Master’s degree

The master’s programme is an advanced and specialised academic degree. It teaches the current state of the art in pedagogy and educational sciences, with a focus on issues in educational science related to social conditions and the heterogeneity of society. The goal is to acquire analytical, theoretical, methodical and critical thinking in addition to factual knowledge. As a graduate, you will be able to recognise, explain and analyse various dimensions of social inequity, and provide knowledge founded in educational science to resolve relevant problems in professional contexts. 

 

Before studies/start of studies

What should I expect from a master’s degree programme in Educational Sciences?  

The master’s programme is an advanced and specialised academic degree. It teaches the current state of the art in pedagogy and educational sciences, with a focus on issues in educational science related to social conditions and the heterogeneity of society. The goal is to acquire analytical, theoretical, methodical and critical thinking in addition to factual knowledge. As a graduate, you will be able to recognise, explain and analyse various dimensions of social inequity, and provide knowledge founded in educational science to resolve relevant problems in professional contexts.

The master’s programme at the University of Innsbruck is a 4-semester programme in which foundations are deepened and focus points are developed in elective modules. The first semester refreshes, deepens and expands on contents covered in the bachelor’s programme. The structure and history behind Educational Sciences in general is introduced and discussed in depth (Module 1), the views of subject theory and social theory are taken up and expanded on (Module 2), professional knowledge and practical skills are described (Module 3) and methods are refreshed and cemented (Module 4). In the 2nd and 3rd semester, students can delve deeper into social inequality, body issues, migration, inter-generational relations, trauma–conflict–violence or psychoanalytic pedagogy in the elective modules. The in-depth courses consist of introductory courses with exercises and later of small thematic seminars that promote deepening and application of methods in the students’ own research questions. The development of the master’s thesis is intensively supported by the advisors and in a master’s thesis seminar.

What career options will the master’s degree provide? 

The master’s degree programme Educational Sciences will prepare you for the following activities:

  • relevant jobs in facilities and institutions,
  • leading, planning, analysis and consulting activities in pedagogy and education-related fields,
  • responsible positions in state and non-governmental organisations, both national and international, and/or
  • continued studies for a PhD or research activities.

For an academic career, this can be completed by PhD studies.

How is the degree programme formally structured?  

The master’s degree programme in Pedagogical and Educational Science consists of 120 ECTS credits. This corresponds to a regular duration of four semesters of study. One ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of around 25 work hours.

Are there any preconditions? 

 

  • Acceptance into the master’s programme requires graduation from a bachelor’s degree programme in a relevant field or a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field from a university of applied sciences or another equivalent degree from a recognised national or foreign institution of higher learning.
  • A bachelor’s degree in Educational Sciences from the University of Innsbruck fulfils this requirement. If you have another degree in a relevant field from a recognised national or foreign institution of higher learning, the President’s Office makes a decision on acceptance according to the provisions of the University’s bylaws.
  • If equivalence is generally established and only a few items are missing for full equivalence, the President’s Office is entitled to make the determination of equivalence conditional on the passing of certain examinations to be taken during the respective master’s degree programme. The equivalence of examinations and studies will be verified during the application process for the master’s degree programme. Prior verifications of equivalence are not carried out.
  • If you have any questions, please contact the Office of Student Affairs for Educational Sciences (see Contacts).

How and when can I register?  

 

The application for the master’s degree programme should be done through the Admissions Office within the defined deadlines: 

  • Matriculation for the winter semester: by 30/11.
  • Matriculation for the summer semester: by 30/04.

Useful links:

 

During studies

What are the elective and focus subjects? 

The master’s degree programme in Educational Sciences transmits highly specialised and in-depth knowledge in the subject of Pedagogical and Educational Science. It stands out in particular due to its great freedom of choice and a broad offering of electives. The following subject areas can be explored in greater depth theoretically, methodologically and practically:

  1. Inequality and inclusion in education, childhood and family
  2. Body relations in pedagogy, education and culture 
  3. The subconscious in pedagogy, education and culture 
  4. Migration and education 
  5. Generation and education in biographies 
  6. Conflict, trauma and violence in pedagogy and education 

There is also the option of completing an individual focus in a scope of 20 ECTS credits. More information is available in the OLAT master’s course.

 

At the end of your studies

The master’s degree programme is completed by a master’s thesis and its defence. The subject of the master’s thesis is discussed with the advisor, who also helps the student to define its contents.

You can find out more about choosing a subject, the subjects of the possible advisors and the writing process in the OLAT course.

Once you have written your master’s thesis, it is submitted to the Examinations Committee, assessed and defended (Defensio).

 

How does the defence work?

1st step: Submission of the following documents to the Examinations Committee:

  • Master’s thesis
  • The fully filled-out examination protocol
  • The confirmation of successful completion of the programme
  • Confirmatory certificates, if required

Submission deadline: at the latest two months (8 weeks) before the desired examination date.

2nd step: Planning the defence:

You will obtain a registration form from the Examinations Committee when you submit your master’s thesis:

  • “Registration for the defence of the master’s thesis” - you cannot obtain it elsewhere, and you should fill it out as follows:
    • The Examinations Committee consists of three persons: First Examiner, Second Examiner and Chair
    • The First Examiner and the Chair are selected or requested by the student, who must schedule the examination date with them (date and time). You can find possible dates at the end of the page
      • The First Examiner is usually the advisor
      • The Chair must be habilitated (link to list of persons with habilitation)
      • The Second Examiner is determined by the Office of Student Affairs on the foreseen days (if nothing is specified)

Submission deadline: The form, signed by all participants, must be submitted to the Office of Student Affairs at the latest five weeks before the examination (please make sure to observe this when selecting the date). This is the only way to ensure that the deadlines are respected.


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