Health and Wellbeing in the Circumpolar Area (MCH)

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The Global North is a real-time test laboratory, as the cultures and societies across the borders in the Northern Region are often affected first by global environmental changes. Climate change, environment, and unique social structures have a significant influence on the health and wellbeing of Northern residents. Special features of the North, such as physical environment, social circumstances, linguistic and cultural aspects, and peripheral location, place specific demands on the delivery of healthcare and wellbeing services as well. We share this knowledge through the Health and Wellbeing in the Circumpolar Area (MCH) programme, a unique international 2-year (120 ECTS) Master's programme.

Core Topics

  • Characteristics of life in Northern environment: culture, physical environment, economics, social structures, and working in Northern conditions;
  • Specific features of health, wellbeing, cultural transitions, and illnesses of Northern residents (holistic view);
  • Special needs of Northern residents regarding health promotion, disease prevention, care, and rehabilitation;
  • Specific characteristics of diseases, health care systems, and health and wellbeing services in Circumpolar Region;
  • Connections between the Northern environment and human health & wellbeing.

Learning Outcomes of the MCH:

  • Student will be able to apply critical and scientific approach to his or her professional work;
  • Student will be able to define and explain the special characters of living in Northern environment/circumpolar conditions;
  • Student understands and is able to describe the experience of health, wellbeing, cultural transitions and illnesses of Northern residents living in Northern cultures;
  • Student will be able to detect, assess and to respond interactively to the special needs of people living in the Circumpolar Region regarding health promotion, disease prevention, care, and rehabilitation;
  • Student identifies, analyses and is able to explain special characters of diseases and health care systems/health and wellbeing services in Northern regions;
  • Student will be able to present interventions to maintain and improve health and wellbeing in Northern environment.

MCH graduates are awarded a Master of Health Sciences degree. They will be able to work as independent professionals in the multiprofessional field of health and wellbeing, e.g. in administrative and managerial positions in health care services, development, planning and research. 

MCH is one of the University of the Arctic's Master's Programmes, and a part of the Barents Cross Border University.



Please find the MCH brochure here.

Contact Information:

Programme Director: Research professor Arja Rautio

Last updated: 1/6/2016