Master in Intercultural Encounters

General

Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description

Does Cultural Diversity Promote Mutual Understanding?

Are you looking for tools to understand the global world, indigenous perspectives, transnational identities, or intercultural relationships? Would you like to study religions and conflicts? Would you like to be more competent in intercultural communication?

The Master’s Programme in Intercultural Encounters (ICE) is a genuinely interdisciplinary programme. You get insight into the diversified world from different perspectives such as religion, conflicts, human interaction, living traditions, and transnationalism. You learn to deal with issues of intercultural interaction, diversity, internationalisation, cultural management, the media and power. In addition to theoretical thinking and research skills, the ICE programme gives you tools for international professional life.

Studying

The aim of the Master's Programme in Intercultural Encounters (ICE) is to learn an appreciation of the many facets of intercultural contact. You acquire theoretical knowledge and skills to examine the complex social and cultural phenomena in different kinds of intercultural encounters. You gain a profound understanding of how everyday local life is connected to international, multicultural, and transnational issues. You learn to analyse why and how conflicts arise for various cultural, political and religious reasons. In addition, you gain insight into the possibilities of dialogue in conflict resolution and learn to communicate and evaluate information on intercultural encounters.

The courses in the ICE programme are grounded in the latest academic research enabling the students to apply their theoretical grasp to practical situations in a multicultural and internationally oriented working life.

Why Intercultural Encounters?

As interculturalism remains in the news from year to year, with new issues constantly emerging, there is an ongoing need to examine current intercultural encounters with a multidisciplinary approach and adjust the focus in response to changes in society.

When graduating from the Master's Programme in Intercultural Encounters, you will have:

  • profound knowledge of intercultural encounters, including thematic specialisation
  • the ability to conduct research and apply scholarly knowledge and scientific methods
  • the eligibility for postgraduate research
  • awareness of intercultural competence

Upon completing the programme, you will be able to pursue a national and international career. You will be able to act and grow in multidisciplinary and multicultural groups and deal with issues of intercultural interaction, diversity, internationalisation, cultural management, media and power.

Struc­ture and con­tent

The scope of the Master’s Programme in Intercultural Encounters is 120 credits (ECTS). At the beginning of your studies, you will be assisted by your supervisor to draw a personal study plan and design your own individual study track. The degree shall be completed in two academic years.

The programme gives you insight into the diversified world from different perspectives such as religion, conflicts, human interaction, living traditions, and transnationalism. You learn to deal with issues of intercultural interaction, diversity, internationalisation, cultural management, the media and power. In addition to theoretical thinking and research skills, it gives you tools for international professional life.

Depending on your choices, the ICE programme will lead to a Master of Arts (Humanities) degree or a Master of Theology degree. You choose your target degree when applying to the programme. The programme is run in English, but you can complete up to 25% (30 credits) of the studies in another language.

Themes

The Master’s Programme in Intercultural Encounters offers a multidisciplinary approach to intercultural issues. You can specialise in different local, national and supranational cultures in, for example, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East, or North America. Also, the perspectives of the Study of Religions, Theology, Communication and Indigenous Studies provide you with the regional, cultural, and socio-political knowledge. Depending on your target degree you will specialise in one or two thematic modules. The thematic modules are:

  • Re­li­gion, Con­flict and Dia­logue
  • Know­ledge, Decolonisation, and Change
  • Com­mu­nic­a­tion and Me­dia
  • Transna­tional In­ter­ac­tions and Globalisation

Students taking the Master of Theology degree should specialise in the thematic module Religion, Conflict and Dialogue. Humanities students can choose two thematic modules. All students may choose one additional module in their optional studies.

Courses and teach­ing

The Master's Programme in Intercultural Encounters (ICE) offers courses with a multidisciplinary approach grounded in the latest academic research, enabling students to apply their theoretical grasp to practical situations in a multicultural and internationally oriented working life.

At the beginning of your studies, your supervisor will assist you to draw a personal study plan and design your own individual study track.

Mas­ter's thesis

Master’s studies culminate in writing your Master’s thesis, which is an independent scientific study of 30 credits. Your research and writing are supported by a seminar. In the ICE programme, the work on Master's thesis begins with a research plan in the spring of the first academic year and continues throughout the second academic year. Students get to choose their own topic with the help of a designated advisor.

Writing your Master’s thesis develops your skills for conducting research. The process will enhance your ability to seek information independently, analyse and assess existing information critically, and produce and apply information independently. Typically students collect and analyze empirical data. In addition, writing your Master’s thesis develops your project management skills and your mastery of an extensive range of knowledge in your field of study.

Stu­dents and stu­dent life

Student life and especially the student organisation culture is exceptionally rich and diverse in Finland. Also at the University of Helsinki, the student community is very active.

More than 250 student organisations operate within the Student Union of the University of Helsinki (HYY), ranging from faculty and subject organisations to political and societal organisations, and from choirs and orchestras to sports and game clubs. Their activities include anniversary celebrations, academic dinner parties, cultural events, get-togethers and excursions.

As a student and member of the Student Union (HYY), you are entitled to many benefits and services. For example, affordable student housing, basic healthcare services, sports facilities and student-priced meals. You also get numerous discounts, for example on public transport fees across the country.

Career

Upon completing the Master’s Programme in Intercultural Encounters, you will be able to pursue a national and international career. You will be able to act and grow in multidisciplinary and multicultural groups, and deal with issues of intercultural interaction, diversity, internationalisation, cultural management, media and power.

The ICE programme has a strong emphasis on enhancing the students’ career prospects. The content of the programme has been designed around modules that develop the students’ theoretical and practical skill set, and allow them to apply their academic knowledge to real life case studies. The students’ preparedness for working life is further advanced by on-site visits, internships, and project work that also provide important opportunities for networking. Employment opportunities for ICE graduates range from cultural and public management to international projects in private companies. Potential employers include the EU, the UN, and other national and international organisations; ministries; universities; the municipal sector; non-governmental organisations; and the media.

The ICE programme includes the minimum of 15 credits of studies in Professional Contexts. In the compulsory Career Clinic course you get a chance to polish your CV or LinkedIn profile, and get to familiarize yourself with various employers and working environments. The optional traineeship and project work modules allow you to gain hands-on work experience that will develop your skills and strengthen your professional identity.

Last updated May 2020

About the School

The University of Helsinki offers a wide range of Master’s Degree Programmes, taught entirely in English. The scope of our programmes is 120 ECTS credits, completed with two years of full-time study. ... Read More

The University of Helsinki offers a wide range of Master’s Degree Programmes, taught entirely in English. The scope of our programmes is 120 ECTS credits, completed with two years of full-time study. All programmes comply with the national legislation governing university education and are, therefore, recognised globally. Read less