University has proposed that degree certificates would in the future include only the minimum number of ECTS required for the degree. It means that the bachelor’s and master's degree certificates combined could fit a maximum of 300 credits. The proposed limit is part of the general renewal of degree programmes and studies in the university.
With the limit, the university wishes to streamline degrees and to encourage students to graduate in set time and with degrees of the suggested size of 180 credits (bachelor) and 120 credits (master). The limit would not prevent students to do courses and study units that exceed the maximum. However, extra studies would not be included in the degree diploma but listed only on a separate transcript.
The Student Union has commented on the issues the suggested limitation arises both in written form and in discussions with the university. HYY has pointed out, for example, these issues.
- Students are the best judges when it comes down to assessing which kind of combinations will the most beneficial after graduation. Cross-disciplinary studies and making surprising and innovative study choices will only become harder if the credit maximum is fixed.
- Students are already politically pressured to study as little and as fast as possible; it is not the university’s job to increase the pressure further.The restriction will hardly change the way students compile their studies but they will continue to do minor subjects and study units they find useful. Applying for jobs will only become cumbersome, as students have to present their skills with multiple transcripts and attachments alongside their diplomas in interviews and applications.
- Above all, if the university wishes to cut off excessive sidesteps in studies, the best way to do this is by proficient tutoring and guidance, not by limiting academic curiosity and freedom with minimum-size degrees.
Heikki Isotalo (specialist, education policy and the development of teaching)