Master's thesis

An academic degree always includes a written thesis. As a student at the University, you are a full member of the academic community and an expert in your field.


The Master’s thesis (30 credits) is a piece of applied research conducted independently by the student. Its key goal is to solve a problem relevant to the field of study, based on existing scientific knowledge and in compliance with the principles of responsible conduct of research. Master’s theses are written on topics related to the advanced studies of the programme, agreed upon between the student and the supervising professor.

In the USP programme, your Master’s thesis can take one of several forms: an independent scholarly research project; a directed thesis within a larger research project in one of the universities; or a professionally-oriented thesis developed in the context of a cooperating partner. In particular, you are encouraged to build upon your work in the urban challenge studios, which will provide a context for collaboration and guidance. In the studios, you can research and write a thesis together with another student or students. In all cases, your thesis must be original, creative work conceived and developed by you.

We recommend that supervision for your thesis includes at least three experts from two or more of the study lines and that the subject of your thesis should be relevant across two or more study lines.

The scope of the Master's thesis is 30 credits. In principle, the thesis process takes one semester of full-time work, including data collection, analysis and writing. In the thesis, students must show their capability for independent scientific thinking as well as their knowledge of the research theme, methodology and scientific language production. Students will make a research plan and follow it with the guidance from their supervisors.

USP theses

All published Master's Theses from the University of Helsinki can be found in Helda, the University Digital Repository of the University of Helsinki. We have also collected all the theses from USP graduates from University of Helsinki and Aalto University to these pages. Enjoy reading finalized USP theses!

You can also read the interview of Barbara Radaelli-Muuronen, one of the first graduates of the USP programme, and check out her thesis "The role of Helsinki contemporary art biennial in placemaking and city branding. An interdisciplinary study on the establishment of a new cultural event."