Goal of the programme
Computer science has a brilliant future! You could help to create new network solutions, build the future digital society, develop secure digital services, or be involved in a ground-breaking international software project. Perhaps you will develop algorithms for utilising genome data in medicine or optimise bus routes using positioning data. Do you wonder about all the things that can be automated? Or would you like to dig deeper and become a researcher?
In the Master’s programme in computer science you can become an expert in a wide range of fields. You will have access to the focus areas of research in computer science at the University of Helsinki: algorithms, distributed or networked systems, and software engineering. You will gain lasting professional skills for specialist, design, or managerial posts in the corporate world, or for research and doctoral education, since the Master’s programme in computer science gives you the aptitude for both independent working and multidisciplinary teamwork.
This education will give you:
- The ability to advance your knowledge in the different areas of computer science
- The skill to seek, assess, and analyse scientific information in your own area of expertise, and apply the methods of the field in an ethical and sustainable way
- The ability to act as expert in the field, and to develop the practices and methods of your field in cooperation with specialists from other fields
- Oral and written communication skills in an international work environment
The quality teaching within the computer science programme at the University of Helsinki has been highlighted repeatedly in national and international teaching assessments. The student-centred, in-depth learning gives you a solid basis for life-long learning. Studying at the leading research unit for computer science in Finland offers you constant interaction with current research and insight into the development patterns in the field.
Further information about the studies on the Master’s programme website.
Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area and pursue their studies in English, are liable to pay tuition fees. You can check from FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees.
Find out more about the Be 1* of the Best Scholarship Programme.
Information on the languages of instruction
Instruction can be given in English or Finnish. Within these sub-programmes, instruction is nearly always in English:
- Networking and Services
Within the following sub-programme, some of the instruction is given in Finnish, but it is also possible to graduate with teaching in English:
- Software systems
You can take exams in English, Finnish or Swedish (unless the nature of the course demands otherwise), and you can write your Master’s thesis in Finnish, Swedish or English.
In future, we will increasingly be using intelligent tools, consisting of networked hardware, software, services, and data. They will work based on intelligent, learning algorithms, data streams carried by communication protocols, and global infrastructures.
Within the Algorithms sub-programme, you will study effective algorithms and their application within other disciplines and in corporate life. Future IT systems will contain more and more intelligent components, the function of which will be based on complex mathematical models created automatically with the aid of machine-learning methods. The problems to be solved are computationally challenging, and the ever increasing amounts of data will create their own challenges when it comes to the efficiency of the algorithms needed.
The Networking and services sub-programme educates you to become an expert and strategic leader in the design and management of new global infrastructures. The infrastructures include Internet technologies in fixed networks and mobile environments, as well as the information and service networks built on top of them. Focus areas include the theory, data security, and trust within distributed systems, interactive systems, and the adaptability of services in a changing environment.
The Software systems sub-programme introduces you to the design and implementation of advanced software. The development of a shared software framework or platform for several software products is very demanding both technically and from the development project viewpoint. Developing such software requires technical skills, but also team- and project work, quality assurance, and communication. Within this sub-programme, you can specialise in software engineering, software technology, or information management, and study the current research questions in these areas in depth.
Selection of the study track
The sub-programmes in the Master’s programme for computer science are:
- Networking and services
- Software systems
You can select any of these programmes according to your preferences at the beginning of your studies. The sub-programme determines which courses you should take.
The Master’s programme comprises 120 credits, which can be completed in two years, in accordance with an approved personal study plan. The degree includes:
- 80 credits of advanced courses, including
- Shared courses within the programme
- Courses within the programme which support the thesis topic
- The Master’s thesis (Pro gradu), 30 credits
- 40 credits of other courses from your own or other programmes
- The other courses can include a work-orientation period
The advanced module in the Master of Science degree includes a thesis (30 credits). In this project you demonstrate your ability for scientific thinking, your grasp of research methods, your in-depth knowledge of the thesis topic, and your aptitude for scientific written communication. Some common types of theses are the literature-based comparison or analysis, and the experimental or constructive application. All theses demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the research literature within the writer’s own field, and command of the communication style prevalent in computer science publications.
Some of the theses are written in collaboration with research groups at the department, so you may be able to participate in top research even before completing your degree. Due to the breadth of the field and its impact on society, the thesis topics range over many themes. Recent thesis topics have included cloud computing, big data, management of large genome data, machine learning, service- and model-based solutions, software development methods, and software quality assurance.
The employment outlook within the field is excellent. Masters of computer science find varied positions within the ICT field, both as employees and entrepreneurs. The nature of the education is also geared towards giving you an aptitude for managerial posts. All the sub-programmes provide the qualifications to find employment in a wide variety of jobs.
Software-system graduates often start their careers as software developers and designers, while network graduates often start with software at the infrastructure level (such as data communications, computation, or data entry). The skills learned in the algorithms sub-programme enable you to work on challenging tasks in various fields.
As a graduate you can find employment within small or large corporations as well as organisations in the private, public, or third sector. Due to the global nature of the field, you can find employment anywhere in the world. Taking modules from other education programmes will help you apply your computer science skills in other areas. Many jobs are based on these combinations.
Thanks to its strong scientific basis, the degree is also an excellent springboard to a doctoral programme.
A Master’s degree gives eligibility to apply to positions that require a second cycle academic degree.
You may apply if you meet the following three requirements:
- You have completed by 31 July 2019 a first-cycle degree (e.g., bachelor’s degree) or second-cycle degree (e.g., master’s degree) or a postgraduate degree in Finland or abroad.
- You have completed or will complete studies required for the master’s programme by 11 January 2019. Below are more details concerning applicable studies.
- You are able to demonstrate your proficiency in English, Finnish or Swedish (Updated 18/12/2018: Finnish and Swedish added). For further instructions on demonstrating your language skills, see the section “Required enclosures”.
If you are currently or have previously been a student at the University of Helsinki, please note the following rules.
If you have refugee status or are in a refugee-like situation, and you do not have the official documents to prove your eligibility to apply for higher education, you can still apply to the University of Helsinki.
You may be admitted if
- You prove your eligibility (see above) by the deadline.
- You submit the application and the required attachments within the specified deadline. The application form is open from 3 December 2018 (8:00h Finnish time) to 11 January 2019 (15:00h Finnish time). Read more about what will happen after the application period.
- You have a first-cycle degree in computer science or another applicable degree with at least 60 credits of key field-specific studies of an equal level to studies for a first-cycle degree in computer science.
Please note: even if the degree you are using as grounds for application is not completed during the application round, you must have a sufficient amount of applicable studies completed by 11 January 2019.
Together with their application, applicants must submit officially certified copies of certificates on all previously completed studies that serve as the basis for their application.
The applicability of the field and the sufficiency of the completed studies will be evaluated in conjunction with admission. The University of Helsinki does not provide any preliminary evaluation on the suitability of the applicant’s previous studies.
Choosing the language of your Master’s degree
In the Master’s Programme in Computer Science, you can choose the language of your degree to be Finnish, Swedish or English. This means that even though most of the teaching will be offered in English, you can answer examination questions and write course assignments and your Master’s thesis in the language that you select as the language of the degree. Please note that you can apply to pursue this Master’s programme in one language only and you must demonstrate your language skills accordingly. You must select the language of your degree when submitting your application.
Choosing a study track
The Master’s Programme in Computer Science has three study tracks:
- Networking and services
- Software systems
You must notify the study track of your choice on the application form, but the selection is not binding.The study track chosen by the applicants will be considered when assessing the applicability of previous studies as well as the motivation letter.
Factors affecting admissions
Your success in the selection process will be influenced by the evaluation of your academic performance; the focus will be on the amount, quality and grades of completed studies that are applicable to the programme, on your motivation letter, and the study plan contained in it, as well as on a preliminary assignment.
In the admission procedure, your application will be scored in the following four categories:
- Applicability of your previous studies
- Academic performance in the studies serving as the grounds for your application
- Your motivation letter (as part of the application form)
- Preliminary assignment
The motivation letter and analysis of previous studies form part of the admission criteria and when writing them you must answer the provided questions. They are part of the application form.
The evaluation of the applicability of completed studies will be based on the analysis provided by the applicants on the application form of their previous studies in the key areas of computer science. Also the preliminary assignment will be used to assist in the evaluation of the applicability of previous studies. The feasibility of the study plan will be evaluated in relation to the overall impression gained from the other admission criteria.
Applicants will receive the preliminary assignment together with instructions by email after the application deadline.They must return the preliminary assignment by 13 February, 2019 in accordance with the instructions.Please note that the assignment is sent to all those who apply for the programme; its receipt does not mean that you are more likely to be admitted.
If several applicants have completed studies applicable to the programme, but not all can be accommodated in the programme’s quota, the applicants will be compared against each other, and the most qualified will be admitted. The programmes need not fill their student quotas to the maximum.
If in this round of admissions you are applying for more than one Master’s programme at the Faculty of Science, University of Helsinki, you must rank them in order of preference on your application form. If you could be admitted to more than one programme, you can only be admitted to the one you have ranked the highest.
The Master’s programme admits no more than 45 students regardless of their selected language of degree and application option.
Applicants will be informed of the results of the student selection by 12 April 2019 at the latest. Please note the one study place per term provision if you are applying for more than one study programme in spring 2019.
Study right to be awarded
If you are admitted, you will be granted the right to pursue the degree of Master of Science in the Master’s Programme in Computer Science.
Statistics on applicants can be found on the University’s webpage.
The application must be accompanied by the following documents, and the documents must be submitted as instructed below:
- Official photocopy of the degree certificate/diploma
- Official transcript
- Diploma supplement (if available)
- Certificate of language proficiency
- Authorised translations into English, Finnish or Swedish
- A photocopy of your passport, your official identity card or your Finnish residence permit card
- Motivation letter and study plan (to be filled in on the application form)
- Preliminary assignment (assignment will be sent to the applicants by email after the application deadline)
1) Read carefully the instructions on application enclosures and their submission.
2) You must demonstrate your proficiency in English. Read the instructions on proving your language skills.
3) If the degree serving as grounds for application to the programme is still incomplete, you need not submit a degree certificate/diploma with the application documents. If you are admitted, the admission decision will be conditional, and you will receive instructions with your letter of admission for submitting the official degree certificate/diploma. NB! The final degree certificate/diploma must be presented by 14 August 2019 at the latest.
|Due date||11.1.2019, 15:00|
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