September 30, 2016

A new, 2nd call for SIMHE-UniPID Virtual Studies proposals is open! Course coordinators from the UniPID member universities are welcome to submit proposals before 28 October. Proposal categories are 1) Introductory studies and 2) Courses in the areas of (intercultural) Working life and Civil Society. If you missed the previous call, now is your time to move!


The Supporting Immigrants in Higher Education in Finland (SIMHE) project implemented by the Finnish University Partnership for International Development (UniPID) is inviting course coordinators from the UniPID member universities[1] to submit course proposals to be offered in the framework of SIMHE-UniPID.


Supporting Immigrants in Higher Education in Finland (SIMHE) is a project funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture (MEC). SIMHE-UniPID is piloting MEC’s national initiative to reinforce the role of Finnish Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in supporting the integration of asylum seekers, refugees and other immigrants. SIMHE-UniPID supports the immigrants striving to start or continue their Higher Education (HE) studies.

The existing UniPID Virtual Studies aim to deepen collaboration between universities and to draw on the specific areas of expertise at different institutions of Higher Education in Finland. In this SIMHE-UniPID Call we seek to fund Virtual Studies courses designed for recently-arrived migrants, who are prospective students in Finland. For universities, it is an opportunity to offer some of their courses virtually to a wider audience while realizing their third mission, societal impact. The courses funded in this call will be offered as part of the UniPID Virtual Studies initiative, using the own existing virtual platforms (e.g. Moodle) of the Universities.

The 2nd 2016 Call for SIMHE-UniPID Virtual Studies Proposals

The 2nd 2016 Call for Proposals aims to fund courses that contribute to and diversify the spectrum of academic courses available for migrants and further supports their inclusion into Finnish Higher Education. The courses offered to this SIMHE-UniPID Call can vary between 1-5 ECTS credits.

This 2nd SIMHE-UniPID Call focuses on two broad course themes:

1. Introductory studies

  • Preparative and, if possible, interdisciplinary courses suitable for newcomers to Finnish universities.
  • Courses related to study skills, ICT or information skills, Finnish language, academic communication skills, the Finnish Educational system etc. are especially considered.

2. Courses in the areas of (intercultural) Working life and Civil Society

  • Professional skills and career planning, working life Finnish etc.
  • Civil society, active citizenship, rights and responsibilities etc

SIMHE-UniPID Call´s Specific Requirements:

In this specific SIMHE-UniPID Call it is crucial, that

1. The course is designed in a culturally sensitive manner, that is, keeping in mind that

  • the students represent a variety of educational experiences, linguistic skills and backgrounds, and that
  • for many participants the course may be their first contact with university level and/or virtual studies in Finland. The materials, instructions etc. must reflect this.

2. The University providing the course is able to enroll also asylum seekers* as visiting students or equivalent and provide them a certificate / transcript of records after completing the course. (*The only identification available may be the Reception Center identity card.)

These conditions will be considered in both the eligibility and the evaluation of proposals.

Conditions of Funding

The following sums are available for the creation and provision of SIMHE-UniPID courses:

  • 1ECT course = max. 3700€
  • 2ECT course = max. 4400€
  • 3ECT course = max. 5100€
  • 4ECT course = max. 5800€
  • 5ECT course = max. 6500€

Applicants should be based in one of the UniPID member universities. The courses funded under this call should be offered in English and the applicants should be prepared to offer the course for the first time during the academic year 2016-2017 (which includes also the Summer Term). All together the course is to be offered three times as part of the UniPID Virtual Studies initiative.

Funding is awarded based on the budget submitted as part of the proposal and paid in total upon signature of the SIMHE-UniPID Virtual Course Contract. More detailed guidelines on the conditions of funding can be requested directly from UniPID-personnel (contact information below).

Formulating a Proposal

A SIMHE-UniPID course proposal should clearly outline the following components

  • the aimed target group and eligible applicants,
  • course content,
  • objectives and expected learning outcomes,
  • learning methods and materials,
  • call-specific requirements (see above).

A preliminary course timetable and a budget for the course should also be included. A template for the budget can be downloaded from http://www.unipid.fi/assets/budget_template.xlsx.

Assessment of the eligible proposals will be based on the following elements:

1. Course Content

  • Relevant studies for people with a migratory background
  • Transferability for a Degree program at least in the offering university
  • Timeliness and usefulness of topic

2. Online Pedagogy

  • How well does the organization of the course structure facilitate collaborative learning and communication among students of different cultural backgrounds
  • How does the course meet the needs of students with different learning styles and skills
  • Use of open online resources

3. Proposal

  • The clarity of the articulated objectives, expected learning outcomes, evaluation, and student responsibilities
  • Composition of the academic teaching team
  • Sustainability
  • Earlier virtual study or virtual pedagogy experience
  • Call-specific requirements

The SIMHE-Unipid Coordination Group makes the final decisions on the funding.

All proposals should be submitted via the specific form for the 2nd SIMHE-UniPID Virtual Studies Proposals 2016 by October 28th 2016.

Further information:

Osku Haapasaari
UniPID / University of Jyväskylä
Tel. +358 40 805 4327

Katinka Käyhkö
SIMHE-UniPID Project Coordinator
Tel. +358 (0)40 805 4914

Marita Häkkinen
SIMHE-UniPID Project Coordinator
Tel. +358 (0)40 805 4913


[1] Aalto University, Åbo Akademi University, University of Eastern Finland, University of Helsinki, University of Jyväskylä, University of Lapland, University of Oulu, University of Tampere and University of Turku.