Studies at University of Oulu 2013-2014

The University of Oulu offers study opportunities with a solid academic foundation ranging from 5-6 year degree programmes and master’s programmes to doctoral training. There are also several possibilities such as open university studies, executive training and continuing education for developing and maintaining skills and competencies.

In addition to a variety of student exchange programmes, international master’s degree programmes in English are offered in six fields of study, making the university an international study environment.

5-6 Year Degree Programmes

MSc in Geology and Mineralogy, Specialisation in Economic Geology

Profile of the Degree: 

Northern Scandinavia experiences an unparalleled minerals boom, making the area the exploration and mining powerhouse of Europe. Several world-class mining and exploration projects, both in Finland and Sweden, require skilled geoscientists which the current programme will train. In addition to a dissertation and an ore geology excursion, students take modules in various aspects of ore geology, as well as in geophysics, environmental geology, mining geology, geometallurgy, and GIS applications. The acquired skills will equip students to seek employment in industry or continue with their PhD training to strive for a career in research and/or teaching at national research organizations and universities.

Courses Required for the Degree: 

The course structure diagram shows the degree structure of each semester (autumn and spring semester), and the required study modules with their credits are shown below. Master studies consist of compulsory advanced-level courses (minimum 50 credits) and other intermediate and advanced level courses (35 credits).


Learning Outcomes: 

On successful completion of this program, students should be able to identify the common ore types, apply relevant research methods to study their properties and geological setting, understand the processes and mechanisms of their genesis and devise strategies for exploration for them. They can assess the applicability of different ore exploration methods and are able to utilize them in practice. In addition, they have competence to plan exploitation and beneficiation of mineral deposits in close collaboration with other professionals in the mining field and to assess how these can take place with minimal negative consequences for the environment.

Arrangements for Recognition of Prior Learning: 

The basic previous degree is a Bachelor degree in geology. Relevant Master and Bachelor level courses in geology previously passed in other universities/institutions of higher education can be used to gain credits in the programme.

The recognition of prior learning follows the main principles as defined by the University of Oulu.

More information: Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

Modes of Study: 

Studies are full-time and correspond to c. 60 ECTS credits per year. Teaching is carried out as lectures and related examinations, laboratory exercises, field courses and literature essays. Credits can also be obtained by practical training in working life (normally as summer work).

Language of Instruction: 

The degree is completed in English.

Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading: 

Assessment methods and criteria for the studies: The degree-related studies can be completed based on the curriculum. This means that the student studies a total amount of 120 credits, which consists of advanced studies in mining and exploration  (50 credits), other optional intermediate or advanced level studies (35 credits) and M.Sc. thesis (35 credits). Courses are composed of lecture courses, seminars, and field and laboratory courses. The study units are primarily completed by attending examinations and they are assessed by the person responsible for the study unit. The assessment is often based on the grades of final or mid-term exams. Also other assessment criteria are used, including portfolio tasks, microexams (continuous assessment), work reports etc. Study unit descriptions give more exact information on the assessment of study units. The Master’s thesis shall be written as the final work in the degree. A Personal Study Plan (PSP) is compiled for each student, considering student’s prior learning and work experience.

Grading: (The University of Oulu Education Regulations 17§): a numerical scale 0-5 in whole numbers or verbal grading Pass or Fail is used in assessing a completed course. In numerical scale zero stands for fail.

In determining the final grade for a study module, a credit-weighted average is utilized. The grade of the Master’s thesis will not be considered when determining the average of the advanced studies. 

Separate provisions have been laid down for assessing the proficiency in Finnish and Swedish language required in accordance with the Government Decree on University Degrees (794/2004).

Occupational Profiles of Graduates: 

In this field, students will graduate to work as an ore geologist mainly employed by a private mining or exploration company or the governmental sector research institute (GTK). They can also carry out independent consulting work. A geologist can participate in ore exploration, inventorying investigations of a promising ore deposit or its later exploitation, and at a late stage, appropriate closing a mine. They can work as researchers or leaders of a research project. The field is very international and therefore it is possible that the first employer of a graduated geologist is an international company and the place of work is either in Finland or abroad.

Access to Further Studies: 

Provided that a graduated student has obtained his/her master’s degree with good rates (at least 60% of the maximum, 3/5, both the courses and Master’s thesis), he/she will have the access to postgraduate studies in accordance with the confirmed curricula accepted by the University of Oulu Graduate School (UniOGS).

Graduation Requirements: 

Requirements of the graduation for M.Sc. are following minimum studies:

  • 50 ECTS Advanced level studies from the courses of economic geology as listed above
  • 35 ECTS Master’s thesis and related maturity test
  • 35 ECTS Optional intermediate- and advanced-level studies
    Total: 120 ECTS

In addition, is order to obtain the degree, the student needs to submit a relevant application form to the Faculty of Science.

Qualification Requirements and Regulations: 

All education in the University of Oulu is based on the principles of the joint European credit transfer system (ECTS) which facilitates the transparency of education and the recognition of degrees at an international level. All degrees awarded from the University of Oulu are recognised by the Finnish Ministry of Education and Culture.

The Master of Science degree is the higher university degree, which provides capability for application of scientific knowledge and methods and qualifications for independent, responsible work and post-graduate studies. The M.Sc. degree is the basic degree for geologists and gives professional competence and qualification for positions in the state institutions.

Basic information

Level of the Degree: 
Master's Degree
Duration of Studies: 
2 years
ECTS Credits: 
Language of Instruction: 
Graduate Profiles: 
Location of Instruction: 
+358 (0)294 481432
wolfgang.maier (at)


Applying Information: 
The degree is part of a five-year degree programme which is applied for through the joint application system at Read more detailed information about admission requirements and applying from The Applicant’s Guide 2013.