M.Sc. Development and International Cooperation

University of Jyväskylä

Application deadline: 19.1.2015
Tuition fee:
  • Free (EEA)
  • Free (Non-EEA)
Start date: September  2015
Credits (ECTS): 120 ECTS
Duration full-time: 24 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time
More information: Go to university website

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Master’s Programme in Development and International Cooperation is a two-year, interdisciplinary 120 ECTS credit programme leading to an advanced university degree. The programme is conducted entirely in English. Successful completion of the programme with merit qualifies the graduate to apply for post-graduate degree studies.

Within the context of the D&IC curriculum, ’development’ is understood as an arena of institutions, policies and actors mobilized by the political, economic and social realities of structural global inequality. Measures to promote development can be an expression of solidarity with the marginalized and disenfranchised masses of humanity, but can also comprise mechanisms by which global asymmetries of wealth and power are produced and maintained. ‘Development’ is thus understood as an intrinsically contradictory endeavor.

Successful completion of the D&IC programme will enable students, who are committed to more just and progressive development outcomes, to develop analytical and practical strategies for negotiating this basic contradiction in their everyday working lives. Graduates of the programme will have acquired the intellectual tools and practical skills required to function creatively and effectively in both global and local development contexts. This comprises an ability to identify the interests associated with various actors in concrete development arenas; to understand the range of resources and capacities available to competing and collaborating actors; to critically assess the aims expressed in development policy texts and documents; and to grasp the complex relationship between policy and reality.

The core learning process of the D&IC curriculum is the production of an acceptable Master’s Thesis. The MA thesis is a significant bit of independent research carried out under the supervision of one or more senior faculty members. Students are enrolled in, and submit their theses to one of the programme’s major subject areas: Education; Ethnology; Philosophy; Political Science; Social and Public Policy; or Sociology. Part of the compulsory credits to be completed for the MA degree, accrue from designated D&IC courses; part of the required curriculum is provided by the Major Subject areas.

During their first year of study, students participate in an intensive programme of lecture courses and seminars, often involving small-scale project work. The second year of study focuses on writing the MA thesis and also provides an opportunity for an academic exchange at one of Jyväskylä’s international partner universities. In addition to basic academic work, the programme involves a compulsory practical internship in a development organization or research institution. The internship is an integral part of the curriculum, and is intended to relate directly to the student’s MA thesis project. Students are encouraged to undertake their internship during the break between the first and second academic years. Successful completion of a minimum of 120 ECTS credits of study, including the MA thesis, entitles the student to a Master’s Degree in the specified Major Subject area, with a specialization in Development & International Cooperation.


Degree Structure
The Master’s Degree Programme in Development and International Cooperation requires a minimum of two years of full-time study.

Three of the four semesters of study imply residence on campus in Jyväskylä. The first two semesters are dedicated to basic academic studies in interdisciplinary Development Studies, coupled with elective courses in the student’s Major Subject area: education, ethnology, philosophy, political science, social & public policy, and sociology.

In their third semester, students undertake a practical internship of a minimum of 3 months, often in a developing country, with a relevant organization dedicated to development or development research. The final semester involves supervised write-up of a Master’s thesis in the Major Subject area.

Studies are comprised of lectures, seminars, workshops and participatory practical exercises provided by Finnish and international academics and expert practitioners. The working language of the programme is English.

Upon completion of the Master's thesis, students are awarded one of the following Master’s degrees, depending on their major subject area:

  • Master of Social Science, with a specialisation in Development and International Cooperation
  • Master of Education, with a specialisation in Development and International Cooperation
  • Master of Arts, with a specialisation in Development and International Cooperation
Programme Structure

The Master’s Programme consists of seven (7) modules of advanced level studies.

  • Programme Structure, total 120 ECTS

1. Academic skills 20 cr

        • DEVS100 Basic Study Skills, 5 cr
        • DEVS101 Thesis Seminar I, 5 cr
        • DEVS201 Thesis Seminar II, 5 c
        • DEVS301 Thesis seminar II, 5 cr

2. Understanding Development 15cr

        • DEVS202 Globalization: Perspectives from development, culture and civil society, 5 cr
        • DEVS203 Contemporary debates in social theory, 5 c
        • DEVS207 Classics of development (book exam), 5 cr

3. Tools for Research and Action 15

        • DEVS302 Development Policy and Management, 5 cr
        • DEVS303 Introduction t0 the philosophy of the Social Sciences, 5 cr
        • DEVS304 Advanced research methods, 5 c

4. Working life, 10 cr

        • DEVS700 International internship, 10 cr

5. Master's thesis, 30-40 cr

        • DEVS801 Master’s thesis, 30-40 cr
        • DEVS802 Maturity exam, 0 cr

6. Major subject studies, credits vary

7. Elective studies, credits vary



Eligible applicants should:
  • Have an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university. Students are admitted into disciplinary programmes in education, ethnology, philosophy, political science, sociology, or social and public policy. Thus, students with a BA degree in one of these subjects have a certain advantage in the selection process. However, students have also been admitted with undergraduate studies in a variety of disciplines, including the humanities and legal studies. Students admitted to the Master’s Degree Programme in Development and International Cooperation should exhibit an outstanding academic record and potential for post-graduate (doctoral) studies.

  • Applicants should also demonstrate a commitment to working for positive social change. Development-related work experience is not required, but voluntary or work experience is considered an asset. International or other cross-cultural experience is also viewed favorably.

  • Applicants are required to have a good command of English, both spoken and written. Applicants must prove the required proficiency with one of the following language tests:

    • the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): TOEFL Internet based test, minimun score 92, TOEFL Paper Based Test, minimum score 580

      • The University of Jyväskylä DI code for TOEFL-test is 9818.
    • International English Language Testing system (IELTS): Academic training, overall band score 6,5

    • Cambridge ESOL's Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): minimum grade C

    • Cambridge ESOL's Certificate in Advanced English (CAE): minimum grade C

    • Pearson Test of English (PTE): PTE Academic, minimum grade 59

  • A language certificate (one of the mentioned above) is required of all applicants, except of those
    • who have completed a Bachelor’s degree in one of the following countries: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom or United States
    • have obtained a minimum grade of 2 in English as an A1 language or a minimum grade of 5 in English as an A2 language as part of International Baccalaureate examination.
  • As registering for and participating in a language test, and finally obtaining the results, may take a long time, please arrange to have your language test well before the application deadline. Applicants who do not prove sufficient proficiency in English, will not be considered for admission.

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 6.5
TOEFL paper-based test score : 580
TOEFL iBT® test: 92


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