Degree Programme in Primary Teacher Education, BA (Rauma) and MA (Turku)
The programme provides students the opportunity to acquire a Master level teacher education in an international context. The combination of a Finnish Teacher qualification, a major in Education and the international context make programme unique. The degree is oriented towards primary teacher education (pre-school and grades 1-6 in basic education). The programme consists of studies in educational sciences, practical training and studies that provide pedagogical skills required for positions in primary education.
The aim of the degree programme is to educate well-qualified academic professionals, active future makers, critical and ethically responsible experts and researchers in the educational field. At the core of a teacher’s work lies the understanding and supporting of a child’s and group’s development. The dialogue between theory and practice takes place particularly during teaching practice periods, which offer a holistic view of a teacher’s work.
The major subject of the Bachelor's degree (180 ECTS) is educational sciences and the degree includes the following studies:
- General studies.
- Language and communication studies (including the Finnish language).
- Basic and intermediate studies in educational sciences (including Bachelor’s thesis).
- Integrated studies of subjects and themes in a comprehensive school.
- Minor studies and/or optional studies in other subjects.
The major subject of the Master’s degree (120 ECTS) is Educational Sciences and the degree includes the following studies:
- Advanced Studies in Education (including Master’s Thesis)
- Elective Studies
The admitted students are granted the study right for both, the Bachelor’s degree programme and the Master’s degree programme in Primary Teacher Education. After completing the Bachelor’s degree, the students are automatically entitled to continue their studies in the Master’s degree programme. There is no separate application for the Master’s degree programme in Primary Teacher Education.
Academic Excellence & Experience
The degree is oriented towards primary teacher education (pre-school and grades 1-6 in basic education). In the studies, the student will acquaint themselves with the current research topics in education and with the principles of theory formation in education and teaching. The programme consists of studies in educational sciences, practical training and studies that provide pedagogical skills required for positions in primary education. The students will examine the development of a child and childhood and understand the social and cultural context of education. The education is based on extensive educational expertise. Supervised teaching practise periods are a central part of the teacher education studies. These periods offer the students a real work life-learning environment at the Teacher Training School. The students may choose optional and minor studies that deepen their knowledge in various subjects.
Bachelor's Thesis & Master's Thesis
The thesis for the Bachelor’s degree Programme in Primary Teacher Education degree is a Bachelor’s thesis. The students:
- search for scientific literature, determine a meaningful research question and prepare a research plan
- collect research data, analyse, and interpret it.
After completing the Bachelor’s thesis, the students master the basic skills of scientific thinking, writing, research assessment and scientific discourse. The thesis lays the foundations for investigative work as a teacher.
Students have to write a Master's thesis as part of the advanced studies in Education. During their Master’s thesis work, the students further develop the basic skills of scientific thinking, writing, research assessment and scientific discourse acquired during the Bachelor studies. The Master's thesis should show the student’s ability for scientific thinking, mastery of the research methods required, familiarity with the scientific literature on the topic of the thesis and the ability to communicate in a scientific context.
The objective of the programme is to develop the following areas of competence:
- Communicative competence. Students are able to act collaboratively and are capable of communicating in different interactional situations.
- Pedagogical competence. Students know the basics of curriculum planning and are able to plan, implement, evaluate and develop learning processes and learning environments.
- Intellectual competence. Students have basic knowledge of education as a science and contents of the multidisciplinary subjects taught in basic education. Student base their actions and professional development on scientific thinking. Students understand the principles of the societal and cultural basics of childhood.
- Ethical competence. Students are able to identify and analyse their actions from an ethical viewpoint and act in accordance with ethical principles.
In Finland, teachers are required to have a Master’s Degree. The Bachelor of Arts (Education) is a lower university degree and does not provide the qualification for a teacher in Finland. After completing the Bachelor of Arts (Education) degree, students are entitled to continue their studies in the Master of Education at the University of Turku.
Completing the Masters of Arts (Education) in primary teaching degree qualifies to act as primary and pre-school education teachers in Finland (taking into account the required knowledge of languages) and other countries that recognize the Finnish teacher qualification.
Career in Research
After completing the Master of Arts (Education) students may pursue postgraduate studies for the Doctor of Philosophy (Education).
High-level research at the Faculty of Education is internationally well-known and has its scope on the whole life-span. The research done at the Faculty forms the basis for teaching. The research is from the offset free and researcher originated. Research is conducted at the Department level. There are also national and international research centres which operate within the Faculty. The researcher centres are
- Centre for Research on Lifelong Learning and Education (CELE)
- Centre for Research on Learning and Instruction (CERLI)
The main themes of research at the Faculty of Education are learning, education policy and education systems and teaching and teacherhood.
General admission requirements
Eligible applicants hold an upper secondary education certificate - the Finnish matriculation examination, the International Baccalaureate, the European Baccalaureate, Reifeprüfung/Die Deutsche Internationale Abiturprüfung or any other comparable upper secondary educational qualification which provides eligibility to University-level Bachelor’s studies in the country in question.
Applicants who are in the final semester of their upper secondary education are also eligible to apply. The required secondary education studies have to be completed and the related enclosures sent to the Faculty of Education by 10 July 2020 at 15.00 (Finnish time). If the studies required are not completed by the application period deadline, applicants should enclose a statement from their home institution stating the expected date of graduation.
Read about the language requirements here.
The application period for studies starting in late August 2020 begins on the 8th and ends on the 22nd of January 2020 at 15.00 (GMT +2).
University of Turku instructions on how and when to apply.
Admission Results and Appeals
Admissions results will be published 27 March 2020 on the application template Studyinfo.fi/en. Applicants will also receive a notice in writing. All applicants will be informed about the admission results. The programme will start if there are 15 eligible applicants.
If the applicant is dissatisfied with the result of the student selection, s/he may submit a written complaint to the faculty of Education within 14 days of the official publication of the results.
The admitted students have to notify on the application template Studyinfo.fi/en by 10 July 2020 by 15.00 Finnish time if s/he will 1) accept the study place, or 2) not accept the study place. If the Faculty of Education hasn’t received the student’s notification by 10 July 2020 at 15.00 Finnish time s/he will forfeit the right to enrol in the degree programme.
A maximum of 20 students is admitted to the programme.
The admission process comprises two stages:
- An assessment of the application documents (motivation letter and secondary education certification), and selection of the applicants to be invited to the entrance examination.
- a) The entrance examination is an online interview in English, based on materials sent to the applicants. The interview invitations will be sent by e-mail. If the applicant is not reached for the interview, the application will not be processed further. b) Scoring of the Secondary education certification. Scoring is based on the grades in English, in mathematics, and in the language of education in the secondary education degree.
The motivation letter is included in the application template studyinfo.fi portal. The length of the motivation letter is maximum 4000 characters, including spaces. The applicant is expected to address all three themes indicated below:
- Describe your reasons for applying for the programme.
- Describe and evaluate your suitability for early childhood education teacher (profession).
- Describe your expectations for this international programme, which is based on the Finnish early education system.
The motivation letter is scored from 0 to 15 points, max. 5 points for each of the themes. To be eligible for selection to the programme the applicant must gain at least 6 points from the motivation letter.
Invitation to the entrance examination interview
Maximum forty (40) applicants are invited to the entrance examination interview on the basis of the motivation letter scoring and the eligibility criteria.
Applicants will be invited to the interview by email 24.2.2020 at the latest. The applicants shall observe the instructions and deadlines given in the invitation.
The interview is based on the following criteria: shown motivation in the field of early childhood education, interaction skills and clarity and depth of academic argumentation.
The interview is partly based on a scientific article that is provided to the applicants together with the invitation.
The interview is scored from 0 to 20 points. To be eligible for selection to the programme the applicant must gain at least 7 points from the interview.
Secondary education certification
Secondary education certification is scored (0 to 6 points) based on the grades in English, in mathematics, and in the language of education in the secondary education degree.
The final admission to the programme is based on the scores and criteria of the motivation letter, secondary education certification and interview. If two or more applicants score the same number of points, their order shall be determined on the basis of the following criteria:
- Secondary education certification
- Points earned from the motivation letter
The eligible applicants’ applications will be scored as follows:
- Motivation letter 0-15 points
- Secondary education certificate 0-6 points
- Interview 0-20 points
Restrictions on student admission
In order to promote patient and client safety as well as the safety of minors, certain restrictions are applied to student admission.
Such restrictions will pertain to the following fields:
- Universities of applied sciences: humanities and education, social services, health and sports, and marine technology.
- Universities: medicine, dentistry, art education, logopaedics, psychology, pharmacy, social work, teacher education.
Admission to the above fields requires that the applicants’ state of health and ability to function allow them to complete practical tasks and training related to studies. Limitations related to health or the ability to function are not an impediment to admission if their effects can be eliminated through reasonable measures such as special arrangements.
In any case, the purpose is not to unnecessarily hinder access to education of disabled persons or persons suffering from physical or mental limitations. Restrictions on student admission will be applied only in cases where it is evident that the applicant cannot participate in education due to his or her state of health or ability to function.
Check for field-specific restrictions, if any, set by each higher education institution. Further information is also available from the institutions’ admissions services [Universities of Applied Sciences] [Universities]
As a prior cancellation of the right to study may be an impediment to admission, applicants must inform the higher education institution of such decisions already at the application stage.
Drug tests during studies and criminal records extract
In certain limited cases, students may be obligated to present a drug test certificate. This primarily concerns situations where testing is necessary to ascertain a student’s ability to function, provided that certain additional conditions specified in detail by law are met.
Students admitted to a higher education institution in 2012 or later may be requested to provide criminal records extract for the assessment of their ability to study. Such an extract may be requested only from students whose studies include practical training or other activities involving work with minors.
The extract will be requested before the beginning of practical training or other activity. To ensure the safety of minors, it is necessary to ascertain that the student about to begin practical training has no criminal record of certain serious crimes (sex offence, murder, aggravated assault and battery, aggravated burglary and robbery and narcotics offence).