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How to select your exchange university

Student exchange is based on inter-institutional student mobility agreements between Aalto University and partner universities abroad. The agreements enable Aalto's degree students to study in the partner university without having to pay tuition fees. Agreements are usually made for specific fields of study, which determines what you can study in each partner university. Aalto students can apply for exchange in the partner univeristies of their own School.

If you wish to apply to a university that is not a partner university, you should apply as a free mover student. See Free mover exchange below for more information.

When selecting the exchange destination

  • Go to the Destination Database of your School (see links below). The Destination Database has information on available student exchange destinations and on the number of open places in each destination. Information in the Database is updated by the beginning of each application round. The Destination Database also has the most recent reports written by previous Aalto exchange students. Older reports are available in wiki.
  • Make sure the university you are considering offers courses that are suitable for your degree in Aalto and are from the correct level, i.e. bachelor's or master's.
  • Check that the exchange agreement covers the field you wish to study.
  • Make sure you have the required language skills to take the courses.
  • Ensure that you fullfill other admission requirements set by the host university.

School of Arts, Design and Architecture

  • Destination Database

  • You can only apply to destinations which are open for your own degree programme and level.

School of Business

Schools of technology (CHEM, ELEC, ENG, SCI)

  • Destination Database

  • Available Destinations for spring term 2022 (application 1-20 September 2021) (.pdf)
  • Aalto schools of technology and engineering have their own exchange destinations and agreements, these are mainly Erasmus destinations in Europe. It is possible for CHEM, ELEC, ENG and SCI students to apply to a destination of another Aalto school of technology as well, but please note that the School's own students are given priority in the selection process.
  • Schools of technology also have many shared exchange destinations. Most of these are outside Europe. All CHEM, ELEC, ENG and SCI applicants are on equal footing when applying to them. Exchange students to these destinations are selected based on their academic index.

Free mover exchange

If you wish to apply to a university that Aalto does not have a mobility agreement with, you can arrange the exchange independently and apply as a so-called free mover student (also often called study abroad or visiting student). Free mover exchange requires more work and effort from the student than going abroad through Aalto's own exchange programme, because free mover students are responsible for taking care of the exchange arrangements, such as the application process to the exchange university, independently. Usually free mover students have to pay for tuition in the hosting university. Here is a brief outline of the steps you should take when organizing a free mover exchange.

  • Find out the costs of the exchange, tuition fees and other expenses.
  • Check if the university accepts free mover students, who can apply and which courses can be taken.
  • Check the application deadlines and instructions given by the university. The process for arranging the exchange on your own may take some time, often a year is needed for all the preparations.
  • Familiarize yourself with your Aalto school's general guidelines on exchange studies. Free mover exchange students must comply with the same guidelines as students going to Aalto's partner universities.
  • Remember that the exchange destination has be a university-level institution and fulfil the quality requirements set by Aalto University. If you are unsure whether the exchange destination fulfils your School's quality requirements or not, please check with the exchange coordinator of your Aalto school.
  • The courses you plan to take on exchange must be approved in Aalto beforehand. You cannot transfer the credits from the host university to your degree at Aalto unless they have been approved as suitable for your degree.
  • You can also apply for a scholarship. More information in Application instructions.

 Quality requirements at the School of Business

The university you are planning to join as a free mover has to fill the quality requirements set by Aalto University School of Business. When entering a university as a free mover, you must take part in the normal degree studies, not for example participate in a separate program designed only for exchange students.

The university must have at least one of the international accreditations which Aalto University School of Business has (AACSB, EQUIS, AMBA) or be listed on an internationally known ranking list (FT Ranking, U.S. News Ranking, Shanghai Ranking, or similar).

Partnership networks

Aalto is a member in several partnership networks and programmes that offer student exchange opportunities.


Erasmus+ Programme generally funds European exchanges, except Nordic countries and Switzerland.

Erasmus exchange agreements are usually made for a specific field of study. The Aalto University schools of technology also have some common Erasmus exchange destinations covering all engineering fields.

A student going on Erasmus exchange commits to complying not only with the principles of student exchange of Aalto University, but also with the rules and regulations of the Erasmus+ Programme. Accepting the Erasmus scholarship means that the student commits to submitting the required Erasmus+ documents and completing the Erasmus+ survey and OLS language tests, for example.

Please read more on Erasmus requirements under Before the exchange and After the exchange.

Student Guidebook for Erasmus+

 Erasmus+ Global Mobility

Erasmus+ Global Mobility refers to the mobility of students & staff (for learning & teaching) between European and non-European universities. Aalto University applies for the funding (for 16 or 24 months) of scholarships for incoming and outgoing Global Mobility exchanges. Global Mobility exchanges are organized under the same principles as the Erasmus+ mobilities, respecting the Erasmus Charter For Higher Education (ECHE) and inter-institutional and individual agreements for learning, training and teaching mobilities.

Erasmus+ Global Mobility includes

  • All study levels, (short cycle, Bachelor, Master, PhD) and recent graduates of all disciplines
  • 3 to 12 months for studies
  • 2 to 12 months for traineeships (from 2016 for partner countries)
  • Up to 12 months per study cycle
  • For staff – from 5 days to 2 months

Global Mobility destinations in 2017-18

Aalto School concerned

Country and exchange period

Non-EU partner university

Electrical Engineering (ELEC)Algeria

University of Science and Technology Houari Boumediene (USTHB)

Ecole National Superieur d'Informatique (ESI)

University of Boumerdes (IEEE - Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineering)

Université Amar Telidji Laghouat




One grant available for spring 2018.

Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur

Indian Institute of Technology Bombay



Possibly grant coming available for spring 2018.

Technion Israeli Institute of Technology

IDC Herzliya



One grant available for spring 2018.

Bauman Moscow State Technical University

Higher School of Economics - HSE Moscow

Tomsk Polytechnic University

Science (SCI), Engineering (ENG),

Electrical Engineering (ELEC) and Chemical Engineering (CHEM)


Exchange period has ended

Tsinghua University

Applying for a Global mobility exchange (outgoing students)

Aalto students interested in applying for exchange to the Erasmus + Global Mobility destinations submit their application following the normal Aalto University application instructions and deadlines for exchange studies.

Coordination and more information on the destinations: 

Erasmus+ Global Mobility scholarship for outgoing students

  • For students, the scholarships for Global Mobility destinations are usually significantly higher than for European Erasmus destinations. The exact sum of the scholarship is determined based on the host country and the duration of the exchange.

  • For some countries, there is funding only for incoming students and staff, for some countries also for outgoing students and staff. With countries where there is more than one non-EU partner university, we aim to have balanced distribution of the scholarships. The allocation of scholarships depends on the number and quality of the applications.

  • In case there are more applications than available Global Mobility scholarships, the students will be ranked according to the policy of exchange studies of their Aalto school. The following selection criteria will be taken into consideration: the candidate's academic study performance (academic index), motivation and language skills, as well as the learning agreement. No additional application is required. The scholarship and exchange place decisions are made by the Aalto schools within the normal exchange application procedure. Students who do not get the Global Mobility scholarship are still eligible for regular Aalto University exchange scholarships.

The scholarships in 2017-18 consist of the following parts: monthly allowance + travel scholarship 

Monthly allowance for outgoing students 650 Eur/month (30 days, exact amount depends on mobility dates).

Travel scholarship is a lump sum based on the travel distance as follows:


530 eur

Israel530 eur
India820 eur
Russia275 eur

Insurance: It is the responsibility of the students to acquire sufficient insurance coverage to the destination country. Aalto University does not offer any compensation towards insurance costs.

Payments: Grants are paid in two instalments, about 80% before and 20% after completing the exchanges and submitting the required documents and reports. Submitting the online EU feedback survey no later than 15 days before the completion of the exchange is mandatory to receive the final monthly grant.

Erasmus+ Global Mobility documents

For incoming and outgoing students (including PhD students)

  1. Erasmus student charter
  2. Grant agreement (from exchange coordinators)

Please use the Erasmus+ Learning agreement while composing your study plan. More information from the exchange coordinators at Aalto University.

For incoming and outgoing staff

  1. Mobility Agreement
  2. Grant Agreement (to be updated later)

Nordplus is the Nordic Council of Ministers' programme in the area of lifelong learning. It forms a network of Nordic and Baltic Universities. Nordtek is a network of the Rectors and Deans of the Technical Universities in the five Nordic countries.

Nordplus and Nordtek also offer scholarships. The procedure is the same as in Erasmus+ scholarships: Aalto University compliments the Nordtek/Nordplus scholarship in case it does not amount upto the sum of the Aalto University exchange scholarship. Students do not need to apply separately for the Nordtek/Nordplus scholarship. Selected students will be informed about the scholarship after the exchange application round.

The leading Nordic universites are allied in the Nordic Five Tech network and operate several joint master's programmes together. These universities are a good choice as an exchange destination for any science and engineering student.


FIRST Programme (Finnish-Russian Student and Teacher Exchange) promotes partnership and collaboration between higher education institutions in Finland and Northwest Russia. The programme supports student and teacher mobility and joint intensive courses between Finnish and Russian institutions of higher education.

Within the programme, higher education institutions come together in networks, which are eligible for FIRST scholarships. Aalto University compliments the FIRST exchange scholarship in case it does not amount upto the sum of the Aalto University exchange scholarship. Students do not need to apply separately for the FIRST scholarship. FIRST scholarship recipients will be informed about the scholarship by their exchange coordinator after selection.

 CEMS Master's in International Management Program

CEMS, The Global Alliance in Management Education, is a strategic alliance of leading business schools and multinational companies. Currently, 30 world-class academic institutions collaborate together with over 70 corporate and social partners to offer international, postgraduate students a unique blend of high quality education and professional experience. 

Over the years, CEMS Master’s in International Management (MIM) has been consistently ranked among the top Master’s in Management programs in the world by the Financial Times. Aalto University School of Business is the only member of this prestigious alliance in Finland. The MIM curriculum has been jointly designed by the CEMS Schools and CEMS Corporate and Social Partners.

Qualified Aalto University students have the opportunity to enroll in the CEMS MIM program in parallel to their MSc degree at the School of Business or other Aalto schools. CEMS MIM is a one-year program that consist of specific CEMS courses, seminars, a semester-long Business Project, workshops in career related skills, languages, an exchange semester at another CEMS University, and an international internship. The School of Business students include the CEMS MIM term abroad in their MSc curriculum as the International Study Module minor. It is often possible to also use other CEMS elements simultaneously towards the 'home' MSc. After successful completion of the requirements of both programs students will graduate with two diplomas - MSc from Aalto and CEMS MIM.

Starting from fall 2017 CEMS MIM at Aalto will be offered both
  1. as a one-year ‘crown-model’ CEMS MIM (66 ECTS) to be completed in parallel with regular Aalto MSc studies. To be eligible for this option, an applicant must be either a Master’s level student or in the last year of their Bachelor’s studies at Aalto University when applying. Next application period: 15.11.-15.12.2017
  2. tied to the new Global Management Master's Programme (120 ECTS) at Aalto University School of Business.

For more information, see: and contact CEMS Programme Managers.

SCI students and CEMS exchange

Students of the School of Science who are planning to apply for CEMS-exchange are entitled to apply for a free mover scholarship (1500e / semester or 2500e / academic year) if CEMS exchange studies are accepted for their degree in technology at the School of Science. Aalto University only supports full-time exchange studies that are part of a student's degree. To apply for the free mover scholarship, the student must get the CEMS exchange course plan accepted and signed by the Planning Officer or Study Coordinator and professor of the student’s major (not the CEMS coordinator), who both will ensure that the CEMS studies fit into the student's degree. If a student completes CEMS studies in addition to his or her own degree as an extracurricular study, it is not possible to award an exchange grant. For more information, you can contact


CEMS Programme Manager Liisa Kotilainen,

CEMS Programme Manager Arja Sahlberg,


Aalto University School of Business is a part of PIM (Partnership in International Management) network. PIM is a consortium of leading international business schools founded in 1973. Each member institution represents the highest degree of excellence in the fields of business administration and management, demonstrates leadership in their geographic region and delivers an MBA or a graduate-equivalent degree in management.


CLUSTER is a European network of top universities of technology. Aalto University has several Cluster Dual Master double degree programmes that include an integrated mobility period abroad. Aalto students apply for exchange in CLUSTER universities either through the Nordtek or Erasmus programmes.

 Magalhães (CHEM, ELEC, ENG and SCI)

Magalhães is a network of European, Latin American and Caribbean universities in the field of science, technology and engineering created to promote and support graduate student exchanges between the member universities. Aalto University schools of engineering and technology have bilateral student exchange agreements with some of the network's member institutions.