What will I learn?

Our degree programme offers diverse and inspiring studies in the fields of contemporary photography, documentary photography and artistic research. In our ambitious and professional community, you will develop your expressive skills and theoretical thinking and also obtain a professional qualification for working in the field. The key strengths of our programme are our strong artistic vision and emphasis on visuality combined with our capacity for conceptual thinking.

In the programme, we will support your own personal expression and offer a theoretical foundation for understanding comtemporary photographic phenomena. Our broad range of courses include elective workshops on subjects such as practices of documentary and staged photography, experimental studio, moving image, new platforms for photography and various working methods and themes of contemporary art.

Our up-to-date teaching facilities are located in Väre, Otaniemi’s inviting and international campus, just an 11-minute metro journey from Helsinki’s central railway station.

Study objectives

Content objectives

  • Students will obtain the skills for experimenting with different forms of expression and working methods and for developing their own artistic work.
  • Students will deepen their powers of expression, their confidence in their own artistic vision and their professional competence.
  • Students will receive a broad understanding of the field of contemporary art and visual culture and know how to relate their own activities to this.
  • Graduates of the programme will understand the many different ways of using photography and the specific characteristics of each, and they will also be able to operate independently and professionally in the field of visual culture and fine art.

Which department am I in?

School of Arts, Design and Architecture

Study options

Full Time (2 years)

Tuition fees
€15,000.00 (12,96,456) per year
Start date

Expected September 2021


Aalto University

Otaniemi Campus,

Otakaari 24,



02150, Finland

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants should hold a Bachelor's degree equivalent of 180 ECTS credits or more to be eligible to apply. The degree must be of at least three years of full-time studies. The degree from a foreign university must in the awarding country give eligibility for corresponding Master’s level studies. An applicable degree may also be an internationally accredited university level MBA program. English Language Requirements: IELTS (Academic IELTS only) Overall Band Score 6.5 and Writing Band Score 5.5; Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE A) Total Score 59 and Writing Score 50; TOEFL IBT (Internet-based Test) Total Score 92 and Writing Score 22 or PBT (Paper-based Test) Total Score 580 and Writing Score 4.0 or PDT (Paper-delivered Test) Reading 22, Listening 22 and Writing 24; CAE/CPE (CAE = Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English, CPE = Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English) - Grades A, B, C.

For international students

The applicant must have at least a BA degree in photography or a BA degree in art.

English Language Requirements:

  • IELTS (Academic IELTS only) - Overall Band Score: 6.5; Writing Band Score: 5.5
  • TOEFL - Total score: 92 (IBT), 580 (PBT); Writing score: 22 (IBT), 4.0 (PBT); PDT reading section 22, listening section 22 and writing section 24
  • CAE/CPE (CAE = Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English, CPE = Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English) - Grades accepted: A, B, C
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE Academic only) - Total score: 59; Writing score: 50

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.