Degree programmes at the Faculty of Social Sciences


Administrative science

The administrative science programme offers students a combination of studies concentrating on Finnish public administration, public administration in different countries and administration in public, non-profit and private organisations. The focus is on two main fields: public administration and its role in society and administrative systems in different (public and private) organisations.

Applied psychology

Psychology has been taught as a minor subject at the University of Lapland since 1985. The training programme - Applied Psychology, Leadership Psychology - was established in 2005. It integrates Psychology and Administrative Sciences, which is a unique educational profile in Finland. The purpose is to train multi-paradigmatic professionals for challenging human relationship tasks, especially in the domain of human leadership. The main frameworks concern psychology and leadership in organisations focusing on human resources.

International relations

The discipline of International Relations (IR) is concerned with
studying the relations between states and other cross-border
transactions of all kinds. Problems of war, peace, political violence
and security are the traditional focuses for IR scholars. A special
feature of International Relations at the University of Lapland is
that it is directed towards questions of biopolitics - the ways in
which international relations are shaped by political rationalities
concerned with the improvement of human life and well being, and how
that is reflected in modern understandings of problems of war, peace,
violence and security.


The degree programme in Management, leading to the degree of Master of Social Sciences, started in autumn 2002. The programme focuses on the interplay of organisational processes and managerial activities in business settings. The main emphasis of the programme is on knowledge-intensive businesses.

Political science

Political Science is a discipline interested in political ideas and institutions and the wide range of activities that are said to belong to politics or to contain a political element. Studies in political science provide a thorough understanding of the political aspect of human societies, including the working of different political systems, democracy and political participation, new forms of poltics, and hte historical development of political ideas.

Public law

Public law belongs as a subject to administrative sciences at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Lapland, although its point of view is jurisprudential. Teaching in public law covers a state, municipalities and other public organisations and their judicial structure and activity and their interrelated relationships. Also the legal status of individual physical and juristic persons is essential in teaching. Teaching in public law is divided to two fields: general public law and medical law.

Rehabilitation science

Rehabilitation Science is a new curriculum in Finland (since 2004) and taught only at the University of Lapland. Studies are multi- or interdisciplinary, with an emphasis on social and behavioural sciences. It prepares students for different kinds of careers in rehabilitation practice, research and development, both in the public and private sector and in third sector organisations.

The programme focuses on the individual’s working ability, physical and psychological functioning, social integration, and empowerment as well as the various processes, systems and factors that influence these abilities. The different interventions classified under the heading of rehabilitation focus not only on the individual, but also on his or her physical adn social environment, workplace, family and living conditions. The study of rehabilitation gives the student a good understanding of the theoretical basis and empirical processes of rehabilitation, its research and evaluation.

Social work

Social work is an applied science, with a strong connection between research and teaching. The education offered consists of three key interacting elements: research, theoretical reflection and social work parctice. The main aim is to strengthen the scientific foundation of professional practice and to promote professional expertise that draws on a research-based approach to social work. Research, teaching and practical aspects form the whole that is reflected in the content and pedagogical approaches of the programmes in the subject.


Sociology seeks scientific explanations for how social structures and the relationships between culture and people develop. Sociology draws on the general social scientific theories and analysesthe phenomena of today. Virtually anything can be studied from a sociological perspective. Sociology is not primarily about indetifying the focal point of research; rather, its specificity lies in the approach. Sociology seeks order and logic in the unlimited wealth of human activity that we meet every day. Understanding this logic requires combining theories of social phenomena with diverse empirical approaches. The methodology of emiprical sociological research includes interviews, observation, and the use of statistics.

Tourism research

Tourism is one of the fastest growing economic sectors in the world. Its singificance as an industry, form of consumption, and part of human welfare increases continuously. The University of Laplad meets this challenge by providing multidisciplinary education that leads to a degree in tourism - the only such degree in Finland. Students majoring in tourism can specialize in one of three areas: Business Studies in Tourism, Cultural Studies of Tourism or Nature-based Tourism.

The following programmes do not award degree at the University of Lapland:


The programme in Business Administration started in 1986 and was renamed Accounting in 1997. Students studying accounting specialise in financial planning, accounting, decision making in financial matters and financial administration. The studies provides students with knowledge on management, financing, accounting, and investment positions in the public and private sectors, and provides a solid foundation for starting one’s own business.


The programme in Marketing began in 1997. Special  enphasis is placed on service marketing, media marketing, and tourism marketing. Studies in marketing provide students with knowledge on fields such as the management and planning of marketing for private and public organisations, advertising, marketing research, and international and service operations.