Since the semester has already started I’d like to describe moments of studying and registering at LUT generally. Some of them I found really outstanding and not ordinary.Other things are regular things need to be done and, of course, important to know.
In welcome package I found a very useful book – study guide with programs in English (also programs in Finnish are available online), and all information about registration, degree certificates, choosing of courses, exams and Master’s thesises are available there. Although all necessary informative tools were in my hands it took time to get familiar with all issues because it’s impossible first to read all the theory and memorize it in order to use afterwards.
Important things always to know and remember
There are three different e-platforms for studying:
– WebOodi for registration to courses and exams;
– Noppa portal for studying and teaching where students find necessary materials for studies and check updates of timetables in case of any changes;
– Moodle, learning enviroment which is mostly used for group works.
Everything is organized for better studying and for conveniece of students and teachers. However sometimes, especially in the beginning such difference in tools may even turn to obstacles instead of convenience. For example, registration to courses should be done only in strictly limited time, the same concerns registration for exams, and it should be done separately. If this requirement are not met by students they have to pay additional fee and this might be very costly.
Another example is that different platforms are used at different courses and it’s necessary to be always careful and attentive not to miss important news. Noppa is not like Facebook or Gmail to get notification of new messages and updates. These platforms are necessary to check regularly.
Since I’m double degree student it took me time to organize my study plan in a way to meet the requirements of both universities. For instance, in Graduate School of Management of Saint Petersburg State University where I spent the first year of Master’s program students are registered to all the obligatory courses and exams automatically on the basis of enrollment and no other charges are made.LUT students go to “yliopisto” – “university” in Finnish (photo by LUT).
Organization of learning process at LUT
Here at university courses are shared among teachers, they are taught not by one professor but by several. Each lecture can be given by different professor or assistant. Usually the exact schedule is announced in the beginning of the semester and is available at Noppa. Also guest lectures are often organized within a course program, and lecturers are professionals from industry to which the course is tight.
The procecess of learning vary between faculties but in general it’s divided to individual work and group work – for me the most effective way of learning because of interacting with other students. And because I study at school of business I know that learning process is organized with use of cases and interactive lectures where students attend being already prepared to the topic. At the end some courses have panel discussions with professionals, for instance course of Sustainable Strategy and Business Ethics.
Finnish professors have rights to check the examination works and bring the grades in three weeks after exam. Grades vary from 0 to 5, and where all above 1 is positive mark and zero is fail. For some international students it’s a long time as they are willing to know grades immediately or at least in couple of days. And this is reasonable because it’s not only willingness to know grades fastly but conveniece in bureaucracy with partner universities: such slowliness causes delays in results reporting and temporary stops the process of students reintegration at home university.
Examinations are usually take place in the same auditorium with students from other faculties, sometimes up to 5 different courses are combined in one room. But classrooms are huge, there is enough space for everyone and courses are marked with colourful papers.
One of the rooms where exams take place, students are waiting outside (photo by LUT).
At the end of the course students are asked to give feedback to course and separate feedback to teammates if teamwork was organized during semester. Each student evaluate contribution of each memeber of team separately and this evaluation may affect the final grade. Here is the moment not to think personally about professional work and separate professional contribution from personal relationships.
In comparision, evaluation of course feedback gives additional 2 points in calculation of final grade and one of its outstanding features is evaluation of personal development. It means that education system is interested to give professional education together with helping students in their personal development, also giving attention to individual nature of each student.