Admission requirements

On this page, you will find information on our admission requirements and selection criteria for the 2020 student intake. Information on the 2021 admission will be updated here by the end of August 2020 at the latest.

You will first need to fulfil our general eligibility requirements. Eligible applications then proceed to the academic evaluation where the student selection criteria is applied.

General eligibility requirements

To be considered eligible for SECCLO, you will need to fulfil these general eligibility requirements:

  • Your previous higher education institution needs to be officially recognized.
  • Your previous degree needs to meet our requirements.
  • If an English language test result is required from you, your test scores will need to fulfil our minimum requirements and you will need to submit the test result as instructed before the application deadline.
  • You will need to submit your online application and all compulsory application documents before the application deadline as instructed.

If there is a problem in any of these general eligiblity requirements, your application will not be eligible and will not proceed to the academic evaluation. Please see further details below.

Requirements concerning previous university and degree

Successful applicants should hold a Bachelor degree from a university/higher education institution fulfilling the following requirements:

  • The university must be an official and recognized part of the national education system.
  • The university has to be found on an official list of degree-awarding institutions (e.g. WHED) or in an international handbook that is completed by some international organization (e.g. UNESCO).

Applicants are eligible to apply if they have completed a 3–4 year Bachelor’s degree awarded by a university or a Bachelor’s degree by university of applied sciences (/polytechnic degree) or equivalent studies. The degree must entitle the graduate to apply for Master’s degree at university in the awarding country.
Applicants in their final year of study are eligible to apply provided that they will graduate by 31 July 2020. If the applicant is accepted to SECCLO, they must deliver a certified copy of the degree certificate to Aalto University by the date specified in the admission letter. If the student is not able to graduate or fails to deliver a degree certificate by the given deadline, the offered study place will be cancelled.

Requirements for English language proficiency

Our language of instruction is English. The applicants are expected to have an excellent command of English. The recognized language tests and their minimum score requirements are listed below.

Minimum total score
Minimum writing score
IELTS (Academic) 6.5 5.5
TOEFL iBT (Internet-based Test)
92 22
TOEFL PDT (Paper-delivered Test)
Reading 22, Listening 22 24
C1 Advanced (former Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English, CAE)
A, B, or C
C2 Proficiency (former Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English, CPE)
A, B, C or C1
Pearson Test of English (PTE Academic)
62 54

The minimum requirements are very strict. If your scores do not fulfil the minimum score requirements, your application will not be processed further. Only the above-mentioned language tests are accepted.

IELTS, TOEFL and PTE results are valid for two years starting from the test date. Thus, the oldest acceptable test during the 2020 2nd application period is taken on 5 March 2018. C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency results do not have an expiration date, however, only tests that can be verified online, i.e. tests taken after 2005, are accepted.

For further information on language test result deadlines and submitting the test scores, see How to apply -> Step 5.

Exemptions from the English language test requirement

The language test requirement is waived for the following groups:

  • Applicants whose higher education degree has been taken at an English-medium programme requiring physical on-site presence at a university in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, the United States, an EU/EEA country or Switzerland.
    • A minimum of one half of the degree must be completed in a country and higher education institution that meets the requirements for exempting the applicant from taking an English test. The language of the degree must be stated in the degree certificate or its appendix, or in the transcript of records or other official document such as diploma supplement, issued by the higher education institution in question.
  • Degree students from SECCLO consortium universities.
  • Applicants, who have attended SECCLO consortium universities as exchange students.

All other applicants are expected to present a valid English language test result, without exceptions.


Student selection criteria

Selection criteria to the SECCLO programme is a high quality Bachelor of Science degree or equivalent studies encompassing a minimum of 180 ECTS credits in Engineering (Computer Science or Information Technology) i.e. a degree consisting of at least three years of full-time studies.

Required background consists of sufficient studies in:

  • mathematics (linear algebra, calculus, probability theory, statistics, and discrete mathematics)
  • good programming skills
  • algorithms and data structures
  • databases
  • theory of computing
  • computer networks
  • software engineering

Knowledge of the following areas is considered an advantage:

  • additional knowledge of mathematical methods
  • mobile applications
  • web software and online services
  • operating systems
  • distributed computing
  • embedded systems
  • advanced computer networking
  • information security and cryptography

The student selection decisions are made based on the following evaluation criteria:

  • Contents of the previous degree(s) (see above)
    • The contents of the applicant’s previous degree(s) are evaluated based on the courses available on the official transcript of records and the course descriptions submitted. Relevant work experience, professional certificates and/or online courses are judged case-by-case, but they do not, in general, compensate for the university level studies that include also the theoretical foundations of the required subjects.
    • Studies in the Master’s programme should provide genuinely new knowledge for the applicant. If the applicant already has a Master’s degree, the motivation letter should clearly indicate why another Master’s degree is necessary.
  • Study success: grades achieved and pace of studies
    • The applicant’s previous study success will be evaluated based on the grade point average (GPA) and results in key courses. Very good previous study success is expected.
  • Recognition and quality of applicant’s home university
  • Motivation and commitment to studies in the programme
  • Other relevant achievements (work experience, entrepreneurship experience, publications, awards, patents etc.)
  • Recommendation letters provided
  • English language proficiency

During the evaluation of applications, contents of the previous degree(s) and study success are evaluated first. Only applicants, who pass this preliminary evaluation will be evaluated against the full set of criteria.

Admission to the programme is granted on a competitive basis. Applicants are assessed based on their previous academic record and application documents submitted during the application period.

All six consortium universities participate in the evaluation of applications and in the joint selection meeting. The allocation of scholarships is determined on a competitive basis and is based on academic merit. The scholarship decisions are given together with the selection decisions.

Appeal process

The right of appeal means that the applicant has the possibility to request for rectification if they believe that there has been an error in the decision-making process. The appeal should be submitted to the SECCLO Consortium within 14 days after the publication of the selection results. All appeals against the selection decisions are processed by Aalto University. Applicants cannot appeal on the scholarship decision.