The ACPA Commission for Global Dimensions of Student Development (CGDSD) 2017 Inaugural Research Grant Winner

Dr. Tamara Yakaboski
Associate Professor, Higher Education & Student Affairs Leadership
University of Northern Colorado

Title: Tuition fee implementation for non-EU students studying in Finnish English-taught Master's (ETMs) Degrees

Abstract: A critical moment in Finnish higher education occurred this fall 2017 as the nation implemented its first ever tuition fees and targeted only non-European Union (international) students across all universities. This study examines that moment from the perspectives of over 50 individuals, including: 1) students’ union representatives; 2) selected impacted students; 3) faculty, who coordinate English-taught degree programs; and, 4) administrators, who are charged with implementation of these fees or work with international students. The creation of tuition fees in a country that previously had none is significant given the Finnish cultural values of equal access to education. This study investigates how three Finnish universities have implemented fees and their related scholarship schemes. Additionally, the study examines the impact of the fees on international students in regards to introducing stratification into the student experience and system. Finnish and European Union students currently continue to have no tuition fee requirement.  Note: Research undertaken while sponsored as a visiting researcher at the Finnish Institute for Educational Research/Koulutuksen tutkimuslaitos, University of Jyväskylä, Finland. 

Image below of the University of Jyväskylä, located in Jyväskylä, Finland
The JY University  

Image below of Student Union at The University of Turku, located in Turku, Finland