Master's Programme in Water and Environmental Engineering


Master of Science (Technology).
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120 ECTS

Field of Study:

Technology and Engineering


2 years, full-time


An appropriate Bachelor´s degree or an equivalent qualification.

Tuition fees & scholarships:

Yes, for non-EU citizens.
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Language of Instruction:

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Organising school/s:

School of Engineering

Organising department/s:

Department of Built Environment

Application period:

2017-12-15 - 2018-01-24

Further information:

Programme flyer (pdf)

Water and environmental engineering research (


Water and environmental engineering is essentially about making the world work.

Faced with limited natural resources and an increasing demand for water, food and energy, we look for practical ways of developing our society in a sustainable manner. The Master's Programme in Water and Environmental Engineering combines a strong technical basis with a sound understanding of the broader societal context to educate game changers who are able to achieve this ambitious goal.

Interested in a variety of topics? Our master's programme is multidisciplinary, bringing together the best of water and environmental engineering while providing a broad view of the field. Our teaching combines theory with practice, including hands-on modelling work, case studies and project work. We collaborate with other master’s programmes at Aalto University and encourage you to go for student exchange to diversify your views and skills.

Do you want to create your own specialisation within our field? Our programme is student-centred, making use of the variety in our students' backgrounds. Our field is diverse and you have several options for pursuing your desired career. To ensure that you study things that you are passionate about, you can design your own study path. Our personal portfolio process helps you to recognise your strengths and interests together with your mentor and peers.

Are you ready to change the world? The ultimate aim of our programme is to ensure a sustainable and functioning society. Such an aim also means we are passionate and motivated about what we do: we are proud to be water and environmental engineers!

Our master’s programme is based in the Aalto University School of Engineering and it focuses on what engineers do: applying theory to practice in service of solving the critical challenges of our society. Our programme provides you with competences in three complementary areas: skills, knowledge and professional identity. These competences are detailed in the figure below.



The four main themes of the programme correspond to the four research themes of the Water and Environmental Engineering Research Group: Water Resources, Water & Development, Water & Wastewater and Environmental Engineering. All these themes have a their own thematic and methodological focuses and you can freely mix courses from different themes. However, we recommend you take multiple courses within at least one theme to ensure that you gain enough in-depth expertise.

Degree structure




The structure of the programme is designed so that you are able to complete your common and advanced studies during the first year. This leaves your second year for elective courses and the master’s thesis. It also makes it easy for you to go for student exchange during the second year. Alternatively, you can further build your expertise by taking more of our advanced courses as elective courses.

Master’s thesis

The master’s thesis (30 credits) is a piece of applied research conducted independently by the student. Its key goal is to solve a problem relevant to the field of study, based on existing scientific knowledge and in compliance with the principles of responsible conduct of research. Master’s theses are written on topics related to the advanced studies of the programme, agreed upon between the student and the supervising professor. A master’s thesis may be, for example, a research and development project carried out for an industrial partner outside the university, or it can be connected with an ongoing research project of the department. Completing a master’s thesis usually takes six months of full-time work.

Career prospects

Water and environmental engineering provides you with diverse career opportunities. Our graduates work in numerous positions as planners, technical experts, managers and more. The employers of our graduates include the private sector, public sector, civil society as well as academia. It is also common to change your workplace; you do not have to work in one sector of society for the rest of your life!

Student selection

Aalto University's student selection process is competitive and paper-based. Applications that pass the eligibility check (administrative evaluation) conducted by Aalto University Admissions Services proceed to the school's programme-specific academic evaluation.

The following are used as criteria for academic evaluation:

  • University or Higher Education Institution
  • Degree and relevance of studies
  • Academic study performance
  • Motivation and commitment to the programme (Motivation letter)

The water and environmental engineering field is diverse, and we therefore welcome students with diverse backgrounds to our programme. Being an engineering master’s programme, we expect our students to be skilled in mathematics and physics. However, an engineering background is not a precondition to apply.

Contact information

For enquiries regarding the application process: admissions [at] aalto [dot] fi

For enquiries regarding the content of the programme and studies: masters-eng [at] aalto [dot] fi

Programme director: Professor Riku Vahala

Academic coordinator: University Lecturer Marko Keskinen

Assisting coordinator: Doctoral Candidate Meeri Karvinen

Page content by: | Last updated: 20.12.2017.