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In the midst of today’s rapidly evolving society, the number of people suffering from a combination of poverty, deprivation of legal rights, and cultural and social isolation is proving to be a growing global issue. This phenomenon known as ‘social exclusion’ is a complex condition that extends beyond economic disadvantage and poverty. It is a multifaceted process through which people lose political, legal, and social agency, and through which they are stigmatized or discriminated against.
The Master’s Degree Programme in Social Exclusion is especially suited to those looking to pursue careers in areas such as research, politics, equal opportunities policies and human rights institutions and organizations. As this course equips students with the skills needed to work in both national and international settings, graduates will find themselves open to a diverse range of opportunities in private and public sectors, as well as in non-governmental organizations and civil society. Additionally, skills developed throughout the duration of this programme are highly relevant in arts, writing, and media careers.
With all of this in mind, this programme sets out to educate its students about the principles of coexistence and offers tools for analysing social exclusion from a multidisciplinary and global perspective. It teaches students to evaluate strategies that promote better social awareness and inclusion; and looks in-depth at the conditions that lead to social exclusion, its negative effects on society and to what degree different cultures are affected.
Students who engage fully with this programme will be able to critically reflect on social and cultural states from a larger perspective based in the humanities, and anchored in subjects such as history, ethics, philosophy, gender studies, theology and minority studies. Belief systems, trends, values, ideologies, power and social practices within society will also be given particular focus throughout the duration of this programme, allowing students to closely examine the factors that contribute to societal problems and how it might be possible to overcome these shortcomings.
Upon successful completion of the programme, graduates will be awarded with either a Master of Theology or Master of Arts, depending on their previous studies and the area of specialization chosen upon commencement of the programme.
Who can apply?
You are an eligible applicant for Master’s-level studies if
- you have a nationally recognized bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited institution of higher education,
- you meet the language requirements
- your degree is in a relevant field for the Master’s degree programme that you’re applying to
Applicants to the International Master’s Programmes taught in English must have a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field that is equivalent to a Finnish university Bachelor’s degree (kandidatexamen).
Applying students must provide a relevant BA in Comparative Religion, Gender Studies, History, Philosophy, Theology or an equivalent degree. As a rule of thumb the applicant should have the equivalence of 60 ECTS credits in the major subject. In addition, previous studies, relevant work and organisation experience, as well as other merits and qualifications can be taken into account. Student selection is made on the basis of application documents; there is no entrance examination.
If the applicant is formally eligible for studies, the degree certificates and transcripts of records are always assessed individually by the academic board of the programme in order to determine whether the profile of the previous studies matches the academic requirements.
Students with a BA in Theology will be eligible for a Master’s degree in Theology, whereas students with BA’s in other subject will be awarded the degree Master of Arts.
All applicants must always prove their level of English language proficiency, in most cases by submitting one of the following English-language test scores to their application (the minimum requirements are listed below):
IELTS Academic (International English Language Testing System): Scores in the Academic test with an average of 6.5, with no individual scores below 5.5. Even if an applicant has the minimum score required in the different sections, the applicant is not eligible if the required total score is not achieved. The results are valid for two years.
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language): Total scores of at least 575 points in the paper-based test, or 90 in the Internet-based test (iBT). The Test of Written English (TWE) is required for those taking the paper-based TOEFL test. The results are valid for two years.
PTE Academic (Pearson’s test of English): Total score of at least 62 points. The results are valid for two years.
No other English proficiency test is accepted.
Fee-paying students can apply for a scholarship to cover a part or the whole tuition fee.
There are three scholarship categories:
- Full Scholarship, covering the tuition fee and includes a annual scholarship to cover the student’s living expenses (6 720 €), awarded for 2 years (second year conditional)
- Tuition Fee Scholarship, covering 100 % of the tuition fee, awarded for 2 years (second year conditional)
- Tuition Fee Scholarship, covering 50 % of the tuition fee, awarded for 2 years (second year conditional)
The decision to grant a scholarship is based on
- the academic performance of the student in his/her previous studies,
- how well the applicant meets the programme requirements
- the answers the applicants have given in the application form
When applying to Åbo Akademi University, applicants can indicate on the application form their wish to apply for a scholarship. In the application form the applicants are asked to answer a set of questions related to motivation and future goals. The answers to the questions will be assessed by the scholarship committee who makes the decision on granting the scholarships. In the assessment the following is evaluated: communicative skills, academic goals and general interest in the field.
The decision on the granted scholarship is given to the applicants together with the admission letter. In order to accept the scholarship the applicant must have accepted the study entitlement offered (binding acceptance).