Bachelor’s theses and maturity tests

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By selecting a degree programme you are able to see the general content as well as the possible degree programme-specific content. You do not have to select a degree programme to see the Open University's instructions.

An academic degree always includes a written thesis. As a student at the University, you are a full member of the academic community and an expert in your own field. In your master’s thesis, you will examine a research question or questions of interest to you and generate new scientific knowledge in your field for the benefit of the academic community. Typically, the thesis is written independently, but, depending on the situation, the related research may be conducted as part of a project or research group or in collaboration with a company or an organisation.

You can see the possible additional instructions for your own degree programme by selecting your degree programme in the menu above.

Bachelor’s theses

A bachelor’s degree, a first-cycle university degree, includes a 6 cr written thesis.

In the thesis, you will demonstrate your ability for scholarly thinking, discussing issues in your discipline and scientific communication. You can complete the thesis independently or by participating in groupwork or a more extensive research project. The thesis must include a clearly defined independent contribution from you, which will be assessed. Write your thesis independently. 

The thesis is assessed on a scale of 0–5.

To ensure the accessibility of the thesis file, you can use the text styles contained in the University of Helsinki template and follow the instructions provided in the template. However, make sure your faculty and degree program's thesis guidelines before using the template. When the Word file is in order for accessibility, you can also easily create an accessible PDF file.

The thesis includes an abstract written in the language of the thesis. In addition, students who have completed their secondary education in Finnish or Swedish must write an abstract in the language of their secondary education if the abstract also serves as a 
maturity test with which the student demonstrates their proficiency in Finnish or Swedish. The instructions concerning the summary vary according to the degree programme. Please check the instructions from your degree programme. You can use the University's abstract document (a word document). Fill in the needed information on each line and write your abstract at the end. The length of the abstract is usually 1 page. The degree programmes and/or faculties can give more detailed instructions in the matter, please see also the degree programme-specific instructions. Attached is also a model document as a pdf. If needed, you can write the abstract also in other word processing programmes with the help of the model document.

Maturity tests for bachelor’s degrees

A maturity test is a scholarly text related to the field of your thesis, such as a part of the thesis or its abstract, or another piece of written work defined in the curriculum of your degree programme. Before undertaking a maturity test, you must complete the native-language studies required for your degree.

The maturity test, which is an essay, serves to demonstrate your command of the field of your thesis and proficiency in the use of Finnish or Swedish.

You must complete your maturity test in the language of your secondary education, Finnish or Swedish. Your degree certificate indicates the language of your secondary education and the language in which you completed your maturity test. By completing secondary education and a maturity test, you demonstrate excellent ability in the language in question (Act on the Knowledge of Languages Required of Personnel in Public Bodies, section 6).

If the language of your secondary education was not Finnish or Swedish, you may complete a maturity test in Finnish, Swedish, English or the language of your thesis. In this case, however, your degree certificate will not indicate that you have excellent language skills. Instead, you must obtain, when necessary, a certificate of your excellent Finnish or Swedish skills by another method. Further information on alternative methods is available on the website of the Finnish National Agency for Education (national certificates of language proficiency).

Maturity tests are graded on a pass–fail basis. The person marking and approving a maturity test is usually a teacher in the degree programme (e.g., your thesis supervisor). The person approving a maturity test must be proficient in the language of the test.

A maturity test is an independent study attainment, but it is recorded in the student information system as having a scope of 0 credits.