University of Tampere's Regulations of Degrees
These Regulations on Degrees enter into force on 1 January 2017.
NB: This is an unofficial translation. In the event of any discrepancies between the Finnish and English versions, the original Finnish version shall prevail.
University of Tampere’s Regulations on Degrees
The Board of the University of Tampere hereby approves these regulations on 4 November 2016 under paragraph 8 of section 14(2) and section 28 of the Universities Act (558/2009).
Scope of application
These Regulations apply to degrees taken at the University of Tampere and the courses belonging to those degrees and, where applicable, to education arranged as non-degree studies, Open University studies, specialist education and continuing studies, and to made-to-order education.
The Regulations on Degrees that apply to the faculties also apply, as appropriate, to other units providing instruction.
In addition to the provisions of the Universities Act (558/2009), the following decrees and acts as amended and the orders issued under those acts apply to the degree programmes and studies taken, to the instruction provided and to the students at the University:
- Government Decree on University Degrees and Specialist Education (794/2004)
- Ministry of Education and Culture Decree on the Specification of Educational responsibilities (1451/2014)
- Decree on Higher Education Degree Structure (464/1998)
- Government Decree on Universities (770/2009)
- Ministry of Education and Culture Decree on the Calculation Criteria for Basic Funding of Universities (331/2016)
- Applicant, Higher education achievement register and Matriculation Examination Registers Act (1058/1998)
- Government Decree on Fees Collected by Universities (1082/2009)
- Students’ Legal Protection Board Act (956/2011).
Degrees and degree programmes
Provisions on the educational purview, i.e. the fields of study in which a university may award degrees, are laid down in the annex to the Government Decree on University Degrees and Specialist Education (794/2004). The fields of study in which a university may award degrees are further specified by the Ministry of Education and Culture Decree on the Specification of Educational Responsibilities (1451/2014).
Within the limits set by the decrees, the University Board decides on how the educational purview is to be divided within the University.
In accordance with Government Decree on University Degrees and Specialist Education (794/2004), the University's faculties may provide education leading to Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees as well as to academic or artistic postgraduate degrees in the fields of study belonging to their educational purview. Education is arranged in the form of degree programmes.
The University of Tampere’s degree programmes that lead to Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees are the type of degree programmes stipulated in the Government Decree 794/2004. Master’s degrees that belong to degree programmes leading to Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees are arranged as Master’s studies or Master’s programmes; separate higher university degrees are arranged as Master’s programmes; and degree programmes leading to an academic or artistic postgraduate degree are organised as doctoral programmes.
The Rector decides on the establishment or discontinuation of a degree programme, with the exception of such programmes where changing the educational purview involves amending the Ministry of Education and Culture decree; in such cases the decision shall be made by the University Board. When a degree programme is established, the internal division of the educational purview within the degree programme is defined.
The faculty councils decide on the eventual majors in Master’s studies, eventual fields of study within doctoral programmes and on the establishment or discontinuation of separate study modules.
If an educational programme leading to a degree is discontinued, the University offers the students pursuing that degree an opportunity to complete their studies within a reasonable transition period. The faculty councils decide on how the transition period is to be organised, unless otherwise provided. A right to study in a discontinued educational programme expires after the transition period has ended.
The University of Tampere may provide Open University courses, specialist education and continuing education, as well as offer educational and development services. Faculties and independent institutes providing instruction may admit students to complete specialist education and continuing education courses or programmes, Open University courses or other non-degree courses. The faculties and independent institutes providing instruction may grant non-degree students admission to individual courses included in the curriculum.
Open University education also includes courses that are open to all and that are provided by the University in cooperation with an external institute or another training provider. Collaboration agreements covering such courses include details of the duties of the University and its collaboration partner(s), the courses to be provided, the instructors and the fees to be collected. Students taking these courses are registered as students of the University of Tampere.
As regards fees for Open University courses and non-degree studies, the University adheres to the provisions of the Government Decree on Fees Collected by Universities (1082/2009) and its amendments. The Rector decides on the fees to be collected for Open University courses and non-degree courses.
Individual non-degree courses and coursework completed under the auspices of the Open University are entered into the University’s student register.
On the basis of the faculty councils' proposal, the University Board decides each year on the number of new students to be admitted to study towards Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees or towards either of these degrees, as well as on the number of students admitted to study in the pedagogical study module in teacher training.
The University Board monitors the achievement of the objectives set for student admissions and, if necessary, gives general guidelines to the faculties on modifying and improving the admission process.
The council of each faculty determines the faculty’s admission criteria, unless otherwise stipulated. The faculties may set up committees for the purpose of preparing admission criteria and making practical arrangements for the admission process. A faculty may also agree to select students in collaboration with one or more other universities.
Together with the faculties, the University’s Study Services – a unit operating under University Services – coordinates the application periods, entrance examination schedules and application information, as well as processes information on the applicants.
The faculties work in cooperation with Study Services to select the students to be admitted.
According to section 37 of the Universities Act, eligibility for studies leading to a lower and/or higher university degree requires the following:
Eligible for studies leading to a lower university degree only or to both a lower and a higher university degree is a person who
- has passed the examination referred to in the National Matriculation Examination Act (672/2005)
- has a vocational qualification awarded on the completion of education of at least three years’ duration or a corresponding prior education
- has a vocational qualification, a further vocational qualification or a specialist vocational qualification awarded under the Adult Education and Training Act (631/1998) or a corresponding prior qualification; or
- has a qualification completed abroad, which in the awarding country gives eligibility for corresponding higher education.
The provisions in paragraph 1 concerning eligibility for degree studies also apply to education leading directly to a Master’s degree arranged by the University without the inclusion of a separate lower university degree.
Eligible for studies leading only to a higher university degree is a person who
- has an applicable lower university degree;
- has earned an applicable degree at a university of applied sciences; or
- has an applicable education completed abroad, which in the awarding country gives eligibility for corresponding higher education.
According to section 37 of the Universities Act, eligibility for studies leading to an academic or artistic postgraduate degree requires the following:
Eligibility for studies leading to an academic or artistic postgraduate degree requires that the person has completed an applicable higher university degree, an applicable degree at a university of applied sciences, or an applicable education abroad, which in the awarding country gives eligibility for corresponding higher education.
The university may require that a student admitted to study for an academic or artistic postgraduate degree completes a necessary amount of supplementary studies in order to acquire the knowledge and skills needed for the studies.
Eligible for studies leading to a professional postgraduate degree is a person who has completed an applicable higher university degree or a degree in a university of applied sciences, or who has an applicable education completed abroad, which in the awarding country gives eligibility for corresponding higher education.
Further provisions concerning eligibility for professional postgraduate degrees are enacted by the Government Decree.
Eligible for specialist education is a person who has completed an applicable degree in a university or a university of applied sciences.
Eligible for studies referred to in this Section may also be persons whom the University deems to possess sufficient knowledge and abilities to study on the programme to which they seek admission.
In addition to an applicant’s general eligibility for postgraduate studies, selection of postgraduate students also takes into consideration the applicant’s study plan and research outline, as well as the resources available in the faculty to organise courses and supervision for postgraduate education.
Each faculty council decides in greater detail on the prerequisites and selection criteria for admission to academic, artistic or professional postgraduate degree programmes, unless otherwise stipulated.
New students are admitted by the faculties’ deans. When admission results are published, unsuccessful applicants must be informed of how to obtain information on the application of the admission criteria in their case and how to appeal against the decision by submitting a request for rectification.
If an unsuccessful applicant is dissatisfied with the admission results, he/she may request for rectification in writing from the faculty council in question within 14 days of the publication of the results. The admission results may not be changed to the detriment of any successful applicant as a consequence of the rectification request.
If the applicant is dissatisfied with the decision taken on his/her request for rectification, he/she may appeal to the Administrative Court but must do so in accordance with the Administrative Judicial Procedure Act (586/1996).
As regards independent institutes providing instruction, the institute director decides on the student admission criteria.
Right to study
New degree students are granted a right to study towards both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in a specific degree programme or towards only one of those degrees, or towards an academic or artistic postgraduate degree. Students are admitted to study towards a degree in a degree programme. The dean of a faculty may grant a student permission to transfer to another degree programme or to change his/her major during the studies; however, when a student transfers to study towards another degree or transfers to another field of study, he/she is granted a ‘new’ right to study towards that degree.
The faculty councils determine the grounds on which a student who holds a Bachelor’s degree and a right to study towards that degree only can be granted a right to continue his/her studies and to pursue a Master’s degree.
Students admitted to a doctoral programme are granted a right to study towards a doctoral degree or, for specific reasons, towards only a licentiate degree.
At any one time, a student may hold only one right to study towards a specific Bachelor’s or Master’s degree, or towards a specific academic, artistic or professional postgraduate degree at the University of Tampere.
A student may not be granted a new right to study towards an equivalent degree that he/she has already earned, unless otherwise provided by the admission criteria of the faculty in question.
Students admitted through the non-standard admission process, i.e. international students and students from other universities, may accept only one study place on a programme starting in any one semester.
A faculty council may revoke the right to study if it is discovered that an applicant has submitted false or insufficient information that may have affected the admission results.
Sections 40–43 of the Universities Act define the normative duration of Bachelor's and Master's degree programmes and lay down rules for restrictions on the right to study.
The right to study is granted for a limited period of time and for specific courses in the case of Open University courses, individual non-degree courses, and degree courses that are organised once only or that exist for a limited period of time. The relevant dean of a faculty or director of an independent institute may grant an extension to a student's right to study to allow the student to complete his/her studies.
Each year, the Rector decides on the enrolment period and issues rules on student enrolment as present or absent.
A student who fails to enrol as present or absent in accordance with the Rector's orders loses his/her right to study. If a student wishes to continue his/her studies at a later point in time, he/she must apply for readmission from Study Services in writing or, if more than one year has passed since the student was last registered, from the dean of the faculty in question, unless the Rector otherwise decides.
Curriculum and teaching schedules
The academic year begins on 1 August and ends on 31 July. The Rector decides on the start and end dates of instruction provided in the academic year, the dates of the four periods and the dates on which holidays, etc. will be observed and no classes held. Details of the teaching schedules may be determined by the faculty councils or the directors of any independent institutes providing instruction.
Courses included in the curriculum or some classes belonging to these courses may be held during the summer months, but alternative modes and times for completing the courses must also be provided; participation in classes held in the summer may not be a prerequisite for the completion of a degree. Between 1 June and 31 August, a period of at least one month must be set aside when no classes are held, with the exception of continuing education and Open University courses.
The language of instruction and degrees at the University is Finnish. Languages other than Finnish may be used in instruction as necessary in accordance with the curricula. The language of an assessed component is defined in the University’s Regulations on the Assessment of Studies.
The starting point for planning instruction is a comprehensive view of education. Systematic work in curriculum design is the most important method to ensure and develop the quality of instruction, learning and competencies. A competency-based curriculum is a tool for designing instruction and courses, as well as for study planning and for academic advising and student counselling. With the help of a curriculum, education is formed into a target-oriented entity, from which redundancies in the courses are removed. The curriculum is also used to demonstrate interconnections between different courses and modules. Additionally, a curriculum includes essential information pertaining to courses, academic advising and student counselling, students’ personal study plans and the smooth progress of studies, as well as to skills assessment and registering completed coursework, theses etc.
In the teaching schedules for each academic year, courses and learning assessment must be organised in such a way that the students can pursue their studies effectively and in a purposeful order within the time frame specified as the normative duration of studies in Government Decree on University Degrees and Specialist Education (794/2004). The faculties monitor the productivity and effectiveness of their programmes and develop the quality and quality management of instruction, studying and academic counselling.
Councils are to approve their faculty’s curricula for the coming academic year before the end of February, and the teaching schedules for the coming academic year before the end of April.
Curricula are approved primarily for a period of three academic years. To design curricula, a faculty sets up committees consisting of instructors and students, as well as of representatives of the Open University staff and other experts as needed.
Any course units in a faculty’s curricula that can be offered as Open University courses during the time period covered by the curricula are approved by the faculty council.
The faculty councils approve the Open University courses. The faculties are responsible for organising Open University courses in cooperation with Study Services.
Faculties also offer their degree courses in Bachelor’s and Master’s programmes to students from other programmes as free choice studies. Such courses are also offered to Open University, non-degree and postgraduate students.
Class sizes are determined in a way that enables students to take the courses needed to complete their degree programme and to progress in their studies without interruption, as described in section 16(2) above. Classes are sized to provide as many as possible of the students referred to in section 17 above with the opportunity to take the courses in question.
A certain number of places on a course belonging to a specific degree programme are reserved for other student groups referred to in section 17, provided that the course is not restricted to the degree programme’s own students in the curriculum. This is achieved either by providing separate classes for these student groups or by reserving places for them within each class.
Within the limits of class sizes, students pursuing other studies may also take courses from programmes not their own.
Instruction and studying
Courses taken at the University of Tampere are governed by the provisions of the Government Decree on University Degrees and Specialist Education (794/2004) and other relevant provisions, as well as by these Regulations on Degrees.
A right to study on a degree programme includes the right to take courses belonging to that programme (i.e. degree courses) as determined in the curriculum. Within the limits of the curriculum, free choice courses and other optional courses taken at other faculties or universities may also be included in a student’s studies.
Students can pursue studies by attending classes or by studying independently.
Rules on the assessment of studies are laid down in the University’s Regulations on the Assessment of Studies and in the curriculum, as well as in the guidelines of each faculty.
If a student has already been assigned an average grade for a completed study module, no changes or additions can be made to the registered module, unless the faculty in question otherwise decides.
The grounds for validity and expiry of completed courses are decided by the council of the relevant faculty.
If the completion of studies requires certain pre-existing skills, a student’s level is assessed using a reliable method.
Students studying towards Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees or towards either of these degrees formulate a personal study plan (HOPS) to support the progress and completion of their studies; furthermore, they update and develop this plan as their studies progress. In principle, students discuss with their personal HOPS instructor on an annual basis. The personal study plan is based on the curriculum and structure of the degree programme in which the student is enrolled. The personal study plan is also used in academic counselling and to support student’s growth into academic experts. The personal study plan specifies the courses, etc. that the student intends to complete in order to earn the degree and the schedule that the student will follow in his/her studies, including the internationalisation module.
A doctoral student will formulate both a personal study plan and a research outline.
The studies offered should be planned with all students in mind. In designing instruction to be offered, it should be ensured that the courses that can also be taken as free choice studies offer places not only for the degree programme’s own students but for other students as well.
Students register for courses using the University's electronic service, unless otherwise stipulated by the faculty in question. If a student does not have a basic user account, the enrolment is submitted according to the faculty’s guidelines.
If there are not enough places on a course for all the students who have registered for it, consistent criteria will be applied in filling the reserved places. Priority will be given to the students for whom the course is compulsory according to the curriculum; however, should it not be possible to accept all these students onto the course, consistent criteria will be applied in filling the reserved places. Faculties and independent institutes providing instruction may issue more detailed regulations on the admission criteria for courses.
If a student has registered for a course but will not be taking it, he/she must cancel his/her registration by the set date before the course begins so that another student may take the course instead.
If a student does not participate in the course and does not cancel his/her enrolment, or if he/she discontinues the course, he/she will be assigned a fail grade for the course in question.
Credit transfer and recognition of prior learning (RPL)
In decisions concerning credit transfer, the University of Tampere adheres to section 44 of the Universities Act (558/2009).
In studying for a degree, students enrolled as present at the University of Tampere may apply for credit transfer for prior studies completed at other Finnish or foreign institutions of higher education or at other educational institutions, and substitute studies on the degree programme with other studies of the same level.
Students may also gain credit or substitute for courses included in the degree programme with knowledge and skills demonstrated in some other manner.
The faculty councils lay down detailed rules for awarding credit within the faculty’s degree programmes for previously acquired knowledge and skills, unless otherwise stipulated elsewhere.
Compulsory courses completed as a part of a previously earned university degree may be incorporated into a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree earned at the University of Tampere if the content of these courses is equivalent to what is required to complete the degree programme in question. The studies to be incorporated must meet the learning outcomes of the degree programme.
Awarding credit for previously acquired knowledge and skills is based on the learning outcomes of the degree, study module or course unit defined in the curriculum. Students may be required to supplement such studies with other studies at the University and to demonstrate their skills.
Studies already included in a previously earned Bachelor’s degree may not count towards a Master’s degree at the University of Tampere, apart from language and communication courses.
If a student who holds a Bachelor’s degree has been admitted to study towards another Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree and the number of applicable credits that can be transferred based on the skills already acquired for this first Bachelor’s degree is so extensive that only 60 credits or less would remain to be earned after the credit transfer, then the student should apply to study directly for a Master’s degree.
The transferred credits are registered in accordance with the credits in the curriculum and will be graded on the scale of 1–5, unless there is a special reason to apply the pass/fail grading scale.
Theses or doctoral dissertations previously accepted for a degree may not be counted towards a second degree.
Legal protection of students
Assessment and rectification procedures in the cases of a doctoral dissertation, licentiate thesis or an equivalent demonstration of knowledge and skills, and a Master’s thesis or an equivalent study attainment or project included in advanced studies, are governed by the provisions in sections 44, 82, 83 and 84 of the Universities Act (558/2009).
In accordance with the paragraph 6, section 13 of the Regulations of the University of Tampere, a student may appeal in writing to the faculty council against the grade received for a doctoral dissertation, licentiate thesis or equivalent demonstration of knowledge and skills, but must do so within 14 days of receiving the grade.
A student dissatisfied with the grade received for a Master's thesis or an equivalent study attainment or project may apply in writing to the faculty council for rectification within 14 days after receiving the grade.
A student dissatisfied with the grading of an assessed study attainment – other than those referred to in section 26 above – or with the recognition of studies completed elsewhere or of prior learning demonstrated in some other manner, may apply for rectification of the grading orally or in writing to the instructor who made the grading decision as regards grading, and to the person who decided on recognition as regards recognition of prior learning demonstrated in some other manner. A student dissatisfied with the grade received for a Bachelor’s thesis or equivalent may appeal in writing to the dean of the faculty in question.
An appeal against a grade received for a course must be lodged within 14 days of the date on which the student has access to the assessment results and to information on the application of the assessment criteria to his/her work.
An appeal against a credit transfer decision must be lodged within 14 days of receiving the notification of the decision.
If a student expresses dissatisfaction with the decision taken on the request for rectification referred to in section 27(1) above, he/she must be provided with a written statement of the reasons for the decision, or with a dated copy of the course documents into which the decision and the reasons for it are added.
A student dissatisfied with the decision taken on the request for rectification referred to in the first paragraph above may appeal to the Appeals Committee within 14 days of receipt of the decision, in accordance with section 16 of the Regulations of the University of Tampere.
Disciplinary actions are taken against students who have violated the rules pertaining to instruction, coursework or research. These actions and the procedures following them are governed by the provisions in sections 45, 45a and 45b of the Universities Act (558/2009) and in the University of Tampere Regulations on the Assessment of Studies, as well as by other rules regarding fraud.
More detailed rules on the learning outcomes and content of the degrees and studies, on instruction and study attainments and on other matters pertaining to degree administration are issued by the faculties, unless otherwise provided in the legislation or other regulations of the University.
The use of the University Library, computers and data systems, as well as other practices pertaining to the operations of and dealings with the University are regulated by the University’s administrative bodies and other authorities. As members of the University community, students are further obligated to adhere to these rules and regulations.
A person who has earned a higher university degree by the name of kandidaatti at the University of Tampere is entitled to use the title of ‘Master’. A person who has graduated as a Master of Science (Economics) is entitled to use the title of ekonomi. The Faculty of Medicine and Life Sciences may award the title ‘Bachelor of Medicine’ (lääketieteen kandidaatti) in accordance with section 32 of the Government Decree 794/2004.
The Rector decides on who is awarded the title of Honorary Doctor on the proposal of the faculty councils.
The Rector determines the general principles of the transitional provisions, and the faculties then decide on further details.
Entry into force
These Regulations on Degrees enter into force on 1 January 2017. These Regulations hereby replace the Regulations on Degrees approved by the University Board on 25 May 2015.
Preparatory measures may be undertaken to implement these Regulations on Degrees before they enter into force.