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Master's Programme in Computer, Communication and Information Sciences - Communications Engineering
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Do you want to hear more about the programme?
Register for the programme webinar. In this webinar on December 19th 2019 at 2PM EET, the programme representatives will tell you more about the programme and you have an opportunity to ask questions!
Objectives of studies
The world comprises networks that connect people and devices that are a prerequisite for all other technologies to work successfully. As new technologies need better networks, building, maintaining and developing them is crucial for our future. The Communications Engineering study option prepares students to answer the needs of this rapidly evolving field. Communications Engineering graduates have:
- Excellent knowledge of technology fundamentals. Graduates are experts in the fields of internet technologies, wireless communications and communications ecosystems.
- Solid understanding of behavioural economics and sciences. Graduates know what makes communications technology usable and economically feasible.
- Solid understanding of business dynamics. Graduates know the laws of business and can navigate accordingly.
- In-depth programming skills. Graduates have exceptional skills in programming, including readiness for demanding fields like machine learning and network protocols.
- Practical experience in the field. Graduates have worked closely within the industry already during the studies and have good connections to leading companies.
- World-shaping power in their hands. Graduates possess the knowledge and tools to have great impact on technological advancements and the future.
Upon graduation from the Computer, Communication and Information Sciences – Communications Engineering programme, graduates possess excellent knowledge and skills in the field of communications technology as well as a lot of relevant hands-on experience from the industry.
The Nordics are the focal point of communications engineering. Two of the top three industry-leaders, Nokia and Ericsson, have grown here and are proof of the Nordics being the world’s leading telecom cluster. Other major equipment manufacturers (e.g. Huawei, Airbus Defence and Space) are present in Finland, making the ICT industry even stronger.
Aalto University and the Master’s Programme in Computer, Communication and Information Sciences – Communications Engineering work closely with the described industry, guaranteeing excellent employment opportunities. Besides the telecom sector, other industrial sectors and governmental organisations are looking to hire Communications Engineering graduates. Usually, the career path starts already during studies – for example in the form of an internship, project work or a thesis carried out for a company.
Students can undertake internships in the industry already during their studies. The most successful students are offered the possibility to work in a research group along their studies - read more about the Honours programme in Communications and Networking.
Leader in industry collaboration
Aalto University is among the top-ranked universities in the world related to industry collaboration. As a graduate, you can leverage on our connections. Aalto Industrial Internet Campus offers you the possibility to network with students from other engineering disciplines and prestigious industrial partners.
Appreciated PhDs for universities and industry
Some of our graduates continue their education towards a doctoral degree either in Finland or abroad. Our PhD alumni are appreciated in top universities around the globe, as well as in the industry seeking senior R&D personnel.
Communications engineering students with excellent study progress are able to tailor their study plan towards a research career during their master studies by applying to the doctoral track. The selection is based on excellent study progress and shown potential in the form of a special assignment done in a department research group. Applying to the doctoral track takes place on an on-going basis. More information about the doctoral track can be found on the department web page.
Build the startup of your dreams?
Aalto University supports entrepreneurship and startups in various ways. Our new business incubators, hubs, courses and communities have already helped over 500 startups grow their wings. If you wish to become an entrepreneur, Aalto is the place for you.
Graduates of the programme will graduate with a Master of Science (Technology) degree (diplomi-insinööri in Finnish).
The programme qualifies for doctoral studies (Doctor of Science or Doctor of Philosophy in an applicable field).
Language of instruction
The language of instruction is primarily English, and the programme can be completed entirely in English. Some courses can be taken in Finnish or Swedish. More information is available in the General information about studies page (aalto.fi).
Content of studies
Studying in the Communications Engineering study option consists of lectures, individual assignments, collaborative projects and hands-on experiments. Students enjoy strong peer support and face-to-face help from professors as the group of Communications Engineering students is relatively small.
The Communications Engineering study option has a technological core that is supported by more human-centred behavioural economics and sciences. It focuses on communications and networking technology, networking business, and human-centric communications. Students can follow their interests and choose their specification area out of the following options:
Advanced networking & cloud technologies for mobile systems
Students learn to design data networks, cloud systems, and services for the use of large enterprises and operators (fixed and mobile) taking into account efficiency, scalability, security and reliability. They also learn how networks can be virtualized and run on cloud systems for lowering operational expenses and easing remote management.
Our courses give an excellent basis to understand and develop advanced networking technologies and cloud technologies for beyond 5G networks, data centers, and e-commerce; impacting both private and public sectors. The main objective of our courses is to educate youth and instill in them the capacity to empower the society with innovative mobile services, and help Finland retain the competitive edge in the field of mobile communication systems.
Students learn about network economics, to conduct techno-economic analyses of communications systems and services, to design value networks, and to understand the end-user needs and behaviour.
Students interested in human aspects of communications can take courses on user research, human factors engineering, user interfaces, and AI-based methods for interaction.
Mobile computing and ambient intelligence
Students learn the key information technologies and operation strategies needed for humans to access data ubiquitously while being mobile as well as how various sensor technologies and artificial intelligence techniques can be utilized to make the everyday environment sensitive to the user needs. Our courses give an excellent basis to understand and develop new services and applications in the 5G era.
Students learn about the modern wireless communication system architectures, fundamentals of the underlaying communications theory and signal processing methods, resource control methods and the related spectrum management issues. Our courses give an excellent basis to understand and develop new technologies for beyond 5G radio access networks.
The topics covered in the courses depend strongly on the chosen specification area. In any case, the variety of courses provided is diverse and large. Here are some examples of courses provided in the study option:
- Algorithmic Methods of Data Mining (5 ECTS)
- Big Data Platforms
- Communications theory (5 ECTS)
- Cybersecurity (5 ECTS)
- Human-Computer Interaction (5 ECTS)
- Internet Protocols (5 ECTS)
- Internet Traffic Measurements and Analysis (5 ECTS)
- Machine Learning for Mobile and Pervasive Systems (5 ECTS)
- Routing and SDN (5 ECTS)
- Signal Processing for Communications (5 ECTS)
- Value Network Design for Internet Services (5 ECTS)
- Wireless Systems (5 ECTS)
Structure of studies
The Master’s Programme in Computer, Communication and Information Sciences – Communications Engineering is organised by the School of Electrical Engineering and comprises a total of 120 ECTS credits. The two-year programme consists of:
- Major studies (60 ECTS)
- Master’s Thesis (30 ECTS)
- Elective studies (30 ECTS)
Communications Engineering is one of the eight study options in the Master's Programme in Computer, Communications and Information Sciences. New students are admitted directly to this study option and there is no additional process for choosing a study option after the admission.
At the beginning of their studies, students define their Personal Study Plans (PSP) together with an academic advisor. The primary purpose of PSP is to ensure that the studies support the student’s interests and are completed in a logical order.
Students are required to complete a Master's thesis, which is a research assignment with a workload corresponding to 30 ECTS credits. The topic of the thesis is agreed upon by the student and the supervising professor. Master's theses are typically written for one of the research projects of the department(s) in question or related industry.
The study environment in the programme is strongly international, and studies are conducted in multicultural groups. The School of Electrical Engineering offers diverse possibilities for student exchange all over the world. Exchange studies can be easily included in the degree e.g. as an international minor. Other possibilities for developing one’s global competence are e.g. conducting practical training abroad, taking a summer course abroad or acting as a tutor for first-year students.
Co-operation with other parties
The Department of Communications and Networking operates closely with the national and international companies and research institutes of the field. In addition, the department has academic co-operation with high quality international universities and organisations.
Study-option-specific application instructions
Applicants to the programme must meet the general eligibility and language requirements that are common to all Master's programmes in the field of science and technology.
Admission criteria to the CCIS programme is a high quality Bachelor’s degree in computer science, software engineering, communications engineering, or electrical engineering. Excellent candidates with degrees in other fields such as information systems, engineering, natural sciences, mathematics or physics will be considered if they have sufficient studies and proven skills and knowledge in the required areas.
For all tracks in the Communications Engineering major, a Bachelor's degree in communications engineering, computer science or electrical engineering is required. In addition, the applicant must have solid knowledge in some of the following areas:
- mathematics (linear algebra, calculus, probability theory, statistics, and discrete mathematics)
- software engineering and programming skills
- operating systems
- basics of computer networks
- basics of communications engineering
- communication protocols (Internet and mobile)
Knowledge of at least some of the following areas is considered an advantage for successful study performance in the chosen study track:
- computer architecture
- distributed systems and parallel programming
- practical experience in networking
- software engineering
- communications systems components and design
- fundamentals of communications and information theory
- fundamentals of electronics systems design
- complex systems
- social or behavioral sciences
- user-interface design
In addition to the compulsory application documents, applicants to the CCIS programme are requested to provide the following additional documents:
- curriculum vitae*
- motivation letter*
- The motivation letter should be written in English. The maximum length of the motivation letter is about 4000 characters. There are no specific instructions for the content of the motivation letter except for the general advise that you should write a separate motivation letter for each study option you apply to.
- at least one original recommendation letter (preferably academic)
- You can upload the recommendation letter(s) to your online application form. There are no specific instructions for their content.
*) The lack of these documents will adversely affect the evaluation of your application.
In addition, these additional documents add value to your application:
- course descriptions of courses taken in relevant subject areas (see the subject lists above)
- You can can either copy the course descriptions from the university website or study guide or summarize them yourself. A list of most important topics covered will suffice.
- work certificates and certificates of other relevant achievements
- copies of any publications
- official transcript of records for other university studies which are not included in the mandatory part of the application
- With documents related to degree studies, follow these instructions. With other higher education studies (e.g. open university or other non-degree), upload the documents to your application as part of the study-option-specific documents.
- GRE or GMAT test results, if available
The application should explain the full educational history of the applicant.
General instructions on study-option-specific documents
All additional application documents described above should preferably be submitted in English. If some other language than English, Finnish or Swedish is used in them, the applicant must provide precise, word-for-word translations of them.
Upload the documents to your online application form in pdf-format. Name the file(s) according to format: Name of the document-Lastname-Firstname (e.g. CV-Lastname-Firstname.pdf). Maximum file size is 1.0 GB.
The study-option-specific documents must be uploaded for each study option separately, even if you use the same document (e.g. CV). Please check carefully the study-option-specific document requirements for each study option you apply to.
The deadline for the study-option-specific application documents to be uploaded to your application form is 10 January 2020 at 15:00 (GMT +2).
The student selection process is competitive and the best applicants are selected according to the following evaluation criteria:
- Content of the previous degree(s)
- Study success: grades achieved and pace of studies
- Recognition and quality of the applicant’s home university
- Motivation and commitment to studies in the programme
- Other relevant achievements (work experience, publications, Junction Hackathon competition or other programming competition wins, etc.)
- Language proficiency
During the evaluation of eligible applications, the applicants’ previous study success and contents of the previous degree(s) are checked first. Only the applications who pass this preliminary evaluation will be evaluated against the full set of criteria listed above.
The applicant’s study success will be evaluated based on the grade point average (GPA) and results in key courses. Very good previous study success is expected. The recognition of the applicant’s home university affects the final interpretation of the academic performance.
The minimum GPA for applicants from Finnish universities of applied science is 4.0. Applicants with GPA below the limit cannot be admitted unless they have other exceptional qualifications. Programme’s courses or equivalent courses completed in open university or as non-degree studies with excellent grades may support the application.
The contents of the applicant’s previous degree(s) are evaluated based on the courses available on the official transcript of records and the course descriptions submitted. The applicant is expected to have completed sufficiently studies in the major-specific subject areas (see above). Relevant work experience, professional certificates and/or online courses are judged case-by-case, but they do not, in general, compensate for the university level studies that include also the theoretical foundations of the required subjects.
In the final phase of the academic evaluation, the applicants who passed the preliminary evaluation, are ranked and the best applicants are selected. The programme does not have a minimum quota to be fulfilled, and not all eligible applicants will necessarily be admitted.
Studies in the Master’s programme should provide genuinely new knowledge for the applicant. If the applicant already has a Master’s degree, the motivation letter should clearly indicate why another Master’s degree is necessary. In most cases, non-degree or e.g. open university studies are recommended instead of degree studies to complement the earlier degree or to improve one’s professional skills. If the applicant already has a valid study right leading to a Master's degree in the admission target in question, the applicant cannot be readmitted without special reasons.
For enquiries regarding the application process, application documents and language tests, please contact [email protected].
School of Electrical Engineering
For enquiries regarding the content of programme, studies at the School of Electrical Engineering and the study-option specific application documents please contact [email protected].
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