In Finland, international mobility of students and teachers is an essential part of internationalisation of education. The national core curriculum sets internationalization and cultural understanding as one of the key objectives in basic education. Therefore, educational programmes through all levels of education have elements supporting internationalisation. Moreover, students are provided with a variety of possibilities to study or work on a traineeship abroad and to gain knowledge of other languages, cultures and societies.
Matters relating to the education system and its development are decided nationally, but national arrangements and decisions are informed and influenced by policies and objectives jointly formulated in the European Union (EU), the Council of Europe, the OECD, the UN and in Nordic cooperation. The broad lines of Finnish education and science policy are in line with the Europe 2020 Strategy.
In Finland, the Ministry of Education and Culture is the main national body responsible for European and international dimensions in education. The main agency for implementing policies in the field of international cooperation in education is the Finnish National Agency for Education (EDUFI).
The state funding reserved for the internationalisation of education and training aims at supporting internationalisation according to the objectives set in the core curricula. This funding also encourages the creation of international cooperation networks.
Finnish higher education institutions are urged to increase their international cooperation through the implementation of the International strategy for higher education and research 2017–2025.
In Finland the most important challenges for international mobility include:
- making mobility an integral part of day-to-day work
- integrating mobility with other activities such as transnational projects and networks to support the development of common tools and working methods and create new contacts
- paying more attention to quality of mobility periods and follow-up of the mobility period