Master's Programme in Engineering Physics
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About the studies
The studies in Engineering Physics create a basis for technological applications in physics and open the door to a variety of careers in industry, science and research. A profound understanding of physics and mathematics can be applied in finding novel solutions to both present-day and future challenges. The research focus areas include experimental and computational materials physics, nanophysics and nanoscience, quantum technology, and advanced energy technologies. The course places an emphasis on learning state of the art analytical approaches, including database driven and machine learning techniques, offering a powerful toolset applicable in a wide variety of research and commercial environments.
Graduates of the Engineering Physics programme have traditionally found an exceptionally wide range of careers in the private and public sector, ranging from research, to consulting and management positions. A strong education in physics, closely knit to the research at Aalto University and the Department of Applied Physics, is also an excellent starting point for a career in the academia, with over a third of MSc graduates continuing their studies towards a doctoral degree in related subjects.
Typical job titles of recent graduates include: Analyst, Applications Engineer, Cryo Engineer, Data Scientist, Design Engineer, Fuel Expert, Nuclear Safety Engineer, Quality Engineer, Research Scientist, System Engineer, Test Engineer, Research and Development Engineer, Reliability Engineer.
Some examples of the companies where our recently graduated alumni work are: Deloitte, Fortum, GE Healthcare, Minsait, Picosun, Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK), Rightware, Stora Enso, TVO, Vaisala, Vilant Systems, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.
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 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).
The tuition fee is €15 000 for non-EU/EEA students. Further information is available on Scholarships and Tuition Fees page (aalto.fi).
Content of the studies
The major in the Master's Programme in Engineering Physics is Engineering Physics. In addition, Aalto University participates in a double degree programme in AMIS Advanced Materials for Innovation and Sustainability (EIT Raw Materials).
The Engineering Physics major consists of two parts: core content and a flexible choice of courses selected by the student. The core courses of the major cover important topics for engineering physics and methods from computational, theoretical, and experimental physics. The core content also includes some choices for more detailed focusing on a certain subject. The rest of the studies have a very flexible structure, and provide the student with the possibility of focusing in physics, nanoscience, energy studies, or designing a more cross-disciplinary content for the major. The student can also choose to complete a minor subject, or complete a more extended major.
The objective of the major is to give the student the chance of profiling the studies for the future professional life while providing a very strong background in physics and mathematics. The studies include a lot of hands-on experience with research.
Structure of the studies
The student’s curriculum consists of a major (40-65 ECTS), an option for a minor (20-25 ECTS), elective studies (25-30 ECTS), and a master’s thesis (30 ECTS), 120 ECTS in total.
Students are required to complete a Master's thesis, which is a research assignment with a workload corresponding to 30 ECTS credits. The student and the supervising professor agree upon the topic of the thesis. The topic of the thesis is usually related to the student’s major, or in some special cases to a minor. Master's theses are typically written for a company or for one of the research projects of the department in question.
The study environment in the programme is strongly international and studies are conducted in multicultural groups. The School of Science offers diverse possibilities for student exchange all over the world. Exchange studies can be included in the degree e.g. as an international minor. Other possibilities for developing one’s global competence include 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 Applied Physics has a wide network of national and international co-operation, including many joint projects and personnel with companies and research institutes. For example, the Department is part of the Helsinki Institute of Physics, which coordinates national efforts at CERN, and it hosts the Finnish node of the CECAM computational network. It is also part of the AMIS international Master’s programme, offering physics in the context of sustainable raw materials as part of a wide European EIT network.
Additional information on research related to this programme is available on the Department of Applied Physics website.
General admission requirements
The general eligibility requirements are the same for all Master's programmes in the field of science and technology. Please see also the requirements concerning language skills.
Applications that fulfill the general eligiblity requirements are sent to the academic evaluation described in more detail below.
Programme-specific admission requirements
The main admission criterion to the Master’s Programme in Engineering Physics is a high quality Bachelor’s degree in Engineering/Bachelor of Science in physics, materials science or a related field, encompassing a minimum of 180 ECTS credits or equivalent studies (i.e., a degree of at least three years of full-time studies).
- The applicant should have a strong background in mathematics and undergraduate physics (30 ECTS or equivalent in the latter). In addition, students interested in the theoretical/computational track of studies should have good computer skills.
- Advanced knowledge of condensed matter physics and/or practical experience with experimental and computational physics research techniques are considered an advantage.
- A very good GRE test score will also support the application (additional test, not mandatory for applying to the programme).
Students chosen to the programme may be required to complement their previous degree with complementary studies. Complementary studies cannot be included in the Master's degree.
Evaluation of applications
The Department of Applied Physics is responsible for the academic evaluation of the applications. The document-based student selection is competitive and the best applicants are selected according to the programme-specific admission criteria:
- Validity and content of degree(s)
- 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.
- Study success: grades and pace of studies
- 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.
- Recognition and quality of the home institution
- The recognition of the applicant’s home university affects the final interpretation of the previous academic performance.
During the evaluation of eligible applications, the applicants’ previous study success and contents of the previous degree(s) are checked first. Only the applicants who pass this preliminary evaluation will be evaluated against the rest of the criteria listed below:
- Language proficiency
- Previous related activities: work experience, publications, patents, etc.
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.
The programme does not have a minimum quota to be fulfilled, and not all eligible applicants will necessarily be admitted. Depending on the number of applications received, the programme may perform a pre-selection before the final student selection.
In addition to the compulsory application documents, the applicants to the Engineering Physics programme are also requested to provide the following study-option-specific documents:
- 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.
- Curriculum Vitae (CV)
- At least one academic letter of recommendation.
- You can upload the recommendation letter(s) to your online application. There are no specific instructions for their content.
- Brief descriptions of relevant physics courses taken (summary, course level).
- Degree certificate and the official transcript of records for possible other university level studies that are not included in the Bachelor's degree transcript.
- With degree certificates/transcripts of degree studies, follow these instructions. For other additional 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.
- Work certificates, and other certificates of relevant activities (patents, publications, GRE and GMAT results, if taken).
General instructions on study-option-specific documents
All additional application documents described above (recommendations letter(s), work or other certificates, and publications) 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).
For enquiries regarding the application process, required compulsory application documents or English language proficiency, please contact Admission Services at [email protected].
For enquiries regarding the study-option-specific application documents or studies in the programme, please contact Learning Services of Aalto University School of Science at [email protected].
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