Study guide
Home > Master's degree > Kulttuurialan ylempi amk, media- ja kulttuuriyrittäjyys (not translated) > Master’s degree in culture and arts, cultural and media entrepreneurship

Master's Degree

Master’s Degree in Culture and Arts, Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship

Autumn 2019

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Year of study 1 2
Search for study unit: ECTS 1 2 1A 1S 2A 1 2 3 4 5 1 2
CORE COMPETENCE 50                        
Media and cultural entrepreneurship
Entrepreneurial skills and identity 5
Future operating environments 5
Customer and user-centred development of business concepts 10
Master's Thesis
Research and development methods 5
Development project 25
COMPLEMENTARY COMPETENCE 10                        
Optional studies
ECTS credits per period / semester / academic year 35 15 16 19 15 8 8 8.3 8.3 8.3 10.5 10.5

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

Programme description

Objective of studies

The objective of the degree programme is to develop the models and practices of entrepreneurship in the field of culture. The Master’s degree programme in Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship is the first Master’s programme in the fields of arts and culture that specifically focuses on entrepreneurship.

The programme is aimed at media and culture professionals interested in launching or developing their own businesses. The programme gives media and culture professionals the readiness to translate their professional core competence into a business. The aim is that the student learns to use customer and user-centred development methods and transform a creative idea into a marketable innovation.

The environment in which media and culture professionals operate today is rapidly changing. Technological developments (such as digitalization), changing cultural contents, evolving perceptions art and new consumer behaviours all have an impact in culture as a professional field. While jobs in, for example, the traditional media organizations have become scarcer, new types of opportunities for professional expertise in the creative industries have been simultaneously emerging outside the established media sector and cultural institutions. Experience economy has given rise to hybrids in which media content, art and culture merge with other products or services. Media, art and culture professionals are in demand in new fields such as corporate communications, health and wellness services and even sports and tourism. Multiprofessional collaboration at the interface between different sectors create space for innovations and new business opportunities.

Graduates from the Master’s degree programme in Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship are highly networked and innovative teamworkers with expertise in user and customer-centred development and they are well-positioned to recognize new business opportunities in the changing operating environment. They will have the necessary knowledge and tools to establish themselves as entrepreneurs. The strong business development skills provided by the programme will also be a major asset when seeking employment is various expert roles. A Master’s degree gives formal qualifications for public appointments that require a Master’s degree and to pursue suitable postgraduate studies.

Structure and content of studies

The Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship programme (60 ECTS) takes an estimated three terms (1.5 years) to complete. The studies are organized as part-time learning and can, therefore, be completed while working. The curriculum is flexible and the studies can be completed in as little as one year with full-time study.

A key element in the programme is the Thesis module (30 ECTS), which runs through the entire duration of the programme. The thesis is based on a development project (25 ECTS) related to the student’s own business operations. Depending on their situation, the student’s business development project may refer to developing a marketable business idea, product or service concept or a prototype, launching new business or developing existing business operations within a specific area of expertise. The thesis project may also be carried out as an assignment to an external customer. The students are not expected to set up their own businesses before or during the programme.

The student may link the development project with the topics and activities of research groups in the Arts Academy or TUAS. The students can find support for their development project from other networks operating within TUAS. The thesis may also be written as teamwork.

Development work is always based on intensive research and analysis and carried out using methodologies and tools relevant to the development task. The thesis also involves documentation and reporting on the development process. The methodological skills required for development work and reporting are taught on the Research and development methods course (5 ECTS) in the Thesis module.

The students will accumulate the core competences necessary for business development in the Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship module (20 ECTS). The focus of the module will be on 1) building students’ own entrepreneurial identity and identifying their personal strengths and development needs, 2) analysing and anticipating current and future operating environments, and 3) customer and user-centred development of products, services and business concepts as well as the commercialization of a creative idea.

The students may use elective studies (10 ECTS) to expand their competences in areas and methods relevant to their work. Courses may be selected from the offering of TUAS and other higher education institution. The students may also complete project-based studies in the RDI projects at TUAS, in external projects or as their own working life projects.

The students will set their personal learning objectives and build their competence track and further their professional development with the support of tutoring, personal study plan and the professional autobiographical process, which forms a part of the course Entrepreneurial Skills and Identity. The professional autobiographical process supports students’ continuous reflection on their entrepreneurial identity, strengths, skills and development needs and competence development during the studies.

Competence objectives

Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship students are trained in a goal-oriented development of their business skills, ethical and constructive communication and collaboration in multidisciplinary teams and working life networks, and in utilizing methodologies and knowledge of various disciplines and professional fields in creative problem solving and in building their media and/or culture entrepreneurship.

Graduates of the programme will be able to
- analyse and anticipate changes in the operating environment and the business opportunities they create
- develop, evaluate and test creative solutions as part of a multidisciplinary team to solve customers’ and users’ problems.
- apply customer and user-centred development methods in the development of, for example, new business concepts, products and/or services
- produce new knowledge through appropriate methods to inform the development work and the evaluation of the commercial potential of a business idea
- create, maintain and utilize partnerships to complement their own skills and domestic and international networks to boost their own business development
- communicate about their competences and development work to domestic and international networks and present their business ideas to potential business partners and investors in a professional manner

Pedagogic approaches

The Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship programme is based on the blended learning approach. Most of the studying and learning takes place according to the student’s own schedule in the location of their own choice. The studies are completed mainly online, as independent study and through different group and project assignments. Independent study alternates with and is supported by contact learning, which takes place usually in two consecutive days each month.

The teachers in the Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship trainer team support the students’ learning process and competence development, supervise the development projects carried out for the thesis and facilitate networking and team work across disciplinary boundaries. In addition to strong pedagogical qualifications, the trainer team also has high professional expertise in the fields of media and art as well as entrepreneurship and project management. Our Master’s degree programme students and faculty form a learning community, in which peer learning from other media and culture professionals plays a key part and in which teachers and students learn together and from each other.

Diverse learning environments

In the Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship programme, study and learning takes place is a variety of different learning environments. Some of the learning environments are used by all students together, while some environments are used by those who find the specific environment relevant and rewarding with regard to their learning objectives and competence track.

The campus environment: The Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship students convene for a contact learning period at the TUAS campus usually once a month. Contact learning offers an important platform for learning guidance, peer support, team work and collective reflection. In addition, the contact learning periods include lectures and talks on the theme under discussion by visiting experts and the programme’s own lecturers and/or visits to local businesses and entrepreneur communities. During the contact learning period, the students also meet with the Contemporary Contexts of Arts students of the Arts Academy at lectures and workshops to achieve creative collisions.

Online learning environment: The online learning environment Optima is the “homebase” for blended learning, providing students with general information about the degree programme as well as the schedule, learning materials and instructions for each module or course as well as the tools used for completing, sharing and/or submitting the learning tasks. Some of the learning activities take place online in interaction with a group or a team of students. The tools in Optima may also be complemented with other location-independent learning technologies as necessary, such as Skype for Business, Office 365 tools and social media.

Businesses/business networks: The Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship programme is offered in close collaboration with working life networks and students are encouraged to make active use of their own professional networks in their development project and other studies and to build new networks to support their future business activities. At the early stages of the studies, each student is expected to find a mentor from outside the TUAS organization.
We engage in extensive long-term collaboration with our partner companies, which play a key role in the degree programme: they host company visits, provide guest lecturers and give assignments for student projects based on real need and share authentic learning tasks to be used on our courses.

During the studies, students will also learn about the communities, networks and services available to new entrepreneurs. The programme collaborates with Creve, a creative business incubator, and other members of the SparkUp community in Turku. The students are encouraged to attend business events, services and training relevant to their own entrepreneurial career path and to use these activities towards their elective studies.

The student cooperative: The multidisciplinary student cooperative Karisma, which operates under the Arts Academy, can be used by students, for example, for testing their business ideas. Activities in the student cooperative may be used towards the degree as project-based studies in elective studies. The students may also use the cooperative when carrying out the development project for their thesis.

Research groups and RDI projects: The students also have the opportunity to complete the development project for their thesis as part of one of the research groups at the Arts Academy or other research, development and innovation projects at TUAS. The students may also include project-based studies in the RDI projects at the Arts Academy as elective studies.

The Arts Academy research groups include Film and Media; Arts, Health and Well-being; Contemporary Art; and Art Education and Art Pedagogy. The Arts Academy course offering covers a wide scope of arts and media, which allows for diverse themes and approaches in thesis work and other development tasks. Innovative research and development cooperation takes place across disciplinary boundaries within TUAS and with other higher education institution and working life.

Multiprofessional and international dimension

The Media and Entrepreneurship programme is by definition multidisciplinary, as its students come with a wide range of educational backgrounds in culture, professional experience and skills sets. The educational and professional diversity of the students is seen as a strength. When working as part of multiprofessional teams, students will have the opportunity to create fresh ideas, solutions and innovations.

The multidisciplinary and multiprofessional dimension of the programme is further supported teaming up with students from the other Master’s degree programme in the field of culture at the Arts Academy, New Contexts for Art. The students may also include multidisciplinary project-based work in their elective studies or select courses from other degree programmes and higher education institutions. The wide range of disciplines and professional fields at TUAS Master School offers interesting opportunities for collaboration.

The themes are discussed from an international perspective by linking local and national aspects and developments with the international discourse and global trends. The course literature will include international sources and case studies and, if possible, visits by international guest experts.

Some of the courses can be completed in a language other than Finnish through the English-language course offering, international student exchange, international projects and elective studies. Courses are held in English if the programme is attended by international exchange students or when the course is given by an international visiting lecturer. Master’s degree students may also serve in international research and development projects.

Student-centred learning and teaching methods

The courses are planned and built around a student-centred learning process and authentic, motivating learning tasks. Many of the learning tasks are linked with the students’ own thesis projects and support their thesis writing process. Learning tasks may also be based on real-life cases, problems and assignments provided by our partner companies or other working life partners.

The learning tasks are ideally carried out as part of multiprofessional teams. As a rule, the independently completed learning tasks are also shared with the group through the online platform for discussion and learning. Peer assessment has a key role in the completion of learning tasks for courses and the development project.

Students' learning is assessed through a variety of methods. In addition to assessment conducted by teachers, self-assessment and peer assessment are also systematically used in addition to external assessment by working life partners, such as student mentors. The assessment covers the competences attained by the student as well as competence development during the studies. The main purpose of assessment is to support students’ competence development. (see section Assessment for more details.)

Feedback system

The Cultural and Media Entrepreneurship programme is based on continuous feedback: students meet their tutor teacher at the beginning of each contact learning period to discuss matters related to their studies. One purpose of the tutor meetings is to make giving feedback easy so that any issues can be addressed immediately. Feedback can also be given via the Optima online learning environment. In addition, students are requested for general feedback on their studies on an online feedback form at the end of the first academic year and on completing their studies.

The degree programme is constantly developed in dialogue with working life. Feedback will be received from, for example, the Arts Academy advisory council, project partners and working life partners.


The assessment of each course is based on competence goals detailed in the curriculum, which are in turn based on the competence goals set for the entire degree programme. The innovation competences of TUAS are taken into account in the competence goals for the degree. The scale of assessment is pass–fail, except for the development project which is given a grade from 1 to 5.

The assessment of the development project for the thesis is based on the common assessment criteria for Master’s degree theses at TUAS Master School. The thesis is always evaluated by two examiners, one of who also supervises the thesis work. The second examiner may be a teacher from Turku University of Applied Sciences or a working life representative. The students will receive a written statement on their thesis detailing the grounds for the grade awarded. Prior to the summative assessment at the end of the thesis process, students will receive feedback from their thesis supervisor(s) with the purpose of helping students improve their final thesis. Process assessment takes place in a group situation in connection with the presentation of the research and development plan and at later stages of the development project, during individual supervisory discussions and following the submission of the draft thesis report (pre-examination version).

Assessment by teachers: The course assessment by the teacher covers all learning tasks submitted during the course in accordance with the principle of continuous assessment. The focus of the assessment is on both the final product (such as a report or a presentation) demonstrating the student’s competences (learning outcomes) and the student’s learning process (competence development). The learning process will be actualized in the online learning environment (by sharing draft versions of learning tasks in the discussion area, by giving and receiving peer feedback and editing the work based on feedback), during face-to-face meetings, in which students may give progress reports on their development projects or other study projects, during supervisory meetings with the teacher, and in the reports written by the student on their work.

Self-assessment is essentially based on a professional autobiographical process, which serves as a tool of reflection on students’ own skills and their development throughout the programme. The process begins from the very first courses, as students learn to reflect on their professional growth, personal strengths and development needs. In addition, students are expected to reflect on the progress of their learning in all reports written during the studies, such as the project-based course reports, reports for courses included in elective studies, and reports on the development project for the thesis.

Peer assessment is used in many learning tasks on the Optima online platform, with students sharing drafts and final versions of their learning tasks amongst each other and giving feedback on their respective performance. The students will also have the opportunity to give peer feedback during contact learning periods in conjunction of presentations on development projects and discussions on learning tasks. Peer assessment is an essential part of each course.

Assessment by working life partners: External working life partners may assess student performance during thesis work, if the work was assigned by an external working life partner or if a working life representative is appointed as a second supervisor and/or examiner. The courses also include appearances by guest experts, who will give feedback on student performance during contact learning periods. External mentors support students’ competence development by giving feedback during the assessment discussions between the mentor and the student. The purpose of the assessment conducted by a working life partner is mainly to support students’ competence development and achievement of goals, so it is provided primarily for the personal benefit of the student.