Finland is one of the first options that come to mind when thinking of immigration to Europe. A strong economy, great nature, the lack of skilled workers, and warm and friendly people toward immigrants make it an attractive destination. The Visa Library team brings up how to immigrate and work in Finland as a teacher through this page.
What are the requirements?
You need these items to work as a teacher in Finland:
A university degree.
The first requirement is to have an educational degree or diploma from an approved university in Finland, your home country, or a foreign one. You often need a MA degree to work as a teacher in Finland, but often you can work with a BA degree.
There is no information about the subject you need to study. But the more related it is to the field you teach, the better.
The center or university you study and get your degree from must be valid and approved in that country. You need a certified copy plus translation as well.
Language proficiency certificate
You need a Finnish or Swedish language proficiency to work as a teacher in Finland. You have the other option to work as an English teacher, but it’s another story, and the requirements change.
There is an aptitude test in Finland that you will have to pass, and it’s in Finnish. So you need language fluency to become a teacher in Finland.
Pass the Recognition process.
If you study in a foreign country and not Finland, you need to apply for recognition to become a teacher in Finland. The country you studied doesn’t matter; EU or non-EU countries. You have to apply for recognition from the Finnish National Agency for Education and receive a license to work as a teacher in Finland.
The recognition process is explained in the below section, and you will find more useful information about it. You have to gather some supporting documents and send them to the Finnish officials. The procedure you have to follow after it is up to your condition and the Finnish official’s decision.
Finding a job offer with a Finnish employer.
If you are a non-EU national, you need a job offer from a Finnish employer to work as a teacher there. Finding an employer is a must, as you need an employment contract with an employer to apply for a work permit. Every non-EU national who wants to work in Finland needs a work permit. It is permission from the Finnish government to work as a foreign person.
What is the procedure?
The procedure you have to follow to become a teacher in Finland is up to your nationality and where you get your degree. If you study in Finland, it becomes easier to become a teacher than in a foreign country.
If you get your degree abroad, you need to pass the recognition process. But the process depends on your qualifications and skills. The Finnish officials decide about it. This is a general process you will have to follow to immigrate and work in Finland as a teacher:
Apply for recognition.
If you study for your degree in a foreign country and not Finland, you need to apply for recognition from the Finnish National Agency for Education. You will have to gather the supporting documents and send them everything. They assess your application and decide about it. This is a sample list of the documents you have to gather:
- Your educational degree.
- Application form.
- Language proficiency certificate.
- Teaching license or certificate.
- Proof of nationality
- Translation of your documents is not in Finnish, Swedish, or English.
You will have to get in touch with the officials to get the full and complete list of the documents.
You have to send them everything and wait for the result of their decision.
Finnish National Agency for Education decision on your application.
It takes time until the Finnish National Agency for Education assess and decides on your application. After they are done processing it, they will inform you of the results. There are different possibilities with your results. They will email you the result or post it to your address.
Finnish officials might require you to take supplementing studies in Finland. If it’s a yes, you will have to take a course in one of the educational centers or universities. They will inform you of the subjects you have to pass or their duration. They are likely to have special instructions about the course you have to pass.
If you do not need a supplementing study or after you pass it, you might need to take an Adaptation period. It’s a training workshop that you might have to pass to become a teacher in Finland.
It’s to get familiar with the teaching procedure and educational content in Finland. You will work and get experience under the supervision of a licensed teacher or education center in Finland.
It’s your responsibility to find a school or center to take your adaptation period. But you should ask the Finnish officials about it to ensure they approve it.
One of the stages you have to pass is to pass an aptitude test in Finland. It proves you are eligible to work as a teacher in Finland and have the required knowledge and skill.
The test is in Finnish or Swedish, so you need language proficiency to pass it and become a teacher in Finland. It consists of an essay part that you have to read and answer questions. Then, you have to prove your teaching skills and abilities through a demonstration in class. You will have to teach the content you have expertise in, like math or science.
You often have to take the aptitude test with a higher education institution or center. They provide you with further information about the content, procedure, and how to register for it.
Apply for recognition to get the license.
After you pass the above stages or the required pens by Finnish National Agency for Education, you need to apply them again to get your license. You will have to gather or collect and submit the required documents or certificates you received through the above stages.
Submit everything to the Finnish officials, and they assess them. After they are done, they will issue you the teaching license to work in Finland.
Look for a job offer in Finland as a teacher.
After you get your teaching license, you can work as a teacher. But you need a work permit if you are not an EU national.
The EU/EEA member states can work in Finland without getting a work permit or a visa. But they need to inform the local officials.
But, non-EU nationals need a work permit to work in Finland. The first step to receiving a work permit is to find a job with a Finnish employer. The teacher and employer have to submit some supporting documents to receive the work permit for the teacher. You, as the teacher, can not apply for a work permit on your own.
You can use various ways to find a job in Finland as a teacher. It’s up to you to use one or all of them according to your conditions.
One of the available ways you can use to find a job in Finland is to search through the websites that offer job positions in the country. These are the employment websites that only advertise jobs in various fields. You can look for or search to find a position as a teacher in them. This is a list of taser websites:
- Monster Finland
- Tiptopjob Finland
- Jobs in Helsinki
- Te- Palvelut
- Careerjet Finland
- Monster. fi
- Indeed Finland
- The Hub
The above list of websites is a sample of the website, and you might be able to find other ones. But they are the most famous websites and the best website to find a job in Finland.
You need to prepare your resume and apply for these positions. You should also mention and indicate that you have a license to teach in Finland.
If your resume is good and impressive, employers might help you with the recognition process.
There are also employment agencies or recruiters in Finland that connect employers and employees. In this case, they connect teachers to schools or academies. You might be able to receive help from them. This is a list of some of these companies:
- aTalent Recruiting
- Horton International
You might be able to find other companies, but they are the famous ones. Visit their website to know if they can help you or find you a teaching position.
The other way is to visit Finland in person and look for a position. When you enter the country to take the tests or pass the training, you can take interviews with schools or academies. You have the option to take a demonstration and provide your teaching skills and abilities.
Some non-EU nationals do not need a visa to enter Finland. They can enter the country with their valid passport. If you are a national of one of these countries, you can enter the country and look for a job. But in case you are not a national of these countries, you can apply for a Finland tourist visa and enter the country. It lets you stay in Finland for up to 90 days. This time allows you to find a job and have interviews. But you may not work under a tourist visa.
Sign an employment contract with the Finnish employer.
One of the requirements to work in Finland as a teacher or any other occupation is to have an employment contract with a Finnish employer. As you will read in the below section, every non-EU person who wants to work in Finland needs a work permit. This is because the Finnish government prefers that employers hire from Finland or the EU for economic benefits. But if they can not find a qualified person in the EU area, they can bring in skilled workers from non-EU countries.
You have to read the contract and understand the terms and conditions. Some items must be included in it, and these are some of the samples:
- Starting date
- Duration of employment.
- Tasks and responsibilities
You can read samples on the internet or get help from a lawyer to sign the contract.
Finland work permit and work visa application.
After you finalize the employment contract, you need a work permit to work in Finland as a foreign teacher. The application process is like this:
Finnish employer or you, the teacher, can apply for a work permit. You’re gonna have to apply for the “First Residence Permit.” to work as a teacher.
Visit the Enter Finland Service website. When you enter the site, click on the Work Part button, you’ll enter another page and should read the instructions to know which part is appropriate for you. A residence permit for an employed person (TTOL) is often your choice. But there might be another option according to your conditions or a particular case for teachers. Read the instructions. Then create an account if you don’t have any.
Now, you need to complete the online application form on the website. Then, submit the scanned form of supporting documents. This is the list of documents you have to gather and submit;
It must be valid over the date of your work contract.
Also, Coloured copies of the passport page and copies of all passport pages containing markings are needed.
One photo of yourself is needed.
- The form MP_1.
You need to attach this form only if You are in Finland and are applying for a first residence permit.
- The employment contract.
It needs to verify these items:
- Employee’s duties
- the start and end date and the duration of your employment.
- The name of the collective agreement (TES) applied.
- Working hours.
- Salary and possible employee benefits.
- The location of the work.
- Employer’s company name, business ID, & contact details.
- Signs and names of employees & employers.
The employer needs to submit these documents.
He/she needs to add the terms of employment online in Entering Finland for Employers.
It is No 5 on the list of requirements.
If it’s not possible to send them online,
The employer needs to complete the TEM 0.54 form & sign it.
You, as the employee, need to submit the form with your application.
- A Certificate of paid taxes or a certificate of tax debts.
They can not be older than 3 months.
- The Certificates on employer’s insurance premiums.
- The Report on the number of employees in the company.
It must contain the number of full-time & part-time employees.
- A Report on the Recruitment of the labor force from the Finnish labor market.
This is the list of supporting documents you need to gather. But, the officials could ask for further supporting documents. Be prepared to submit whatever they ask.
If you’re abroad, you must prove your identity to a Finnish embassy or consulate. You can find the list & their address in the Visa Library article. You have to book your appointment before getting to the embassy. It’s possible to arrange a meeting through their website.
What if you are in Finland at the time of application? Now, you must prove your identity at a service point of the Finnish Immigration Service.
There is an online booking system to reserve your appointment.
You can find its link in the Visa Library article.
Your application process comes with a fee. You have to pay it to the Finnish online banking credentials by a verified credit card or to the embassy or consulate. You’d better pay it as soon as possible to speed up the process. Now, visit the Finnish embassy on the scheduled date and bring the original copies of the documents you submitted online.
Submit the documents to the officials, Then answer their questions regarding the purpose of your visit. You’d better know that your fingerprints will be taken. It’s not a big deal & will be done in a few minutes.
When you’re done with the embassy or Immigration Service, wait for the processing.
You can follow the status of your application on your Enter Finland Account. At this time, your application enters two stages.
The Employment and Economic Development Office will evaluate your application.
They will check your eligibility. If a piece of document is missing, they’ll ask you to submit it. So you should check your Enter Finland Account regularly. They could also ask for additional information. Be prepared to submit whatever they ask ASAP.
When Employment and Economic Development Office agrees with your application, the Finnish Immigration Service will process the application.
You will receive the result in writing or at an interview if they agree.
Remember that you can NOT enter Finland while waiting for an answer to your application.
If you enter the country, you’ll have to cancel the previous application & start a new one. When the officials agree on your application, They’ll notify you of the further stages to follow.
You must send your passport to the embassy to get the visa and enter Finland. When you get the residence permit for Finland, you will be registered with the Finnish Population Information System automatically. You will get a Finnish Personal Identity Code at the same time.
When you enter the country, you must visit the nearest service location of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. There, You will be registered as a resident.
You can find more information about Finland’s work visa from the Visa Library article or watch the video that the Visa Library team has prepared on our YouTube channel.
Teachers’ salaries in Finland.
Your salary as a teacher in Finland depends on various factors;
- Your education.
- Work experience
- Language fluency.
- The subject you teach.
- The school or place you work with,
- The city you are living in.
The sources have mentioned various figures for your salary s a teacher in Finland.
According to the Glassdoor website, the average salary of a teacher in Finland is about €2,500 per month. This source says that the average salary is about €1,083 – €2,160.
According to Salary Explorer, the average salary is about 3,570 EUR per month, and while the lowest salary is about 1,750 EUR, the highest salary is about 5,570 EUR. The range is between these two figures.
According to World Salaries, the average annual salary is about 43,340 EUR, and the average monthly salary is 3,611 EUR. While the lowest annual salary is about 21,400 EUR, the lowest monthly salary is about 1,783 EUR. It says that the highest annual salary is about 66,140 EUR
The highest monthly salary is about 5,511 EUR.
The best cities to work as a teacher in Finland.
The answer to this question is up to your preferences in terms of the city you want to work in. Whether you prefer large or quite small cities with amazing nature is up to you. You should research the Finnish cities and determine which one is appropriate for you.
This is the list of the largest cities in Finland where you can find teaching positions better as there are more opportunities or schools:
There are some cities that people love to visit and live in. These are the most beautiful cities in Finland that everyone wants to visit. You’d better consider them and find information about whether you like to visit them or not:
You can find more information about each city and learn which is appropriate for your conditions.
Finland visa options for teachers.
If you need a visa to enter Finland, these visa options help you in the process of becoming a teacher there. When you read the description of each visa, you will learn how it can help you.
Finland work visa
When you want to work in Finland as a foreign teacher, you need a Finland work visa. You need it if you are from a non-EU county, and EU member states do not need a visa to work in Finland. Before you apply for a visa, you need a work permit. To apply for a work permit, you need to find a Finnish employer and reach an agreement for employment with him/her. You apply to Finland officials, and after the work permit is issued, you apply for a work visa to enter the country.
A foreign teacher who is a non-EU national needs a work permit and a work visa to work in Finland.
Finland student visa.
If you study in a foreign country, you must send your degree and documents to Finnish officials for recognition to get a teaching license. They assess the quality and quantity of your degree and decide whether you can work in Finland as a teacher or not.
But if you study in Finland and get a degree from one of the universities and education centers, you do not need recognition. The process of becoming a teacher becomes easier and faster. But you must get admission from a Finnish university or education center and then apply for a Finland student visa.
Finland visitor visa.
Some non-EU countries are exempt from a visa for entering Finland and visiting friends, family, and tourist attractions. If you are a national of one of these countries, you can enter Finland with your passport and stay for up to 90 days. If you want to become a teacher there, you can use this opportunity to find a job and immigrate there.
But if you are not among the visa-waived countries, you can apply for a Finland visitor visa or a tourist visa to find a job. Remember that a Finland tourist visa doesn’t permit you to work there. You can just use it to find a job.
Teaching jobs in Finland for foreign teachers.
There are various teaching positions and related jobs for a teacher. You’d better know them and become familiar with the requirements. The range of the subjects you can teach and places you can work is different. This section brings you some of these related work options, and you can read them to know what opportunities are available for you:
- GED Teacher
- Education Services Facilitator
- Elementary School Teacher
- Education Administrator
- Director of Learning Technology
- Educational Psychologist
- Kindergarten Teacher
- Education Program Specialist
- Economics Lecturer
- Distance Learning Coordinator
- Child Care Coordinator
- Business Teacher
- Biochemistry Professor
- Art Teacher
- Architecture Teacher
- Anthropology Teacher
- Agricultural Sciences Teacher
- Academic Staff
- Academic Manager
- Academic Advisor
- University Teacher
- Training Coordinator
- Teacher Aide
- Special Education Teacher
- Science Educator
- Professor – Social Work
- Psychology Teacher
- Post Doctoral Researcher
- Head of School
- Clinical School Psychologist
- Student Development Specialist
- Life Sciences Teacher
- Student Employment Specialist
- Training and Development Specialist
Can I work in Finland as a foreign teacher?
Having a license from a foreign country doesn’t give you the right to work in Finland as a teacher. You need to apply to the Finnish National Agency for Education and pass the recognition process. After they grant you the license to work as a teacher in Finland, you can find a job and apply for a work permit. Look at the above section to find more information.
Is it easy for me to become a teacher in Finland?
The answer depends on your mindset and ability to work hard during the process. You need to get a university degree and learn Finnish or Swedish. Then you have to apply to the Finnish government and pass the recognition process. It could be hard for you to pass the recognition and the requirements by the Finnish government, and take your time. You must be ready to pass it and spend the required time.
Before the recognition process, you need to work on your language fluency and learn Finnish or Swedish. It might take you time to learn it to the level to pass the aptitude test.
The process is a bit long and radius. So you should look up to your background and character to determine whether you can do it or not.
Is it hard for me to find a teaching job in Finland?
It’s up to your skills, abilities, and work experience whether you can find a teaching job in Finland or not. Before that, you must be good enough and work hard to pass the recognition process and get the teaching license.
You should know that the job market is tough in Finland, and so many skilled workers are trying to get a job in the country. So you will compete with the best teachers.
It might be hard for you if you have a Mediate resume. Improve your work experience and background and try to get qualifications.
The more skilled and experienced you are, the higher your chance of getting a job in Finland.
Let’s sum up…
This page of the Visa Library explained how to immigrate and work in Finland as a teacher. It covered the procedures you have to follow and the required items to become a teacher in Finland. Moreover, you learn the answer to some of your questions.
If you have questions, write them down in the comment section. The Visa Library team will answer them.
Frequently asked questions about immigration to Finland as a teacher.
What is the first step to becoming a teacher in Finland?
You need to apply to the Finnish officials and pass the recognition process to get a license.
Is it possible to work as a foreign teacher in Finland?
Yes, but you need a license from the Finnish officials that you will get after passing the recognition process.
Do I need Finnish language fluency to become a teacher in Finland?
Yes, you need Finnish or Swedish language fluency to become a teacher in Finland.