Structure and content

The structure of the new Master's Programme in Changing Education, starting in autumn 2020 at the University of Helsinki, is designed to promote the understanding of education as a dynamic and transformable construct from the individual neural level to global policies. The studies connect different views of diversities and equality in education, teaching, and learning. You study sociological, cultural, historical, philosophical, and gender studies perspectives with educational psychological and neuroscientific research.

The scope of the programme is 120 credits (ECTS) to be completed in two academic years. The curriculum comprises compulsory and optional modules in educational sciences, courses in qualitative and quantitative research methods and culminates in the production of a Master’s thesis (30 ECTS). You can also include optional studies in related disciplines, an internship and a student exchange period as part of your degree.

You participate in carefully designed democratic learning where students and teachers work together with problems, ideas, materials and pedagogical tools in different contexts. The courses will address current themes in education at different levels of schooling.

The programme and the courses are structured around three topic areas. All students take courses in each topic area and the optional courses provide space for creating a deeper understanding of a certain topic. You specialise by selecting a suitable combination for yourself from a wide variety of courses.

Topic areas

1. Education, society and culture

In this content area, sociological, cultural, philosophical, historical, political, and economic perspectives are combined in order to provide the students with an understanding of education as societally contextualized. Education is examined through the lens of policy, culture, and practice, specifically in relation to the questions of social justice. Students learn to examine the relationships between education and multiple inequalities, including age, gender, ethnicity/race, sexuality, disability/health, and social class. The focus is on analyzing the ways in which multidimensional inequalities, social exclusion and discrimination in education are constructed.  Students will evaluate education-related issues of social justice by combining micro- and macro-approaches and analyse, interpret and find solutions.

2. Educational psychology and neuroscience

The recent advancements in educational psychology and the neuroscience of learning are taught in a manner that allows the students to understand learning, teaching, and education from a new viewpoint, highlighting the individual differences and the basic common principles of learning. The students will have direct experience with the use of modern psychological and neuroscientific methodologies, including data analysis and the use of physiological measurements to support learning. The students will learn to evaluate the value and applicability of research results.

 3. Pedagogy, educational institutions and research-based teacher education

The students will focus on pedagogical issues, Finnish research-based teacher education, and an analysis of different educational institutions and systems. Analyzing and assessing pedagogical phenomena is a central part of the studies. The students will also examine the Finnish educational system in its entirety. The studies also include developing professional experience and applying theoretical and methodological knowledge and skills in the field of education.

Language of studies

The language of teaching and studying in the programme is English.

Earned degree

You will complete the degree of Master of Arts in Education. It provides general eligibility for postgraduate studies and qualifies for positions which require a Master’s level education. However, it does not provide a Finnish teacher’s qualification.