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Full Time MA Degrees in Finland

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The Master’s programme in English Studies helps you develop your expertise in areas that are often separated in other programmes. Read more
The Master’s programme in English Studies helps you develop your expertise in areas that are often separated in other programmes: English language and linguistics, literature in English, and the teaching of English. Upon graduation, you will have excellent command of the English language. By working in a stimulating environment with accomplished researchers and teachers, you will also develop other skills needed in your future career, such as skills in presentation, independent and group work, and project management.

An MA in English Studies prepares you for a variety of jobs, and our graduates have been successful in finding employment. If combined with mandatory pedagogical studies, the Master’s degree in English Studies qualifies you to be a language teacher. Alternatively, you can find employment in media or publishing, business, or international organisations where language skills are required. English is used globally as the language of science, culture, business and tourism, and experts in English are required in all of these fields.

The University of Helsinki will introduce annual tuition fees to foreign-language Master’s programmes starting on August 1, 2017 or later. The fee ranges from 13 000-18 000 euros. Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area, are liable to these fees. You can check this FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees: https://studyinfo.fi/wp2/en/higher-education/higher-education-institutions-will-introduce-tuition-fees-in-autumn-2017/am-i-required-to-pay-tuition-fees/

Programme Contents

Courses in English Studies focus on several topics relating to the English language, literatures in English, and teaching English. You can choose to combine courses from one or more lines according to your interests. In Linguistics courses you will focus on the structure and uses of English as well as on language variation and change, sociolinguistics and corpus linguistics. In the Literature courses you will study several areas of the various literatures in English from narrative, cognitive, postcolonial and ecocritical perspectives. Courses in Applied Linguistics are tailored especially for future language teachers.

As a student in English Studies, you will attend lectures but also work in collaboration with other students, partly in digital learning environments. To assess your learning progress, several methods are used, such as examinations, essays and learning diaries. In English Studies you will also practice your spoken and presentation skills.

During your Master’s studies, you can:
-Progress further in your linguistic or literary studies and choose the most interesting courses.
-Strengthen your understanding of theory in your chosen field.
-Strengthen your language skills, academic writing skills and presentation skills.
-Participate in research projects.
-Participate in the Master’s thesis seminar, during which you will write your thesis.
-Complete studies abroad as an exchange student (if you have not done so already).
-Complete practical training, by working as a trainee or a substitute teacher, for instance.

Selection of the Major

You can choose between two specialisations, Teacher Training and General. For the teacher’s specialisation, pedagogical studies are mandatory, and there is a separate selection process for these studies. If you choose the General specialisation, you can combine English Studies with other studies according to your interests.

Programme Structure

The scope of the Master’s degree is 120 credits (ECTS). The degree contains the following studies:
-Advanced studies in the discipline (60–120 credits) and
-If needed, you can take other courses to achieve the minimum credit requirement for the degree (a total of 120 credits).

With full-time studies you should be able to complete the Master’s degree in two years.

During your Master’s studies, you will focus mainly on your major subject, deepening your knowledge through coursework and writing your Master’s thesis. The advanced studies in your major subject include professional skills courses, which are typically completed as practical training.

Depending on your interests, you can also include minor subjects and other supporting studies.

To help you complete your studies systematically, you will prepare a personal study plan (PSP) at the beginning of your Master’s studies, with support especially from the programme staff and from the Faculty and University administrators.

Career Prospects

English Studies will prepare you for several careers in business and culture, as well as in public administration and education:
-With careful selection of supporting studies, you can find employment in government, the media, libraries and other cultural institutions, national and international organisations, or tourism.
-If you complete pedagogical studies for subject teachers, you will be qualified to teach English at comprehensive and upper secondary schools as well as in adult education.
-After successfully completing your Master’s degree, you can also apply to continue your studies as a postgraduate student and later build a career as a university researcher or teacher.

The University of Helsinki has the most comprehensive selection of disciplines in Finland, making it easier for you to plan your major and supporting studies to benefit your future career. Feel free to include the ones you find most interesting and useful in your degree.

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Understanding Europe today requires much more than understanding the process of European integration. The tensions, challenges and possibilities that are manifesting themselves today have their roots in a longer political, social and cultural history. Read more
Understanding Europe today requires much more than understanding the process of European integration. The tensions, challenges and possibilities that are manifesting themselves today have their roots in a longer political, social and cultural history.

This programme takes you to these roots. A multidisciplinary study path introduces you to various aspects of European society, culture and politics. Along the way, it draws from the strengths of Nordic research on Europe, with its strong focus on regional cooperation, diversity, identities, institutions, culture and the politics of history and memory. You will get to know the Nordic countries from a European perspective and Europe from a Nordic perspective.

Studying the ways in which Europeans cooperate, how European states and societies are interconnected, and how they are governed, forms an important part of the programme. Besides looking at the processes of integration and the evolution and functioning of the European Union, the programme highlights the significance of regional cooperation in the Nordic context, the EU’s relations with its neighbours and its place in the global system.

At the end of your studies, you will have gained a broad understanding of European issues and acquired advanced research skills. You will be ready to work in a wide range of expert positions that require independent and creative thinking, in both the public and private sectors.

The programme consists of joint courses and specialisation studies. One of the available options is to specialise in Nordic Studies. ENS is the only Nordic Studies programme taught in English in the Nordic countries.

The University of Helsinki will introduce annual tuition fees to foreign-language Master’s programmes starting on August 1, 2017 or later. The fee ranges from 13 000-18 000 euros. Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area, are liable to these fees. You can check this FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees: https://studyinfo.fi/wp2/en/higher-education/higher-education-institutions-will-introduce-tuition-fees-in-autumn-2017/am-i-required-to-pay-tuition-fees/

Programme Contents

The programme consists of a multidisciplinary selection of courses that introduce you to various aspects of Europe, the Nordic countries, and the Baltic Sea Region.

The topics addressed in the joint courses include, for example, contemporary European politics, cooperation and conflict in European history, Nordic societies and cultures, and institutions, ideologies and identities in Europe. You will also learn about nations and nationalism, political and social protest, (Nordic) welfare models, the European Union and Nordic cooperation, European legal traditions, and the politics of memory.

The programme involves substantial interaction between you and your teachers. You will complete several writing assignments and research papers along the way, culminating in a Master’s thesis in your second year. Some courses use active learning or flipped classroom pedagogy.

The content of your studies also depends on your own choices. In addition to core courses that provide you with a deep multidisciplinary understanding of Europe, the degree includes specialisation studies of your own choosing.

If you specialise in Nordic studies, you will have access to some courses taught at the programme for Nordic Literature and the Kultur och Kommunikation Master’s programme.

You also have plenty of other options. The University of Helsinki is a large research university. As a student in ENS you will have access to a rich variety of specialised courses in many faculties and schools. Check the section on research focus to see what we are particularly good at in Helsinki.

Selection of the Major

The programme has two tracks (see the structure of studies below for more information):
Humanities track – This study track emphases regional and cultural studies, and history. Upon completion of the programme, you will receive the Master of Arts degree.
Political science track – This study track is oriented towards political science, political history and the European legal tradition. At the end of the programme, you have earned the Master of Social Sciences degree.

Programme Structure

The extent of the Master´s programme is 120 credits (ECTS) to be completed in two academic years. The studies are divided into four main parts:
-Joint courses (core courses that are common to all students in this programme).
-Track-specific studies (core courses that are separate for the humanities and political sciences tracks).
-Specialisation studies (that you choose yourself).
-Master’s thesis and supporting seminars.

Career Prospects

The programme will train you as an independent and critical thinker who is well informed about European issues, trained to do independent and creative analytical projects, and experienced in working in a multicultural English-speaking environment.

There is currently a great need for professionals like this within the public and private sectors. The programme will provide you with the necessary skills and knowledge to pursue a career in higher education, local and national administrations, the media, the European Union, Nordic Regional and international institutions, non-governmental organisations, and the business sector.

European studies graduates from the University of Helsinki have begun careers for example in the European Commission, European Parliament, Committee of Regions, Pro-European NGOs, College of Europe, communication offices, and associations promoting Nordic cooperation. You will meet some potential future employees, as well as alumni from our university, in the career course we organise for you. You will also have the opportunity to complete an internship during your studies.

If you are interested in pursuing a career in academic research, the programme provides you with high quality research training.

Research Focus

The European studies programme covers a wide spectrum of research projects in various faculties and research institutes. In recent years, the focus has been especially on studying boundaries, regions and identities in Europe, different narratives of Europe, European legal traditions, the construction of post-Cold War Europe, the politics of memory, and political violence in post-war Europe. The university also offers a wide selection of teaching in English in Central and Eastern European studies.

Many of these themes are also strongly present in the field of Nordic studies. This field has traditionally had a distinctly European flavour. Research projects in recent years have, for example, focused on imagology of the European North and South, Nordic welfare state/ism, the politics of neutrality, and Nordic cooperation in a global comparative perspective.

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Why do languages change? Why does your mobile device suggest funny completions for words you are typing? How did it happen that Finnish is spoken mostly… Read more
Why do languages change? Why does your mobile device suggest funny completions for words you are typing? How did it happen that Finnish is spoken mostly in Finland, but its linguistic relatives are scattered over a larger area? How can you study a language that does not have a standard orthography? Why can you sometimes tell where other people come from just by their accent? Why do some people stick to their dialect, but others give it up when they move to the city? Should you try to support language diversity? Can we save languages that are spoken by a very small number of people? How can computer-synthesised speech be made to sound more human? Why do some languages seem so much more difficult to learn - are they inherently more complex?

This Master's programme will provide you with an understanding of the nature and diversity of human language and with the theoretical tools for working with language material. If you are interested in languages but are unable to decide which of them you want to study, this Master's programme offers several fields of specialisation. One of them might be just perfect for you.

During your studies, you will:
-Gain an in-depth understanding of the basic structure of language, its subsystems (phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics) and their mutual relationships.
-Learn the fundamentals of linguistic analysis and language description.
-Familiarize yourself with linguistic concepts, theories, descriptive models and the associated research methods.
-Learn how language is related to cognition, speech and interaction as well as to social structures, culture and society.
-Learn to use various methods and technical tools in order to manage and analyze language data.
-Gain a good understanding of linguistic variation and diversity: what is common to the world's languages and how they differ, how language changes through time, how languages influence one another, how individuals cope with multilingual situations and how communities speaking endangered languages can be supported.

After completing your studies, you will be able to work independently in various fields that require multidisciplinary expertise in linguistic sciences. You will have the theoretical knowledge and skills that are required for postgraduate studies in the doctoral programme in language studies.

The University of Helsinki will introduce annual tuition fees to foreign-language Master’s programmes starting on August 1, 2017 or later. The fee ranges from 13 000-18 000 euros. Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area, are liable to these fees. You can check this FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees: https://studyinfo.fi/wp2/en/higher-education/higher-education-institutions-will-introduce-tuition-fees-in-autumn-2017/am-i-required-to-pay-tuition-fees/

Programme Contents

Linguistic Diversity in the Digital Age is an integrated international programme that offers you a comprehensive view of all subfields of the science of language. As a student in the programme you will be able to choose among four specialist options: (1) General Linguistics, (2) Phonetics, (3) Language Technology, and (4) Diversity Linguistics.

General Linguistics
Gives you comprehensive in-depth training in a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches to language structure and language in use. Special emphasis is put on language typology in a global perspective as well as the documentation and description of endangered and previously undocumented and under-documented forms of speech.

Phonetics
Introduces you to the tools for working with the articulatory, acoustic and perceptional aspects of human speech from a multidisciplinary perspective. At the more advanced level, you will become acquainted with the methods of experimental phonetics.

Language Technology
Combines linguistics with digital technology in an interdisciplinary approach with close links to computer science. The focus areas include natural language processing (NLP) for morphologically rich languages, cross-lingual NLP and language technology in the humanities.

Diversity Linguistics
Encompasses all aspects of linguistic diversity in time and space, including historical linguistics as well as the extralinguistic context of languages: ethnicities, cultures and environ­ments. The areal foci in Diversity Linguistics are Eurasia and Africa.

These four specialist options interact at all levels. There is a study module common to all students in the programme regardless of the specialist option they choose. The integration of these four perspectives into one programme is unique - no similar programme exists anywhere else.

In the context of “Humanities”, the programme has the closest relationship to natural sciences, and many subfields of the programme involve methods directly linked to laboratory sciences, including digital technology and neurosciences.

The teaching in the programme includes lectures and seminars, practical exercise sessions, reading circles, fieldwork excursions, as well as work practice (internship). The broad spectrum of teaching methods guarantees optimal support for your learning processes.

Programme Structure

The scope of the Master of Arts degree is 120 credits. The degree contains the following studies:
-Studies common to all students in the programme (30 credits)
-Advanced studies in the specialist option (at least 60 credits)
-Other studies (up to 30 credits)

The target duration of full-time studies leading to an MA degree is two years.

All students in the programme take the same courses during the autumn semester of the first year.

Then you will focus on your specialist option (general linguistics, phonetics, language technology, or diversity linguistics). This block of studies consists of courses (at least 30 credits) and of the final project, which is your Master's thesis (30 credits).

Additionally, you choose other studies: modules offered either by the other specialist options within this Master's programme or by other programmes within the University of Helsinki. The size of such optional study modules is typically 15, 25 or 30 credits. Courses offered by other universities can also be included here.

The studies in your own specialist option as well as the other studies may also include an internationalization period (e.g. student exchange) and work practice or other working life oriented study units. Working life and career development perspectives are integrated in many courses in the programme.

You will complete your studies systematically. At the beginning of your Master’s studies, you will prepare your first personal study plan (PSP). In this, you will receive support especially from the staff of the Master's programme. Guidance is also given at the Faculty level.

Career Prospects

After graduation, students of the programme find employment in a wide variety of positions, in which special knowledge of language is required.

One path prepares you for a research career, and many graduates work as researchers in Finland and abroad. You can also work in the political, diplomatic, and educational sectors, as well as research administration. Further potential employers are found in the publishing industry, media and journalism, public relations and communications of business and public administration, as well as NGOs.

If you choose a technological orientation, you may work in language technology firms or more generally in the IT sector. Big international companies are in constant need of experts in speech and language technology. Additionally, there is a vibrant field of domestic companies, some established ones and many promising start-ups. Some students have founded their own companies and become entrepreneurs.

Note that it is not possible to graduate as a (subject) teacher in the LingDA Master's programme.

In honour of the University of Helsinki's 375th anniversary, the Faculty of Arts presented 375 humanists during year 2015. Get to know the humanists! http://375humanistia.helsinki.fi/

Internationalization

Linguistics is by definition an international field. Language capacity is a feature common to all human beings, and the objective of linguistics as a science is to study both the universal background of language as a phenomenon and the global diversity of languages as expressions of social and cultural heritage.

In the LingDA programme, internationalization is present in several forms and at several levels:
-The programme functions in English and accepts international students from all countries.
-The programme recruits students representing a variety of linguistic and cultural backgrounds.
-The students are encouraged to study and master many languages from both the practical and the theoretical points of view.
-The students are encouraged early on to get engaged in documentational and typological field work among speakers of little documented languages in various parts of the world.
-The students are encouraged to use the opportunities of international exchange that the university offers.

The programme has a high international profile and all teachers have wide international contact networks. At the university of Helsinki, linguistics was internationalized as early as the 19th century. Finland is a country where, in particular, ethnolinguistics and field linguistics were developed and practised much earlier than in most other European countries. Some of the regions where Finnish ethnolinguists have been active include North and Central Eurasia, the Near and Middle East, East Asia, South Asia, and Africa. This tradition of field-work-oriented linguistics is today carried on by the HALS (Helsinki Area and Linguistic Studies) research community. At the same time, the more recent fields of linguistics, including phonetics, language technology, and typology, have developed their own international profiles.

Research Focus

The MA programme Diversity Linguistics in the Digital Age combines several research fields in which the University of Helsinki has long been a global leader. Language research in Helsinki has always maintained its strong commitment to a better understanding of cultural areas and their history. Situated in an ideal place for the study of language history and contact linguistics of various Eurasian language families, the study of Uralic languages has a long tradition in Helsinki. Our interest in the culturally and historically informed study of language reaches well beyond that, though, spanning Asia, Europe and Africa.

Our language research is empirically driven and informed by linguistic typology. The question of linguistic complexity, its significance for language and cultural history, and its intersection with ecological models is a hallmark of the Helsinki School of Linguistics. We explore new horizons in area and language studies by combining cutting edge research in linguistic typology with field work based descriptive linguistics and linguistic anthropology.

A unique asset at the University of Helsinki is the presence of various language technology initiatives at the forefront of the digital humanities. The study of morphologically complex languages plays a great role here, and special attention is paid to lesser researched languages.

Each of the four study lines of our MA programme thus corresponds to a University of Helsinki focus area. Our language-related research is typically multidisciplinary and involves more than one linguistic specialty. This is also a crucial feature in our MA programme. Students receive theoretical, thematic and methodological training for research or other professional careers that require problem-solving skills in order to maintain linguistic diversity and to support people’s linguistic well-being.

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