Structure of Degrees in Contemporary History

​Bachelor's Degree

The lower academic degree corresponds to the Anglo-American Bachelor's Degree and is called kandidaatin tutkinto. Contemporary History students who gain this degree become Bachelors of Social Sciences (in Finnish Valtiotieteen kandidaatti).The degree takes about three years of full-time study and consists of 180 credits (opintopiste). One credit is defined as approximately 26,7 hours of work, and the amount of credits received for any course is determined based on the estimated amount of work required of the student to attain the objectives of the specific course. One (1) Finnish credit corresponds to one (1) ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) credit.

Master's Degree and Postgraduate studies

The more advanced Master's Degree is called maisterin tutkinto. This degree consists of a minimum of 120 credits, and it usually takes a further two years to complete after the lower degree. Graduates become Masters of Social Sciences, or Valtiotieteen maisteri. Postgraduate studies consist of two degrees, the voluntary Licentiate (lisensiaatin tutkinto) and the Doctor's Degree (tohtorin tutkinto).

Studies at the Department of Contemporary History

Contemporary History studies are divided into three sections: Basic Studies, Intermediate Studies and Advanced Studies. The extent of the Basic Studies is 25 credits, and this section is usually completed during the first year of studying. The goal of these studies is to achieve a basic knowledge and a general impression of the discipline, and the structure of this section is the same for all students. Themes covered in Basic Studies include an introduction to historical research, different approaches to world history, political ideologies and recent Finnish history (starting from the 19th century).

Intermediate Studies of Contemporary History go deeper into the discipline and the methodology of the discipline. In Intermediate Studies students can choose the topics they want to focus on, and responsibility for planning one’s studies passes more and more to the student. Many students choose to complete a part of this section of their studies abroad in foreign universities.

Completion of Intermediate Studies (together with the required minor, language and general studies) leads to the Bachelor’s Degree.

Advanced studies of Contemporary History form the final stage of studies and concentrate on the students' ability to apply different research methods and analyze research findings themselves. The Master’s thesis (Pro Gradu) forms a central part of this section. Students choose their own topic and write a thesis of 60 to 100 pages. The backbone of Advanced Studies are three seminars during which students present papers that illustrate the advancement of their thesis and receive comments from the teacher and other participants of the seminar.