Goal of the programme
When you study mathematics and statistics at the University of Helsinki, some of the best mathematicians and statisticians in the world will be your instructors. Studies in this Master's programme will give you a solid basis for maths and statistics applications. Graduates of this Master's programme find employment as researchers, teachers, and in demanding expert posts in the public and private sectors in Finland and abroad.
The Master's programme in mathematics and statistics is based on top research. The teaching within the stydy track at the University of Helsinki follows a high standard and is highly valued, not just within Finnish academia but in global university rankings. Upon graduating from this Master's programme, you will:
- Be an expert in the methods of mathematics or statistics
- Have mastered the basics of another scientific discipline
- Be able to apply scientific knowledge and methods
- Be able to follow developments in mathematics and statistics
- Know how to think critically, argue a point, and solve problems
- Have excellent interaction skills and be assertive and creative
- Understand the principles of ethical and sustainable development
- Be well prepared to work as an expert and developer in your field
- Be prepared for scientific postgraduate studies
Further information about the studies on the Master's programme website.
Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area and pursue their studies in English, are liable to pay tuition fees. You can check from FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees.
Find out more about the Be 1* of the Best Scholarship Programme.
Information on the languages of instruction
All teaching is given in English. Exams can also be taken in Finnish or Swedish, and the Master's thesis can be written in Finnish, Swedish or English.
The Master's programme consists of courses in mathematics, applied mathematics, statistics and social statistics. The courses include group and lecture instruction, exercises, literature, and workshops. Most courses also include exams or project assignments. In addition, you can complete some courses independently, by taking literature-based exams. The instructors in this programme have received prizes for their high standard of teaching. The teaching methods used in the subjects in this Master's programme have been widely recognised in the media.
Selection of the study track
The study branches within this programme are Mathematics, Applied mathematics, Statistics and Social statistics and the specialisation subjects are:
- Mathematical physics
- Applied analysis
- Probabilistic modelling
- Mathematical logic
- Mathematical modelling
- Insurance and financial mathematics
- Algebra and topology
- Social statistics (Students can specialize in official statistics and receive the European Master in Official Statistics (EMOS) certificate.)
You will select your specialisation subject during your first year.
The Master's programme comprises 120 credits, which you can complete in two years. The degree in mathematics includes:
- 85 - 120 credits of advanced courses, including the Master's thesis (30 credits)
- 0 - 35 credits of other courses from your own or other programmes
- Working-life orientation and career planning
- Personal study plan
The Master's thesis (30 credits) is based on a topic selected from your own subject. The purpose of the thesis is to advance your knowledge of your chosen topic. Further, it develops your aptitude for working independently and requires you to understand the scientific literature in your field. The topics will often be related to on-going research projects. If you are interested in research, your thesis work can often be the first stage towards your doctoral dissertation.
In mathematics, the MSc thesis is usually written under the supervision of a professor or instructor of the department, but sometimes it can be written outside the department. In statistics, the MSc thesis is usually written outside the department, for example in a government research institute or within research groups on the university campuses. You can acquaint yourself with the range of thesis topics through the thesis database. The supervision of a thesis written outside the department is usually done in cooperation between experts in the research group and a professor or teacher from the department.
Graduates of the Master's programme can find employment outside the university or continue with one of the doctoral programmes in mathematics and statistics. The Master's programme will give you excellent capabilities for work in the public or private sector as an expert in mathematics and statistics, skills that are very sought after in the job market both in Finland and abroad. The banking, investment, and insurance fields, for instance, value mathematicians and statisticians very highly internationally. Many of our graduates work in research and development or as teachers in various educational institutions. Graduates from this programme have excellent chances to find employment corresponding to their education.
The international nature of the programme is implemented in many ways:
- Research within the disciplines of the degree programme is of high international standard and is highly regarded
- Teaching staff and research collaboration within the programme are international
- The atmosphere of the programme is international, several international students are admitted each year
- Theses and projects may be completed within international projects
- There are opportunities for a student exchange period in many foreign universities
The programme works in close collaboration with other programmes at the University of Helsinki relating to mathematics and statistics, such as:
- The Bachelors programme in mathematical sciences
- The Life Science Informatics Master's programme
- The Master's programme of Data Sciences
- The Master's programme in theoretical and computational methods
- The Master's programme in economics
- The Bachelor's and Master's programmes for teachers in mathematics, physics and chemistry
Within the JOO programme, it is possible to take courses at e.g. Aalto University and Hanken School of Economics, as well as other Finnish universities. There is also collaboration with many corporate partners for various projects.
The research focus within the disciplines in the degree programme are e.g.
- Geometric analysis and measurement theory
- Analysis in metric spaces
- Partial differential equations
- Functional analysis
- Harmonic analysis
- Mathematical physics
- Inversion problems
- Mathematical logic and set theory
- Time series analysis
- Social statistics
The programme is part of the Analysis and dynamics and the Inversion problems centres of excellence.
After graduating from the Master's programme, you can apply for a doctoral programme, either at the University of Helsinki or other international universities. Suitable doctoral programmes at the University of Helsinki are, for example:
- Doctoral programme in mathematics and statistics
- Other doctoral programmes where mathematics and statistics are used, such as:
- Doctoral programme in computer science
- Doctoral programme in biomedicine
- Doctoral programme in population health
The programme does not give formal qualifications. In actuarial mathematics you can take additional courses elsewhere to gain an SHV degree (an actuary degree approved by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health). By combining the Master's programme with courses in pedagogy, you can gain competence to work as a teacher.