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Masters Degrees (Nanobiotechnology)

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What’s the Erasmus Mundus Master of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology all about?. Within the Erasmus Mundus framework, four leading educational institutions in Europe offer a joint Erasmus Mundus Master of Science in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology. Read more

What’s the Erasmus Mundus Master of Nanoscience and Nanotechnology all about?

Within the Erasmus Mundus framework, four leading educational institutions in Europe offer a joint Erasmus Mundus Master of Science in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology. The partner institutions are:

  • KU Leuven, Belgium (Coordinator)
  • Chalmers, Tekniska Högskola, Sweden
  • Université Grenoble Alpes, France
  • Technische Universität Dresden, Germany

The word Nanoscience refers to the study, manipulation and engineering of matter, particles and structures on the nanometer scale (one millionth of a millimeter, the scale of atoms and molecules). Important properties of materials, such as the electrical, optical, thermal and mechanical properties, are determined by the way molecules and atoms assemble on the nanoscale into larger structures. Moreover, on a nanometer scale, structures’ properties are often different then on a macro scale because quantum mechanical effects become important.

Nanotechnology is the application of nanoscience leading to the use of new nanomaterials and nanosize components in useful products. Nanotechnology will eventually provide us with the ability to design custom-made materials and products with new enhanced properties, new nanoelectronic components, new types of ‘smart’ medicines and sensors, and even interfaces between electronics and biological systems.

Structure

In the first stage of the programme all students study at the coordinating institution, where they take a set of fundamental courses (max 12 credits) to give them a common starting basis, general interest courses (6-9 credits), a compulsory common block of core courses (36 credits), and already a profiling block of elective courses (min 6 credits) which prepares them for their specialisation area. In the second stage the students take a compulsory set of specialising courses (15 credits), depending on their chosen specialisation area, combined with a set of elective broadening courses (15 credits), and do their Master’s thesis research project (30 credits). Chalmers offers the second year specialisation options of Nanophysics and Nanoelectronics. TU Dresden offers the options Biophysics and Nanoelectronics, and JFU Grenoble offers the options Nanophysics, Nanochemistry and Nanobiotechnology.

 The programme contains the following educational modules:

  1. The fundamental courses (max. 12 credits) introduce the students to relevant disciplines in which they have had no or little training during their Bachelor’s. If a student does not need any or all of the fundamental courses, he/she may use the remaining credits to take more elective courses from the broadening course modules.
  2.  The general interest courses (6-9 credits) are imparting non-technical skills to the students, in domains such as management, economics, languages, quality management, ethics, psychology, etc. A Dutch language and culture course is compulsory for all the students.
  3.  The core courses (36 credits) contain first of all five compulsory courses focusing on the thorough basic education within the main disciplines of the Master: nanophysics, nanochemistry, nanoelectronics and nanobiochemistry. All students also have to take one out of two available practical courses where they learn to carry out some practical experimental work, which takes places in small teams. Also part of the Core courses is the Lecture Series on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, which is a serie of seminars (14-18 per year) on various topics related to nanoscience and nanotechnology, given by national and international guest speakers.
  4. The specific courses (min. 21 credits) are courses of the specialising option aimed to deepen the student’s competences. The students can choose 6-18 credits elective profiling programme units in the first year at the KU Leuven from three course modules. Then in the second year university the students take 15 credits compulsory courses at their second year location on their selected specialisation. They can also choose to do an industrial internship on a nanoscience or nanotechnology related topic at a nanotechnology company or research institute.
  5. The broadening courses (15 credits) are courses from the other options of the Master’s programme, which allow the students to broaden their scope beyond the chosen specialisation. Students can choose from a large set of program units offered at the second year university.
  6. The Master’s thesis (30 credits) is intended to bring the students in close and active contact with a multidisciplinary research environment. The research project always takes place at the second year partner university and is finalised with a written thesis report and a public presentation. Each Master’s thesis has a promotor from the local university and a promotor from KU Leuven.

 The EMM-Nano programme is truly integrated, with a strong research backbone and an important international scope. The objective of the programme is to provide a top quality multidisciplinary education in nanoscience and nanotechnology. 

Career perspectives

In the coming decades, nanoscience and nanotechnology will undoubtedly become the driving force for a new set of products, systems, and applications. These disciplines are even expected to form the basis for a new industrial revolution.

Within a few years, nanoscience applications are expected to impact virtually every technological sector and ultimately many aspects of our daily life. In the coming five-to-ten years, many new products and companies will emerge based on nanotechnology and nanosciences. These new products will stem from the knowledge developed at the interface of the various scientific disciplines offered in the EMM-Nano programme.

Thus, EMM-Nano graduates will find a wealth of career opportunities in the sectors and industries developing these new technologies: electronics, new and smart materials, chemical technology, biotechnology, R&D, independent consultancies and more. Graduates have an ideal background to become the invaluable interface between these areas and will be able to apply their broad perspective on nanoscience and nanotechnology to the development and creation of new products and even new companies.



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The Nanoscale Engineering master is a two-year program corresponding to 120 ECTS credits. Students receive a universal and profound training in physics, materials science and electronics at the nanoscale, but also in nanobiotechnology. Read more
The Nanoscale Engineering master is a two-year program corresponding to 120 ECTS credits. Students receive a universal and profound training in physics, materials science and electronics at the nanoscale, but also in nanobiotechnology.

Elective courses can be followed by the students in their desired area of specialization and/or to broaden their horizons. The entire curriculum is taught in English.

A key educational concept of the program is that each student is immersed in a high-quality research environment for at least half of the time in the curriculum. Throughout the academic year, lab practicals and projects are carried out in research institutions that participate in the program, and thesis projects are undertaken in research laboratories or in nanotechnology companies.

In addition to the scientific and technological aspects, ethical issues and the societal impact of nanotechnology, as well as business considerations, are addressed in specialized seminars and courses.

Structure of the Curriculum

First Year (60 ECTS)

The major part of semester 1 is dedicated to lectures: The students follow 7 courses from the core modules and 2 elective modules. Laboratory practicals and mini-projects ensure a smooth transition into semester 2 with its four-month internship in a research group. This internship is prepared in semester 1 already with a dedicated literature survey. Seminars of speakers from both academia and industry complement the educational program throughout the entire first year.

Second Year (60 ECTS)

Semester 3 is again dedicated to lectures, featuring 5 slots for core modules and 3 for electives, as well as some ancillary courses. The entirety of semester 4 is taken up by the six-month Master thesis project, which can be conducted in a research laboratory or in a company, in France or abroad. As in the first year, seminars of speakers from both academia and industry complement the educational program.

Modules and Courses

Core Modules

These courses impart the fundamental knowledge in the nanotechnology field applied to physics, electronics, optics, materials science and biotechnology. Students are required to follow at least twelve core module courses during the two-year program.

Core modules in the first year There are four obligatory core modules in the first year:

Introduction to Nanoscale Engineering
Micro- and Nanofabrication, part 1
Characterization Tools for Nanostructures
Quantum Engineering

Furthermore, there is a remedial physics course to which students are assigned based on the results of a physics test at the beginning of semester 1:

Basics of Physics

Finally, students have to select a minimum of three courses from the following list for their first year:

Solid State Physics at the Nanoscale
Continuum Mechanics
Physics of Semiconductors, part 1
Physical Chemistry and Molecular Interactions
Biomolecules, Cells, and Biomimetic Systems

Core modules in the second year Students have to choose at least four courses from the following selection for their second year:

Nano-Optics and Biophotonics
Surface-Analysis Techniques
Physics of Semiconductors, part 2
Micro- and Nanofluidics
Micro- and Nanofabrication, part 2
Biosensors and Biochips
Computer Modeling of Nanoscale Systems

Elective Modules

These courses cover a wide range of nanotechnology-related disciplines and thus allow the students to specialize according to their preferences as well as to broaden their expertise. Elective modules in the first year Three courses from the following list have to be chosen for the first year:

Nanomechanics
MEMS and NEMS
Introduction to System Design
Drug-Delivery Systems

Elective modules in the second year Students follow a minimum of three courses from the following selection in the second year:

Multi-Domain System Integration
Solar Cells and Photovoltaics
Nanomagnetism and Spintronics
Nanoelectronics
Tissue and Cell Engineering

Experimental Modules

Students conduct lab practicals that are integrated into the various courses, during which they familiarize themselves hands-on with all standard techniques for fabrication and characterization of nanostructures. They furthermore have the opportunity to work more independently on individual or group projects.

Ancillary Courses and Seminars

This module deals with complementary know-how, relevant both for academia and in an industrial environment. Students follow a course on intellectual-property issues. Ethical aspects and the societal impact of nanotechnology are covered in specialized seminars, which also allow for networking with national and international nanotechnology companies and research laboratories. Communication skills are likewise developed through written and oral presentations of all experimental work that is carried out during the Master program.

Internship

In the second semester, students conduct two-month internships in two of the research laboratories participating in the program. The students choose their projects and come into contact with their host laboratories earlier in the academic year already, by spending some time in these laboratories to carry out an extensive literature survey and to prepare their research projects under the guidance of their supervisors.

Master Thesis Project

The final six-month period of the program is devoted to the master project, which can be carried out either in an academic research laboratory or in an industrial environment. Students have the option to conduct their thesis project anywhere in France or abroad.

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This study course is for students who wish to become specialised graduates with an advanced biomedical knowledge concerning the links between the structure and the purpose of biomolecules and bio-systems operating at cellular and tissue level of the human body, in both physiological and pathological conditions. Read more

This study course is for students who wish to become specialised graduates with an advanced biomedical knowledge concerning the links between the structure and the purpose of biomolecules and bio-systems operating at cellular and tissue level of the human body, in both physiological and pathological conditions. The wide knowledge of the techniques is based on a solid practical activity in laboratories during the internship.

Subject to the educational aims of Class LM-9, the acquired knowledge allows specialized graduates to assist physicians in the diagnostic and therapeutic tasks involving the manipulation of cells, genes, and other biosystems requiring applicants to learn special skills in experimental biotechnology (e.g. Diagnosis and gene therapy; therapy through the use of genetically engineered cells; rational design and development of new medicines based on models of molecular targets known or derived from pharmacogenomic knowledge; preparation of nano-biotechnological tools for advanced diagnostics imaging and drug delivery; modulation of the immune response; diagnostics based on innovative processes of science and medical laboratory techniques; immunotherapy to targeted cells); organize and coordinate laboratory activities for advanced research or for diagnostic examinations requiring the use of biotechnological methods and the manipulation of cells or biotechnological materials; organize and coordinate the experimental protocols of clinical research involving the use of materials or biotechnology techniques; design and perform with autonomy research in biotechnology applied to medicine; lead and coordinate, also in governance, development programs and surveillance of biotechnology applied to human beings, taking into account the ethical, technical, environmental and economic implications.

Course structure

First year: Advanced Biomedical Technologies Or Laboratory Activities 1: Cellular And Molecular Therapies Or Laboratory Activities 2: Molecular And Systems Biology, Laboratory Medicine Technologies And Molecular Diagnostics, Pharmaceutical Biotechnology: Design And Analysis Of Biopharmaceuticals, Seminar

Molecular Medicine Curriculum: 6 Months At Ulm University: Glp/Gsp Bioethics, Molecular Oncology, Trauma Research And Regenerative Medicine

Traditional Curriculum: Proteomics And Bioinformatics, Cell And Organ Physiology And Medical Pathophysiology, Genetics, Immunology And General Pathology, Nanobiotechnology

Second year: Experimental Models In Vivo And Vitro, Pharmacology And Molecular Therapies, Stem Cell Biology And Molecular Biology Of Development, Thesis Work

Molecular Medicine Curriculum + Proteomics And Bioinformatics

Career opportunities

Biotechnology physicians will be able to head research laboratories in a predominantly technological and pharmacological environment and coordinate, as well as in terms of management and administration, program development and the monitoring of biotechnology applied on human beings with emphasis on the development of pharmaceutical products and vaccines, taking into account the ethical, technical, and legal implications and environmental protection.

  • To work in industry (pharma, biotech companies) for new diagnostics, molecular therapeutics, regenerative medicine and vaccines
  • To work in academia as a researcher in one of the many fields of Molecular Medicine
  • To be an entrepreneur in Biotech start up companies as a result of scientific discoveries

Graduates will be able to assist doctors in the diagnostic and in the therapeutic phases when those imply the manipulation of cells, genes and other bio systems and when specific biotechnological experimental competences are required.

Scholarships and Fee Waivers

The University of Padova, the Veneto Region and other organisations offer various scholarship schemes to support students. Below is a list of the funding opportunities that are most often used by international students in Padova.

You can find more information below and on our website here: http://www.unipd.it/en/studying-padova/funding-and-fees/scholarships

You can find more information on fee waivers here: http://www.unipd.it/en/fee-waivers



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