Vocational Teacher Education
Are you an expert in your own professional field and interested in working with people? If your answer is yes, this might be for you. As a vocational teacher you will be able to facilitate the professional growth of young people preparing for working life, as well as those with work experience who are looking for more challenges. Vocational teacher education benefits both those already in a teaching position and future teachers.
Tampere, online studies
Application period: 10–30 January 2018
No tuition fee
Description of the programme
This vocational teacher education programme is meant for professionals who wish to teach in English and / or who are not proficient in Finnish. No prior experience in teaching is required. You can study alongside work and complete your studies in 1.5 years.
The vocational teacher education programme (60 credits) provides the pedagogical qualification required of teachers at
- universities of applied sciences
- vocational schools
- vocational adult education centres
The programme also meets the statutory pedagogical requirements for teaching at comprehensive schools and upper secondary schools, as well as for work in non-formal adult education. The teacher's pedagogical studies 60 credits (= Vocational Teacher Education) are one part of the qualification requirements set for teachers in Finland, which vary depending on the education institution in which the person works as a teacher.
The programme consists of six modules of 10 credits each:
- Basic Studies in Education
- Teaching and Learning in the 21st Century
- Inspiring Teaching and Learning
- Modern Pedagogical Models
- Teaching Online and Building Collaborative Learning Communities
- Diversity, Legislation and Pedagogical Development Project
The contact days are organized approximately every other week. You must be able to attend at least 50 % of the contact days in person at the TAMK Main Campus; the rest can also be attended via video conferencing if you wish. Attendance in person especially during the first months of studies is necessary.
In addition to meeting on the contact days, the students also study in small groups that stay in touch using social media tools. The groups can also utilize various virtual environments and face-to-face meetings.
Aims and contents
The vocational teacher education programme supports your development as a facilitator of learning and an educator. It furthers your role as a member of your work community and society.
The starting point for vocational teacher education is participatory pedagogy. It encompasses the wide range of activating and exploratory pedagogical models and methods. Teacher students have a real voice in the way their studies are planned, implemented and assessed.
The core competency areas are:
- evaluation competency
- teaching and facilitation competency
- well-being competency
- partnership competency
- cultural competency
The studies consist of 60 credits and include:
- basic studies in education
- vocational pedagogical studies
- teaching practice
- elective pedagogical studies
The curriculum contains the aims, principles and contents of vocational teacher education. It is updated annually, and the students follow the curriculum of their starting year for the duration of their studies.
Q: Am I eligible to apply?
A: In most cases, a higher education degree (or recognized equivalent) and 3 years of professional work experience in a relevant field is required. Further details.
Q: Can I apply with a foreign degree?
A: Yes. If your degree certificate is from a country other than Finland, Sweden, Norway or Denmark, you must get a Recognition of Qualification from the Finnish National Agency for Education / the Finnish National Board of Education. Apply for the RoQ well in advance - the average processing time is 3-4 months! Further information.
Q: I am a nurse. Can I apply for the Vocational Teacher Education programme?
A: If you have a degree from a university of applied sciences in the field of social services and health care, and you have at least five years of professional work experience in a field corresponding to your degree, you are eligible. If you have completed a Master's degree in the field of social services and health care, three years of professional work experience in a field corresponding to the degree is enough.
Q: I will complete my degree in the spring before the studies begin. Am I eligible?
A: Unfortunately you are not eligible. The entry requirements regarding both education and work experience must be met by the end of the application period.
Q: Must the work experience be continuous, or would, for example, summer jobs and weekend work be acceptable?
A: The work experience does not need to be continuous. The following formula will be applied to calculate the full-time equivalency of part-time and short-term employment: 150 h = 1 month, 11 months = 1 year. The employment certificates must show the numbers of hours you have completed and the time periods during which you have worked.
Q: Does the work experience have to be accumulated after completion of the degree?
A: No, it does not.
Q: Will work that I did while I was a student be included in my work experience?
A: Yes, except for any practical training that you did as part of the study programme for the degree on which your application to this Vocational Teacher Education programme is based.
Q: Are there language requirements for the English language group?
A: No official certificate regarding English language ability is required. However, participants must be able to use English for study purposes, which requires a good level of spoken and written English. They must be able to read English-language scientific and professional literature, and to acquire information and skills, and develop their knowhow through the medium of English.
Q: Can I be admitted if I don't have any teaching experience and/or I am not currently working as a teacher?
A: Yes. Admission to the programme is based on a points system. Teaching experience is one criterion for which applicants are awarded points, but there are other criteria as well. Applicants are assigned to a so-called "admission group", according to the degree that is used as the basis for the application. Within each admission group, applicants are given points for a range of criteria and ranked in order of their total admission points; they are then admitted onto the programme in rank order according to these totals.
Q: How do I add up my working time as a teacher if I have been teaching for a few hours a month over a couple of years?
A: Part-time teaching experience will be converted into full-time teaching experience. 64 hours of part-time teaching experience equals one month of full-time teaching experience.
Q: When will the results be published?
A: The results of the application process will be published on 6 April 2017 at the earliest. Applicants who are offered a place on the programme must confirm their intention to take up the study place by 20 April 2017.
Q: What qualification will the education give me?
A: Successful completion of the study programme confers the pedagogical qualification required from vocational teachers in Finland. With this qualification you can work in universities of applied sciences, vocational schools, adult education institutes, general education institutions such as high schools, and non-formal adult education. In addition to this pedagogical qualification, different institutions may have special requirements concerning qualifications and work experience when recruiting people for specific positions.
Q: How is studying organized on this programme? What study methods are used?
A: Studying and teaching practice take place collaboratively in small groups and in authentic teaching environments. The learning environments include physical, social, and digital working spaces. No exams are held; evaluation happens through verbal feedback on all aspects of the participants' performance.
Q: What is teaching practice and how is it organized?
A: The studies include getting acquainted with different learning situations, students, learning environments, work communities and networks, as well as working as a teacher and facilitator. Participants are assigned to a study group, each of which has its own group teacher. The group teacher will provide detailed information on teaching practice and other aspects of the programme at the beginning of the studies.
Q: How can I get my prior experience and/or studies accredited?
A: The School of Vocational Teacher Education promotes the principle of recognition and validation of prior learning and knowhow (AHOT in Finnish). The student can apply for full or partial accreditation of any study module based on self-evaluation, documented prior learning, and /or other agreed methods. Accreditation can be granted based on prior studies on the same level as those provided by the TAOKK programme, or on knowhow demonstrated by agreed methods.
Q: Is attendance at lectures compulsory ? How do I make up for absence?
A: The English language group's studies consist of contact days at the TAMK Main Campus (in which you must be able to attend in person especially during the first months of the studies), video lectures, online learning, group work, and independent assignments.You will need to participate sufficiently in small group work and in the work of the whole student group. You must also take part in self and peer evaluation as instructed by the group teacher.
Q: What is the duration of the studies? Can I complete the studies in one year?
A: The extent of the studies is 60 credits and the planned study time is 1,5 years.
It is possible to shorten or extend the study time if agreed at the beginning of studies. Your own personal goals and your prior knowledge will affect the total study time.
Q: Where will the English Vocational Teacher Education studies be organized?
A: Contact days at TAMK Main Campus and/or video conference meetings are organized approximately every other week. Participants also study in small groups, and stay in touch with each other using social media tools.
Q: When do the studies begin?
A: The studies for the English Vocational Teacher Education group start during Spring 2018..
Q: How many students will be admitted to the English Vocational Teacher Education group?
A: 20 students.
Emma Roinila, emma.roinila(at)tamk.fi, tel. +358 40 801 6069
Application: taok(at)tamk.fi, tel. + 358 3 2452 054
tel. + 358 3 2452 054
How to apply
The application to all Vocational Teacher Education institutions is from 10 January to 30 January 2018.
The national joint online application is available during the application period on the site www.studyinfo.fi.
The entry requirements for vocational teacher education are in most cases:
- a relevant university degree
- a minimum of three years of occupational experience in a field corresponding to the subject of teaching (for teachers of vocational subjects)
For further information, please contact email@example.com.
The number of new students will be 20.
If you have obtained your higher education qualification abroad, recognition by the Finnish National Agency for Education / the Finnish National Board of Education is required. More information >
The student selection procedure is based on a national admission point scoring system. The criteria which will be taken into consideration in the admission point scoring system in 2018 are:
- teaching experience acquired since 1.1.2010
- other completed degrees in addition to the degree with which you will apply (max. 2 degrees)
- basic studies in educational sciences (completed according to the requirements of a Finnish university or UAS)
- further professional and/or pedagogical education completed since 1.1.2013
The admission criteria are tentative.The detailed criteria will be published in autumn.
tel. + 358 3 2452 054
The online application form will be available on the site studyinfo.fi.
- Accepting your study place
- Right to study
- Beginning of studies
- Time needed for the studies
- Curriculum 2017
- Module A: Basic studies in education
- Use of IT tools
- Orientation to pre-task
- Study certificate
- Updating your personal details
- Transport and parking
- Contact person
Accepting your study place
Please accept your study place by 15:00 on 20 April 2017 at the latest in My Studyinfo service. You will need your online banking codes, mobile identification or e-certificate card to log into the service. If we have not received your confirmation by this time, you will lose your study place.
Please register for attendance for the academic year 2017–2018 at the same time when accepting your study place.
After TAMK has registered you as an attending student, you will automatically receive an email with a link to activate your TAMK user name with Finnish online banking codes (if you don't have Finnish online banking codes, you will receive your TAMK login name during the first contact days). With the TAMK user name and password you can view Intra and acquaint yourself with the study guide.
Right to study
Students who start their studies in 2017 have the right to study until 31 July 2020.
Beginning of studies
You are expected to attend the first contact day in person. During the first contact day you will have an orientation to the teacher education studies, meet your student colleagues and form study groups. You will learn to use the relevant tools and TAMK's IT systems. The first study module will also be introduced.
Please bring your own laptop and headset with you to the first contact day.
If you cannot start your studies this spring, you can register as absent for the first year. However, note that your right to study will still remain valid only until 31 July 2020.
Time needed for the studies
The extent of the vocational teacher education is 60 credits, which corresponds to 1600 hours of student work. In addition to face-to-face or online meetings approximately every other week, you also need to allocate time for independent work, study group work, and teaching practice.
Completion of the studies generally takes 1.5 years.
If you wish to complete your studies in one year, please bring the following documents to your group teachers on 11 May:
- a brief report on the reasons why you would like to complete the studies in one year
- brief report on your teaching experience so far
- copies of certificates needed for credit accreditation (e.g. basic studies in education, other pedagogical studies)
- your teaching and facilitating practice plan
You will find the curriculum here.
Module A: Basic studies in education
The vocational teacher education includes 10 credits of basic studies in education, which will be offered in summer 2017. These studies comprise the first module of the programme. If you have already completed basic studies in education (25 ECTS credits) elsewhere, send a copy of the certificate to Teemu Jokinen (teemu.jokinen @ tamk.fi) and you will receive an automatic accreditation of module A / 10 credits. In that case, module A is not compulsory for you and you can start your studies when the group continues in the autumn with module B.
Use of IT tools
In your studies you will be using various social media tools, video conferencing tools, and a learning platform called Tabula (a customized Moodle).
A contact day takes place every second week on Thursday. Contact days are either meeting in person in TAMK or via video conferencing, as advised by the teacher. Detailed instructions will be given on the first contact day on 11 May in TAMK.
The primary online learning platform that will be used during the studies is Tabula (tabula.tamk.fi). You will be instructed on the use of Tabula on 11 and 18 May 2017 during the contact teaching days.
Other computer systems
The teacher education studies will also utilize blogs (www.blogger.com) and social media tools, such as Google Drive and YouTube. If you do not already have a Google (Gmail) account, please register one before the studies. You will need the Google account in order to complete the pre-task (see below).
You will also have access to students' desktop PAKKI and get a TAMK email address.
Orientation to pre-task
As a pre-task, you are asked to introduce yourself to the other students in your group and your group teachers in the course blog. The blog can be found here.
To write in the blog you will need a Google (Gmail) account. If you already have a Gmail address, send it to Teemu Jokinen, teemu.jokinen(at)tamk.fi. You will then receive an invitation to your Gmail address. Click it to accept it within three days and gain rights to post to the blog. If you do not yet have a Gmail address, sign up at www.gmail.com and then follow the instructions above.
Introduce yourself and write about your path towards being a teacher. If you do not work as a teacher, write about the reasons why you would like to become one or what interests you in the teacher education studies. You can also write about good and bad examples and experiences of teachers in your life, especially if there are some that have influenced your career aspirations. If you work as a teacher, also tell us how long you have worked as a teacher and how you have developed as a teacher through time.
The post should be about 400 words. Remember to add labels to your blog posts ("your name", "pre-task"). Please submit your blog post by 1 May at the latest.
If you need a certificate of your acceptance for any authorities, employers etc. please contact the study secretary (taok @ tamk.fi).
Updating your personal details
In case of changes in your personal details (e.g. name, address, telephone number), please send email to the study secretary (taok @ tamk.fi).
Transport and parking
Information can be found on the Main Campus page.
Education Designer Teemu Jokinen, tel. +358 40 574 0205, (teemu.jokinen @ tamk.fi)
A warm welcome to the start of your teacher education studies!