Master's Programme in Geoengineering
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Hear students' thoughts on the Master's Programme in Geoengineering and find out more about the field.
Geoengineering relies on a wide range of disciplines, including geoscience and material science, mechanics and construction. Structures of interest are foundations, roads, excavations and underground structures like tunnels.
Due to the fact, that most construction materials and everyday household items, energy sources, as well as the groundwater, origin from the earth, the geoengineering is the hidden science behind our everyday life. Additionally, the megatrends like the urbanisation, climate change and an increasing use of natural resources create huge societal challenges for the geoengineers to solve.
Geotechnical studies provides tools for design of foundations for buildings and roads in challenging environments. Experts in construction of tunnels and underground spaces are needed for safe and economical solutions. Knowledge provided by highway engineers are essential to develop future traffic lines and communities. The field of geoengineering also covers extraction and recycling of mineral based materials.
The Master’s Programme in Geoengineering gives you the knowledge, skills, and competences needed to understand the behaviour of soils for geotechnical engineering, of rocks for rock engineering and mining and of road structures for highway engineering. As a graduate of our programme, you will have a firm grasp of the entire life cycle of engineered geotechnical structures. This covers the entire life cycle from research and design to construction, maintenance and recycling. Field investigations, laboratory experiments and numerical modelling are the tools we develop and use to tackle the challenges in design and construction.
The Master's Programme in Geoengineering offers three paths for specialisation within the field.
Sound geotechnical knowledge is the foundation of all construction. In geotechnical engineering, the main topics of interest are the mechanical, hydraulic and thermal properties of soil and their impact on foundations, soil-structure interaction and soil improvement.
Roads and trafficked areas are a crucial part of societal infrastructure and as such have a profound impact on everyday life and the entire function of the society. The focus areas in highway engineering are the structural design of roads and material science of bituminous materials. The education allows you to understand how to choose and design the material and structure for the type of traffic it should serve, e.g. airport, highway, parking, city road. You will learn the methods to maintain the structures and rehabilitate them to prolong their life.
The core fields of rock engineering are rock mechanics, excavation techniques, construction and applied geosciences. Rock engineering is about utilising bedrock as an underground space and as a mineral resource. The education gives you the tools required for designing optimal structures in the rock and expertise to carry out these plans in a safe, economic and environmentally friendly way.
The programme consists of 60 credits of major studies (30 credits of common core studies and 30 credits of advanced studies of your choosing), 30 credits of elective studies and a master’s thesis (30 credits). You can focus your studies to dive deeper into the fields of geotechnical, rock or highway engineering by selecting appropriate courses in advanced and elective studies.
For more information on the courses, please visit the programme's section on Into, Aalto University's student portal.
Geoengineers have many opportunities to work in varying expert assignments. Graduates are mainly employed by industry, but also by governmental entities and research institutions. They hold key positions ranging from engineering, design and consultancy to management, teaching and research.
Typical job titles at the start of a career are; project engineer, designer or site supervisor. An academic position is also a possibility after completing a doctoral degree.
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/higher education institution; recognized for high quality of education and research
- degree and relevance of studies; suit very well or excellent to the study option
- academic performance; need to be mainly very good or excellent
- motivation and commitment to the programme; should be clearly in connection with the study option
For applicants to the Master's Programme in Geoengineering, basic knowledge in the following fields is highly recommended: geology or geotechnics, mechanical and structural engineering, material sciences and statistics, mining or construction.