Pilot case

Introductory Finnish MOOC

Introducing students around the world to the basics of the Finnish language.
Four happy students studying with computers on the table.

Pilot leader

Aija Elg


Language Centre


circa 3500 students


Nov 2016 – Dec 2017


Introductory Finnish MOOC is a Finnish language Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) and it is the first language MOOC offered by the Aalto Language Centre.

The course teaches Finnish from no prior background to a lower beginner level and functions as an orientation phase for newcomers to enable easier adaptation to Finland. In this four-week course, students will learn to understand, speak, and write basic Finnish. The main target groups are people who are planning to come to study or work in Finland and Aalto University but anyone who wants to learn Finnish can join.

Goals of the pilot are:

  • Create a Finnish MOOC that serves the target group and supplements the other course supply in Language Centre
  • Share the results of the project with colleagues (teaching materials, pedagogical results, technical instructions etc.)
  • Create ground for wider MOOC and blended learning supply in Language Centre
  • Enhance Aalto University’s visibility internationally and function as possibility to show Aalto’s approach to learning and teaching to foreign students and faculty
  • Collect experience how aalto.fi platform suits for MOOC-platform
  • Introductory Finnish forms part of the Suomi 100 Finland 100 programme under the name of “Learning Finnish Together”

Platforms and tools

Aalto OpenLearning– Learning environment
Learning Centre Studio 
– Video and audio production

Involved courses

LC-7007 – Survival Finnish
Introduction to the Finnish Language and Culture


The pilot course was in November 2016 and the first course was delivered in April 2017 with 274 students. The follow-up delivery of the course in June 2017 gathered 1399 enrolled students, in August 635 and in December 1193. The four courses have gathered 3501 enrolled students altogether. Students’ feedback has been excellent: “The course is very well organised, with interesting topics and although there is a lot of material, it felt easy, pleasant and almost effortless to learn the new concepts, words, pronunciation. The videos are one of the best part. Kiitos!”

The next phase is to make Introductory Finnish course as a credit course and include it to the Language Centre’s normal course offering.


Aija Elg
Language Centre
Pilot leader

Sanna Rämö
Language Centre

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