Strategy of Oulu University of Applied Sciences 2020–2030

VISION: The leading multidisciplinary, community-spirited and international university of applied sciences in Finland with high-quality, contemporary competencies stemming from close cooperation with businesses and organisations.

Education strongly linked to working life

The competence gained from Oamk provides our students with a solid foundation for finding employment and succeeding in various tasks in their respective fields. Apart from solid substance knowledge, our study programmes equip students with an understanding of the challenges that prevail in working life as well as the underlying phenomena, and also with skills to contribute to the resolution of these challenges. We work in a student-oriented manner and value each individual student's learning experience. Oamk graduates are highly sought-after specialists.

We develop and implement our educational offering in cooperation with businesses and industries. All of our degree programmes contain project courses completed in actual working environments, which also supports future employment. We intend to increase our offering in languages other than Finnish, particularly to support work-based immigration. We will offer clear paths into UAS studies, specific for each field of study, to complement the Finnish joint application system.

Oamk will expand its offering aimed at life-long learning, especially in the form of tailored training programmes. Programme contents and courses will be planned jointly with customers, based on their needs. We will also continue to develop our offering of open UAS studies, specialised studies, joint studies with other institutions of higher education, and courses preparing immigrants for UAS studies. In addition, we recognise the importance of master’s degrees as an essential, increasingly popular element of life-long learning. We will increase awareness of the various options available for life-long learning, utilise technology in the implementation of such studies and expand possibilities for individual tailoring and implementation methods.

We have strategically selected our objects and forms of education export and implement them in an economically profitable manner. Our education export activities are linked to our general focus areas of education.

We implement studies within various university networks, both jointly and through task division. Our most important partner is the University of Oulu, with whom we implement specific courses as well as paths from UAS to university studies and vice versa. The networks and cooperation with other institutions of higher education significantly expand the study range available to our students.

Our pedagogy is strongly competence-based. This means that we place the accumulation and demonstration of competencies at the core of all educational activities instead of focusing on isolated subjects or quantitative performance. Every study path is unique because every student has individual, previously obtained competencies. The teacher's role is increasingly revolving around guidance and counselling. Digital learning environments and mobile apps are utilised in the studies.

Values

Our daily activities are guided by the following values:

Impact

Our desire to achieve impacts directs everything we do. At Oamk, social impact means developing new skills for working life, strengthening future capabilities and promoting vitality. We take active part in social interaction.

Openness

Openness is based on comprehensiveness and is manifested in the transparency of all our activities. Openness is a way of building mutual trust. At Oamk, this means that we conduct influential cooperation, share information openly, maintain transparent infrastructures and ethical practices, promote an open organisational culture and monitor its realisation in our daily activities.

Responsibility

We are committed to responsible operations – as individuals and as a university community. We pay attention to economic, social, cultural and ecological sustainability in everything we do. We strive for continuous development and create successful solutions in our education, research, development, innovation and artistic activities incooperation with businesses and industries.

Visibility and impact from RDI and artistic activities

The quality and impact of Oamk’s research, development and innovation (RDI) activities will be reinforced by sharpening the focus of their contents and expanding their financing base especially with funding obtained from Finnish and international competitions. Our multidisciplinary RDI activities produce solutions to such issues as climate change or demographic diversification. We promote well-being, drive new development in working life and actively support new business generation. Our artistic activities contribute to the development of the field of culture and generate positive visibility for Oamk. The RDI and artistic activities form one element of competence development, both for our personnel and students. As is typical of universities of applied sciences, the RDI activities are closely integrated with our education provision and learning, as well as the lifelong learning offerings and projects implemented in cooperation with businesses and industries.

Our key RDI focus areas are environmental knowledge, sustainable well-being and digital disruption.

At Oamk, environmental knowledge is particularly linked to the development of the circular economy, responsible industrial production and consumption, and the optimisation of energy generation and use.

Sustainable well-being covers the attention paid to demographic diversification, promoting digitalisation in healthcare and social services, and reforming business models.

Digital disruption, in turn, focuses on applying new digital technologies and promoting business opportunities. At the moment, these activities at Oamk are primarily related to the data economy, 5G/6G technology, drones, robotics, and printed intelligence.

Moreover, the themes of digitalisation, entrepreneurship, internationalisation and networking penetrate all our RDI activities. We conduct our RDI activities in close cooperation with various networks, especially with the University of Oulu, making sure that the activities complement each other in a mutually beneficial way, utilising each sector's strengths. In this way, we can provide industries with better overall service in the field of competence development.

We will designate certain areas of research that form the foundation of our RDI activities and reinforce their visibility and impact. We play a central role in reforming society. As experts in the latest knowledge and competencies, members of the Oamk community take active part in social dialogue and exert social influence within their respective fields by commenting and addressing contemporary challenges.

Strong networks and ecosystems

We work actively in various networks, and all of our network activities aim at supporting the implementation of our primary tasks. Our most important network comprises local operators in the Oulu region: the City of Oulu, local universities and secondary education providers, sectoral research institutions, industries and public-sector employers.

We are developing cooperation with universities with regard to education provision. We will particularly intensify our participation in international networks and offer all of our degree students the opportunity to study abroad for a certain period or complete an international joint or double degree. We will also utilise our international network cooperation in expanding the financing base of our RDI activities.

More efficient activities

Efficient activities ensure the high quality of education provision, RDI and artistic activities. The internal financial resource allocation model applied at Oamk supports efficiency and provides clear indicators.

Well-being in the university community

The development of Oamk is based on close cooperation between our personnel, students and alumni. The student perspective is preferred over production-related factors in our development activities. We strive to strengthen our alumni network and utilise the expertise of our graduates in all fields of study, both as experts through their experience and as teaching resources. We will develop the competence of our personnel and community members to meet the demands of the 2020s, including challenges related to global issues, pedagogy, internationalisation, workinglife skills, supervisory work and management. The methods used on achieve these objectives include training, intensification of contacts between our personnel and industry representatives, and a new distribution of responsibilities. The entire university community is aware of the objectives, which are defined together.

We highlight the international aspect in all of our activities, both within Oamk and in our cooperation with the University of Oulu. We will intensify collaboration between our international degree and exchange students and Finnish students. We will provide increasing opportunities for international education.

Well-being in the university community is the core concept that forms the framework for our employees’ and students’ competence growth.

University consortium full of opportunities

Oamk and the University of Oulu form a core structure in the local ecosystem, which also includes other significant education and RDI institutions. This ecosystem provides students with flexible study paths at different levels of education, both within each sector and between sectors. We make sure that our services contribute to the provision of flawless study paths and support the progress of studies. The RDI and artistic activities and research infrastructure within the ecosystem contribute to the development of local businesses and industries and offer opportunities for lifelong learning.