University of Oulu

Takala, M., Nordmark, M., & Allard, K. (2019). University Curriculum in Special Teacher Education in Finland and Sweden. Nordic Journal of Comparative and International Education (NJCIE), 3(2), 20-36.

A comparison of university curriculum in special teacher education in Finland and Sweden

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Author: Takala, Marjatta1; Nordmark, Marie2; Allard, Karin3
Organizations: 1University of Oulu, Finland
2University of Dalarna, Sweden
3University of Örebro, Sweden
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 0.7 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Oslo Metropolitan University, 2019
Publish Date: 2019-08-19


The education of special teachers’ is seldom studied, and when it is examined, it is compared primarily with general teacher education. The written academic curricula reflect scientific, professional, social, and ethical values, goals, and competences in education, school and society. This study analyses the special teacher education (STE) curricula from six Finnish and seven Swedish universities. The results show that Finnish STE curricula consists of 60 credits over one year, while the Swedish curricula comprises 90 credits over 1.5 years. Finnish STE can be called a “combo degree,” which addressed various learning difficulties, and Swedish STE transformed it into a specialization, with five different options. Teaching practice is essential in Finnish education, but does not exists as such in Sweden. Inclusive elements are somewhat present in the curricula, often in the form of co-operation. The core contents in these two countries are discussed and compared.

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Series: Nordic journal of comparative and international education
ISSN: 2535-4051
ISSN-E: 2535-4051
ISSN-L: 2535-4051
Volume: 3
Issue: 2
Pages: 20 - 36
DOI: 10.7577/njcie.2659
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 516 Educational sciences
Funding: The Finnish Ministry of Education has supported the writing of this article.
Copyright information: Copyright (c) 2019 The Authors. This article is licenced with CC-BY 4.0.