Programme structure

The specialisation in Higher Education (HES) is a two-year full time study consisting of 120 ECTS.

This specialisation has the following structure (all courses are mandatory):

  • 45 ECTS master's thesis
  • 30 ECTS specialization
  • 25 ECTS methods
  • 20 ECTS introduction

4th semester

MIED4190 – Master Thesis
3rd semester MIED4220 – Higher Education Research Traditions and Developments MIED4040 – Methods III Higher Education Studies MIED4190 – Master Thesis
2nd semester MIED4020 – Research Methods II MIED4190 – Master Thesis
1st semester MIED4100 – The Norwegian Education System in its Nordic Context MIED4010 – Research Methods I


10 credits 10 credits 10 credits

First semester with joint lectures

During the first semester, you will have two courses. The first course: ‘The Norwegian Education System in its Nordic Context’ (20 ECTS) will provide you with a thorough introduction to relevant components of the Norwegian education system. In addition, it will introduce you to the notion of ‘the Nordic Education model’, how it affects Norwegian education and how it relates to the European idea and other educational models. The course will lay the groundwork that is further discussed and developed during the specialisation courses in the first, second and third semesters.

The first part of the course will be held together with the students in the other specialisation: Education and Social Change: Childhood and Youth Studies. In the second part of the course you will be introduced to your area of specialisation. The second part will address higher education from historical, political and educational science perspectives. In this second part we will use Norwegian higher education and the Nordic education model as important frames of reference for discussing similarities and differences among higher education systems and institutions around the world.

You will also have the first research methods course (10 ECTS) during the first semester with the Education and Social Change: Childhood and Youth Studies students. This course introduces you to a set of methodological issues and approaches essential for empirical research in social sciences.

Speeding up on your specialisation journey

Work on the master thesis begins during the second semester. This implies you will be offered a course aimed at supporting you in planning your master’s thesis as well as the second research methods course (together with the ESCY students). In addition, the second semester further develops the key theories, questions and analytical perspectives in HES introduced in the first semester. The HES specialisation course in this semester will also ensure that you attain the skills and competences required for identifying and interpreting academic literature of relevance for your research interests.

Further strengthening your foundation

During the third semester, work and emphasis on the thesis will be continued. The specialisation will further focus on interrelated research traditions in the field of higher education studies. The course in methods this semester provides a thorough understanding of the research process in the area of Higher Education studies.

Conducting and finishing your own research

During the fourth and last semester, you will independently conduct your thesis work under the supervision of an experienced supervisor. The previous semesters will have provided you with the knowledge, skills and competences required for successfully undertaking and finishing your thesis research.

Diploma and degree

This programme leads to the following degree: Master in Education; Specialization: Higher Education Studies

The diploma is issued when you have completed the courses that meet the requirements for a degree. Read more about diplomas.

Published Mar. 4, 2021 3:52 PM - Last modified Sep. 10, 2021 10:23 AM