First live meeting in a long time for the committee and significantly lower number of members were present, even though there has been an option to join via zoom.
Firstly the 2022-2024 curriculum was passed with just a terminology change: renaming the ‘University Wide Studies’ to ‘Optional Course for Basic Studies’. It was agreed that a list of optional courses for the whole programme would be created and each majour will select suitable courses.
Basic Admission Criteria will not be changed, however a new section will be added for the pathway studies.
More information around the pathway studies has been shared. The pathway studies is part of a cross-administrative government programme to boost immigration of skilled employees, students and researchers to Finland.
The overall goals of the MEC is that international degree students have tripled and 75% of them stay on in Finland and gain employment by 2030. These numbers are not to be gained purely by the pathway studies but also through other incentives as per the Finland scholarships.
The pathway studies are going to be a part-time curriculum of around 20Cr worth, starting from pre-university level mathematics up till Differential and Integral Calculus, with the aim that these could be completed in parallel with final high-school year. Afterwards this will allow access to select few degree majours (2x Aalto and 2x Tampere University majours are being made available through this on the pilot), based on their GPA acquired. They will further need to complete an English language certification as well as complete their certification allowing them to study at a higher education in the awarding country as part of their final degree entry requirements.
Pathway studies are not going to be available as an application route to students that apply to the joint admission (admission group I, i.e. you need to apply through one or the other route not both).
Student selection came up as a discussion topic, target quotas of students whom accepted the degree path was only reached for the Quantum Technology and Data Science majours some others were as low as 50% of their quota. This is due to students applying to multiple majours and not waiting to see if they made the cut from the waiting list on their preferred, to counter this it has been recommended that the respective majours over select with an alternating ration (with DS hardly any while the low ones can even be as bold as accepting 6x their quota)
As per the pathway studies student scholarships is an incentive programme to increase skilled employees in Finland (above what can come from the local market). As such around 60% of tuition liable applicants will get a scholarship offer. A scholarship is in the form of a tuition waiver fee (mostly 100% waivers) and these will be shared proportionately amongst the study paths and will be specific to the majour. This is to avoid that all the scholarships ends up into a single study path.
19-25 May – Student selection and Scholarship decisions
27May (3 June latest) – Admission results
Week 22-23 – webinar(s) for accepted students
15 July – Deadline to accepted
29.8 – 2.9 – Orientation WEEK!!!
There are some decision items related around the student selections thus some of the final numbers can change.
We have had some feedback on the Bachelor’s Thesis seminar. During the Bachelor’s Thesis seminar students have been provided with a couple of topics they could use for their Bachelor’s Thesis. They’ve then had a combination of training seminars on various topics including writing, group feedback as well as some one-on-one feedback / assistance. Even though the number of students expected that will complete their Bachelor’s thesis is going to increase during the next couple of years, the plan is to still maintain the same level of individual feedback and support. It has been made clear that thesis criteria cannot be aligned to any other (Finnish) Bachelor’s thesis as each of the Schools have their own separate criteria. The criteria will be standardised throughout the committee’s programme.
The proposal got suggested to award a ‘Best Bachelor’s Thesis’ award for each majour, which has been received favourably by all participants. The intention is not to be a significant ‘financial gain’ but more a prestige award which could be accompanied by a gift voucher of €100, the details of the award would need to be determined as well whether it is needed to vote on the implementation.