Full-time, daytime studies

Degree Programme in Physiotherapy
Bachelor of Social Services and Health Care, 210 ECTS

Bachelor of Health Care

  • Programme
  • Curricula
  • Implementations

Name of the Degree Programme

Degree Programme in Physiotherapy


The programme has no specialisations.

Qualification awarded

The graduates of the Degree Programme in Physiotherapy obtain the degree title Bachelor of Health Care. The graduates become registered physiotherapists (UAS). The extent of the studies is 210 credits.

Level of qualification

The degree programme leads to a higher education degree which is a first cycle Bachelor-level degree in the European Higher Education Area (EHEA). According to the eight-level classification of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) and National Qualifications Framework (NQF), the degree represents level 6.
The description of the level of the Degree is included in the Statute, at

Specific admission requirements

Eligibility for studies at a university of applied sciences is stipulated in the Universities of Applied Sciences Act 932/2014.
The selection criteria are specified in the data of the Degree Programme at and

On the websites, application and instructions are in Finnish language for the degree programmes taught in Finnish.

Specific arrangements for recognition of prior learning (RPL)

The RPL procedure means the identification and recognition of the student’s previously acquired learning. The student has the opportunity to apply for the recognition of their competencies if the competencies correspond to the learning goals of the Degree Programme. The identification process is closely connected with the preparation of the student’s personal curriculum and is updated during personal counselling discussions.

The identification and recognition practices are presented in the RPL Instruction of SeAMK. It specifies how recognition of competencies is applied for, how the application is processed, and how the student is informed of it. The instruction lists the RPL contact persons of each Degree Programme, who counsel students on matters related to the process.

In the assessment of prior learning, for example the following evidence is used:

– certificates on training programmes with similar content and other training programmes
– testimonials and further clarifications by an employer
– interviews of the student
– written and oral exams or reports
– functional or written assignments or other evidence
– presentations, portfolios

The final project/thesis and the Maturity Test cannot be submitted to the RPL procedure.

Qualification requirements and regulations (incl. graduation requirements)

Please see the Degree Regulations of Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences.

Pedagogical approach and learning environment

The physiotherapy education follows the pedagogy of Problem-Based Learning (PBL). The pedagogical philosophy of PBL is based on cognitive-constructivist and experiential learning, which means that learning evolves as a result of the student's own mental process of managing information and active working through of previous and current, continuously increasing experiences.

Problem-based learning starts with work life experiences. Since life at workplaces does not follow a curriculum divided into courses, also students should learn to solve problems in a natural way, in the very form they exist in practical work. For this reason, the individual courses have been integrated into selected themes, which are closely connected with issues arising from practice and with the skills and knowledge required at work - i.e. with the key competences. Instead of seeing education as giving information, it is appreciated as producing experiences and competences.

The labour market and its expectations for competence also increasingly call for skills in information seeking and management, collaboration, problem solving, lifelong learning as well as ability to integrate different forms of information from several disciplines in practical work. In PBL pedagogy, learning is not just remembering, but examining professional problems together with other students and the lecturer. The student is seen as a responsible, information-seeking adult, who will assume responsibility for her or his learning and become committed to target-oriented and self-directed study. The student’s internal entrepreneurship is translated into initiative and active thinking, action and attitude regarding both theory and practical training. The teacher's role is to facilitate and coordinate the learning process.

The studies involve work in small groups, expert lectures, project work and practical training both at the University and in real-life work settings.

Profile of the programme

Physiotherapists are experts in the assessment and promotion of clients' mobility and functional capacity. They plan, implement, evaluate and develop their work independently. They collaborate with the medical staff in charge of their clients' treatment and represent their profession in multi-professional teams. The central aim in physiotherapy is to maintain the functional and work capacity of the population as long as possible. The physiotherapists also seek to affect our living and working environment.

The physiotherapists work in hospitals, health centres, research and care institutions, rehabilitation centres and spas, in the occupational health service, in public health and sports organizations, in institutions for the disabled and the elderly, in children's day care centres, in schools and in the municipal provision of physical education services. They may also become independent practitioners.

Occupational profiles

Physiotherapists are experts in the assessment and promotion of clients' mobility and functional capacity. The physiotherapists work in hospitals, health centres, research and care institutions, rehabilitation centres and spas, in the occupational health service, in public health and sports organizations, in institutions for the disabled and the elderly, in children's day care centres, in schools and in the municipal provision of physical education services. They may also become independent practitioners.
After completing the vocational language studies the student is able to communicate in spoken and written situations related to his field of study. He can search for information and follow the development of his professional field in the target language.


Internationality in the Degree Programme involves student and teacher mobility and networking for projects and other collaboration. Home internationality is promoted by study material in foreign languages and by inviting visiting international lecturers every semester. Students take active part in tutoring international students.

Access to further studies

After three years of work experience, the student will be eligible for further studies for a Master’s Degree in the field in question.

Structure of the studies

In accordance with the Universities of Applied Sciences Act, the studies of a Degree Programme consist of basic studies, professional studies, practical training promoting professional skills, free elective studies, and a final project/thesis. The extent of the studies is 60 credits a year.

During the basic studies, the focus is on the foundations of physiotherapy practice and on the development of language and interaction skills. The purpose of the professional studies is to learn to assess and examine functional capacity, to support it and to cure dysfunction by means of physiotherapy. The idea of alternative professional studies is to gain further skills and knowledge in one speciality of physiotherapy, for example in child, adult or aging people's physiotherapy. The purpose of the final thesis is to provide competence in the research and development of physiotherapy.

The curriculum includes five seams permeating through the studies and extending over them. They are based on SeAMK’s reports, studies and strategy, as well as on the national and international recommendations and regulations related to education provided by universities of applied sciences.
- The Information Search seam strengthens the student’s professional and field-specific information search skills throughout the studies.
- The Internationalization seam secures the improvement of the student’s international competencies during their studies. Home internationality is strengthened by utilizing scientific articles and our international partners in our theory studies. Intensive weeks create more opportunities for internationalization at home.

- The studies corresponding to the Entrepreneurship seam help the student understand the central and growing role of entrepreneurship in society.
- The Sustainable Development seam makes the student aware of social responsibility and helps them understand the diversity of sustainable development as a working life skill. Sustainable development is taken into account in different ways throughout the studies (ecological, social, cultural and economic sustainability).
The seam of Career Guidance helps the student recognise their competencies and own strengths. It also includes working life knowledge, job search skills, and lifelong learning.

Students have the opportunity to include multidisciplinary, working life-oriented project studies in their personal curricula (SeAMKPro). The recommended timing for multidisciplinary working life projects is the fifth and sixth semester.

The Degree Programme includes 75 credits. Part of the practical training can be undertaken abroad.

The studies will be completed in the order indicated by the programme structure. Preceding studies must be finished before moving on to the next study modules.

Examination regulations, assessment and grading

Please see the Degree Regulations of Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences.

Graduation requirements

Please see the Degree Regulations of Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences and instructions for graduates at Intra.

Mode of study


Head of degree programme

Ms Tarja Svahn, +358 40 830 2296, tarja.svahn(at)

Student counsellor

Ms Marjut Koivisto, +358 40 680 7190, marjut.koivisto(at)

Coordination of international mobility

Tiina Välimäki, 040-830 4127, tiina.valimaki(at), Coordinator, Outgoing student exchanges to Europe
Maria Loukola, 040-830 2240, maria.loukola(at), Coordinator, Incoming and outgoing student exchanges outside Europe

Student services

Tel. +358 20 124 5055,

Coordination of Practical Training

Field of study

Health and welfare
The classification of the educational field is based on the international ISCED classification used by the Ministry of Education and Culture.

Learning outcomes

The learning outcomes of the Degree Programme in Physiotherapy represent level 6 in the 8-level European Qualification Framework (EQF). According to this framework, the following learning outcomes are relevant to physiotherapists:
-Advanced knowledge of their field of work, involving critical understanding and evaluation of theories, central concepts, methods and principles
-Awareness of the scope and boundaries of the profession and/or discipline
-Advanced skills, demonstrating mastery, ability to apply knowledge, and innovation, required to solve complex and unpredictable problems in a specialised field of work, science or arts.
-Management of complex professional activities or projects or ability to work independently in expert positions in their field of work. Ability to take responsibility for decision-making in unpredictable contexts.
-Basic ability to work as independent entrepreneurs

Generic and subject specifc competences

Competencies are extensive knowledge entities, or combinations of the individual’s knowledge, skills, and attitudes. They describe qualifications, performance potential, and the ability to cope with professional duties.

Common/general competencies are fields of know-how common to different Degree Programmes, but their special characteristics and importance may vary between professions and work assignments. General competencies form the basis for professional activities, cooperation, and the development of expertise. According to Arene’s (Rectors' Conference of Finnish Universities of Applied Sciences) recommendations, general competencies include learning skills, ethical competence, cooperation skills, innovation skills, and internationalization skills. In addition to the above-mentioned competencies, entrepreneurial skills and quality management skills are emphasized in the degree studies of SeAMK as competencies common to all.

Degree programme-specific competencies form the basis for the development of the student’s professional expertise.

Work-based learning and work placements

The student’s salaried work during their studies and the competencies achieved through it can be used in order to complete a course. This is referred to as employment-integrated learning, and it can also be related to voluntary work or hobbies. It is essential that the things learnt through working contribute to the attainment of the learning goals of the course. Learning achieved through employment-integrated learning can be verified, for instance, through skills demonstrations and assignments.