Master’s Degree Programme in Dance Performance - Admission Criteria

Degree: Master of Arts (Dance)
​Length of Study: 2 years
Language of Study and Degree: Finnish, English

The Master’s Degree Programme in Dance Performance is comprised of two years of full-time studies. They develop the student’s skills as a performer, as an independent and reflective artist and his/her preparedness to function in diverse and variable contexts in the field of dance art.

The core of the studies is versatile research in the practices of a performer in the frameworks of dance art and other similar art forms. They constitute of dancer’s theme studies and artistic projects, contextual studies giving background to contemporary performance and dancer’s work, individual studies, and a thesis. A student will be more prepared to understand his/her performer’s art and he/she will contemplate its possible outcomes. The student will also be able to deepen his/her understanding of art, developed in this practice, and the special questions of his/her own art form, when writing the thesis, which is part of the final work.

The studies develop the student not only as a solo performer but also as an active member of an artistic workgroup, who reflects the artistic questions on performer’s work’s position. During the studies, he/she works independently, in a group, and in cooperation with the students from other programmes. The working methods will support his/her development as an artist with his/her own voice and as a performer in relation to the changing society and its changing views on art and humanity.

In the thesis work, the student has a possibility to work in TADaC (Theatre Academy Dance Company). In addition to the challenge of performing, the project offers an experience of international touring.

The Master’s Degree Programme in Dance Performance advances the students’ preparedness to doctoral studies and it is in cooperation with the Academy’s Performing Arts Research Centre (Tutke). The programme is also an essential agent of the Theatre Academy’s international publication series Kinesis, which contains research publications on dance.

In addition to the programme’s artistic director (Professor), the teaching staff comprises of visiting teachers and professors of the field, lecturers, artists, and experts.


Admission Criteria


An applicant is eligible for the two-year Master’s Degree Programme in Dance Performance if he or she has:

  1. a first-cycle university degree in dance or another applicable field
  2. an applicable degree in a university of applied sciences
  3. a corresponding BA (Bachelor of Arts) -level foreign degree, which in the country in question confers eligibility for corresponding higher education studies


  4. The applicant has acquired sufficient knowledge and competence based on studies, artistic activity and work experience, acknowledged by the Theatre Academy. This admission criterion is intended for applicants whose undergraduate degree is incomplete or who have separate university-level studies in the arts (e.g. through the Open University).
    ​The applicant needs to have completed university studies worth at least 60 study credits, the applicability of which will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Studies may comprise university-level studies in your own field of art, dance or theatre performance or studies in support of these, and have to be completed by the end of the application period. In addition to 60 study credits, applicants need to have strong proof of artistic activity and work in their own field of art.

The applicant’s eligibility will be assessed based on the applicant's application and certificates.


A decision on the applicant's eligibility will be made before sending out invitations to the entrance examination. Applicants found ineligible will be informed of that decision. Applicants found eligible will be informed of that decision via email by week 9-10. NB. Only those who, based on their advanced assignments, proceed to the next stage of the application process will be invited to the entrance examination.

The selection to the Master’s degree programme is conditional for those applicants who have not completed a Bachelor’s degree or another applicable first-cycle degree at the time of the selection process. These applicants must deliver a certificate of completed Bachelor’s studies or other applicable first-cycle degree to Admissions Services by 8 July 2019 at 3 p.m. (Finnish time) otherwise their conditional selection will be cancelled. A conditional decision does not concern applicants who are selected based on their studies, artistic activity and work experience.

Supplementary studies to achieve the necessary level of competence may be required of a student who has been admitted to the Academy. The maximum amount of supplementary studies is 30 credits. Admitted students will be informed of any supplementary studies required of them in the letter of acceptance and the announcement of admissions results.


Language Requirements

In order to be admitted as a degree student at the University of the Arts Helsinki, applicants must have command of the language of instruction used in the programme. They must demonstrate their skills with a language certificate or prior studies.

In addition, the Selection Committee assesses the applicant’s language skills during entrance examinations through written and practical assignments and interviews.

Having sufficient language skills is, in principle, a requirement in order to be eligible to apply, and it ensures that the applicant has demonstrated educability and suitability for university-level education and has the communication skills needed as a student.

Applicants must provide proof of sufficient language skills by the end of the application period (23 January 2019 at 3 p.m., however no later than 30 January at 3 p.m.

If applicants wish to use prior studies as proof of their sufficient language skills but haven’t yet completed the degree (e.g. applicants whose BA degree is incomplete at the time of application), they must send out a degree certificate of completed studies along with a statement about the estimated time of graduation.

The language of study and degree in the Master’s Degree Programme in Choreography is Finnish and English.
The Master’s Degree Programme in Choreography admits students who study in either Finnish or English. If a programme admits new students to study in English, some of the teaching will be offered in English to the entire class.

Student has the right to use written or spoken Swedish in teaching and study attainments, unless it is otherwise stated in the curriculum or the character of the teaching makes it impossible. However, most of the group instruction is in Finnish/ English.


Demonstrating proficiency in English for programmes taught in English

Applicants may demonstrate their proficiency in English in the following ways:

  • Certificate of education completed in English in an EU or EEA country, the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand


  • Certificate of a university degree or a university of applied sciences degree completed in English in an EU or EEA country, the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand

The official language of the degree must be mentioned on the degree certificate or its appendix, in the transcript of study records, or some other official document issued by the institution in question. In order for the applicant’s general education to be counted as proof of language proficiency, it must be completed by the end of the deadline for submitting certificates. The deadline is stated in the admissions criteria and applies to those who have been selected conditionally.


  • Certificate of a university or a university of applied sciences degree completed in Finnish, Swedish or English in Finland
    (NOTE: A degree completed in Finnish or Swedish must include foreign language studies in English in accordance with the decree 794/2004, which must also be stated in the degree certificate/appendix.

Uniarts Helsinki also counts foreign language studies in English that are completed in Finland for a university degree/university of applied sciences degree, as well as studies completed in some other manner, as proof of language proficiency even if the applicant’s degree is still incomplete, provided that the studies comply with the decree. In this case, the applicant must send a transcript of study records to Uniarts Helsinki along with a copy of the degree requirements of the higher education institution in question or some other document that states which language studies are required for the degree.


Applicants who haven’t received their education in English or haven’t completed a degree at a higher education institution in English in one of the above-mentioned countries can demonstrate their language skills in the following ways:

  • Minimum grade of magna cum laude approbatur (M) in the level A English test (advanced syllabus) included in the Finnish matriculation examination
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma:
    o   diploma completed in English;
    o   a passing grade in the English test (literature / language and literature / language and performance) on level A; or
    o   minimum grade of 5 (good) in the English language test on level B
  • European Baccalaureate Diploma:
    o   passing grade in English as the L1 language; or
    o   minimum grade of 7 in English as the L2 or L3 language
  • A Reifeprüfung diploma can be used as proof of sufficient language skills if the applicant has received
    o   a passing grade in the written level A English test
    o   a minimum grade of 8 in the oral level A English test
  • Certificate of a completed language test approved by Uniarts Helsinki
    o   TOEFL (IBT = Internet Based Test, PBT = Paper Based Test)
    -  Total score: 92 (IBT), 580 (PBT)
    o   IELTS (Academic)
    -  Overall Band Score: 6.5
    o   Cambridge English C2 Proficiency (CPE): accepted grades are A, B, C and Level C1
    o   Cambridge English C1 Advanced (CAE): accepted grades are A, B, C and Level B2
    o   Cambridge English B2 First (FCE): Accepted grades are A, B, and C.
    o   Pearson Test of English (Academic)
    -  Total score: 59

IELTS, TOEFL and PTE test results are valid for two years from the test date. Cambridge results are valid indefinitely.

Applicants should submit interim results of language tests by email to Admissions Services to ensure that the results arrive by the deadline; receipt of the official results by post from the test organisation may take weeks.


Annual Tuition Fees for Studies in English

Uniarts Helsinki will charge an annual tuition fee of 5,000 euros from non-EU and non-EEA students studying for a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in a foreign language. The amount of the fee will stay the same for the duration of a particular student’s studies.

In the 2019 student admissions of the Theatre Academy of Uniarts Helsinki, tuition fees will apply to applicants applying to one of our English-speaking degree programmes;

  • Master’s Degree Programme in Live Art and Performance Studies
  • Master’s Degree Programme in Choreography
  • Master’s Degree Programme in Dance Performance

The fee cannot be charged to a citizen of a Member State of the European Economic Area, or to a person who is entitled to the same treatment as EU citizens under a treaty signed by the European Union and its Member States with a third party or to a family member of the above-mentioned individuals. Nor can it be charged to a person with an EU Blue Card, a continuous or permanent residence permit or a long-term resident’s EC residence permit issued to third-country nationals as referred to in the Aliens Act, or to a family member of the above-mentioned individuals.

The definition of persons regarded as family members is based on the Aliens Act.


Exemption from tuition fees

You are exempted from paying tuition fees if you have one of the following documents:

  • Passport or identity card to indicate the citizenship of EU/EEA/Switzerland
  • EU Blue Card in Finland
  • Continuous residence permit card in Finland, Type A permit
  • EU Family Member's Residence Card in Finland
  • Permanent residence permit card in Finland, Type P permit
  • EU residence permit for third-country citizens with long-term residence permit card in Finland (Type P-EU)

Temporary permit cards and passports must be valid at least until the start of studies.

Applicants who are liable for payment due to their nationality must use the application form in the Study info portal to notify whether there are abovementioned grounds that would apply and release the applicant from payment. The applicant in question must provide the necessary documents that prove release from liability for payment and submit them to the admissions office by the end of the deadline. 

If the applicant’s liability to pay the fee changes after the application deadline, the applicant must contact the admissions office immediately.


Tuition fee waivers

Uniarts Helsinki has introduced a scholarship programme for students who are liable for payment in the form of tuition fee waivers, which aims to promote student recruitment and provide financial support for students who need it. Applicants should note that the university does not offer any scholarships for living expenses.

Applicants who are liable for payment must also state on the application form if they want to apply for a scholarship from Uniarts Helsinki to cover the annual tuition fee if they get accepted. Students may apply for the scholarship using a separate form. The scholarships are granted for one academic year at a time based on the students’ applications. The amount of the scholarship is 2,500 or 5,000 euros. All new degree students who are liable for payment and have applied for the scholarship will be awarded a tuition fee waiver of EUR 2,500 (50%) on their first academic year.

Students who are awarded a scholarship will be notified of the decision personally at the same time as they receive the admission results. Students who are liable for payment have the right to apply for scholarships during the normative duration of their studies (2 years in Master’s programmes). Decisions regarding scholarships are made annually.

The annual tuition fee must be paid in connection with the acceptance of a study place no later than 8 July 2019 at 3:00 pm Finnish time. The application process for a residence permit can only begin after the annual tuition fee has been paid. Uniarts Helsinki recommends students to pay the annual tuition fee as soon as possible after they receive the notification of their acceptance. Students are required to pay the annual tuition fee in order to register for attendance and complete studies.



Assessment Criteria

In advance assignments and the entrance examination, attention will be focused on the applicant’s:

  • Knowledge and artistic abilities in the field of dance
  • Ability to understand the frames of assignments and to articulate creatively out of them
  • Ability to reflect artistic activity
  • Creativity and holistic interpretation
  • Cooperation and interaction skills
  • Motivation and commitment
  • Suitability for the field of dance art and for higher education studies


Advance Assignments (phase 1)

No further explanation or more detailed information will be available on the advance assignment.
The advance assignments may be completed in Finnish, Swedish or English.

Please mark your name on the advance assignments.

  1. Assignment
    Read chapter 10, The extreme exercise of saying ‘we’ - On Vera Mantero’s Until the moment when God is destroyed by the extreme exercise of beauty, in Jeroen Peeters’ book Through the Back – Situating Vision between Moving Bodies (p. 213-233, Kinesis 05, Theatre Academy 2014). Write an essay where you enter into a dialogue with the text, bringing forth the themes and questions in your own work and identity as a dancer that are most important to you at this time.
    The length of the essay should be 2-4 computer-written sheets (A4) (spacing 2).

    You can find the text here: The extreme exercise of saying ‘we’ - On Vera Mantero’s Until the moment when God is destroyed by the extreme exercise of beauty. (PDF)

    Some applicants may be eliminated based on advance assignment. Advance assignment will also be evaluated alongside the other entrance exam assignments in the final evaluation.

  2. Assignment
    Create a portfolio of your artistic work. The portfolio may contain text, video, pictures. The portfolio, or a link to it, is to be delivered at the same time as your application.


Phase 2 Assignment
Applicants should be prepared to perform their own solo choreography or an improvisation (ca 5 minutes).



Student Selections

The student selections are organised at the Theatre Academy’s premises in Haapaniemenkatu 6, Helsinki.

The selection process occurs in many phases, and eliminations are made between phases. Eliminations can also be made during phases. Additional assignments requiring preparation may also be given during the selection process.

The individual assignments can be carried out in Finnish, Swedish or English. The group assignments take place in Finnish or in English, depending on the applicants. The written parts of the examination may be answered in Finnish, Swedish, or English.

Entrance exams consist of guided assignments in contemporary dance and improvisation. As entrance exams proceeds it is included advanced level assignments in contemporary dance together with assignments, which measure the candidate’s personal stage expression.


Selection Phases 1–2

The application period is 9 January – 23 January 2019.


Phase 1:

► Complete and submit the online application form by 23 January 2019 at 3 p.m. (Finnish time).

Submit the advance assignments online by 30 January 2019 at 3 p.m. (Finnish time).

Submit certificates and CV online by 30 January 2019 at 3 p.m. (Finnish time).

The decision on the applicant's eligibility will be made on week 9-10 at the latest. Applicants found eligible/ ineligible will be informed of that decision via e-mail. Those who, based on their advanced assignments, proceed to the next stage of the application process will be invited to the entrance examination. Invitations to Phase 2 will be sent by e-mail during week 17 at the latest.


Phase 2: 13 – 15 May 2019 (16 May is in reserve and may be used if required)

Results (admissions proposal) will be published on 6 June 2019.

Applicants cannot change the entrance examination times assigned to them.


Please note that you might need a visa to enter Finland to participate in entrance examination. With certain countries, an invitation to entrance examination/admissions course alone might not entitle the applicant to a visa. Please check what the Finnish authorities require from your country in good time.





1) Complete and submit an online application form (“Fill in application”) at the Studyinfo portal by 23 January 2019 at 3 p.m. (Finnish time).
The electronic application form is available only during the application period 9 – 23 January 2019 at 3 p.m.

Master’s Degree Programme in Dance Performance can be found on the Studyinfo portal under the name of: Master’s Admission, Dance Performance, Master of Arts in Dance (2 yr)

When you have submitted your application, you will receive a confirmation email. The email will include your application number, which you will need for submitting your appendices.


2) Submit Advance Assignments and Appendices via Embark system by 30 January 2019 at 3 p.m. (Finnish time).
The Embark is accessible during 9 – 30 January 2019 at 3 p.m.

Submit via Embark:

  • Advance Assignments
  • CV (a list of your education, work experience, and artistic experience)
  • Degree diploma
  • Diploma Supplement (if used at the international institution of higher education in question)
  • A report of the scope of international studies in ECTS credits and their grading on a five-point scale (if a diploma supplement is unavailable)
  • The official transcript of those studies which the applicant wishes to be considered in the application process (e.g., a transcript of the studies leading to the completed degree)
  • Other applicable certificates: knowledge and competence acquired through studies, artistic activity and work experience
  • A certificate of proficiency in English language

The applicant must have the appendices translated by an authorised translator, if they are in a language other than Finnish, Swedish or English.

A manual of how to securely submit admissions material via Embark system.


Applications (application form, advance assignments, appendices) are submitted at the sender’s risk. Applicants are advised to submit the application forms, advance assignments and appendices in good time before the closing of the application period. It can take up to hours to upload larger files if there is a lot of traffic in the system.

Late application forms and advance assignments will not be considered, nor can applications be submitted without the advance assignments. Advance assignments submitted via email are not taken into consideration.

Application documents or appendices cannot be returned to the applicant.