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Masters Degrees in Physics, Belgium

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What is the Master of Physics all about?. The programme aims to train physicists capable of working in research institutes or corporate environments. Read more

What is the Master of Physics all about?

The programme aims to train physicists capable of working in research institutes or corporate environments. Upon successful completion of the programme, students will have acquired:

  • thorough knowledge of physics in general as well as more in-depth knowledge of at least one specialized area;
  • the ability to make sound judgments informed by current research;
  • the ability to gain new insights and results and to develop new methods;
  • the ability to solve physical problems using the most appropriate experimental and/or theoretical methods and to report on research findings;
  • the ability to structure and analyse specific problems in different situations;
  • strong teamwork skills;
  • the ability to communicate findings and insights;
  • a critical understanding of the role that physics plays in society.

This is an initial Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.

Structure

After a semester with advanced courses in different disciplines of physics, you choose a major research specialization consisting of advanced and specialized courses and a master’s thesis of 30 ECTS.

The remaining 30 ECTS allow you to follow one of two options: Research or Physics in Society.

  • The Research option prepares you for a research career in academia or industry. You broaden your research skills by choosing a minor research domain, including at least 12 ECTS courses from that domain and complemented by a research internship or with other courses.
  • The Physics and Society option offers you the opportunity to prepare for a career as a physicist outside academia, through courses preparing you for entrepreneurship or via an internship in a company.

Department

The mission of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is exploring, understanding and modelling physical realities using mathematical, computational, experimental and observational techniques. Fifteen teams perform research at an international level. Publication of research results in leading journals and attracting top-level scientists are priorities for the department.

New physics and innovation in the development of new techniques are important aspects of our mission. The interaction with industry (consulting, patents...) and society (science popularisation) are additional points of interest. Furthermore, the department is responsible for teaching basic physics courses in several study programmes.

Objectives

The master students will grow into independent and critical scientists. Masters of physics will have developed sufficient knowledge and skills to participate in competitive national or international PhD programmes. Moreover the acquired research methodology will prepare the student for employment as a scientist in any chosen profession.

The curriculum is constructed in a way that the student can specialize in an area of choice by joining one of the research groups of the department. This specialization can be in the field of nuclear physics, condensed matter physics ortheoretical physics. A major part of the curriculum consists of research resulting in a master thesis. The subject of the thesis is chosen by the student during the course of the second semester of the 1st Master year and students join a research team from the 3th semester onwards.

The students can choose an option to prepare themselves better for a future in research or in industry or society related fields.

In the option "research" the student can take courses from another research specialization than its major one, which can be accompanied by an internship in one of the research teams of this minor discipline. As such our students have the possibility to broaden their knowledge in at least two scientific disciplines (in physics or a related field), which is invaluable when a further research career in or out of academia is considered.

In the option "Physics for society" students can choose for an internship of a full semester in a company or they can take courses from the LCIE Entrepreneurship Academy who wants to prepare academics for entrepreneurschip.

The Erasmus programme of the European Union offers an excellent opportunity for Belgian students who would like to combine their study with experience outside the KU Leuven. All research groups of the department have a network of European collaborators and we advise interested students to integrate this exchange with their thesis research during their second Master year. Choices concerning the Erasmus programme need to be made in December of the 1st Master year. Address the Erasmus coordinator to obtain specific information on this European programme.

Career perspectives

The Department of Physics and Astronomy at KU Leuven generates substantial research funding. Consequently, many research positions are available, and more than half the students obtaining a master’s degree in physics eventually start a PhD programme in one of the department’s research groups.

A number of graduates prefer to pursue a second master’s degree, with medical radiation physics, environmental sciences, and statistics as the most popular subjects. There are also excellent career opportunities in industry (ICT, material research, electronics), consulting, government, banking (statistics), and higher education. Unemployment is nonexistent among newly graduated physicists.



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Are you interested in theoretical and/or experimental research of elementary particles, stars and the universe? Do you want to attend lectures by Nobel… Read more

Something for you?

Are you interested in theoretical and/or experimental research of elementary particles, stars and the universe? Do you want to attend lectures by Nobel Prize laureates and other internationally renowned researchers during your education? Do you want to participate actively in the latest, innovative experiments at CERN or on Antarctica? Or do you aspire to have a career in academia, industry, banking, in the medical sector or education? In that case this Master programme is what you are looking for!

About the programme

This MSc programme combines the expertise in research of both the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Ghent University (UGent). This allows you to tailor your study programme according to your interests. The programme consists of several components: basic competences, electives, Master’s thesis and, specifically for the minor Research, mobility / internship. Mobility means taking courses at another university, usually in Belgium, while the internship can be either in Belgium or abroad.

Content

Elementary particles
The structure of this Master’s programme ensures a broad formation as a physicist and offers you the opportunity to partake in top-level research in our very own research groups. This programme focuses on the physics of elementary particles, where both experimental and theoretical research topics are discussed, as well as astro-particle physics.

Experimental physicist
As an aspiring experimental physicist you can focus on the experimental study of high-energy interactions and cosmic radiation, and you can work with the most innovative detectors in the biggest particle accelerators.

Theoretical physicist
As a future theorist you will be confronted with gauge theories, strings and branes, gravitation and cosmology. This theoretical part has links with theoretical research in astrophysics, since that discipline studies the evolution of massive double stars, the evolution of star birth galaxies and the chemical evolution of galaxies.

Astronomer
As an aspiring astronomer you can choose to do observational research on topics such as astroseismology and the development of photometric techniques.

Quantum physics
Finally, you can also decide to specialise in the most fundamental aspects of quantum physics and its recent applications in the field of quantum information.

Curriculum

The curriculum consists of four components:

1. Mandatory courses
2. Electives
3. Internship
4. Master thesis
This structure ensures that you will have a solid formation as a physicist, while offering you the possibility to participate in high-level research in our research groups.

Room for interaction and discussion

Physics students at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel attend lectures, exercises, lab sessions and excursions in small groups. There is room for interaction and discussion, and a low threshold for students to actively participate. This programme pays special attention to critical analysis.

The different research groups at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel are in close contact with leading universities and research institutes around the world, which allows you to do part of your studies and/or the research for your Master’s thesis abroad. Our research groups work for example at the particle accelerator at CERN.

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What is the Master of Astronomy and Astrophysics all about?. The Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics programme offers a wide range of courses on the subfields of astronomy and on research methodology. Read more

What is the Master of Astronomy and Astrophysics all about?

The Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics programme offers a wide range of courses on the subfields of astronomy and on research methodology. Special attention will be devoted to the analysis and astrophysical interpretation of data, as well as totechnological aspects of international astronomical research.

Upon successful completion of this programme, students will have acquired:

  • thorough insight into various aspects of astronomy;
  • insight into the sciences contributing to astronomy;
  • a critical research attitude developed through gradual training;
  • the ability to define and formulate strategies to study complex questions;
  • the ability to integrate technological developments in basic researcht;
  • the ability to construct simple numeric and physical-mathematical models to study data within a theoretical framework.

This is an initial Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.

Structure

The Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics programme consists of 120 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System - ECTS), divided over two years. In the first year, theoretical courses provide a solid foundation for further study, while students develop their research skills by undertaking a research project. The second year includes the Master’s thesis, i.e. an extensive written report of research conducted in one of the department’s astronomy research groups. 

Institute

The Institute of Astronomy conducts research on stellar astrophysics. The research performed at the institute is situated in the domain of stellar astrophysics and stellar evolution in a very broad context. Specific research themes of the institute include asteroseismology, stellar evolution and exoplanets.

A particular area of expertise is asteroseismology, the field that studies the internal structure of stars (massive stars, red giants, blue subdwarfs) through the observation and theoretical interpretation of their oscillation spectra. Early and late evolutionary phases of single and binary low-mass stars are investigated, with a particular focus on the interaction of stars with their circumstellar environments. The institute is involved in the development and exploitation of both ground-based and space-based instrumentation

Department

The mission of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is exploring, understanding and modelling physical realities using mathematical, computational, experimental and observational techniques. Fifteen teams perform research at an international level. Publication of research results in leading journals and attracting top-level scientists are priorities for the department.

New physics and innovation in the development of new techniques are important aspects of our mission. The interaction with industry (consulting, patents...) and society (science popularisation) are additional points of interest. Furthermore, the department is responsible for teaching basic physics courses in several study programmes.

Objectives

This Master's programme is strongly connected to research in astronomy and astrophysics and aims to prepare the students for research in this area.

At the end of this study the student will have acquired:

  • thorough insight into several aspects of astronomy;
  • insight into the sciences that contribute to astronomy;
  • a good research attitude through gradual training;
  • the ability to define and formulate a strategy to study a complex question;
  • the ability to integrate technological developments in fundamental research;
  • the ability to make simple numeric and physical-mathematical models to study data within a theoretical framework.

Career perspectives

A research-oriented Master's programme in astronomy and astrophysics is essential to ensuring high-quality astronomy research. Graduates will have a competitive advantage when applying for a PhD, either locally or abroad, and the skills they acquire will also prepare them for research careers in a broad range of professional environments.



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The space sector plays an important role in economic, social, technological and scientific developments. The future of the sector and its manifold applications require highly skilled experts with a broad interdisciplinary perspective. Read more

The space sector plays an important role in economic, social, technological and scientific developments. The future of the sector and its manifold applications require highly skilled experts with a broad interdisciplinary perspective. The development of innovative space technologies is fostered by an intense symbiosis between technological sectors and the challenges set by fundamental research in exact and biomedical sciences. Additionally, the economic and social valorisation of space technologies requires an efficient relationship between project developers and the economic sector.

The large scale of space projects imposes important constraints on management. The international character of the space sector and of its broad applications, including the relevance of space for security and defence, implies a need for European and international legal and political measures.

What is the Master of Space Studies all about?

The Master of Space Studies programme is designed to prepare scientists to respond to a myriad of challenges and opportunities. In addition to coursework in space sciences, the curriculum is enriched by a Master's thesis and a series of guest lecturers from international, national and regional institutions.

This is an advanced Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.

Structure

The programme is conceived as an advanced master’s programme and as such it requires applicants to have successfully completedan initial master’s programme in either the humanities and social sciences, exact sciences and technology or biomedical sciences.

  • The interdisciplinary nature of the programme is expressed by the common core of 25 ECTS in introductory coursework. These courses are mandatory for every student. They acquaint the student with the different aspects that together form the foundation of space-related activities. The backgrounds of the students in programme are diverse, but all students have the ability to transfer knowledge across disciplines.
  • Depending on their background and interests, students have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge through more domain-specific optional courses, for a total of 20 ECTS, covering the domains of (A) Space Law, Policy, Business and Management, (B) Space Sciences and (C) Space Technology and Applications, with the possibility to combine the latter two. 
  • For the master’s thesis (15 ECTS), students are embedded in a research team of one of the organising universities, or in an external institute, organisation or industrial company, in which case an academic supervisor is assigned as the coordinator of the project. The master’s thesis is the final section of the interdisciplinary programme, in which the acquired knowledge and abilities are applied to a complex and concrete project.

Department

The mission of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is exploring, understanding and modelling physical realities using mathematical, computational, experimental and observational techniques. Fifteen teams perform research at an international level. Publication of research results in leading journals and attracting top-level scientists are priorities for the department.

New physics and innovation in the development of new techniques are important aspects of our mission. The interaction with industry (consulting, patents...) and society (science popularisation) are additional points of interest. Furthermore, the department is responsible for teaching basic physics courses in several study programmes.

Objectives

The objectives of the programme are to develop students' knowledge of all aspects of space studies generally and, specifically, to impart:

  • the ability to situate the relevance of students' own curriculum in the broad field of space studies
  • specialised knowledge and attitudes in specific fields relevant to space studies;
  • insight in the development and realisation of large international projects;
  • abilities necessary for the guiding of complex projects.

Career perspectives

Graduates will be in a position to develop a career in the space sector or in space research.

Depending on his/her previous degree, the student will find opportunities in the space industry (engineers, product developers and technical-commercial functions with a high degree of technical and financial responsibilities), research institutions with activities in space (researchers and project developers), (inter)governmental bodies with responsibilities in research and development programmes related to space (project managers and directors, policy makers on national, European and international levels). The spectrum of employment possibilities encompasses not only the space sector as such, but also the broader context of companies and organisations which use or are facilitated by space missions.



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The Erasmus Mundus Master of Science in Photonics is an international English-taught course programme with a duration of 2 years set up in the context of the Erasmus Mundus programme of the European Union since 2006. Read more

About the programme

The Erasmus Mundus Master of Science in Photonics is an international English-taught course programme with a duration of 2 years set up in the context of the Erasmus Mundus programme of the European Union since 2006. This master programme is offered by three leading European universities in the field of photonics: Ghent University (acting as coordinator), Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium) and St-Andrews University (UK). Furthermore the consortium has added Associated Academic Partners (NTU - National Taiwan University, Taiwan, EPFL - Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland, DTU - Technical University of Denmark, Denmark - Royal Institute of Technology - KTH, Stockholm (Sweden) and UPV - Universidad Politécnica de Valencia, Spain) to the programme to offer all students a thesis in their field of specialization.

Core and advanced photonics courses

Two universities in Belgium (Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Universiteit Gent, programme coordinator), two in Scotland (St.-Andrews University and Heriot-Watt University) and one in Sweden (Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan, Stockholm) have jointly organised the Erasmus Mundus Master of Science in Photonics since September 2006.

This Master offers:

- A specialization in photonic materials, components and systems. Lasers and LED's, optical fibres and liquid crystals, optical sensors and detectors will reveal all their secrets to you.
- A wide variety of elective courses in ICT, electronics, business aspects of photonics, multimedia etc.
- An industrial internship which will give you the opportunity to get in touch with the Photonics Industry
- A multi-disciplinary training in Photonics and Photonics-related subjects, organized
by four European universities that are all at the top of the innovative world of Photonics
- The opportunity to broaden your knowledge and skills in other domains, such as ICT, biosciences, physics and chemistry of materials, industrial management etc.

The graduates of this programme receive a joint UGent-VUB Master of Science degree in Photonics

Approach

Core and advanced photonics courses:
The first year will be devoted mainly to a programme of core photonics courses with essentially the same content at all institutes, complemented by a number of advanced photonics courses as well as several courses in related disciplines and transferable skill courses.

Move to another location:
In the second year you will move to another location where you will continue to take advanced photonics, multidisciplinary and transferable skill courses and where you will carry out your master thesis (30 ECTS) in a photonics sub-field of their choice. In addition to the regular courses, all students will attend a two-week summer school at the end of the first and second year of the programme.

International opportunities

This Master's programme offers both EU and non-EU students the opportunity to enroll in an international programme and to spend a year in two of the three countries mentioned above. It’s a multi- disciplinary programme covering electrical engineering, basic physics, material technologies, electronics and applications in different fields.

Contact with different European cultures and languages:
In addition, they will be brought into contact with several European cultures and languages and will get the chance to live in different European capitals (Brussels and Stockholm) and/or European cities (Gent, Edinburgh and Saint Andrews), cities with a rich cultural heritage.

For your master thesis you can travel to the following EMMP partner institutions who excel in photonics research:
- Overseas partnership: National Taiwan University (R.O.C. Taiwan)
- Associated European partners: Danmarks Tekniske Universitet (Denmark), École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (Switzerland), Universitat Politècnica de València (Spain)

Curriculum

Available on http://studiegids.ugent.be/2013/EN/FACULTY/E/MABA/EMEMMP/EMEMMP.html

Admission requirements



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This interuniversity 'master after master' program (60 ECTS) is jointly organized by the Belgian Nuclear Higher Education Network (BNEN), a consortium of six Belgian universities. Read more

Organizing institutions

This interuniversity 'master after master' program (60 ECTS) is jointly organized by the Belgian Nuclear Higher Education Network (BNEN), a consortium of six Belgian universities: Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Universiteit Gent, Université de Liège , Université Catholique de Louvain et Université Libre de Bruxelles and the Belgian Nuclear Research Centre (SCK-CEN). Students can enroll for this master program at each of the six partner universities. The program is built up of 31 ECTS of common compulsory courses, 9 ECTS of elective courses and a compulsory Master Thesis of 20 ECTS.

The primary objective of the programme is to educate young engineers in nuclear engineering and ts applications and to develop and maintain high-level nuclear competences in Belgium and abroad. BNEN catalyses networking between academia, research
centres, industry and other nuclear stakeholders. Courses are organised in English and in a modular way: teaching in blocks of one to three weeks for each course, allowing for optimal time management for professional students and facilitating registration for individual modules.
All courses take place at SCK•CEN, in Mol, Belgium. The lectures take place in a dedicated, brand-new classroom in the conference centre of SCK•CEN (Club-House), located in a wooded area and nearby the SCK•CEN restaurant and library services. SCK•CEN offers a variety of accommodation options: houses, villas, studios and dormitories. For more information visit: http://www.sckcen.be

About the programme

The one-year progamme was created in close collaboration with representatives of the utility companies and power plants and teaches students in all aspects of nuclear technology and its applications, creating nuclear engineering
experts in the broad sense. Exercises and hands-on sessions in the specialised laboratories of SCK•CEN complement the theoretical classes and strengthen the development of nuclear skills and attitudes in a research environment. Various technical visits
are organised to research and industrial nuclear facilities.
The programme can be divided into three core blocks:
ƒ- A set of introductory courses allowing refreshing or first contact with the basic notions of nuclear physics, material sciences and the
principles of energy production through use of nuclear phenomena.
ƒ- A core block of nuclear engineering applied to power generation and reactor use; theory of reactors and neutronics, thermal hydraulic problems encountered in reactor exploitation, the nuclear fuel cycle and the specific material corrosion problems.
-ƒ An applications block where safe and reliable operation of nuclear power plants and the legal and practical aspects of radiation protection and nuclear measurements are discussed.

Scholarships

BNEN grants are available for full-time students.

Curriculum

http://www.vub.ac.be/en/study/nuclear-engineering/programme

Nuclear energy: introduction 3 ECTS credits
Introduction to nuclear physics 3 ECTS
Nuclear materials I 3 ECTS
Nuclear fuel cycle and applied radiochemistry 3 ECTS
Nuclear materials II 3 ECTS
Nuclear reactor theory 8 ECTS
Nuclear thermal hydraulics 6 ECTS
Radiation protection and nuclear measurements 6 ECTS
Operation and control 3 ECTS
Reliability and safety 3 ECTS
Advanced courses 4 ECTS
Master thesis 15 ECTS
Total 60 ECTS

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The programme is co-organised by Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Universite Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), offering students the possibility to obtain a double master's degree at the end of the programme. Read more

About the programme

The programme is co-organised by Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Universite Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), offering students the possibility to obtain a double master's degree at the end of the programme. The first year of courses is taught at the ULB Engineering Campus in Brussels, while the second year is taught at VUB.

The Master of Science in Architecture trains designers to realize the synergy between the engineering and the architecture disciplines.

The programme provides students with an advanced level of knowledge and insight and makes them proficient in the creative and inventive use of the engineering and architectural knowledge in a complex architectural design.

The training is characterized by the integration of scientific research in education. The design studio acts as a crystallization point in the application of knowledge with respect to architectural design, structural design, installation techniques and urban planning. Given the complex and more advanced nature of architectural design at Master level, it requires the interaction between various disciplines combined with a scientific attitude.

The programme prepares students to a wide range of job profiles such as architectural and structural engineer, project manager, consultant, employee or executive in an architectural or engineer office, supervisor of the built heritage, policy maker for urban planning, researcher and others.

The programme consist of a fixed number of compulsory courses and a number of optional courses . The second year also includes a master thesis. In this master thesis it is requested to realize a synergy between a research study and an architectural design.

Curriculum

Available on http://www.vub.ac.be/en/study/architectural-engineering/programme

Tuition fees

• €837 per year for EEA students
• €2500 per year for non-EEA students (student who require a student visa)

Student profile

You are looking for a career which is creative, challenging and fulfilling
You are driven by architectural and constructional design
You are looking for an engineering degree which combines the challenges and inventiveness of the modern building industry with a flair for originality and creativity
You are interested to study in an international environment

Admission requirements

Applicants should have acquired the following knowledge during their undergraduate studies:

For architectural science: to be able to make use of the knowledge concerning architectural theory and history in project proposals and to discourse on architectural subjects in a reasoned and critical way;

For engineering sciences: to posses the more specialized knowledge for the calculation and simulation of all technical aspects related to the execution of a project, ranging from the stability of structures, foundation techniques, building physics, building acoustics, heating, durability, lighting to the use of new materials, lightweight constructions, the re-use and renovation of existing buildings and the 4D-design;

For design: to have insight into complex problems, to be able to formulate and define a problem, to integrate multi-disciplinary knowledge in the design, to justify the steps taken in a design process, to implement design insights on a distinctive way and to present and communicate, including critical reflection.

Additionally, applicants should be proficient in English

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