Language requirements in Sibelius Academy

Demonstrating your language proficiency in English

You may demonstrate your proficiency in English in the following ways:

1) Certificate of general education completed in English in an EU or EEA country, the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand

OR

2) Certificate of a university degree or a university of applied sciences degree completed in English in an EU or EEA country, the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand

OR

3) Certificate of a university or a university of applied sciences degree completed in Finnish or Swedish in Finland, which includes foreign language studies in English in accordance with the decree 794/2004 or 1129/2014

  • Foreign language studies in English that are included in an incomplete Finnish university or university of applied sciences degree, as well as studies completed in some other manner, can also be approved, provided that the studies comply with the decree. In this case, you must send a transcript of study records to Sibelius Academy Admissions Office along with a copy of the degree requirements of the higher education institution in question or some other document that states which language studies are required for the degree.

If you haven’t received your general education in English or haven’t completed a degree at a higher education institution in English in one of the above-mentioned countries, you can demonstrate your language skills in the following ways:

4) English test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed in the advanced syllabus level (A-level language) with a minimum grade of magna cum laude approbatur (M)

5) International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma:

  • diploma completed in English
  • passing grade in the English test (literature / language and literature / literature and performance) on level A
  • minimum grade of 5 (good) in the English language test on level B

6) European Baccalaureate (EB) diploma:

  • passing grade in English as the L1 language
  • minimum grade of 7 in English as the L2 or L3 language

7) Reifeprüfung (RP) or Deutsches Internationales Abitur (DIA) diploma completed at Deutsche Schule Helsinki:

  • passing grade in the written level A English test
  • a minimum grade of 8 in the oral level A English test

8) Certificate of a completed international language test approved by Sibelius Academy:

  • TOEFL (IBT) – Total score: 73
  • IELTS (Academic) – Overall Band Score: 5.5
  • Cambridge English C2 Proficiency (CPE) – accepted grades are A, B, C and Level C1
  • Cambridge English C1 Advanced (CAE) – accepted grades are A, B, C and Level B2
  • Cambridge English B2 First (FCE) – Accepted grades are A, B, C, and Level B1
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic) – Total score: 43

    IELTS, TOEFL and PTE test results are valid for two years from the test date. Cambridge results are valid indefinitely.

9) If you are unable to take the required language proficiency test by the deadline, you can take part in the paid language proficiency test organised by Uniarts Helsinki, proving language proficiency via passing marks. If you wish to take the language proficiency test, you must state this on the Studyinfo application form. The language test must be taken before the end of the entrance examination.

NOTE! A language test organised by University of the Arts Helsinki is accepted as a demonstration of your language skills only in the Sibelius Academy admissions. Uniarts Helsinki does not guarantee that the language test will be available to you in the same week as the entrance examination itself. The language proficiency tests of Uniarts Helsinki are held in Helsinki only.

The language test organised by Uniarts Helsinki will have the same required skill level as in the tests organised by an outside institute. The test consists of two parts – written communication and oral communication – and you must pass both of them and achieve the necessary skill level as determined by the programme in question. A passing grade is valid for two years in the Sibelius Academy admissions if you apply to the university during that time period.

Demonstrating your language proficiency in Finnish

You may demonstrate your proficiency in Finnish in the following ways:

1) You have completed your general education in Finnish

  • Basic education, upper secondary level degree, or other degree that gives eligibility for higher education completed in Finnish (passing grade in Finnish as a mother tongue in the school-leaving certificate)
  • Minimum grade of approbatur (A) for Finnish as a mother tongue in the Finnish matriculation examination

OR

2) You have completed a university degree or a university of applied sciences degree in Finnish

  • You may demonstrate your proficiency in Finnish also if you have completed, at minimum, a written thesis in Finnish for a Bachelor’s degree or a maturity test in Finnish that has been approved by a university or a university of applied sciences
  • Sibelius Academy also counts a certificate proving that you have studied the Finnish language as a major subject at a university or a university of applied sciences as proof of language proficiency. The same applies to core and intermediate studies (60 ECTS cr, or 30 cr according to the old Finnish credit system) in Finnish completed at a university or a university of applied sciences
  • Language proficiency test or language studies in Finnish completed as part of a degree at a higher education institution may also be regarded as proof of language proficiency, if you have received a minimum grade of ‘good’ for oral and written skills in Finnish (as a second national language)

If you haven’t been educated in Finnish or haven’t completed a degree at a higher education institution in Finnish, you can demonstrate your language skills in the following ways:

3) Finnish as a second language test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed with a minimum grade of lubenter (B)

4) Finnish as the second national language test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed on the advanced syllabus level (A-level language) with a minimum grade of eximia cum laude approbatur (E)

5) Finnish as the second national language test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed on the intermediate syllabus level (B-level language) with a grade of laudatur (L)

6) International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma:

  • minimum grade of 2 in a Finnish language test on level A (literature / language and literature / literature and performance)
  • minimum grade of 3 in a Finnish language test on level B
  • minimum grade of 2 in A1 Finnish or minimum grade of 3 in A2 Finnish in the International Baccalaureate programme completed before 2013

7) European Baccalaureate (EB) diploma:

  • passing grade in Finnish as the L1 language (minimum grade of 4)
  • minimum grade of 5 in Finnish as the L2 language

8) Reifeprüfung (RP) or Deutsches Internationales Abitur (DIA) diploma completed at Deutsche Schule Helsinki:

  • passing grade (minimum grade of 4) in the written test in Finnish as the mother tongue
  • minimum grade of 8 in the oral test in Finnish as the mother tongue
  • minimum grade of 5 in Finnish as the second language

9) National Certificate of Language Proficiency in Finnish (YKI) awarded by the Finnish National Agency for Education with all subtests of the test completed on level 3 (reading comprehension, writing, listening comprehension, speaking)

10) Civil Service Language Proficiency Certificate demonstrating oral and written skills in Finnish completed at least on level ‘satisfactory’

11) A passing grade in Finnish studies completed at Kulkuri School of Distance Education, corresponding to the basic education syllabus

Demonstrating your language proficiency in Swedish

You may demonstrate your proficiency in Swedish in the following ways:

1) You have completed your general education in Swedish

  • Basic education, upper secondary level degree, or other degree that gives eligibility for higher education completed in Swedish (passing grade in Swedish as a mother tongue in the school-leaving certificate)
  • Minimum grade of approbatur (A) for Swedish as a mother tongue in the Finnish matriculation examination

2) You have completed a university degree or a university of applied sciences degree in Swedish

  • You may demonstrate your proficiency in Swedish also if you have completed, at minimum, a written thesis in Swedish for a Bachelor’s degree, or a maturity test in Swedish that has been approved by a university or a university of applied sciences
  • Sibelius Academy also counts a certificate proving that you have studied the Swedish language as a major subject at a university or a university of applied sciences as proof of language proficiency. The same applies to core and intermediate studies (60 ECTS cr, or 30 cr according to the old Finnish credit system) in Swedish completed at a university or a university of applied sciences
  • Language proficiency test or language studies in Swedish completed as part of a degree at a higher education institution may also be regarded as proof of language proficiency, if you have received a minimum grade of ‘good’ for oral and written skills in Swedish (as a second national language)

If you haven’t been educated in Swedish or haven’t completed a degree at a higher education institution in Swedish, you can demonstrate your language skills in the following ways:

3) Swedish as a second language test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed with a minimum grade of lubenter (B)

4) Swedish as the second national language test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed in the advanced syllabus level (A-level language) with a minimum grade of eximia cum laude approbatur (E)

5) Swedish as the second national language test of the Finnish matriculation examination completed in the intermediate syllabus level (B-level language) with a grade of laudatur (L)

6) International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma:

  • minimum grade of 2 in a Swedish language test on level A (literature / language and literature / literature and performance)
  • minimum grade of 3 in a Swedish language test on level B
  • minimum grade of 2 in A1 Swedish or minimum grade of 3 in A2 Swedish in the International Baccalaureate programme completed before 2013

7) European Baccalaureate (EB) diploma:

  • passing grade in Swedish as the L1 language (minimum grade of 4)
  • minimum grade of 5 in Swedish as the L2 language

8) National Certificate of Language Proficiency in Swedish (YKI) awarded by the Finnish National Agency for Education with all subtests of the test completed at least on level 3 (reading comprehension, writing, listening comprehension, speaking)

9) Civil Service Language Proficiency Certificate demonstrating oral and written skills in Swedish completed at least on level ‘satisfactory’

10) Test named ‘Test i svenska för universitetsstudier – TISUS’ completed in full in Sweden, with a passing grade in all sections of the test