Differences Between TUAS and TJUT

Moi! My name is Li Fangyu and I come from China. My university is Tianjin University of Technology. It is located in Tianjin, which is only 100km away from the capital Beijing!
Compared with TUAS, TJUT has only one campus but it is a much bigger one because there are more students.

Li11This is the gate of my university.

 

I think one big difference between these two universities is the layout.

In TJUT, it has library, sports playground, three canteens, more than 10 teaching buildings and more than 20 student apartments! All things are gathered together in one campus. And in China, almost all the universities provide places for students to live. It is safe and cheap. But it maybe a little bit small. And there are no kitchens in student apartment because some big canteens are cheap and not far. There are hundred kinds of Chinese food that you can choose. It is really delicious and time-saving.

There are also some supermarkets and cafes inside, which are also nice.

For the study, there are also some differences.Li12

In TUAS we almost use email every day to get some information. But in my university we prefer using social networks (like QQ or WeChat) or group chats to tell something important and seldom use email. If you have something to ask teachers, you can directly call them or send SMS to them and they will reply you in time.

During the class, maybe the rules in my university is stricter. If you keep using mobile phones or laptops at class, the teacher may think you are not listening carefully. Then they may ask you to turn off the devices. So you may should listen to the lectures carefully and ask questions. This maybe a little bit different from here. In TUAS we can use any device to study on class and the teacher wouldn’t stop you.Li13

What impressed me most in TUAS classes is that there are many presentations. And we have to comment everyone’s presentation. And at the same time we have a lot of group works to write a thesis and make a final presentation together. In my university, there are less presentations but more writing or memorizing homework. And whatever you are studying you have to memorize many things every day.

During the almost 4 months in TUAS, I feel a really academic atmosphere and everyone pay a lot of attention to their assignments. I am really glad to have this experience of being an exchange student. This semester can be unforgettable in my whole life.

Li14Text & photos: Fangyu Li

 

 

Everyday life in Turku

It has been a long time since I was longing to come to Northern Europe. Now I have been in Finland for almost 3 months and going to leave in one more month. Tempus fugit. I would like to thank Finland, thank Turku and thank Turku AMK. You are the ones that gave me such wonderful days in my university life.

If it was not that I heard about the program of being an exchange student in Turku by accident, I may never have an idea and chance to live here even for a short time. And that was the first time I knew the name of Turku. The only things I know about Finland are Nokia, snow, Santa Claus, Angry birds and Northern lights. I became so excited after I made up my mind to come here.

The exchange student application work was a little bit complicated and took me a lot of time. But it was full of joy for me.

And I even prepared some wonderful small Chinese gifts for my future Finnish friends when I went to Beijing. I knew this would be my very first time odyssey!

Li1

 

 

 

Li2The flight from Shanghai to Helsinki took 10 hours but I was just keeping looking out of the window and felt like there were only 2 hours.

Finally I arrived Turku! It was already 10pm in China but 5pm in Finland, but I was totally wide awake.

My tutors picked me up at the station. They were really nice and helped me to settle down in my apartment. Everything was totally new to me and it was really hard to fall asleep at the first night. No exaggeration, I still felt like dreaming and could not believe I was more than 7000 kilometers away from home.

I came to Turku quite early, almost 10 days before school starts. So I had a lot of time exploring the city with my tutors. They were really patient. We went to the flea market, the beach, the woods to pick blueberries and Ruissalo to see the sunsets. It was mid-summer in Finland. The temperature was really comfortable. The air was clean and everything in sight is green. That was really fantastic!

Summer in Finland is like a wildest dream!

Li3 Li4 Li5

 

 

For me, I invited my tutors to my place and cooked them Chinese dishes with my Chinese friends. We chatted and laughed until the day was fully dark. We really had a fantastic night!

I was really happy that they love the Chinese cuisine we cooked!
(maybe just my version of Chinese food ……)

Li6 Li7
Then comes the orientation day! My brand new semester began!

Li8

It was really the first time that I met so many students from so many countries. Everything were waiting to be explored.

About what I study, it seems like a little bit difficult for me as I was studying totally different courses at my home university. But the courses here were still attractive. Life is keeping trying new things!
And the most impressive course in the Finnish course! Since Chinese language is totally different from any European language, Finnish is difficult but so interesting! I made mistakes but now I knew one more new language! 🙂

Li9

This is one of my Finnish assignments. It maybe only several sentences but took me a lot of time! Finnish is hard but I love it! Just like I love Finland!

During the 3 months in Finland so far, I have traveled in Helsinki, Rauma and Tampere. And I am planning to go Rovaniemi recently. Every city is unique but all beautiful in a Finnish way! Quite, gentle, peaceful and clean.

Li10

Time flies! Now the autumn semester is coming to an end. Finland gave me so much this time. I met so many friends from all around the world and I knew so many stories about people whom I may meet only for once.

So many words to say!

Now I think it was not only just traveling, but also a kind of life experience. Although we live thousands kilometers away, we still have same happy and sad stories. We can share all the happy or sad moments. I will miss Finland and miss all the people I met in Finland.

Thank you all! Paljon kiitoksia! Suomi!

Text & photos: Fangyu Li

Curiosities of Finnish people & culture

Winter weather in December

Winter weather in December

Living in Finland might seem a bit easy because you got told that everybody is nice to you and tries to help you. The interesting part is that it counts for people who are coming from abroad. Finnish people are quite shy so they think – if a native needs help – “help will come from someone else”…

That’s what I was told so. Being shy is not the only thing which is different about the people. Although to their shyness they want to differ from each other. They want to be unique. Therefore they are changing their hair color to blue, green, grey, pink or even red. Furthermore they seem to love tattoos over everything and piercings are also very common.

Finland is also a country where fitness seems to be very important. You will find several fitness clubs in only one street and people also love to wear sportswear as “casual wear”.

Next to their alternative behavior in styling they appreciate to go into the sauna once in a while. Finnish saunas are a cultural habit where people meet and talk about their lives. Finnish saunas are from the inside completely made out of wood and its temperature is something between 80°C to 100°C.

If you think that these temperatures are as extreme as the cold weather you might get disappointed. At least until January… until then the weather is just getting colder and wetter but there is still no real winter feeling. The daylight might get reduced to six hours which is a few less than the average middle European daytime. It is a little distracting but quite interesting to experience a different climate situation. If you felling depressed because of too líttle sunlight you don’t have to worry at all. Every shop is selling Vitamin D3 pills which should act as supplement. I was told that the Finnish people are little more depressed when it is cold and dark outside. It appears Finland is more different than expected in the first place but with its different cultural treasures a real have to go 😉Welser2-1Text & photos: Michael Welser

Into the wild

Finland is synonym of nature for me. So for all nature lovers, Turku is the paradise! I have had the opportunity to discover a lot of amazing places near Turku. I could see these places during different seasons and each time is magical. During the summer, you can enjoy long walks and picnics. During the autumn, you can see amazing and powerful colours and also smell the good perfume of woods. Finally, during the winter, frozen landscapes offer an unforgettable memory.

My favourite places are Ruissalo and Kurjenrahka National Park. When the weather is good, there is an incredible atmosphere in Ruissalo. You can meet a lot of interesting people, grill sausages in front of the Baltic Sea and participate to a lot of activities like paddling or kayaking. I have done a lot of walks during the autumn and the colours were stunning. I will never get tired of this place! During the winter, when the weather is colder, you can live the amazing experience of ice-swimming with sauna. It’s really typical in Finland and you should really try that!

Kurjenrahka National Park

Kurjenrahka National Park

Kurjenrahka National Park is an otherworldly place! You can make long walks around the lake and see the wonderful landscapes. According to where you are, you can have a different view of the park, it is really impressive. You can rent a cottage near Kurjenrahka and enjoy the nature for a week-end, it is a really good way to take a deep breath of fresh air!

I really appreciated all my adventures in the nature near Turku. I feel good in these places, far of the pollution and stress of the cities. It is as if the time stopped for several hours. The nature is really invigorating.

Text & photo: Florie Lefèvre

Differences between TUAS and my home institution

Main entrance of TUAS, Sepänkatu campus

Main entrance of TUAS, Sepänkatu campus

I’m a Belgian student and I’m studying International Business at Turku University of Applied Sciences. TUAS is really different compared to my home institution. I discovered another teaching method, rules and work method. It was a really good experience for me, so I would like to share it with you.

Firstly I’m really impressed by the teaching method. In Finland, you do not stay on your seat to listen a teacher during some hours. At TUAS you have a lot of group work with other students, discussions with teachers and projects. It was a little bit difficult for me in the beginning because I’m shy and my English is not really good. But after 2 weeks I was more confident and I gave my opinion more easily. It is a good method for me because you can learn from others and share your knowledges and opinions. There are also a lot of oral presentations. So you can improve a lot of your presentation skills. Teachers are really friendly, they are not there to judge you but they want helping you to develop your competences.

Secondly the assessments are really different than in Belgium. At TUAS you have a grade. You can have a grade from 1 to 5 (5 is the best). The assessment includes group assignments, your involvement in class and the final exam. The more you are involved in your courses, the higher your grade is. In Belgium, it is the opposite. The more you do mistakes in your assignments and exams the lower your grade is. I find that the method of TUAS is really good because this method motivates students to be interested in their courses and also to give your best.

The last point which is really different here compared to Belgium is the rules in the class. At TUAS, students can leave the classroom when they want. For example, to get a coffee, to take a phone call or to go to the bathroom. It is strange for me because in Belgium, this kind of behaviour is considered like impolite and students cannot do that.

It was really funny and interesting to learn and adapt to these differences.

Text & photo: Florie Lefèvre