European Masters in
This is an outline of a new European Masters course in Speech and
Language Technology at the University of Helsinki, taught entirely in
English. It is proposed that the course will start in Autumn 2004 as
part of the "Bologna" restructuring of European university degrees.
It is anticipated that the course will attract students from
throughout the EU, including a number of Finnish students. The entry
requirement is a suitable Bachelors degree from a European university.
The Masters degree may lead either to immediate employment in industry
or, for excellent students, to PhD research at University of Helsinki.
Speech and Language Technology
The core areas of the course are speech technology and language
technology, supported by relevant studies in web technology. The
speech technology components include phonetics, speech processing
(recognition and synthesis) and prosody. The language technology
components include linguistics (computational and theoretical),
language processing (parsing and generation) and dialogue systems. The
web technology components include Java programming, XML and web
Similar Existing Courses
These UK courses are intensive 1-year full-time courses. The Masters
degree is completed in 12 months by making the summer vacation a third
semester, spent on industrial project work and dissertation writing,
after two regular semesters of taught courses and examinations. It is
proposed that the Helsinki Masters will not follow this pattern, but
will be a 2-year course spread over 4 normal semesters. This will
allow a little more flexibility in module choices and project
The Edinburgh course combines a strong psychological and cognitive
flavour with the core speech and language components. The Cambridge
course has a stronger emphasis on computing and it requires previous
experience of computer programming. It is intended that the Helsinki
course will combine the core speech and language components with
suitable foundation courses in web technology.
It should be possible to get the course approved as a
European Masters in Language and Speech.
This is an endorsement given by ISCA (International Speech
Communication Association) and EACL (European Chapter of the
Association for Computational Linguistics) to courses which meet a
specific set of requirements covering both the taught components and
The Euromasters curriculum has been developed by 13 European
universities. The curriculum may be offered either by a single
institution or by a partnership between participating institutions.
The Euromasters programme encourages students to spend at least 3
months at a second European university. A summer school is run at one
of the participating universities in July each year.
A Partner Institution
The Edinburgh and Cambridge courses are single-institution courses
made possible by the large numbers of professors, lecturers and
researchers in speech and language technology concentrated at those
universities. At University of Helsinki we can offer a range of
appropriate modules in language technology but we will need to find a
suitable partner to offer an equivalent range of modules in speech
One option is to collaborate with Helsinki University of Technology
who have relevant strengths in speech technology, so that the complete
Masters in Speech and Language Technology can be offered in Helsinki.
Another option is to collaborate with a suitable speech technology
partner outside Finland but probably in the Nordic region. In either
case, full advantage should be taken of web-based learning, video
technology and the experience already gained in the Finnish KIT
network in language technology education.
Last modified: Fri Mar 21 20:28:16 EET 2003