Master’s Degree Programme in Nuclear and Particle Physics, Master of Science (2 yrs)

Degree name
Master of Science
Planned duration
2 years
Studies begin
Autumn 2018
Extent of the study programme
120 ECTS credits
Language of instruction
Degree level
Master's degree
Tuition fee per year for non-EU/EEA students
12 000 Euros

Study objectives

The objective of the Master's degree is to provide you with advanced academic training in the fields of nuclear and particle physics. Depending on your interests and skills you can choose to complete your master's studies with different profiles, specializing in experimental or theoretical nuclear physics or in experimental or theoretical particle physics. The master studies give you a holistic view of nuclear and particle physics to critically, independently and creatively identify, formulate and deal with complex issues resulting in a capability to contributing to research and development work. Such training and skills are suitable for a wide range of professional careers, including that of an academic researcher.

A student completing the program will possess a subset of the following skills (dependent on course selection choices, list not exhaustive):

  • Masters the basics of quantum field theory and is able to apply it in particle physics phenomenology
  • Is familiar with the elements of the general relativity
  • Understands the standard model of cosmology, the structure of the universe at large scales and the thermal history of the early universe
  • Has knowledge of the neutrino physics phenomena and basic theoretical formalism
  • Is experienced in using numerical methods at a level that gives ability to apply them in wider contexts
  • Has learned particle physics and cosmology at a level sufficient for graduate studies in any other university
  • Is familiar with a number of models of nuclear structure
  • Can identify different types of excitations in nuclear level schemes
  • Can use existing data bases to estimate radiation and dose levels and their time development
  • Can use data bases to estimate energy deposition and heating issues related to applications of nuclear physics in various fields such as medicine and energy production
  • Will be able to predict the outcome (products and their yields) of different types of nuclear reactions
  • Will be able to build and use basic detector set-ups for activity and half-life measurements
  • Will be able to monitor radiation levels and build radiation shields
  • Will be able to build and use simple vacuum systems for measuring energies of ionizing particles

More about the language of instruction

All courses are taught in English. The majority of the literature is in English.

It is possible to include courses where the language of instruction is Finnish as optional or minor studies.

Study contents

In the Master's studies, you can specialize in

  • experimental or theoretical nuclear physics or
  • experimental or theoretical particle physics.

All students have one obligatory course in particle physics and one  in nuclear physics. I addition mandatory studies include research training, seminar and Master's thesis.  For completing your master’s thesis, you will perform a research project in one of the research groups of the particle and nuclear physics and learn necessary scientific skills of planning, implementing and reporting of a research project. The curriculum allows you to tune your degree according to your own interests and skills by offering a large variety of optional courses. In the field of nuclear physics, these are advanced level courses in nuclear physics, cyclotron physics, accelerator physics and techniques. Or you can specialize in techniques for nuclear and accelerator based physics experiments, nuclear astrophysics or nuclear fission and its applications. On the other hand if you are more interested in particle physics you may select courses like particle astrophysics, cosmology, quantum field therory and its applications or ultra-relativistic heavy ion physics.

Tuition fees

In Finnish universities, there are no tuition fees for EU/EEA citizens. Tuition fees concern only non-EU/EEA degree students who start their studies in English-taught Master's degree programmes in August 2017 or after that.

The tuition fee is 12 000 euros / academic year.

The fees will not concern those non-EU/EEA students who

  • have started their studies before autumn 2017
  • are enrolled in Doctoral/PhD level studies and research
  • study in degree programmes taught in Finnish
  • are EU/EEA citizens or their family members (spouse / child)
  • are already residing in Finland or some other EU country on a permanent basis (i.e. are equivalent to EU citizens *)

*) continuous (A) or permanent (P/P-EU) residence permit type

University of Jyväskylä has scholarships available for students who are required to pay tuition fees. Scholarships are applied for when applying for the admission to the programme.

For more information about tuition fees and scholarships visit:

Choosing a main subject or field of specialization

The major subject of your Master studies can be either physics or theoretical physics. At the beginning of your studies, you make a personal study plan, which is to be accepted by the Department of Physics. In the study plan, you select the courses for your Master studies according to your interests. If you select more theoretically oriented courses, the major of your degree will be threoretical physics, if, on the other hand, you are more interested in experimental techniques and applications, your major will be physics.

Structure of studies

Master's Studies is Nuclear and Particle Physics, 120 ETCS credits

  •  Major subject studies, 90 ETCS credits
    o Particle physics 8 ETCS credits
    o Nuclear physics 8 ETCS credits
    o Seminar 4 ETCS credits
    o Master's Thesis 30 ETCS credits
    o Optional courses in nuclear and particle physics 40 ETCS credits
  •  Optional studies 25 ETCS credits
    o Optional studies in e.g. physics, mathematics so that the degree includes at least 120 ETCS credits

Final project

The learning objectives for a thesis include to give in-depth knowledge of the nuclear and particle physics, including deeper insight in the current research and development work. During the thesis work, you receive a capability to contribute to research and development work. The aim is that you also learn to present and discuss the findings of your work and have level of knowledge and arguments to discuss these findings in written and spoken English.

Depending on the subject the thesis can be either theoretical or experimentally oriented. You are entitled to guidance during the course of the work.

Career opportunities

There is an existing and continuing need for experts in nuclear and particle physics, not only in fundamental research but also in industry. The birth of new research facilities and experiments requires not only experimental, but also theoretical expertise in these fields. The need is at the international level, not just the national level. The pressure to reduce carbon emissions and increasing energy demands means that nuclear power is being reconsidered and even expanded in many countries. Again, these developments require experts to ensure safe operations, to avoid clandestine use of nuclear materials and to ensure an informed and reasonable discussion on the use of and exposure to radiation and radioactivity, both man-made and naturally occurring. The spin-offs and applications borne from fundamental research into nuclear and particle physics are manifold, and too numerous to discuss here. Examples are the use of radioisotopes in medicine and medical imaging, prospecting (oil, etc), explosive detection (neutron activation), the world-wide web, etc.

Also as mentioned above, training within an international-class research infrastructure brings with it a large number of other skills which enable graduates to be competitive in working life outside research and academia. Graduates from the Department of Physics have been generally successful in finding employment, and graduates from the Accelerator Laboratory have been sought after by other similar institutes due to their comparatively high level of experience.


The Accelerator Laboratory is one of the very few truly international infrastructures in Finland: Large number and variety of different nationalities works and studies at the department. Department of physics encourages students to leave for student exchange or to attend international trainee programmes.

Co-operation with other parties

Much of the research in Nuclear and Particle Physics relevant to the program offered by the Department of Physics is carried out under the Helsinki Institute of Physics (HIP) Nuclear Matter Program and Theory Program.

The accelerator laboratory collaborates with he various research groups as wells as with the European space industry, national paper and wood industries, medical industry and many others.
Particle physics research includes active collaboration with the world-leading laboratories such as Brookhaven National Laboratory (PHENIX-experiment) and CERN (ALICE and LAGUNA experiments).

Research focus

Activities in Nuclear Physics cover both experimental and theoretical research in Nuclear and Accelerator-Based Physics and related applications. The various groups in the Accelerator Laboratory form a Centre of Excellence in Research nominated by the Academy of Finland for the period 2012-2017. The main focus is on the studies of new phenomena in nuclei at the extremes of existence. Applications and instrumentation are developed in-house for use in both research and industry. The Accelerator Laboratory is part of the Department of Physics of the University of Jyväskylä and is one of the leading stable-ion beam facilities in Europe and one of the very few truly international infrastructures in Finland. More information.

Particle physics activities at JYFL consist of both theoretical and experimental research. The main theoretical areas of study are physics Beyond the Standard Model, Cosmology, Neutrino Physics and the Physics of Ultra-relativistic Heavy Ion Collisions. Experimental research is carried out in Astroparticle and Cosmic Ray physics, Neutrino Physics, and Ultra-relativistic Heavy Ion Physics. There is close collaboration between the theoretical and experimental research groups. Particle physics research at JYFL is highly international, including active collaboration with the world-leading laboratories such as Brookahaven National Laboratory (PHENIX-experiment) and CERN (ALICE and LAGUNA experiments). More information.

Postgraduate study opportunities

Produces eligibility for postgraduate studies in Nuclear Physics, Particle Physics, Applied Physics.

  • physics
  • particle cosmology
  • nuclear physics
  • particle physics

Application period: Master's Degree Programmes (University of Jyväskylä) (15.11.2017 at 08:00 - 10.01.2018 at 15:00)

Student admission to study programme

The selection process comprises of two parts:

1) Reviewing of the application documents
2) Interview (in person or via Skype/Video/Telephone)

Phase I: Assessment of eligible applicants based on the application documents

You will receive an e-mail notification when the documents have been pre-processed and, if necessary a request to supplement the application.

The student selection committee at JYU will assess the content of the applications – ineligible applications will be disregarded. The selection committee will rate the applicants on the basis of their academic background, letter of motivation and supporting letter of reference. The different aspects of the application will have the following weights:

Selection criteria


Academic background     

max. 70 points

Letter of Motivation

max. 20 points

Letter of Reference

max. 10 points

Total max.

100 points

The student selection committee will rank the eligible applications and make a pre-selection. The highest scoring applicants will be invited to an interview. Details of the relevant dates of the various stages are given below. In the evaluation of academic background, factors such as the percentage of relevant courses from the total and average grades will be taken into account.

Phase II: Interviews and final student selection

As mentioned above, the highest scoring applicants from the pre-selection phase will be invited for an interview, with the interview carrying a value of 40 points. The structured interview will take 15-20 minutes per candidate. The final ranking will then be made on the total points scored in phase I and II, from a maximum of 140 points.

If more than one person has equal points in the final ranking, the order will then be decided by the points the applicant got from the academic background. If this does not make a difference between applicants, the order will then be decided by the points the applicants got from the interview.  If this does not make a difference between applicants, the order will then be decided by the points the applicants got from the motivation letter. If this does not make a difference between applicants, the order will then be decided by the points the applicants got from the reference letter. If there is still no difference, the order will be raffled.


Required degree

Applicants must hold a Bachelor's degree in physics from a university with an internationally recognised academic standing, or equivalent qualifications. Successful candidates should have basic knowledge in quantum mechanics and proven interest in science.

Admission of an applicant graduating after the application deadline is conditional till s/he submits the degree certificate, the deadline being 17 July 2018.

English language profiency

English language proficiency demonstrated in only one of the following ways:

1)      Upper secondary school degree, English being the medium of instruction, from the following countries: Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Great Britain, Ireland, the United States, Canada, Australia or New Zealand.

2)      A higher education degree, English being the medium of instruction, from the following countries: EU/EEA country, the United States, Canada, Australia or New Zealand. The degree must be fully completed in English and the thesis must be written in English. The language of instruction must be clearly marked in the degree certificate or transcript of records, or other official document provided by the higher education institution in question.

3)      TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score of 580 (paper-based) or 92 (internet-based)

4)      an IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score of  6.5

5)      a Cambridge ESOL’s Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) or Cambridge ESOL’s Certificate in Advanced English (CAE) grade C or above

6)      PTE (Pearson Test of English) 59

7)      National Certificate of Language Proficiency (YKI) for English taken in 2012 or after, with skill level 4 or higher (in every section; reading comprehension, listening comprehension, speaking, and writing)

8)      The applicant has completed or is completing a higher education degree in Finland and the degree includes studies of academic English for at least 6 ECTS credits (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages, levels B2–C1 and field-specific content). Applicants who wish to prove their English proficiency in this way are required to submit the form available at: However, applicants who have completed a minimum of 6 ECTS of studies in academic English at the University of Jyväskylä are not required to submit the form.

Please note:

  • As there are often some delays in the language proficiency processing, please ensure that you register for the language test well in advance of the application deadline so that the test can be completed and the result received in time to meet the deadline. It usually takes approximately a month for the test results to arrive at the institution.
  • If the results of the language test are below the required minimum, the application will not be processed.
  • Pearson Test of English, IELTS and TOEFL language proficiency tests are valid for two years and the test result must be valid during the application period.

Entrance examination and aptitude test


Phase I: Assessment of eligible applicants based on the application documents by mid-March 2018

Phase II: Interviews and final student selection by 28 March 2018

Required attachments

Required attachments

1) Officially certified transcript of records from the student’s institute of higher education both in the original language and in English (translated by an authorised translator). In cases where the original language is English, one certified copy is sufficient. Note that the transcript is a document containing information on courses taken and grades and credits obtained. A certificate of registration or a diploma is not sufficient. All educational documents must be officially certified by the awarding institution, or legalised. Officially certified copies issued by a Finnish notary public will also be accepted. Additional information: NB: If you are completing or have completed your degree in a Finnish university or university of applied sciences, your degree was completed on 1 January 2003 or later, and you have a Finnish personal identification code, you do not need to submit officially certified copies of your educational documents.  

2) Officially certified copies of degree certificates both in the original language and in English (translated by an authorised translator). In cases where the original language is Finnish or English, one certified copy is sufficient. All educational documents must be officially certified by the awarding institution, or legalised. Officially certified copies issued by a Finnish notary public will also be accepted. Additional information: NB: If you are completing or have completed your degree in a Finnish university or university of applied sciences, your degree was completed on 1 January 2003 or later, and you have a Finnish personal identification code, you do not need to submit officially certified copies of your educational documents.  

3) Copy of a valid passport (the identification pages with name, date, place and expiry date) or other identification document (i.e. personal identity card, driving license)

4) Certificate of English language proficiency

5) Curriculum Vitae (CV)

6) Letter of motivation

7) Letter of reference

8) Copy of a residence permit that exempts its holder from paying tuition. Required only from applicants who are liable to pay tuition based on their nationality, but are in possession of a residence permit that exempts them from paying tuition. Such residence permits include: EU Blue Card, type A or P residence permit card in Finland, P-EU residence permit card, or an EU Family Member’s Residence Card in Finland.

Attachment Delivery address Deadline
Required attachments
University Admissions Finland
Unioninkatu 40 C
10.01.2018 15:00

Additional information on applying

Admissions timetable

  • Application round opens: 15 November 2017
  • Application deadline: 10 January 2018
  • Notification of admission status: 28 March 2018
  • Request for rectification deadline: 11 April 2018
  • Confirmation deadline: 20 April 2018
  • Studies begin: 1 August 2018

Right to appeal

According to the Finnish legislation, the rejected applicants must be informed about their right to an appeal:

Should you find that a mistake has been made in the selection process concerning your application for the Master’s Degree Programme in Nuclear and Particle Physics, you may send a written appeal addressed to the Appeal Committee of the University. In the appeal you should clearly state, where the mistake has taken place and identify the matters your appeal is based on.

The appeal should be done in writing and within 14 days after the result has been made public.

You should send your appeal to:

Appeal Committee of the University
P.O. Box 35
FI-40014 University of Jyväskylä

It is worthwhile to keep in mind that the decisions on admissions are very seldom changed - unless a technical error or such has taken place - since they are based on a very careful consideration and a studious inspection of the applications.

For more information:

Contact information of the programme:


Admissions services

Admission Services

Visiting address:
ADMISSION SERVICES, Seminaarinkatu 15 (T-building), 2nd floor

Postal address:
ADMISSION SERVICES P.O.Box 35, 40014 University of Jyväskylä

Telephone: +358 40 805 3018

University of Jyväskylä, Faculty of Mathematics and Science

Faculty of Mathematics and Science has four departments (Department of Biological and Environmental Science, Department of Chemistry, Department of Mathematics and Statistics and Department of Physics). Department of Mathematics and Statistics is located at Mattilanniemi and the rest three in the Ylistönrinne campus. Experimental research facilities include accelerator laboratory of department of Physics, Konnevesi Research station of biological and environmental research as well as  Nanoscience centre, which is a cross disciplinary research centre shared by researchers of chemistry, physics and cell and molecular biology. Roughly 2300 students are enrolled in the faculty yearly. The number of staff is about 560.

The objectives of the faculty are to produce high level internationally recognized research and train experts to serve science, industry and society. In the faculty of Mathematics and science you can study the following disciplines:

  • Aquatic science
  • Biology: ecology and evolutionary biology, cell and molecular biology
  • Chemistry
  • Environmental Science
  • Mathematics and Statistics
  • Physics




Academic calendar

The academic year of the University of Jyväskylä consists of the autumn semester and the spring semester which are both divided into two teaching periods.

Check the dates from the University's Academic calendar

Autumn Semester  from 1 September to 31 December

I  period  1 September — around 20 October 
II period  around 20 October — around 16-20 December

Classes and exams end by before Christmas

Spring semester from 1 January to 31 May 2017

III period  beginning of January — aroud mid-March
IV period  mid March — endof  May 2017

  • Easter Break: week before Easter

Student benefits

Information on living expenses

In Finland, the general cost of living is relatively high. You must be able to cover your everyday living expenses independently so you should have at least 700-900 euros per month at your disposal. When applying for student residence permit, you (unless you are EU/EEA student) will need to show, that you have at least 560 € per month (6720€ per year) at your disposal. This is the absolute minimum required by the immigration authorities. EU citizens who come to Finland to study do not need to apply for a student residence permit, however they should also be able to cover their living costs independently.

Please look also at the information concerning the tuition fees charged (from non-EU/EEA students).

The average monthly living expenses for a student in Finland are approximately 700-900€. This may vary a bit, depending on your study location in Finland – for example, accommodation and other living costs are not necessarily so high in Jyväskylä than other larger cities.

As a student you can get discounts in student restaurants and cafeterias, public transport, etc. Student housing with shared facilities is usually a low-cost accommodation option.

You can’t be guaranteed to find employment during your studies so it is not possible to cover part of your living expenses doing work.

Financing your studies

The University of Jyväskylä offers high-quality, research-based Master’s degree programmes in English.

In compliance with Section 10 of the Universities Act (558/2009), a university must charge a fee of at least EUR 1,500 per an academic year from a student admitted to education other than bachelor’s or master’s degree studies in Finnish. Fees are not charged to a citizen of a state belonging to the European Economic Area or to a person who is equivalent to a European Union citizen under a treaty concluded by the European Union and its Member States with another contracting party, or to a family member of the individual. Nor is a fee charged to a person with the European Union Blue Card, a permanent residence permit or a long-term resident’s EU residence permit issued to a third-country national referred to the Finnish Aliens Act, or to a family member of the individual. The Aliens Act is applied in the definition of persons regarded as family members. Furthermore, no fee is charged to a student participating in commissioned education in compliance with Section 9 of the Universities Act.

A university must have a scholarship system to support the studies of students participating in fee-charging degree education.

For further information, please see: tuition fees and scholarships.

The cost of course literature is not very high, since most of the course books can be borrowed from the University Library.

International students cannot apply for student loans and grants in Finland, unless you have lived in Finland for the past two years in some other capacity than that of a student and can be considered permanent residents in Finland. Further information:

Health care services

The Finnish Student Health Service (generally referred to as YTHS) provides health and medical care for Bachelor's and Master's level students who have joined the Student Union. Doctoral students are not entitled to the services of YTHS. For further information, please see: healthcare.

Information about accommodations

Student housing in Jyväskylä is provided by KOAS (The Central Finland Housing Foundation) and Kortepohja Student Village. The student apartments are located about 2.5 - 4 kilomentres from the University main campus and the city centre. Degree students should apply for accommodation as soon as they have been admitted to the University of Jyväskylä. 


All students studying at the University of Jyväskylä are responsible for obtaining their own insurance. You should therefore acquire your own health, accident and travel insurance before coming to Finland. For further information, please see: insurance.

Contact details

The institution's own web pages
Telephone: +358 40 805 3136

Visiting address:
Matemaattis-luonnontieteellinen tiedekunta, Survontie 9 C (Nanoscience center, 3. kerros)

Postal address:
PL 35 (YN)