Student Finnish to English – An introduction 

Most of the people you will encounter in Finland during your studies will probably speak very good English (even though they might not think so themselves). You will, however, surely learn some Finnish at the same time. To get you started, we have gathered a vocabulary specific for studying in Finland and taking part in the student culture in Tampere. These are words that you will surely come across when you arrive here!


Ainejärjestö (abbreviation aj) – A subject association for students of a particular field or degree programme. You can tell them apart by the colours of their overalls!  

Akateeminen vartti – Lectures and events often start 15 minutes after the announced start time. This is known as an ’academic quarter-hour’ and it is perfectly normal. Events which are marked to start at 16 sharp will start at 16 sharp, however.

Appro – A student event in which you will tour the city and go through checkpoints. An appro can be much more than a pub crawl! 


Excursion (abbreviations Excu or XQ) – A trip outside the university to meet prospective employers etc. Usually arranged by student associations.


Fuksi – A fresher, a first-year student. 


Haalarit – Student overalls. In Finland, many students wear overalls at parties, events and excursions – the colour of their overalls is determined by their field of study. It might look weird, but you don’t need to worry about a dress code when you have your overalls!


Kilta – A guild, student association for ’teekkaris’, meaning engineering students.

Kurssi – A course, the basic building block of your studies.

Kyykkä – A traditional Karelian game practiced by students in Tampere. The Kyykkä World Championship is held yearly in Hervanta.  


Luento – A lecture. Central to your studies.


Moodle – A virtual teaching platform used on many courses.


Opintopiste (abbreviation op) – A study credit (or ECTS credit). One ’noppa’ is calculated to correspond to approximately 27 hours of work. Gather enough of them to earn a degree!


Periodi – Teaching period. The academic year is divided into four teaching periods; two in the autumn, two in the spring. At the end of each period, there is a teaching-free week when exams are held.


Sitsit – A student party involving eating, drinking and singing. Highly recommended!

Speksi – A type of interactive student theater. Go see some!  


T3 (abbreviation of Tampere3) – The merger process of universities here in Tampere. Through the T3 process, all university students in Tampere are nowadays studying at Tampere University.

TAMK – Abbreviation of Tampere University of Applied Sciences.

TAU – Abbreviation of Tampere University in data systems, for example.

Teekkari – An engineering student.

Tentti – Exam. Earn your study credits by passing this.

TREY – The Student Union of Tampere University. We do many things!  

Tuni – Abbreviation used in the data systems of the Universities community, for example your tuni-email.

TUNI-tunnus – TUNI account. A personal username for accessing the university electronic services. You will use this very often, so learn it by heart.


YTHS – the Finnish Student Health Service (FSHS) takes care of students’ health care in Finland.