Degree Regulations of the Diaconia University of Applied Sciences
Valid as of 01/08/2018.
Approved by the Examination Board on 08/05/2018, by Diak Executive Group on 21/05/2018, and by the Diaconia University of Applied Sciences Ltd Board of Directors on 04/06/2018.
1 Educational Mission
Section 1 Diaconia University of Applied Sciences (Diak)
Education at Diaconia University of Applied Sciences (abbreviated as Diak) is provided by Diaconia University of Applied Sciences Ltd.
The education is carried out on campuses in Helsinki, Pieksämäki, Oulu, Pori and Turku.
Diak educates customer-focused, research and development oriented experts for the renewing needs of working life. Together with working life, Diak produces innovations to deal with current phenomena for the benefit of the future. The driving force behind Diak’s work and innovations is a strong, properly profiled RDI.
Diak’s mission is to provide education leading to University of Applied Sciences (UAS) Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees, and to arrange open university studies and adult education (Act 351/2003, Section17, Act 411/2005, Section 18, Act 932/2014 and Decree 1129/2014). Diak’s fields of education are social welfare, health care, sports, culture, humanities and education. Diak arranges a part of the training together with other institutions of higher learning.
Values and mission
The values guiding work at Diak are Christian love for one’s neighbour, social justice, open interaction and effective work of high quality.
Diak educates competent professionals and experts for the church and society and participates in the development of its fields of study at the regional, national and international levels.
Diak works actively to promote social cohesion, public health and the foundations of education.
The language of instruction at Diak is Finnish. When required, other languages may be used in instruction: the language of instruction in the Bachelor of Social Services (DSS), Master of Health Care and Master of Social Services degree programmes is English.
Section 2 Degrees, Degree Titles and Qualifications
UAS bachelor’s degree in social services and health care:
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Health Care, 210 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Health Care, Diaconal Nursing, 240 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Health Care, Public Health Care, 240 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme of Social Services, 210 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Social Services, Diaconal Work, 210 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Social Services, Christian Youth Work, 210 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Social Services, Christian Early Childhood Education and Care, 210 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Social Services, (language of instruction: English), 210 ECTS
UAS master’s degree in social services and health care:
- Master’s Degree Programme in Social Services, 90 ECTS
- Master’s Degree Programme in Health Care, 90 ECTS
- Master’s Degree Programme in Health Care, Public Health Care 90 ECTS
Master’s degree in social services and health care (language of instruction: English):
- Master’s Degree Programme in Health Care, 90 ECTS
- Master’s Degree Programme in Social Services, 90 ECTS
The implementation of Diak’s degree programmes in nursing respects the requirements stipulated in the EU directives (77/452/EEC, 77/453/EEC, 89/595/EEC, 2005/36/EC, 2013/55/EU, EU 97/43 EURATOM) and in the Act and Decree on Health Care Professionals (Act 559/94, Decree 564/94). The skill requirements of this education follow the national requirements for health sector education.
Bachelors of Social Services who started prior to the end of the transition time for the new early childhood education act can qualify as kindergarten teachers if their studies, conducted under approved personal study plans, include at least 60 ECTS credits of early childhood education and social pedagogy (Act 272/2005, Decree A608/2005; specifications approved by the Diaconia University of Applied Sciences Board on 16 February 2006). Students who started in 2010 or later can qualify as kindergarten teachers if they are educated as Bachelors of Social Services. The education of Bachelor of Social Services, Christian Early Childhood Education and Care also qualifies students as kindergarten teachers. Education leading to the qualification of Bachelor of Social Services, Diaconal Work and Bachelor of Social Services, Christian Youth Work cannot include studies that would qualify students as kindergarten teachers.
The education of Bachelor of Social Services, Diaconal Work, Bachelor of Social Services, Christian Youth Work and Bachelor of Health Care, Diaconal Nursing give students 90 ECTS credits’ worth of instruction in theological, parish and church work, providing them with vocational qualifications for diaconal offices (Deacon, Deaconess), offices of Parish Coordinator for Youth Work and Parish Coordinator for Early Childhood Education and Care in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland. Students who started in the Bachelor of Social Services programme, delivered in English, prior to 2016, can obtain the qualification for diaconal office (Deacon) in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.
According to the Church Central Administration, these studies must include the following:
- theological studies: a minimum of 20 ECTS of studies of the Bible, Christian faith and spiritual life
- professional studies in diaconal work: a minimum of 40 ECTS (Deacon and Deaconess)
- professional studies in Christian education and youth work: a minimum of 40 ECTS (Parish Coordinator for Youth Work)
- professional studies in Christian early childhood education and care: a minimum of 40 ECTS (Parish Coordinator for Early Childhood Education and Care )
- studies concerning working life and work communities in parishes and the church sector in general: a minimum of 15 ECTS, of which 12 ECTS must consist of full-time practical training in a parish of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland
- a final thesis on diaconal work, Christian youth work or Christian early childhood education and care: 15 ECTS
Students who complete 8 ECTS of studies in missions and international diaconal work in education leading to church qualifications are eligible to hold the post of Coordinator for Missions and International Work and Missions Secretary in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland (Church Central Administration 24 January 2017.)
Bachelor’s degree in humanities:
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Humanities, Sign Language and Interpreting, 240 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree Programme in Humanities, Community Interpreting, 210 ECTS
Master’s degree in humanities:
- Master’s Degree Programme in the Development of Interpreting Practices, 90 ECTS
Section 3 Open University Instruction
Students may undertake studies for their Bachelor’s or Master’s degrees through the open university or otherwise as separate studies if the UAS grants them the right, limited in time and contents, for these studies.
Section 4 Specialisation Studies
Specialisation studies at universities of applied sciences are intended to be undertaken after graduation and after some work experience so that the students may advance professionally in their special fields. Specialisation studies may include only education for which the basis has been specified by the cooperation consortium of Finnish universities of applied sciences (Act 1173/2014.) When preparing their proposal for the Ministry of Education and Culture, the consortium specifies per type of specialisation study the UAS degrees that allow graduates to apply. Similarly, the consortium specifies the extent of specialisation studies, usually 30 ECTS.
2 Student Selection and Admissions
Section 5 Student Admission
Diak students include all persons with the right to study an educational entity offered by Diak such as a degree-oriented programme, open university course, or a standalone module.
Student admission may take place in different ways.
When admitting students to degree-oriented studies in the social and health sector and in humanities, Diak respects the provisions of the Polytechnics Act 932/2014, Section 26, relating to accessibility and prerequisites for admission, and Section 27, relating to access to information relating to admission.
Individuals whose health or functional capacity does not fulfil the requirements of practical or training-related assignments cannot be admitted if there are safety requirements involved with such assignments and the obstacles cannot be removed with reasonable effort. Any previous decision concerning the forfeiture of a student’s right to study may prevent admission if matters relating to the health and safety of others so require.
Section 6 Joint Application Process
Under the Government Decree on the Joint Polytechnics Application System (Decree 353/2003), the application process is handled by UAS student admissions services. UAS students are selected for degree-oriented education through a nationwide joint application process to Finnish higher education or a separate admission process, apart from labour-policy-based adult education and education financed through EU structural funds (Decree 982/2006, Section 2). A certain number of joint application places is reserved for individuals who do not have a previous degree from the Finnish education system or who have not accepted a study place on a degree programme starting in autumn 2014 or later.
The duties of the Admissions Services include the reception, handling and safekeeping of paper applications and the attachments of electronic applications sent to the school, checking the eligibility of applicants, general communication involved in the application and selection process, other practical arrangements in the joint application process, and the maintenance of the UAS-specific subregister of the register of applicants.
In addition, the duties of the Admissions Services include all other tasks involved in the student application and selection process, e.g. updating the details of educational backgrounds, modelling of the selection criteria, completing the selection calculations etc. using the Studyinfo.fi service.
The Admissions Services are also responsible for communication, directions and scheduling in the validation of certificates. Diak’s Study Offices check original certificates at the beginning of studies within two weeks of the starting date indicated to the students. The checking takes place by comparing the original certificates to the copies and the information in the applicant register.
The Admissions Services train and guide UAS staff in issues related to the joint application system.
The Admissions Services operate as an authoritative body, following directives of the Ministry of Education and Culture and the National Board of Education, which maintains the register of applicants. The Admissions Services are responsible for treating all applicants equally regardless of their choice of educational institution.
The degree-oriented forms of education outside the joint application system (e.g. labour-policy-based education, education financed by the EU) are handled by Diak’s Admissions Services together with Study Offices.
Students may turn directly to the Study Office with issues relating to registration and the right to study.
Section 7 Student Selection
The criteria for student selection for education leading to UAS Bachelor’s degrees and UAS Master’s degrees are prepared by the Admissions Student Affairs Specialist together with the Study Guidance Counsellors. Programme specific student selection teams can be consulted. In principle, the selection of applicants mainly follows national, field-specific selection criteria.
The Study Guidance Counsellors also prepare other instructions concerning the selection process. The Vice Rector confirms the selection criteria.
Types of programmes to apply for:
- Bachelor’s Degree in Health Care
- Bachelor’s Degree in Health Care, Diaconal Nursing
- Bachelor’s Degree in Health Care, Public Health Care
- Bachelor of Social Services
- Bachelor of Social Services, Diaconal Work
- Bachelor of Social Services, Christian Youth Work
- Bachelor of Social Services, Christian Early Childhood Education and Care
- Bachelor of Social Services (language of instruction: English)
- Bachelor’s Degree in Humanities, Sign Language and Interpreting
- Bachelor’s Degree in Humanities, Community Interpreting
- Master’s Degree in Value and Community Based Development of Work
- Master’s Degree in the Development of Leadership and Socially Effective Service Provision
- Master’s Degree in the Promotion of Social Inclusion and Social Rehabilitation
- Master’s Degree in the Promotion of the Health and Well-Being of People in Danger of Marginalisation
- Master of Health Care: Master’s Degree in Global Health Care (language of instruction: English)
- Master of Social Services: Master’s Degree in Community Development, Human Rights and Conflict Resolution (language of instruction: English)
- Master’s Degree in the Development of Interpreting Practices
Students applying for any degree-oriented training which is to be implemented as labour market training shall apply as defined for the specific training in its application instructions and student selection criteria. The selection criteria are prepared by the Study Guidance Counsellors on the implementing campus. The Vice Rector confirms the selection criteria.
Applicants for open UAS studies are accepted on a first come, first served basis. Open UAS studies do not re- quire any special prior instruction, but carrying out these studies may require prior knowledge and skills as well as the general maturity required for higher education and in the particular field of studies. Any significant prerequisites are listed in connection with enrolment information.
Students who have completed 60 ECTS in the open UAS, or a number of ECTS specified per specific application process, can be admitted into degree programmes through the open UAS application process. The criteria for admission are prepared by the Admissions Student Affairs Specialist together with the Study Guidance Counsellors.
The final decisions on student admissions to education leading to UAS Bachelor’s and UAS Master’s degrees are made by the Vice Rector on the basis of the recommendations of the student selection committees.
The final decisions on student admissions to any degree-oriented training which is to be implemented as labour-policy-based training are made by the Director of Education on the basis of the recommendations of the student selection committees.
Admission is conditional until students’ certificates have been checked in the Study Office on each campus. If grades and/or work experience count in student selection, copies of certificates are compared to the original certificates. If an applicant does not provide the required certificates within 14 days or has provided false information earlier and would not have been eligible for admission on the basis of correct information, the UAS may reverse the decision.
Any applicant to degree-oriented education who is dissatisfied with the admission decision is entitled to appeal in writing to the UAS Examination Board within 14 days of the publication of the decision. When publishing the results, Diak must inform the applicants about how to obtain information concerning the selection criteria applied to their case as well as how to initiate the appeal process. Due to an appeal, no decision must be changed to the detriment of any student already selected.
Section 8 Accepting a Place of Study
Universities of applied sciences inform degree programme applicants of their selection through the Studyinfo service (studyinfo.fi). In addition, those admitted will receive the decision by email. Applicants may accept the place of study through the Studyinfo service or using the form they receive with the email informing them of the decision. If the acceptance notification is not delivered within the given time, the study place is forfeited. Notifications of the acceptance of a study place are binding and cannot be changed or cancelled.
Section 9 Admission as a Transfer Student
A transfer student is a student admitted to a Finnish UAS who transfers their study right to another Finnish UAS or to another study programme in their original school of admission provided there is a change to their degree title. In order to be eligible to transfer to Diak from another UAS, students must have been registered as present at their initial UAS for at least one semester and gained at least 55 credits per academic year (Bachelor’s Degree) or at least 30 credits per academic year (Master’s Degree). Students may apply for transfer only to work towards the same UAS degree. Students eligible for admission as transfer students must be registered as present at another UAS. Transfer students must, in principle, be able to complete their remaining studies within the study right period. Transfer students’ right to study began when they accepted a study place at their initial UAS. Semesters of study and absence at the initial UAS will follow the transfer student to Diak.
Students applying to transfer to Diak from another UAS are interviewed before their transfers are approved. If necessary, Diak is entitled to request that the students’ learning skills, working skills and social skills be assessed. The decisions to approve transfers are made by the Vice Rector on the basis of Study Guidance Counsellors’ recommendations.
Applicants receive written decisions within one month from the last filing date of their application. Upon the acceptance of transfers, the normative duration of the student’s study right is confirmed. The detailed application procedure and the application period are available on Diak’s Admissions website.
Transfers are conditional until students have confirmed their study place at Diak and registered as present.
Section 10 Changes to the Right to Study at Diak
Changing the right to study to apply to another type of degree-oriented education is possible in education for the social services and health sector only. The conditions for such changes are that the respective students have no assignments pending, that their degrees can be completed within the study right period regardless of the possible additional studies necessitated by the changes, and that study places are available in the groups to which transfers are desired. At the earliest, transfers may be requested after one semester of studies.
Students must apply for a change in their right to study in writing and present the reasons for requesting it. Students should submit their applications to their Study Guidance Counsellors by the end of March/October. Study Guidance Counsellors interview the applicants, check each applicant’s credits and assess the possibility of timely completion of the remainder of the applicant’s studies.
If the above criteria are met, the programme specific Principal Lecturer/Head of Education/Lecturer discusses the basis of the study right change with the student. Changes to the right to study are prepared and processed in the programme specific committee (Principal Lecturer/Head of Education/Lecturer and Study Guidance Counsellor).
The decisions concerning changes to the right to study are made by the vice Rector on the basis of Study Guidance Counsellors’ recommendations. Applicants receive a written decision within one month of the final submission date of their application. Students who are dissatisfied with the decision may appeal to the Examination Board within 14 days of the date they were informed of the decision.
3 Registration and the Right to Study
Section 11 Registering as Present or Absent
Students who have been accepted on to a degree programme must, within the time frame indicated in the letter of acceptance, inform the school of accepting the place. In order to keep their right to study, students must register as present or absent each academic year in the manner instructed by the University of Applied Sciences.
The registration obligation concerns all students on UAS Bachelor’s and UAS Master’s degree programmes and in labour-policy-based training leading to a degree.
Students starting their studies on 1 August 2015 or later may, after accepting the place, register as absent if they intend to undertake any of the following activities during their first academic year:
- service under the Conscription Act (1438/2007), Non-Military Service Act (1446/2007), or Act on Women’s Voluntary Military Service (194/1995)
- maternity, paternity or parental leave
- incapacitation by personal illness or injury (Act 325/2015).
For reasons other than the above, students may register as absent for two semesters, maximum, during their studies. Such absences are not counted as study time.
Students starting their studies earlier than 1 August 2015 may be absent for two academic years in total by virtue of a notification of absence. This period of time will not be counted towards the maximum duration of studies (Act on Reform of the Professional Studies, Section 15c, 26 September 2001). Diak is not bound to organise equivalent studies should they no longer be otherwise available when studies continue after an absence.
Only students registered as present are entitled to study and have credits entered in the study register. Students registered as absent are not entitled to complete any studies. Students registered as absent are not entitled to obtain student benefits, subsidised meals or any benefits related to student union membership such as discount on travel.
More detailed instructions on registering as present or absent are available on Diak’s website. Students who have not started their studies and are returning after a period of absence can resume their studies when the education for which they were admitted starts again on the relevant campus, if they cannot undertake their studies on other Diak campuses.
Section 12 Duration of the Right to Study
Diak’s Bachelor’s degree education consists of three and a half to four years of full-time study depending on the programme. 210 credit programmes equal three and a half years of full-time study and 240 credit programmes equal four years of full-time study. The extent of Diak’s Master’s degree education is one and a half years of full-time study. These degree-oriented studies are arranged so that full-time students can complete their studies within the normative duration of such studies (Decree 423/2005, Section 3). Full-time students are entitled to take the normative duration plus one year to complete their studies.
For students starting their studies on 1 August 2015 or later, time spent in service under the Conscription Act, Non-Military Service Act, or Act on Women’s Voluntary Military Service, and time spent on maternity, paternity or parental leave, is not counted as study time. In addition, absences of a maximum of two semesters for which the student has registered as absent are not counted as study time. (Act 351/2015, Section 30.)
For students who started their studies earlier than 1 August 2015, absences of a maximum of two academic years are not counted towards the maximum duration of studies (Act on Reform of the Professional Studies, Section 15c, 26 September 2001).
Diak is not bound to organise equivalent studies should they no longer be otherwise available when studies continue after an absence.
Transfer students’ rights to take degrees are determined in accordance with the study rights they acquire in the transfer. The time spent for studies that form the grounds for transfer, whether registered as present or absent, is included when the period for completing the degree is calculated. (Act 257/2015.)
Students who have withdrawn from Diak are usually required to reapply under the standard application procedure. In cases in which the student has completed all studies except the thesis, or the student has conducted his/her studies under the 2010 curriculum or one introduced later than 2010, Diak may, upon application and on the basis of the Study Guidance Counsellor’s interview and written statement, restore the right to study without the standard application procedure. Applications should be submitted to Study Guidance Counsellors, and the Vice Rector will make the decision.
In labour-policy-based training leading to a degree, the duration of the right of study is the same as the du- ration of the training.
In open UAS studies, the duration of the right of study is the same as the duration of the education for which the student was granted the right of study.
Students will forfeit their right to study if they do not complete their studies within the normative duration of their studies. After this, students must apply for an extension of their right to study. Applications are made to the Vice Rector.
Students may withdraw from Diak by giving notice. Withdrawn students are not registered as students and cannot complete any studies. After withdrawal, students do not have a right to study and are not eligible for subsidised meals and other student benefits. Withdrawals must be presented in writing; degree programme students should discuss their intentions with their Study Guidance Counsellor or the lecturer responsible for the semester programme before they present their withdrawal.
Section 13 Extension of the Duration of the Right to Study
Degree programme students who have exhausted the normative time plus one year must apply for a study extension to complete their studies.
The grounds for granting extensions are based on the decision-maker’s discretion and his/her assessment of the conditions prevailing for the completion of studies as stipulated in the degree regulations.
The extension of the study right period calls for specific reasons. Applications must be submitted in writing to the Study Guidance Counsellor before the expiration of the right to study. The prerequisite for extensions is that unfinished studies be no more than 60 ECTS for Bachelor’s degree students and 40 ECTS for Master’s degree students and that the studies can be completed within one academic year. The decisions concerning extensions of the right to study are made by the Vice Rector on the basis of Study Guidance Counsellors’ recommendations. The student has the right to request correction to the decision on the loss of study right from the UAS Board of Diak within 14 days after the declaration of the decision (Act 351/2003, Section 20).
Students who have been granted an extension to their right to study are not allowed to register as absent. Exceptions to this are military service, its alternative civilian service, maternity leave, paternity leave, parental leave, and the student’s inability to carry out studies due to illness or disability.
Section 14 Forfeiture and Reinstatement of the Right to Study
Degree programme students forfeit their right to study if they have not registered as present or absent in the manner required by the school or if they fail to complete their studies within the normative duration of such studies plus one year (Act 351/2003, Section 25). If a student who has lost his/her right to study wishes to start or resume his/her studies later, he/she must present the University of Applied Sciences an application for the restoration of his/her right to study. Such applications may be submitted without participation in the student selection process (Act 325/2015, Section 32).
When a transfer student accepts a new right to study, the older right that formed the grounds for the transfer ceases to be in force (Act 325/2015).
In labour market training leading to a degree, the right of study ends when the training period ends.
Students who have forfeited their right to study may not undertake any studies before they have re-applied for and been granted the right to study.
Applications for the reinstatement of the right to study should be submitted to Study Guidance Counsellors. The decisions concerning reinstatements of the right to study are made by the Vice Rector on the basis of Study Guidance Counsellors’ recommendations. A student’s right to study can be reinstated if it is possible for the student to graduate within the normative time plus one year. When a student’s right to study is restored, the semesters that the student has been absent from his/her studies are checked and the student is registered as absent for the semesters during which he/she did not hold the right to study. If the permitted duration of absence, i.e. 1 or 2 years equalling 2 or 4 semesters, is exceeded, the excess absence counts as a semester present. If the remaining time (standard duration + 1 year) allows the student to finish his/her studies with the modules currently offered, the student’s study right can be restored.
If a student has lost his/her right to study under the Polytechnics Act due to neglected registration and is applying for reinstatement under the Act, there will be a handling fee of €50 imposed upon the application. There will also be a handling fee if a student has lost his/her study right due to not finishing studies within the normative time given in the Polytechnics Act and is applying to extend the time in order to finish his/her studies (Decree 1440/2014).
Section 15 Revocation and Reinstatement of the Right to Study
When studies involve requirements relating to the safety of minors, patients, clients or traffic, the University of Applied Sciences may revoke the degree programme student’s right to study (Act 932/2014) if
- the student has during his/her studies repeatedly or seriously endangered the health or safety of another person and thereby proved himself/herself clearly unsuitable for the practical tasks or training related to the studies
- it is obvious that the student’s health or functional capacity does not fulfil the conditions for admission
- during the application process, the student concealed a previous forfeiture of his/her right to study that could have prevented his/her admission,
- the student has been sentenced to punishment for a crime that can prevent studies, or practical training in connection with studies, that essentially require working with minors.
If the right to study was revoked under Act 932/2014, for reasons of health or functional capacity, the right to study can be reinstated when the reasons for the revocation have been removed (Act 932/2014, Section 35). Applications with appropriate certificates of health or functional capacity should be submitted to the Vice Rector.
Decisions concerning revocations of the right to study are made by the Board of Diaconia University of Applied Science.
In the Open UAS, the right to study can be revoked by the Vice Rector if
- the student has during his/her studies repeatedly or seriously endangered the health or safety of another person and thereby proved himself/herself clearly unsuitable for the practical tasks or training related to the studies
- it is obvious that the student’s health and functional capacity do not meet the requirements of the practical work or training that are required for the studies.
Appeals to decisions concerning the revocation and reinstatement of the right to study should be submitted to the Students’ Legal Rights Protection Committee within 14 days of the student being informed of the decision.
4 Studies and Related Practices
Section 16 Study Counselling
At Diak, Study Guidance Counsellors are responsible for study counselling and the development of the function. In addition, lecturers and persons responsible for year-level learning outcomes provide guidance and counselling.
Section 17 Students’ Personal Study Plans (PSPs)
All degree programme students draft personal study plans under the guidance of their Study Guidance Counsellor. A personal study plan outlines the objectives and intended progress of studies. The document can be revised each year for the following year of studies. Any bringing forward or delay in studies necessitates an update to the plan. Students and counsellors agree together on students’ personal study plans. On the basis of a medical certificate or a similar expert opinion, the Study Guidance Counsellors may decide to allow reasonable special arrangements relating to a student’s studies.
In all Diak education, students are entitled to include in their UAS degrees five (5) ECTS credits worth of studies in excess of the decreed number of ECTS credits, provided their graduation will not be delayed because of this.
Student may complete studies outlined in their personal study plans on any Diak campus. However, students must complete their first semester on the campus they have received admission to. Before enrolling on modules on another campus, students must confirm their personal study plan with their Study Guidance Counsellor.
Section 18 Identification and Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and Work-Based Learning
Degree students have the right to request recognition and accreditation of studies and prior learning from their Study Guidance Counsellor for learning outcomes achieved by formal education and for learning outcomes achieved by other than formal education from the teacher responsible for RPL decisions for the study module. Students are responsible for providing evidence and all relevant information concerning their prior learning. The recognition and accreditation of prior learning as well as the related application and decision-making procedures are described in the RPL instructions (AHOT in Finnish) on Diak’s website. The application of RPL instructions to open UAS studies is specified in more detail in the respective instructions by the open UAS. In cases of joint degrees, Diak cooperates with the schools offering the degrees when these schools are in charge of providing the teaching for the relevant study modules.
Recognition of work-based learning combines work and higher education with the aim of finding alternative methods for completing academic modules, and includes different ways to tailor learning for individual students. The most common way for the student to complete modules is by working either full-time or part-time. The application process, documentation requirements and decision-making regarding the process is outlined on Diak’s website as well as on MoodleRooms.
Section 19 Objectives of Degree Studies
The objectives of degree studies in Diak include that graduates:
- possess extensive and practical basic knowledge and skills along with the theoretical background necessary for working as experts in their fields
- are ready to follow and advance their professional fields
- have the skills required for professional development and life-long learning
- possess sufficient linguistic and communicative skills to work in their fields, to participate in international ventures, and to succeed in collaborative work (Decree1129/2014, Section 4).
Section 20 Practical Training
The objective of practical training is to familiarise students in a controlled manner with the most essential practical duties in view of their professional studies and the ways of applying their skills and knowledge to practice in working life.
The minimum extents of practical training per degree are the following:
- Bachelor’s Degree in Health Care, 90 ECTS; qualifications in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, 90 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree in Health Care, Public Health Care, 100 ECTS
- Bachelor of Social Services, 58 ECTS
- Bachelor of Social Services, 48 ECTS; qualifications in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, 48 ECTS
- Bachelor of Social Services, 45 ECTS; students starting in 2016 or later, 43 ECTS (language of instruction: English)
- Bachelor’s Degree in Humanities, Sign Language and Interpreting, 31 ECTS
- Bachelor’s Degree in Humanities, Community Interpreting, 35 ECTS
In health care, the minimum number of credits for practical training is determined by the EU directive 2005/36/EC. Thesis projects account for 15 ECTS in the practical training aimed at improving the professional skills of nurses and public health nurses.
Students who fail to complete their practical training cannot begin the next practical training without special permission. Respectively, students who fail to complete the studies required for the previous semester can be denied the right to participate in the next practical training.
To be able to participate in practical training for the thematic entity Participation and Guidance, health care students are required to have passed the study module Safety in Pharmacotherapy and Pharmacological Calculation. Prior to their practical training periods, students are required to pass the pharmacotherapy and drug calculation studies required for the contents of the practical training.
Practical training may be conducted when school is out of session, provided this is specified in the student’s personal study plan and follows Diak’s practical training guidelines.
The details of practical training at the open UAS are specified in more detail in the respective instructions by the open UAS.
In order to assess learning by working, special assessment and reflection sessions are arranged during practical training. These discussion groups include the student, a working life representative and the lecturer. The discussions take place on the basis of the students’ learning objectives and self-assessment as well as feedback from the working life representative. Assessment is both guiding and comprehensive. If there is a risk that a student may not pass his/her practical training, the supervising lecturer must arrange a discussion immediately after concerns are raised. In all practical training, the instructions and forms issued on Diak’s website must be followed.
Section 21 Language Studies
Through degree programmes leading to UAS Bachelor’s degrees or through other means, students must demonstrate that they have:
- the skills in spoken and written Swedish that correspond to the Swedish language proficiency required of state personnel in bilingual authorities (Act 424/2003, Section 6) so that they can practice their profession and develop professionally;
- the spoken and written skills in one or two foreign languages needed for the practice of their profession and for their professional development.
Points 1 and 2 do not concern students who have received their education in a language other than Finnish or Swedish or students who have received their education abroad. Language proficiency required from such students will be determined by the Study Guidance Counsellor based on the certification provided by the student. Students who acquired their education abroad and did not study Swedish or English are automatically exempted from the language proficiency requirements.
In special cases, the UAS can fully or partially exempt students from the language skill requirements stated in points 1 and 2. The Examination Board is the party deciding on exemptions from language proficiency requirements under the Decree 1129/2014, Section 7. The exemption criteria have been agreed upon by the Examination Board (4 June 2012). Any application for exemption should explain and provide documentation for the grounds on which the exemption should be granted, appending the statements or recommendations of the Study Guidance Counsellor and a relevant language teacher.
Special reasons for exemptions from language proficiency requirements include the following: the student has never studied the language, the student has not studied any Swedish or English during his/her second cycle studies, the student has a health-related issue such as severe dyslexia, or, language studies prove overwhelmingly difficult due to, for example, an insufficient baseline level. The application should be completed using the appropriate form. Language instructors and Study Guidance Counsellors will provide more information on the exemption process.
The Examination Board may exempt a student from the Finnish-language maturity test if the student’s mother tongue is not Finnish. The exemption criteria are specified more closely in the respective instruction on Diak’s exemption practices concerning language studies and language proficiency requirements (Kieliopintojen/kielitaitovaatimusten vapautuskäytännöt Diakissa).
If students are exempted from language studies, the total extent of their degree will remain unchanged. Compensation in the form of studies of equivalent extent must be agreed with Study Guidance Counsellors.
A student’s language proficiency is shown on his/her diploma.
Changing the working language before starting in the Interpreter, community interpreting programme:
Changing the working language is possible only in exceptional situations. Changing languages can be considered only prior to the commencement of actual languages studies; in practice this means the first semester. In order to be allowed to change languages, the student must take a language test that corresponds to the one of the second working language in the entrance exam. The change is possible only if the student completes the test sufficiently well. If the test does not give evidence of sufficient language proficiency, the student’s right to study remains as it was and the student may continue studies in the language for which he or she was originally admitted.
Section 22 Elective Studies
Elective, supplementary, optional and preparatory studies are specified in course curricula and in the schedules for each academic year.
As specified for the study module by the student organisation and the developers, an active participation in Diak governing bodies and/or O’Diako or in development and tutoring activities may be accepted to render 2–10 ECTS in elective studies.
Studies leading to Master’s degrees include elective studies as specified in the respective curricula.
Section 23 Thesis and Maturity Test
Thesis projects must be centred on working life. Further instructions on theses are available in the guide Towards Research-Orientation in Professional Practice (Kohti tutkivaa ammattikäytäntöä, curricula that entered into force prior to 2015) and the Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research (Osallistavan ja tutkivan kehittämisen opas, curricula that entered into force in 2015 and later). The Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research provides instructions for the writing and assessing of new theses, in particular. The instructions in the new guide and those in the previous guide are flexibly applied to theses begun earlier.
In principle, students write their thesis in Finnish if they study on a programme which is offered in Finnish, and in English if they study on a programme offered in English. For justified reasons (e.g. thesis commissioned by working life), the Director of Education may decide to grant an exception to the above.
The public section of a thesis can be a monograph or a report that consists of several separate publications. For the second thesis (KEH5, 5 ECTS) included in the Bachelor of Health Care, Public Health Care degree, this is a blog post. The thesis is assessed on the basis of this document. The requirements concerning monographs and theses consisting of several separate parts are specified in more detail in Diak’s Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research (2018).
The form of the thesis and its relation to other studies are discussed in more detail in the guide Towards Research-Orientation in Professional Practice (Kohti tutkivaa ammattikäytäntöä, curricula that entered into force prior to 2015) and the Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research (Osallistavan ja tutkivan kehittämisen opas, curricula that entered into force in 2015 and later).
Students working towards their second degrees may use their earlier theses for their second degrees. Similarly, students who have completed their theses at another UAS before transferring to Diak to attend corresponding education may use their earlier theses. In addition, students who completed their Bachelor’s degrees at Diak and resume their studies in corresponding education in order to achieve new qualifications (such as a kindergarten teacher’s qualifications), may use their earlier theses. The instructions concerning the use of earlier theses and the conditions relating to their use are available on Diak’s website and in the Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research.
Public health care nursing students are required to complete two theses. The thesis (15 ECTS) for the Bachelor of Health Care degree should be ready before the thesis (5 ECTS) for the Bachelor of Health Care, Public Health Care degree is completed during the KEH5 module. A total of 10 ECTS from the first thesis will be credited for the thesis of the Bachelor of Health Care, Public Health Care degree.
When assessing a thesis at a UAS, attention is paid to the subject matter and topic, the justification, the originality of the student’s thinking and way of working, the structure of the thesis and the publication and the benefits of the work. The detailed assessment criteria are given in Towards Research-Orientation in Professional Practice (2010) and the Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research (2018).
When assessing a master’s thesis at a UAS, attention is paid to the significance of the task setting for working life, the knowledge base and information acquisition, the mastery of methods and processes, the outcomes and the benefits of the outcomes, the development of expertise, and the language, structure and readability of the work. The detailed assessment criteria are given in Towards Research-Orientation in Professional Practice (2010) and the Guide to Community-Based Participatory Research (2018). The form of a thesis may be a report or an article.
A thesis can be prepared in pairs or by a small group of students. In some cases students can complete a thesis individually. If the thesis is carried out by more than one individual, the grading of the thesis can be applied to the group as a whole or to each individual student.
A thesis is examined by the supervising lecturer and at least one other examiner. They prepare a statement using a form template. The statement shows the total grade for the thesis, the grade for each subsection, and a short written summary of the assessment. The written assessment criteria are appended to the statement.
All students are required to save their theses in the Theseus database by the date on which the finalised work must be submitted. A student together with the Director of Education may decide not to publish his or her thesis when it is saved in Theseus. The theses of students studying for their second degrees are saved in Theseus but not published if parts of the theses were accredited on the basis of the students’ earlier studies. More detailed information concerning the conditions of the accreditation of studies is available on Diak’s website.
Theses completed for the Bachelor of Health Care, Public Health Care degree (KEH5) are saved on Diak’s content channel. Editors and thesis supervisors are responsible for deciding if and when these are published.
Theses are archived in accordance with the current archiving plan. Paper copies of all theses are kept in the Study Office.
In special cases, some parts (appendices, background data) of thesis projects may be classified as secret for a limited period of time. If such classification is required, the author(s) must submit a special application to the Examination Board. The application must have a statement appended from the examiners of the thesis. Based on the recommendation of the Examination Board, the final decision is made by the Rector. Nevertheless, the thesis report is always public. However, the personal evaluation is not public (Act 621/1999, section 23, subsection 30).
To receive their degrees, students must write maturity tests, which are essays related to the topic of their theses. The maturity test demonstrates the students’ knowledge of the subject area and their command of Finnish or Swedish (Decree 1129/2014, Section 8). The Examination Board makes the decision on the maturity test if the language proficiency stipulated in Decree 1129/2014, Section 8, is not required of the student. Students on the degree programmes offered in English are required to write a maturity test in English. The maturity tests for UAS Master’s degrees are written in the form of a press release. A maturity test is not required for the theses completed for the Bachelor of Health Care, Public Health Care degree (KEH5).
The maturity test is an essay, written under supervision, on a topic in the subject area of the thesis provided by the supervisor. Under special circumstances, students may complete the maturity test by an alternative assessment method (e.g. by writing an article). In such cases the assessment process is arranged separately with a lecturer specialising in the language of assessment. The maturity test essay is assessed based on contents and language. The grading is pass/fail.
Section 24 Studies in Working Life Learning Environments
Diak has entered into partnerships with working-life parties in accordance with the pedagogical principles of Universities of Applied Sciences. In working-life operation environments, competences are built when working-life representatives, students and Diak staff work together. These activities combine research, development and studies to reach the objectives specified in curricula. Some of the studies under the curricula take place in participatory, investigative development activities under the Centre of Expertise Programme (OSKE) as specified in the implementation plans of these activities.
Section 25 Studies on International Exchange
Degree programme students can complete parts of their studies in higher education institutions and/or practice training sites in foreign countries. This must be a part of their personal study plans and take place in accordance with Diak’s guidelines.
Before students participate in international studies and start in any international training programmes, their studies must have progressed as intended under their personal study plans.
International studies must take place during the study right period, and participation in international exchanges must not delay students’ graduation. Students with extended times reserved for their studies due to specific reasons in their PSPs form exceptions. However, they must also apply for exchanges during the study right period allocated for their studies.
Section 26 Participation in Instruction and Guidance Sessions
Degree programme students are required to register for their study modules per semester as specified in the instructions available on Diak’s website. Open UAS students register for their studies when they enrol in the open university.
In order to pass, students must achieve the objectives in accordance with the learning assessment criteria specified in the curriculum.
The completion of studies requires participation in instruction, completion of course assignments, and passing the exams. Attendance requirements are given in the implementation plans of modules and courses. Only students registered as present may take part in instruction and complete studies.
In blended education, students must participate in contact teaching and in distance work as specified in the respective implementation plan.
Students may be removed from the participant lists of study modules one week after the beginning of the module if they have not participated in instruction or responded to contact attempts and if no special agreements have been made with them.
Degree students are expected to proceed according to their personal study plans. Practical training is carried out according to section 20 of the Degree Regulations.
In health care education, personal study plans may be used to change the order in which the thematic entities Diversity of Life Histories and Promotion of Health II and Applied and Development-Oriented Expertise are completed. The precondition for this change is that the student has passed 2 ECTS of vaccination studies: Vaccinations and the prevention of communicable diseases LÄÄ0601A15S and Vaccination counselling and injection skills LÄÄ0901A15S.
Social services students may attend Pedagogical Practice in Early Childhood Education and practical training required for preparatory studies for the social sector only when they have passed at least one half of the theory of their preparatory studies.
The studies in sign language and interpretation deepen and expand students’ learning in an ascending spiral. Therefore, it is important to complete the studies in the order given in the curriculum. In degree-oriented studies, any significant deviations from this order should be specifically agreed upon with Study Guidance Counsellors.
Section 27 Assessment of Study Achievements
Student success in reaching the objectives of education is assessed with oral and/or written examinations, practical assignments, skills demonstrations and other suitable methods. Students are entitled to receive information about the assessment criteria at the beginning of a study module. The assessment criteria are based on course objectives and Diak’s guidelines.
The grading scale is excellent 5, good 4, good 3, satisfactory 2, satisfactory 1, pass/fail, completed or participated (Osall in Finnish).
The practical training periods of students who study social services and health care in accordance with the 2015 curriculum are assessed as pass/fail.
The practical training of students in the degree programme in social services, delivered in English, is assessed as pass/fail or excellent – good – satisfactory. The practical training of students studying in accordance with the English-language curriculum approved in 2016 is assessed as pass/fail.
Practical training in the humanities is assessed as pass/fail.
The teacher supervising the placement is responsible for assessment.
In humanities, the different parts of the final exam in community interpreting are assessed and numerical grades are entered in transcripts.
The different parts of the final exam in sign language and interpreting are assessed and numerical grades are assigned. The final grade of the study module is shown as Participated (Osall in Finnish).
The grade Participated (Osall in Finnish) is used in the assessment of students who participated actively in language training but were exempt from the language proficiency requirements.
In pair and group work, the expectation is that the workload is evenly distributed. When requested, students must be able to show which share of a common task was carried out by them. When joint assignments are assessed, there may be justified reasons to give different grades for the students.
If a student submits a learning assignment late without presenting a valid reason, the grade is decreased by one point. If a late learning assessment would be graded as one (1) before this decrease, the assignment is graded as failed.
Students must have the feedback, the assessment and the entry into study register within one month from the end of study modules or courses. If a student has not duly delivered his/her work for assessment, the period of one month is calculated from the date assigned by Diak for the general submission of pending assignments. Nursing students must have the opportunity to undertake and redo the exams in Pharmacotherapy and Pharmacological Calculation and to have the grades entered into the study register before the practical training period for that semester begins.
Students’ grades for their study modules and partial achievements are recorded in Diak’s study register. Also partial module achievements completed by students who started their studies during or after the year 2010 are recorded in the study register. The teacher in charge of the course ensures that all grades are recorded in the register immediately after the confirmation of the grade.
Students have the right to receive information concerning the way in which assessment criteria were applied in their case. Students must have an opportunity to view their assessed study achievements in written or electronic form. The assessment criteria must be kept available for six months after the publication of the results (Decree 352/2003, Section 19). The teachers in charge of courses must ensure that the assessed works (exam results, practical training assessments, etc.) are retained for six months, after which time they are destroyed.
Section 28 Appealing the Assessment of Study Achievements
Students who are dissatisfied with the assessment of their study assignments or the recognition of their prior learning may request a re-assessment or correction in writing from the individual or body who made the assessment or decided on the accreditation, be it the Study Guidance Counsellor, lecturer, or lecturer committee/group. The appeal must be submitted within 14 days of the date on which the student personally had the opportunity to learn the result of the assessment and the way in which the assessment criteria were applied. Students who are unhappy with the grading can request correction from the Examination Board in writing within 14 days of the date they were informed of the decision (Act 932/2014, Section 57).
The appeal process to correct the assessment of study achievements:
- The student requests correction from the assessor in writing within 14 days of receiving the assessment.
- The assessor re-assesses the student’s work or application (such as exam, assignment, thesis, RPL application).
- The assessor explains the grounds for the assessment in writing and gives them as feedback to the student.
- If the student is dissatisfied with the re-assessment, the superior of the assessor assigns a new assessor to assess the attainment and to issue a statement concerning the attainment.
- If the student is still dissatisfied, he/she contacts the secretary of the Examination Board in writing within 14 days of receiving the new assessment.
- The secretary of the Examination Board instructs the student how to claim for correction from the Board.
- The student sends a claim for correction in writing to the secretary of the Examination Board, complete with attachments, no later than a week before the relevant board meeting.
Section 29 Renewals and Upgrades of Study Achievements
Passing grades cannot be upgraded. Passing grades will not be deleted from the study register. Failed courses can be retaken twice, unless agreed otherwise.
Section 30 Expiry of Study Achievements
Students must complete the learning tasks, exams and other assignments for their modules according to the implementation plans. Should degree students for some justified reasons be unable to complete their assignments or exams in the agreed schedule, they must, as soon as possible, complete and submit all pending assignments as instructed by their lecturer. The assessment period is 1 month from the submission deadline/exam date. If any assignments are pending at the end of the following semester, the student will draft a plan to complete them and submit it to their Study Guidance Counsellor. If a module is left unfinished for more than a semester, the student may have to start it again from the beginning. Missing assignments may prevent students’ progress in their studies, have an effect on their obtaining study grants or on the back-collection of their grants, postponing their graduation.
Open UAS students’ right to submit assignments and take part in exams ends when the implementation of the studies ends, unless they agree, in advance, on a later submission time with the lecturer in charge. Information is not required to be kept concerning unfinished study achievements, and open UAS students cannot supplement their uncompleted assignments, exams or other requirements after their study right has expired. If a student is granted a new study right for specific studies, the studies must be completed in accordance with the current requirements.
Completed studies entered into the study register do not expire during the time allotted for the completion of the degree, which equals the normative duration of studies for the degree plus one year.
Students studying according to Finnish-language curricula approved before 2015 and students studying in accordance with the English-language curriculum approved in 2016 may complete their missing studies according to their personal study plans for as long as modules are available. However, students must complete their studies within one year from the time that the relevant study module was offered the final time. In other cases, the missing studies shall be taken on per study module / according to the current curriculum.
Section 31 Diplomas and Certificates
A University of Applied Sciences grants each student a diploma upon the completion of the degree. Students should apply for their diplomas no later than three weeks before the intended graduation date on MyDiak. The precise dates for submitting diploma applications are given on Diak’s website.
Students may apply for their diplomas only when their transcripts contain all the required modules. Graduations intended for May and December are exceptions. Students graduating in May or December may apply for their diplomas even if all studies listed in their personal study plans do not show as completed in their transcripts.
The Bachelor’s diploma shows the name of the degree, the degree title, acquired credits, the student’s language proficiency and, when applicable, the associated professional qualifications.
The Master’s diploma specifies at least the name of the degree, the degree title and the acquired credits.
Grades are available in the transcripts appended to diplomas.
As to diplomas for joint degrees, the provisions stipulated in the cooperation agreements are held valid.
Diplomas of students who have completed 90 ECTS of studies in theology and professional parish and church work (Church Central Administration decision 24 January 2017) show their qualifications for diaconal office (Deacon, Deaconess) or the office of Parish Coordinator for Youth Work or Parish Coordinator for Early Childhood Education and Care in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.
If students have completed 8 ECTS of studies in missions and international diaconal work (Church Central Administration decision 24 January 2017) their diplomas show that they are qualified for the posts of Coordinator for Missions and International Work or Missions Secretary.
If students have completed at least 60 ECTS of studies in early childhood education and social pedagogy (Decree 608/2005), their kindergarten teacher’s qualifications are shown on their diplomas (Act 272/2005, decree 608/2005, amendments approved by the Board of Diaconia University of Applied Sciences on 16 February 2006).
The name of the degree that is valid at graduation will be recorded on the degree certificate.
Degree students of Sign Language and interpreting can choose the degree title recorded on the degree certificate either as Interpreter (BA) or Interpreter, Sign Language and Interpreting (BA).
In humanities, the diplomas of degree students of Sign Language and interpreting show the students’ specialisation in inter-language interpreting (Finnish and the Finnish Sign Language) or intra-language interpreting (Finnish and augmentative and alternative communication methods) as well as the advanced studies included in the degree.
If a student has completed advanced studies in interpreting for the deaf and the deaf-blind and has taken the respective final examinations for his or her degree and has obtained the associated qualification for Kela’s interpreting service centre for the disabled, these studies are shown on the diploma.
If a student has completed advanced studies in pedagogical guidance and has taken the respective final ex- aminations for his or her degree these studies are shown on the diploma.
The speech-to-text interpreting studies that qualify students to work as speech-to-text interpreters and to be included in Kela’s interpreting service centre for the disabled are shown on the diploma.
Diplomas of community interpreters show the working languages under section Language Proficiency (Kielitaito, e.g. Finnish and Arabic).
Transcripts are issued to show studies completed at the Open UAS.
Upon request, the University of Applied Sciences provides students with statements of their completed study achievements while their studies are still in progress (Decree 1129/2014, Section 10).
The UAS provides all graduates and, upon request, other persons who have completed studies at the UAS, diploma supplements intended primarily for international use. Such diploma supplements give basic information about the UAS and the study achievements and studies itemised on the diploma or certificate, explaining their level and position in the educational system (Decree 1129/2014, Section 10)
The University of Applied Sciences or lecturers associated with it cannot provide references for students for employment purposes.
5 Other Regulations
Section 32 Examination Board
Diak’s Examination Board consists of the Chairman, who must be a principal lecturer or lecturer at the UAS, and two other members, one of whom must be an instructor at the UAS and the other, a degree programme student (Act 932/2014).
The Examination Board has a quorum when at least two members are present. The term of office of the Examination Board is two years. The chairperson, members and their deputy members are appointed by the UAS Board (Act 932/2014, Section 19).
The duties of Diak’s Examination Board include:
- decisions concerning requests for rectification of study achievement assessments as well as decisions concerning requests for rectification of recognition of prior learning (Act 392/2014, Section 57)
- decisions on exemptions from language proficiency requirements under Decree 1129/2014, Section 7
- decisions on students’ requisitions for the titles of polytechnic degrees
- decisions on the maturity test when the language proficiency under Decree 1129/2014, Section 7, Subsection 1, is not required of the student
- the responsibility for interpretations and application principles of the degree regulations
- the preparation of equivalency applications of degrees completed abroad and the decisions concerning the extents and contents of studies
- the treatment of claims for correction of student selection and the respective decisions
- any other duties assigned by the Rector or the University of Applied Sciences Board
The Examination Board must keep public records of all its decisions. However, any documents containing personal student information will not be made public.
Section 33 Student Welfare Group
Each Diak campus has a multidisciplinary student welfare group. All actions undertaken by student welfare groups are confidential and aim to support students and help them cope with the varying situations in their lives and, with a view to students’ personal resources, to find the best possible solution in each situation. The work of these groups is student-oriented. Students whose matters are discussed are present during the discussions.
Student welfare groups are formed of a study guidance counsellor, a public health nurse, a students’ representative and, possibly, a lecturers’ representative. If necessary, a school social worker and/or a campus chaplain/deacon may be included as an expert member.
Any member can convene the group. The duties of these groups include both general and preventive supportive actions, the preparation of and decisions on matters relating to student support services, and preparedness for special actions in the case of any emergency. In order to develop their work and to ensure the high quality of their operations, student welfare groups consult expert members, e.g. student body representatives and individuals in charge of teaching resources.
Section 34 Quality Assurance
In accordance with Diak’s quality policy, the quality assurance system produces expedient information concerning Diak’s strategic and operational success. The quality assurance system guides development and leadership and the information it provides is easily accessible.
Diak’s quality assurance system is founded on a model of continuous improvement (PDCA, Plan, Do, Check and Act). In this model, operational development is seen as consisting of planning, implementing, assessing and developing. The model is applied in all operations. All of Diak is committed to quality management and continuous improvement; the staff, students and external interest groups play key roles. Diak aims to include quality management as a part of the daily work and work culture of the staff and students.
Diak’s feedback system supports the attaining of goals and, with its qualitative feedback data, helps identify operational development goals and strengths. For UAS degree-oriented studies, the key student feedback channels include the applicant survey, the student survey for first and third semester students, and the graduate survey (AVOP). Master’s degree student feedback is collected through surveys every semester and throughout study modules.
Various self-assessments, peer assessments and audits are conducted as needed in order to improve operations.
Section 35 Discipline
If a student is caught plagiarising or cheating (i.e. cheating on exams, copying assignments, falsifying practical training reports, having one’s exam done by someone else), the supervising lecturer will take the situation in hand, in exam situations, expelling the student from the exam. The lecturer who observed the cheating will contact the suspected student as soon as possible, requesting a written explanation. If the student is unable to show by his or her explanation that cheating did not occur, disciplinary action will be taken. The lecturer will, as soon as possible, verifiably notify the student of the initiation of disciplinary action. The Director of Education and the lecturer will hear the student and deliver the documentation to the Rector.
The Rector will decide whether a written warning will be issued. Two or more warnings result in the matter being brought before the University of Applied Sciences Board for a possible fixed-period suspension.
The procedures to be applied in the case of possibly dishonest research are given in the document “Menettelyohjeet hyvän tieteellisen käytännön loukkaamista koskevien epäilyjen käsittelemiseksi Diakonia- ammattikorkeakoulussa” (“Procedure for the handling of suspicion of breach of good scientific practice at Diaconia University of Applied Sciences”, available in Finnish). Theses form a part of Diak’s research work.
Other situations requiring disciplinary action include all activities that endanger the safety of people, disturb teaching, are in breach of non-disclosure agreements or are otherwise improper; these situations also include cases in which a student refuses to present his/her drug test certificate, and cases in which investigations show that a student has used any drug for other than medical purposes so that his/her functioning capability has been weakened. Diak’s disciplinary actions for these situations are presented in the following instructions: “Opiskeluoikeuden peruuttaminen”, “Huumausainetestaus Diakonia-ammattikorkeakoulussa”, and “SORA-lainsäädännön edellyttämät kurin- pidolliset toimenpiteet Diakonia-ammattikorkeakoulussa” (“Revocation of the Right to Study”, “Drug Testing at Diak University of Applied Sciences”, and “Diak University of Applied Sciences’ Disciplinary Actions Under the SORA-legislation”).
Section 36 Final Exams in Humanities, Working as an Interpreter
Students of interpretation on the degree programs in humanities take a final exam near the end of their studies (Sign Language and interpreting LOP0007A11H, Community interpreting LOP0002A12H). Sign Language and interpreting students may take the exam after they have completed all studies in the program excluding elective studies, thesis studies, the professional studies and practical training of the final semester. Elective studies in speech-to-text interpreting must be completed before taking the final exam.
Community interpreting students may take the exam after they have completed all interpreting environment modules (KAO, SOS, TER, MAM, POL) as well as practical placements 1-3.
Prior to taking their final examinations and obtaining the necessary qualifications, students of Sign Language and interpreting are not allowed to function independently as interpreters of Sign Language, interpreters for speech-impaired persons or speech-to-text interpreters. If there is clear evidence that a student has worked without permission as an interpreter, the student will be verifiably informed of disciplinary action as soon as possible. Representatives of the degree programme will hear the student and deliver the documentation to the Rector. The Rector will decide whether a written warning will be issued. Two or more warnings result in the matter being brought before the University of Applied Sciences Board for a possible fixed-period suspension.
Section 37 Study Fees
Entrance examinations related to student selection and education leading to UAS Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees are free of charge for students. The Open UAS and other adult education adhere to the legislation concerning charges payable to polytechnics (Act 932/2014, Section 12, and Act 1440/2014).
Annual fees will be charged from non-EU/ETA students who have been admitted to UAS Bachelor’s and UAS Master’s degree programmes and will start their studies 1 August 2017 or later (Polytechnics Act 932/2014, Section 13a). The fee for Bachelor’s degree programmes is 4.000 EUR/academic year and for Master’s degree programmes 6.000 EUR/academic year. Fees are payable upon accepting the place of study and registering as present. Fees are refundable only in the event of a declined visa application restricting the student’s stay in Finland.
Section 38 Confidentiality
Any confidential information of an individual, company or family that has come to the notice of any student during their studies or practical training cannot be revealed to a third party without permission. The obligation to maintain confidentiality will remain in effect after the end of studies.
6 Entry into Force
These degree regulations enter into force on 01/08/2018. General principles of legal protection are followed in the application of these degree regulations. The Examination Board is responsible for their interpretation and principles of application. If necessary, the University of Applied Sciences Board will supplement and/or amend these degree regulations. Information concerning changes, if any, is available on Diak’s website.