Structure, content and courses

In the Master's Programme in Translational Medicine (TRANSMED), we favor interactive approaches such as group work and team-based learning, student presentations and discussion.

The scope of the Master of Science degree in Translational Medicine is 120 cr.

Upon graduation, all students will have deeper understanding of at least two of the following fields: cancer, regenerative medicine, metabolic disorders, translational psychiatry, nervous system disorders or infection biology.

  • Students can work at the interface of research, clinics and industry.
  • They have the capacity to critically analyse scientific literature and they are aware of the regulatory and ethical aspects of translational research.
  • Students also learn the basics of communicating research findings to the public.
  • Students learn to produce new scientific information in the field of translational medicine, and they gain knowledge to apply this information in future research or in commercial or health care applications.

Check out more courses in the University of Helsinki online course catalogue for students in the Studies service.

Foundations in Translational Medicine 35 cr

The Foundations in Translational Medicine (35 cr) form the basis of the degree in both study tracks. These include medical sciences, research and communication skills and career planning to prepare for the selection of study track.

  • Statistics and RI
  • Introduction to Bioinformatics
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology
  • ABC of Medical Genetics
  • Laboratory Medicine and Molecular Diagnostics
  • Pharmacology and Toxicology
  • Reading and Popularizing Translational Research
  • Research Ethics
  • Career Development



Mechanims of Human Disease 10 cr

Independently from your choice of study track, you can direct your studies to a specific field in translational medicine, or select a broad combination of different topics. The basis of this is the module Mechanisms of Human Disease, where you can include courses from 10 to over 30 - depending of your own interests.

  • Cancer from Biology to Research
  • Regenerative Medicine from Bench to Bedside
  • Metabolic Disorders from Aetiology to Therapy
  • Translational Psychiatry
  • Basic Mechanisms of Nervous System Diseases
  • Infection Biology
  • Pathologic Basis of Disease
Bench and Bedside 5 cr


Every student participates in Translational Medicine Thesis Seminars from the beginning of the studies. In these seminars students practice scientific presentation and discussion by acting as opponents and by introducing their research plans and the results of their thesis projects.


All students complete Clinical Rounds in Helsinki University Hospital under supervision of clinical teachers to get an insight of the clinical medicine, as well as the implementation of research based therapy and diagnostics in patient care.


Study track Translational Research 20 cr

In the Translational Research track, students gain experience in working as a member of a research group. They are able to formulate research questions, apply current methodologies, produce and present scientific results and discuss their own findings. They are well equipped for doctoral studies and careers in science, in health industry or expert positions in the public sector.

Obligatory Advanced Research Methods is a 10 cr internship in a research group, where student has the opportunity to learn up-to-date research methodologies related to the translational research field of their interest.

Elective courses include 

  • Research Proposal Exam
  • Imaging in Science and Medicine
  • Introduction to Systems Biology
  • Next-Generation Sequencing and Single-Cell Technologies in Biomedicine
  • Epidemiology - basic concepts and practical analyses

Optional courses include

  • Drug Discovery and Development with a Focus in Biologics
  • Novel Applications in Precision Medicine


Study track Health Industry and Innovations 20 cr

In the Health Industry and Innovations track, students gain insight into innovation processes and business opportunities in health industry. They also have the opportunity to learn about pharmaceutical development from basic research to clinical trials. Students gain experience in working in a company setting, and are encouraged to produce a Master’s thesis as a commission. Study track Health Industry and Innovations also provides all the competencies required for doctoral studies.

Obligatory traineeships, 10 cr, are partially or completely completed outside university in private or public enterprises or institutes.

Electives include

  • HealthTech Linkage
  • BioMed Business
  • Selected topics in Clinical Pharmacology
Master's thesis 30 cr

A Master’s thesis consists of both research and written work completed as part of TRANSMED studies. The aim is to train the student in independent research work, information retrieval skills, the critical assessment of sources and research results, and academic writing. The research is usually part of a wider research project that aims to produce new scientific knowledge. Each student is assigned a personal supervisor.

Research groups suitable for completing a thesis can be found e.g. in Research Programs Unit, in Institute of Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM), or in Neuroscience Center. Most suitable are groups residing on Meilahti campus area - for practical reasons.

Students in the study track Health Industry and Innovation are encouraged to do the thesis as a commission. Commissioned Master’s theses are completed in cooperation with employer organisations.


Other studies max. 25 cr

Working life skills

Students may further develop their working life skills by participating in an interdisciplinary project, in student tutoring or in the administration of the university or a student organisation. These experiences are credited in the degree.

Language studies

A maximum of 15 credits of language studies in Finnish, English or Swedish language can be included in the degree to support career choices.

Sustainability skills

Both study tracks are closely related to Good health and well-being, one of the sustainable development goals set by the United Nations, and sustainability awareness is an important part of future careers in this field. All students may include 5 cr of sustainability courses to their degree.