Basic Points: Points for students study pace
    • The rate of study is calculated by dividing the number of credits by the number of attendance terms (max 60 credits / year is taken in account). Additional points for applicants with at least 55 credits / academic year by the end of the application deadline, 2 points.
  • Grade, max 5 points
      • Average. Scoring: Applicans with an average of 2.5 = 2 points, average of 3 = 3 points, average of 3.5 = 3.5 etc.
  • Academic objectives (study plan and motivation letter) max. 5 points
    • Communicative ability – how well the student formulates themselves
    • Academic objectives for exchange: what does the student want to experience from exchange studies before graduating from Åbo Akademi
    • How well do the courses on exchange fit with the students curriculum and academic motivations
    • previous experience which has prepared the student for the intended exchange
    • The desire and willingness to share experiences from exchange studies after returning home
    • The desire to represent the home university and to the the Academy’s ambassador to the world
  • Other
    • When the same amount of points occurs for two students, applicants with the fastest study rate in combination with an average of at least 3.2 (e.g. for ISEP to North America) and a convincing motivation for student exchange (according to the above criteria) are prioritized.


Updated 17.1.2020