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Master's Degree

Master's Degree Programme in Management and Leadership in Health Care

Spring 2021

Select years, semesters and periods (when only one year is selected) by clicking buttons below. (S = Spring, A = Autumn)
Year of study 1 2 3
Search for study unit: ECTS 1 2 3 1S 2A 2S 3A 1 2 3 1 2 3 4 5 1 2
CORE COMPETENCE 40                                  
Planning for the Future
Future Operating Environments 5
Research Methodology 5
Service Management in the Social and Health Care Sector
Service Provision 5  
Service Guidance 5
Strategic Management and Finacial in the Social and Health Care Sector
Strategy, Quality and Assessment 5  
Business and Financial Competence 5  
Management and Leadership in the Social and Health Care Sector
Management of Future Competence 5  
Leadership Change 5  
COMPLEMENTARY COMPETENCE 20                                  
Optional Studies
(Select 20 ECTS)
MASTER'S THESIS 30                                  
Development Methods 5
Master’s Thesis Plan 10  
Implementation of the Master’s Thesis 5  
Master’s Thesis Final Report 10    
ECTS credits per period / semester / academic year 20 40 10 20 25 15 10 18 18 18 32.5 32.5 19.7 19.7 19.7 20 20

Due to the timing of optional and elective courses, credit accumulation per semester / academic year may vary.

Programme description

The Master's degree programme in Development and Management of Social and Health care is part of Turku University of Applied Sciences (TUAS) Master School. TUAS Master School brings together all Master’s degree programmes at TUAS in the fields of Business, Culture, Healthcare and Social Services, and Technology. It gives the students an excellent chance to create new multidisciplinary networks with other experts both in Finland and globally. The School of Leadership Excellence provides the students a possibility to study and acquire skills and competences needed as a business leader and manager whereas the School of Professional Excellence focuses on developing the skills and competences needed as a specialist in the selected discipline.

In the leadership (MBA) studies the student develops his/her managerial profile as a motivating and effective leader who achieves results and change by managing people ethically and who renews and develops the organization based on appropriate methods and research data.

The Managing Director can analyze and develop himself / herself as a leader, as well as managing people and activities. They are able to apply different methods of research, development and innovation in the reform of social and health care activities. The Managing Director is able to utilize the service and system information, its steering mechanism know-how and decision-making skills in the planning and implementation of work community services and services. They can design, implement, evaluate and manage customer-oriented services, service processes, and service management. The Managing Director knows how to plan, implement and evaluate the strategy-based work community, as well as financial thinking. The Managing Director understands the personnel and its expertise as a critical loss factor for quality and cost-effective operations. Thus, the manager will be able to plan, develop, evaluate, and manage the staff's skills in relation to the activity on the basis of continuous improvement.

Teaching is mainly done in Finnish. The studies are also conducted in English and using English-language learning materials.Students have the opportunity to participate in international research, development and innovation projects (TKI), where the working language is English.

The Master’s degree composes of core competences, complementary competences and thesis work. Part of the mandatory core competence studies are common for all MBA programmes and part are specific for the Development and Management of Social and Health care. Complementary competence studies include elective studies that can be taken freely from the other TUAS Master’s programmes or from the Masters’ programmes of other universities. In most cases, the thesis work is done as a working life development project. At the beginning of the studies the student and the tutor teacher create together an individual study plan for the student. The core competence of leadership is the management of social and health care services, strategic thinking and leadership, economic and business expertise, and self and human leadership. Future operating environments in the social and health sector, renewed services in the social and health sectors, and changing decision-making in the service system require the competence of strategic thinking, decision-making and implementation from the immediate manager. The studies focus on the ethics of strategic activities and decision-making, on the evaluation of activities, on quality and on the achievement of effectiveness. The centerpiece is a derived strategy and a process of change. Studies in the field of economics and business include business thinking in managing service activities and the work community. The importance of knowledge management and management is emphasized by analyzing future competence requirements to bring about changes in operations.The thesis that is being developed as a development project will develop and manage working life both nationally and internationally through a network. The advancement of one's own career and goal-oriented development of local leadership skills are supported in the processes of freely chosen studies, core studies, and thesis.

The extent of the study programme is 90 ECTS.
The studies are composed of:
· compulsory core competences 40 ECTS
· elective complementary competences 20 ECTS
· thesis work 30 ECTS.

The advanced studies common to each leadership programme include studies in research methods and in future operating environments. The rest of the compulsory studies deepen the insight specific to each leadership programme. Students may further deepen or expand their competences by choosing elective courses from the other programmes. The Master’s degree studies at TUAS Master School are flexible and can be completed while working full-time and from anywhere in Finland. The programme is built on mixed-mode studies including lectures, seminars, e-learning, team-work and independent work. There are 2 days of contact sessions monthly. The planned length of the studies is 1.5/2 years.

The thesis is mainly implemented as a development project in which the student acts as the developer of the organization. The thesis has a clear research grip and close connection to practice. The thesis is most often carried out as a development or research work carried out in the student's own organization or in research, development and innovation projects of the Turku University of Applied Sciences (RDI). The thesis is implemented according to the tripartite model. This means collaboration between the student, the teacher tutor and the work life coach throughout the training. If necessary, the donor also cooperates. A development and project team representing a wide range of expertise will be created for the development project to support the implementation of the development project.

A central part of the studies is the Master’s thesis. The thesis work starts already at the beginning of the studies and it is carried out as a working life oriented development project. The thesis will not only develop the student’s knowledge and skills in a certain study field and specific topic but also gives the possibility to enhance skills in leading teams and work groups.

Possible titles: Head of Department, Service Manager, Project Manager, Designer, Director

An upper university degree produces the same eligibility for a public post or post as a university degree at a university. Training provides general competence in management and development tasks. In the social and health sector, besides the general eligibility conditions, there is also sector-specific regulation for management. Extensive development and substance expertise enables national and international mobility. The training follows the European Qualification Framework (EQF) proficiency level descriptions and the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) proficiency descriptions. The level corresponding to the higher polytechnic degree is 7.

Students have the opportunity to complete part of their studies outside Finland at the higher education institutions with which Turku University of Applied Sciences has signed a cooperation agreement. In addition, students can integrate internationalisation in their studies e.g. by participating in the intensive weeks organised by the international networks as well as by participating in international conferences and projects. International professional and research literature forms a significant part of the learning materials and part of the teaching can be in English.

Leadership trainings are designed and implemented in collaboration with working life. The working life connection is primarily made up of the student, the student's workplace, networks and education. The interaction between students working in different positions plays an important role in the development of professional skills and the creation of collaborative networks. The most important element of the degree is the development project that serves the working life, which creates the actual thesis. The thesis increases the student's professional skills and competence and serves the development needs of working life. Local, national and international actors are also involved in research and development. Students can apply for courses at other higher education institutions and include these in a degree. Students can also take advantage of CampusOnline's joint online study offer at the polytechnics of Finland. Industry participates in the development of education.

The aim of the research group is to promote leadership, the evaluation and development of the social welfare and health care system through multidisciplinary expertise. Focus areas are knowledge-based management, customer-focused operational models and new solutions at interfaces, high-quality care and services for the older citizens, competence and expertise in the renewing and increasignly multicultural operational environment and additionally higher education, employment and career paths.

A Master’s degree awarded by a university of applied sciences provides eligibility for further academic studies as well as for applying for professional teacher education. Universities may set conditions on granting rights for further studies in the form of e.g. supplementary studies.

Competence objectives

After completing the programme, the student is able to:

· analyse and develop him/herself as a leader as well as human and operational leadership
· apply different research, development and innovation methods to the reform of the social and health sector
· utilise social service and health service system information, its control mechanisms and decision-making skills in the planning and implementation of work community activities and services.
· design, implement, and evaluate customer-oriented social and health services, service processes, and service management
· plan, implement and evaluate work community activities based on the strategy and the principles of continuous improvement
· plan and manage the operation of a work community financially
· to design, develop, evaluate, renew and manage staff competences

Pedagogic approaches

The pedagogical approach applied in the leadership (MBA) studies is Innovation pedagogy that refers to an approach of constructivist and problem-based learning. Master´s students study alongside their work and want to broaden and deepen their theoretical knowledge and get models to apply theory in their own work. Studying is part time and involves both contact and distant learning. In addition to individual learning, collaborative learning in teams is applied to meet the needs of working life. Integration between studies and applied RDI activities and working life orientation play an important role in the studies. Learning takes place partly in virtual and in multi-disciplinary environments. On average, there are one - two consecutive contact teaching days in a month. The student creates an individual study plan (ISP) at the beginning of his/her studies, where he/she selects studies offered in Masters programmes related to, among others, the completion of the master´s thesis. A central part of Development and Management of Social and Health care (MBA) studies is the master´s thesis in which the student will not only develop the knowledge and skills in a certain study field and specific topic, but will also have the possibility to develop his/her work and workplace.


The objectives for skills levels in a Master’s Degree are based on the legislation on universities of applied sciences and the European Qualification Framework (EQF). The level corresponding to a Master’s Degree is level 7. The assessment criteria for each course are described in its implementation plan. Performance requirements vary depending on objectives, content and the method of implementation. The courses and the thesis are assessed on a scale of 0 to 5. Assessment focuses on competence and its development. The course assessment methods vary according to the objectives of the study module. Assessment may focus on the outcome (for instance, a report or a seminar presentation), on the process (the student’s own activity and actions during the course) or on both. Students receive regular feedback on their performance from their teachers. Peer- and self-assessment as well as client company feedback on performance are also utilized. The degree assessment framework is used as the basis for the assessment. The Degree Programme will be developed according to the principles of continuous improvement. In the development work, feedback from the students and working life as well as their initiatives have a key role. Feedback is collected with, for instance, student questionnaires and group-specific development discussions.