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Degree Program in Composition

University of the Arts Helsinki
Program overview
5.5 years
Full time
Bachelor's degree
Scholarships available
English, Finnish, Swedish

Start dates
August 2023

August 2023

August 2023
Student sitting by a piano at Uniarts Helsinki. Image by Veikko Kähkönen

About this program

Degree Program in Composition

This 5.5 year program leads to a Bachelor's and a Master's degree.

Come and study the leading program in the field of composition to pursue a career as a professional composer with an extensive knowledge of music.

Composition studies, harmony and voice leading, music analysis and instrumentation are at the core of the program. As a bachelor’s student, you will complete instrument studies and learn about aural skills, music history and electroacoustic music. As a master’s student, you will focus on deepening your professional expertise and completing studies that support your personal identity as a composer.

You can also choose courses organised by the other two academies of the University and complete so-called joint studies that are available for all students.

Admission requirements

In order to be admitted as a degree student to the Uniarts Helsinki, applicants must have command of the language of instruction used in the program. Having sufficient language skills is, in principle, a requirement in order to be eligible to apply, and it ensures that the applicant has demonstrated educability and suitability for university-level education and has the communication skills needed as a student.

The academies determine the languages of instruction for each degree program. The languages are stated in the program's admission criteria as well as the syllabus.

If a program has several languages of instruction, applicants are only required to prove their proficiency in one of the languages.

Applicants must demonstrate their skills with a language certificate or prior studies. Language skills may also be assessed as part of entrance examinations.

A number of our study programs is offered in Finnish, Swedish, and English. This means that the student has the right to use any of these languages in teaching and study attainments, unless it is otherwise stated in the curriculum or the character of teaching makes it impossible. Please notice that most of our group instruction is held in Finnish or English.

These requirements are followed in our bachelor's and master's admissions, and in doctoral admissions where appropriate.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.

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Program content

Composition, Bachelor of Music


  • Supplementary composition, optional

Analysis, history and methodology studies

  • Music analysis unit (15 cr)
    • Music analysis theory and practicum
    • History of Western art music
    • History of music essay, optional
    • Lecture practicum on contemporary music
    • Lecture series on music of our time

Harmony & counterpoint and orchestration

  • Harmony & counterpoint module
    • Harmony and voice leading 1

Orchestration module

Music-making and structural awareness skills

  • Structural awareness of music 1 and 2
  • Keyboard skills and sight-reading

Instrument performance

Language studies

  • Foreign Language 5 cr
  • Second official language 3 cr / Andra inhemska språket
  • Written communication 2 cr
  • Foreign language 5 cr

For more information, please check the course webpage.

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.

Program delivery

The languages of instruction for this program are English, Finnish and Swedish.


The tuition fee for non-EU/EEA students is €5000 per year.

Tuition fees at Uniarts Helsinki are only applicable to Non-EU and non-EEA students studying for a BA or a MA degree in English.


Target degree - Bachelor’s + Master’s Degrees in Music

The program aims to give you such extensive knowledge of music, music theory and practical composition or research skills that you will be able to work in positions that demand creative artistic skills, particularly musical expertise and pedagogical skills, after you graduate.

Continuing studies

It is possible to complete a doctoral degree at the University as a third-cycle degree. After graduating with a master’s degree, you’ll have the option to apply for doctoral studies in music and specialise in artistic or applied doctoral studies.

At Sibelius Academy you can complete the Licentiate of Music (LMus) and Doctor of Music (DMus) degrees.

Career paths

The studies prepare you to engage in discussion within the music community and in society at large. Graduates of the program have diverse career opportunities, and besides working as a composer, common career paths include becoming a teacher, musician and writer.

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About this institute

University of the Arts Helsinki

The University of the Arts Helsinki (Uniarts Helsinki) offers the highest education in fine arts, music, dance and theatre in an inspiring multidisciplinary environment. Uniarts Helsinki’s wide selection of programs in the field of arts and productive dialogue between teaching...

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Why study at University of the Arts Helsinki

  • The University of the Arts is one of the leading performing arts universities in the world: Uniarts Helsinki’s Sibelius Academy has ranked among the top 22 universities in the QS World University Ranking for five consecutive years (2016–2022).
  • We have unique facilities for creating arts with two campuses in Helsinki and a new building for fine arts which was opened in 2021. The facilities are in the use of the Academy of Fine Arts as well as students of light design, sound design, and design for the performing arts. We host over 1,000 public performances or exhibitions per year.
  • At Uniarts Helsinki you can study in an inspiring environment where different disciplines of art influence each other. The academies of Uniarts Helsinki;Academy of Fine Arts, Theatre Academy and Sibelius Academy, have roots deep within the Finnish arts education and history of art. The predecessors of all three academies were founded in the 19th century although then they operated under slightly different names.
  • The Academy of Fine Arts of Uniarts Helsinki is an international academy with a focus on fine arts. Students' personal aspirations and one-to-one guidance in teaching are at the heart of the academy.
  • The Sibelius Academy of Uniarts Helsinki is one of the largest music academies in Europe. It is the cornerstone of the Finnish music culture through its expertise in teaching, research and artistic activities.
  • The Theatre Academy of Uniarts Helsinki is a reformer of the performing arts and offer the highest education in theatre, dance and writing in Finland.

Contact info

University of the Arts Helsinki

Sörnäinen campus
Sörnäisten rantatie 19
00530 Helsinki

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Message the school

Want to know more about Degree Program in Composition? Fill out the following form and we'll pass your details on to a representative from the school, who will respond to your enquiry.


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