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Study place offerAccepting the study place
EnrolmentAnnual enrolment
IT accountActive your Aalto account
Student organisations

Join our student organisations

Student information systems
Find the key personnel
Get to know your surroundingsCampuses and public transportation
Before you come to Finland (if not already here)Bring your original degree certificates
Finding accommodationTips for finding a place to stay
Other useful information before/after coming to FinlandLinks to immigration services etc.
Working contractWhat to remember

Welcome to Aalto University! We are excited to have you!

Before you dig in any further on these pages, it is a good idea to read this page just to get a feeling of the steps you need to take now that you are starting your doctoral education in your doctoral programme. Below you can find short introductions on these first steps, the systems you are expected to use as a doctoral candidate at Aalto University, and the contact information of your doctoral programme.

1. Accepting the study place

Before you can begin your doctoral education, you need to accept officially the offered study place in your doctoral programme. Follow the instructions given by your doctoral programme for accepting the study place. Usually new doctoral candidates are enrolled as attending for the first academic year, or the current academic term, depending on when your study right has been established. The academic terms run from 1 August to 31 December and 1 January to 31 July. Academic year comprises them both (i.e. autumn term and spring term).

2. Enrol to the university every year until you graduate

This cannot be repeated too much, so even though your enrolment is taken care of for the first year or term (your doctoral programme will tell you about this in the admission letter), we want to emphasize the importance of remembering to enrol every academic year.

All doctoral candidates must enrol to the university every academic year as either attending or non-attending until they graduate as doctor. The enrolment period for the coming academic year starts always in early May. and ends in early September. Enrolment is done in WebOodi

(until 30 July) or the OILI-enrolment service (see more below). If you forget to enrol, you will lose your right to study, and you have to apply for readmission, so it is very important to remember this.

3. Activate your Aalto IT account

The Aalto IT username and password are used to login to all Aalto online services. Once you have activated your IT account, you have access to many electronic services, including your Aalto email. The university uses email as the primary means of communication, so it is essential that you keep on top of your Aalto email at all times. Your Aalto email will be used in most contact between you and the university, so it is crucial to read it regularly. If you want to use some other email address (e.g. if you are a part-time candidate, and prefer using your company’s email address), you need to redirect the email from your address to the email address you use regularly; instructions for the redirection.

You will receive an email when the activation of Aalto IT account is possible. The email will be sent to the email address you have used when you applied to the university. Please follow the instructions of IT services and activate your account as soon as possible.

  • You can activate your account at with your Finnish online banking details, Finnish mobile certificate or with a Finnish electronic ID (HST) card.
  • If you don't have strong identification, you'll receive activation email, please follow instructions at The activation uses the email and the phone number you used when you applied.
  • If self-activation is not possible, you must visit the IT service desk to activate your Aalto IT account. Please remember to bring official, photographic ID with you (such as passport).

IT instructions and IT service desk contact information:

4. Join our student organisations

All Aalto students can join AYY, Aalto University’s student union. Membership is optional for doctoral candidates. After becoming a member, a doctoral candidate can purchase the green student card of doctoral students.
More information about joining AYY:

Aalto University has also Aallonhuiput, a doctoral student association, in which you can meet other doctoral candidates, and contribute to and influence the development of the doctoral studies at Aalto University. You do not need to be a member of AYY to join Aallonhuiput. More information:

5. Getting started with your doctoral education, practical information

Into pages

All the information related to your doctoral education can be found in Into, on the pages of your own doctoral programme. As there is some variation in practices between the doctoral programmes at Aalto, remember to make sure you are on the right pages. It is beneficial to familiarize yourself with the Into pages at the beginning of your studies. So you know what to do after you have finished reading this page!

Doctoral programmes in Into:

Oodi is the record of your studies

WebOodi ( is the student information system, where you can view your personal details, register for courses and examinations, and order a transcript of records. WebOodi also includes important course information, such as the content, timetable, and teaching location for each course. The university uses the contact details you have provided in WebOodi for all communication, and therefore it is important that you keep them up to date at all times.

Aalto University will introduce a new Sisu student information system on 9 August 2021. The introduction of Sisu is preceded by a service break of student information services between 31 July and 8 August 2021.

MyCourses collects the online workspaces of the courses

MyCourses ( is a system, where you can find workspaces and home page of each course. You can also browse the courses in MyCourses.

Contact information

Support in studies (administrative)

The school in which you are admitted as a doctoral candidate will guide and advice you in your studies. It is best to deal with all matters related to your studies (i.e. all administrative processes in the doctoral programme, not just matters related to courses) with the student services of your own doctoral programme.

Academic support (scientific)

For support on the research part of your doctoral education, turn to your supervising professor, thesis advisor(s), or colleagues. If you are working at a research group, the group will also support you, and help you to integrate in your research community. Or maybe you are working at a company, or doing your studies in your spare time? Whatever your surroundings, it is crucial to get to know the people around you, especially fellow doctoral candidates, early on in your doctoral education journey.

Get to know the practices of your department

Your department may have some practices of its own (e.g. some have a compulsory mid-term review and/or compulsory courses, recommended literature for exams, recommendations on teaching etc.), so it is beneficial to check your department’s instructions. Interaction with other candidates in the same department/research field is also highly recommended!
The web pages of different departments can be found under the schools:

6. Get to know your environment: Campuses and public transportation

Aalto University has two campuses in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area. You can find the campus maps here. There is also mobile map application Aalto Space available for Otaniemi Campus.

More information about public transportation.

Aalto is active in the development of a sustainable campus area. You can also make an impact in your own environment by the choices you make. Welcome to sustainable Aalto! (pdf)
Read more about sustainable Aalto  and the development of a green campus.

For those doctoral candidates who are coming and moving to Finland from another country:

7. Before you come to Finland

If the study right was granted conditionally, follow the instructions given by your doctoral programme. It is important to remember to bring with you to Finland the original versions of the diploma and transcript of the degree that was the grounds for acceptance into the doctoral programme. If the documents concerning your bachelor’s degree are also required, your doctoral programme will let you know. Note that you need to show the original versions of these documents and also their official English translations, if the originals are not in English, Finnish, or Swedish. Your doctoral programme will remind you of this too!

8. Searching for accommodation

If you are searching for accommodation, remember that before you accept any offers, it is important to check the distance between your accommodation and the campus. Helsinki Metropolitan Area covers a large area, and you do not want to spend all your time traveling between your home and the university.

Use the journey planner on HSL’s (Helsinki Region Transport) web page: to check where possible housing is located and how far it is from the campus.

Campus maps with addresses for the buildings are here:

Please check the links below for information and guidance about finding accommodation in Finland.

Into-page for exchange students lists different web sites in which you can look for accommodation:

Information about finding a private rental:

Information about short-term and entry-level accommodation:

Practical information about renting and living in Finland:

9. Useful information about coming to and living in Finland:

Some of this information may be familiar to you already, but just in case you need to check some vital information concerning your possible relocation to Finland, here are some useful links to stuff that you need to know. Note that the formalities related to your relocation to Finland are your responsibility, so unfortunately the doctoral programme is not able to assist with that.

Information about working in Finland at the webpage of the Finnish Immigration Service:

And about applying for a residence permit for scientific research:

Information about e.g. immigration formalities, contact information for Finnish authorities etc.:

Information about e.g. Finnish health care system, opening a bank account, taxation, etc.:

10. If you have or will have a working contract at Aalto University:

Note that a working contract (e.g. with the title doctoral candidate or equivalent) and doctoral study right are two separate things; doctoral study right must always be applied for, even if you are already working at a research group at Aalto University. If you are unsure of your status, please contact the doctoral programme of your school.