Studies at University of Oulu 2015-2016

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

Cultural Anthropology, Master of Arts, 120 ECTS Credits

Profile of the Degree: 

Cultural anthropology studies humans, communities, and the social construction of behaviour during different times and at different corners of the globe. Our aim is to learn to understand different kinds of cultures and to analyse how culture shapes human lives. Cultural anthropology is interested in the unique aspects of specific cultures, as well as in the similarities between cultures. A comparative perspective is central to the field. Through it, cultural anthropologists strive to construct general theories on culture and society. Importantly, anthropology seeks both to understand foreign cultures and to throw into sharper relief our own cultural practices.                                            

Special fields in cultural anthropology include, for example, the anthropology of religion and economic anthropology. Typical for many special fields is close collaboration with related fields of study. Their research results are frequently used to solve concrete social problems. The cultural anthropology programme in Oulu specializes in northern cultures, contemporary cultural trends, cultural interaction, and environmental, medical, and applied anthropology. Fieldwork holds a central place in research. Training in cultural anthropology equips a student to work as a researcher, but also in diverse positions in the cultural field, NGOs, media, museums, and administration.

Cultural anthropology and archaeology have shared basic level studies. Students choose their major by the end of the March of the first spring term.

Courses Required for the Degree: 

Master's degree: Major subject Cultural Anthropology (120 ECTS credits)

A Master’s degree includes Advanced Studies in the major subject (84 ECTS credits) and studies in minor subject(s), language and communication studies, training, or other studies (in total 36 ECTS credits). The Advanced Studies include a Master's Thesis (40 ECTS credits).

Further information: see Course Structure Diagram.

Learning Outcomes: 

After completing the Advanced Studies in Cultural Anthropology, students will have the capacity to explain and analyse ethnographic methods and data in various forms. In addition, students will have the abilities to apply the theories of cultural anthropology and write an independent treatise. They will also know how to utilise their studies in cultural anthropology in working life. During comprehensive seminar work students will learn analysis, scientific communication within the field and the guidelines of scientific writing.

After completing a Master's degree, the student

  • has knowledge of the dimensions of theoretical discourse within the field of his/her main subject and is able to implement this discourse on a practical level in interpreting and categorizing information and is able to disseminate information for others.
  • is able to distinguish between scholarly thinking and common perception and is able to independently work to produce new academic discourse.
  • is able to work independently on challenging assignments that demand analytical skills, creativity and ethical judgment, as well as work as an expert in diverse groups and settings.
  • is able to plan and implement profound projects by seeking and applying information, and is able to produce scholarly discourse.
  • has knowledge of the fundamentals of his/her minor subjects and is able to follow and interpret related developments as well as their significance with regards to society.
  • has good oral and written skills in his/her native language and can communicate fluently with other academics in the field of his/her study as well as with people outside the field.
  • is able to communicate and interact internationally in his/her field of study in Finnish or Swedish and in at least one foreign language. (Different requirements apply for foreign degree students).
Arrangements for Recognition of Prior Learning: 

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 and Teaching: 

Studies are to be carried out fulltime. The average input needed for studies of one academic year is 1600 working hours, which is equivalent to 60 ECTS credits. Studying fulltime, the entire degree (120 ECTS credits) can be completed in two years. The studies are primarily carried out as contact teaching, but some of the courses can be completed by independent learning (book examinations, essays) or by distance learning. The alternative methods are explained in the study unit descriptions.

Language of Instruction: 

The language of instruction in the major subject is Finnish. Other languages of instruction depend on the minor subjects the student includes in the degree.

Examination Regulations, Assessment and Grading: 

The degree-related studies can be completed based on the curriculum. This means that the student studies the advanced studies and elective studies the curriculum contains, in accordance with the curriculum. The study units are primarily completed by attending examinations and with written assignments and they are assessed by the person responsible for the study unit. The assessment is often based on the grades of final exams and term papers. Also other assessment criteria are used. Study unit descriptions give more exact information on the assessment of study units. 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.

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. When assessing doctoral dissertations and licentiate’s theses, verbal grading kiittäen hyväksytty (Approved with Distinction), hyväksytty (Approved) tai hylätty (Rejected) can be used. In numerical scale zero stands for fail.

In determining the final grade for a study module, a credit-weighted average is utilized. The grades of Pro Gradu Theses and Diploma Theses shall not be considered when determining the average of 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: 

Degree in Cultural Anthropology equips a student to work as a researcher, but also in diverse positions in the cultural field, NGOs, media, museums, and administration.

Access to Further Studies: 

The Master’s degree is required for the commencement of postgraduate studies and the Doctor of Philosophy degree. At the University of Oulu, the postgraduate studies are coordinated by University of Oulu Graduate School (UniOGS).

Graduation Requirements and Final Project: 

A Master’s degree includes Advanced Studies in the major subject (84 ECTS credits) and studies in minor subject(s), language and communication studies, training, or other studies (in total 36 ECTS credits). The Advanced Studies include a Master's Thesis (40 ECTS credits). A maturity test (0 ECTS credits) will be administered on the basis of the thesis.

The study modules included in the degree must be compiled in Oodi (the official student register). This is done by the person responsible for compiling studies in the subject in question. Diplomas are granted by the Dean of Education and distributed to the graduates in the official graduation ceremony. The ceremony is usually held once a month, apart from July and August. Students should register for the graduation ceremony by filling in a form and submitting it to the Faculty Student Affairs. The forms, as well as detailed information on graduation ceremony dates and closing dates for applications, can be found on the website http://www.oulu.fi/humanities/node/19505

 

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’s degree (MA) is a qualification for doctoral studies as well a general qualification for many jobs in the civil service. The language proficiency requirements of the degree qualify the student for employment in the civil service according to the section on language proficiency, 6 §.

Government Decree on University Degrees 794/2004, Language Proficiency Section 6: Language proficiency

1. The student must demonstrate in studies included in education for a lower or higher University degree or otherwise that he/she has attained:

(1) proficiency in Finnish and Swedish which is required of civil servants in bilingual public agencies and organizations under Section 6(1) of the Act on the Knowledge of Languages Required of Personnel in Public Bodies (424/2003) and which is necessary for their field; and

(2) skills in at least one foreign language needed to follow developments in the field and to operate in an international environment.

2. The provisions of subsection 1 do not concern a student who has been educated in a language other than Finnish or Swedish or a student who has been educated abroad. The language proficiency of such students shall be determined by the university.

3. For special reasons, the university may either totally or partially exempt a student from the requisite language skills referred to in subsection 1.

Basic information

Level of the Degree: 
Master's Degree
Duration of Studies: 
2 years
ECTS Credits: 
120
Language of Instruction: 
Finnish
Graduate Profiles: 
Anthropologist
Cultural Producer
Researcher
Location of Instruction: 
+358 (0)294 483342
hannu.i.heikkinen (at) oulu.fi

Applying

Applying Information: 
The degree is part of a five-year degree programme which is applied for through the joint application system.