What's the Master of Mechanical Engineering all about?
The Master of Science in Engineering: Mechanical Engineering is a general training programme integrating all disciplines of basic sciences, engineering and technology. An essential element of the mechanical engineering curriculum at KU Leuven is the direct training of each student in a real-life industrial or research setting. Following up on the design assignment in the Bachelor's programme, the Master's programme brings the student in close contact with the industrial reality.
The Master's programme in Mechanical Engineering has three versions:
- A Dutch-language version for students who have already obtained a Master's degree of Engineering Technology: Electromechanical Engineering
- A Dutch-language version for students who have completed their Bachelor's training at our Faculty or at another university with Mechanical Engineering either as a major or as minor.
- An English-language version which mainly addresses foreign students, and to which admission is granted after evaluation of the application file.
The programme consists of five modules.
- The first major component is the core module in mechanical engineering.
- The second major component is one out of five options, which have been put together in a complementary way.
Three generic options
- Manufacturing and Management: modern techniques for the design and production of discrete components, CAD and computer integration in production, management techniques, maintenance and logistics of a production company.
- Mechatronics and Robotics: mechatronics is the discipline in which the synergy of construction, sensing, actuation and control of machinery are concurrently defined and tuned for optimum integration
- Thermo-technical Sciences: physical principles and analysis, design, construction and operation of combustion engines and thermal and flow machines, cooling machines, power plants, etc.
Two application oriented options
- Aerospace technology: physical principles, analysis, design, construction, exploitation and operation of aircraft and space systems;
- Vehicle technology: physical principles, design, analysis and production of cars and ground vehicles and of systems for ground transportation.
The third and fourth components in the programme structure concern a set of elective courses, to be chosen from a list of technical coursesand from a list of general interest courses.
The final component is the Master's thesis, which represents 20% of the credits of the entire curriculum.
- The department has a large experimental research laboratory with advanced equipment, to which Master's students have access. FabLab (a "Fabrication Laboratory") is also directly accessible for students.
- The department has built up an extensive network of companies which recruit a large number of our alumni since many years already, from whom we receive lots of informal feedback on the programme.
- In addition to their academic teaching and research assignments, several members of the teaching staff also have other responsibilities in advisory boards, in external companies, science & technology committees, etc. and they share that expertise with students.
- The programme attracts a large number of students.
- The programme offers students the choice between application oriented options and generic methodology oriented options.
- Many courses are dealing with contents in which the R&D of the Department has created spin-off companies, and hence can offer very relevant and innovation driven contents.
- The programme has a clearly structured, extensive and transparent evaluation procedure for Master's theses, involving several complementary assessment views on every single thesis.
- Several courses are closely linked to top-level research of the lecturers, and they can hence offer up-to-date and advanced contents to the students.
The Erasmus+ programme gives students the opportunity to complete one or two semesters of their degree at a participating European university. Student exchange agreements are also in place with Japanese and American universities.
Students are also encouraged to learn more about industrial and research internships abroad by contacting our Internship Coordinator. Internships are scheduled in between two course phases of the Master’s programme (in the summer period after the second semester and before the third semester).
These studying abroad opportunities and internships are complemented by the short summer courses offered via the Board of European Students of Technology (BEST) network. This student organisation allows students to follow short courses in the summer period between the second and the third semester. The Faculty of Engineering Science is also member of the international networks CESAER, CLUSTER and T.I.M.E.
You can find more information on this topic on the website of the Faculty.
The field of mechanical engineering is very wide. Mechanical engineers find employment in many industrial sectors thanks to our broad training programme. Demand for this engineering degree on the labour market is very strong and constant. A study by the Royal Flemish Engineers Association, identifies the specific sectors in which graduated mechanical engineers are employed.
- mechanical engineering: e.g. production machinery, compressed air systems, agricultural machinery
- metal and non-metal products: a very wide range of products e.g. pressure vessels, piping, suit cases,...
- off-shore and maritime engineering
- automation industry
- vehicle components, such as exhaust systems, drivetrain components and windshield wipers,...
- development and production of bicycles
- aircraft components, such as high lift devices, aircraft engines and cockpit display systems
- building, textile, plastic, paper sector
- electrical industry
- chemical industry
- environmental engineering and waste management
- energy sector
- financial, banking and insurance sector
- communications sector
- transportation sector: infrastructure and exploitation and maintenance of rolling stock
- software development and vendors
- technical and management consulting: large companies and small offices
- education and research
- technical and management functions in the public sector