Biomedical Systems Engineering – Master’s Study Programme
Master of Science in Electrical Engineering, Information Technology, and Computer Engineering
The course of study is mainly taught in English. If modules are taught in a different language, this is indicated in the corresponding module catalogue.
Examinations may be taken in either German or English (in agreement with the examiner in question).
Winter and summer semester
More information on beginning of studies:
Beginning the programme in the winter semester is recommended. A German language course for beginners starts in September.
Non-EU applicants: 1 March for the following winter semester
Non-EU applicants: 1 September for the following summer semester
Tuition fees per semester in EUR:
Combined Master’s degree / PhD programme:
Joint degree / double degree programme:
Biomedical engineering is an interdisciplinary area in which engineering techniques are applied to medical problems. Graduates with a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering, Information Technology, and Computer Engineering with a specialisation in Biomedical Systems Engineering will have acquired a high level of specialisation, a research-oriented view, and in-depth, domain-specific knowledge at a professional level in the areas of electrical engineering, information/communication technology, and engineering physiology. They will be able to apply engineering principles and design concepts to medicine and biology as well as understand medical instruments for diagnosis and therapy.
The curriculum is designed to provide not only a general background in biomedical engineering but also a special focus on systems skills in electrical engineering, such as control systems, communication techniques, and the measurement or visualisation of biomedical systems for basis or clinical applications. The graduates will have a broad knowledge of signal processing for the acquisition, optimisation, and analysis of biomedical applications for both clinical and research applications. System engineering and mathematical, statistical, multi-scale, computational modelling and optimisation form the theoretical basis of the field.
Typical research areas include molecular and cellular systems physiology, organ systems physiology, medical imaging, measurement devices, robotics, learning and knowledge-based systems, and visualisation.
The graduates will be able
- to take technical-scientific questions from practice, to understand the problems, to formulate them, and then communicate them to others.
- to analyse engineering and technology questions and formulate solutions.
- to understand the impact of design activities on the life cycle of products.
- to adequately report results both in writing and verbally using current technical language and terminology.
- to communicate adequately in their native language and in English.
The standard period of study is four full-time semesters (two years), including the preparation of the Master’s thesis. The course of study may be commenced in either semester.
The study programme consists of a range of mandatory or mandatory-elective modules that define the specific profile of the study programme.
This part of the curriculum is complemented by a large offer of laboratory work, project work, and seminars. In addition, there is a selection of possible courses that comprise courses from all other Master’s study programmes offered by the faculty. Finally, there is an assortment of elective courses from the entire RWTH course programme, including courses in economics and soft skills as well as language courses. German language courses are compulsory for all students who cannot certify a German language level of at least B1.
During the 18-week industrial internship, students will be trained in how to solve current engineering problems while working with renowned industry partners. This is often the first step towards the student’s future professional career.
The Master’s thesis is an independent, predefined scientific project to be completed in a fixed period of six months. It is concluded by an oral presentation and defence of the results.
Successful completion of the study programme requires a total 120 ECTS credits partitioned over the various subject areas as defined below:
- mandatory and mandatory-elective modules from the subject area CORE subjects and ELECTIVE subjects of the selected study programme (graded exams) – 40 ECTS credits
- modules from the subject catalogue of GENERAL elective subjects from the overall Master’s course (graded exams) – 8 ECTS credits
- laboratory course or project as offered by the selected study programme (ungraded) – 4 ECTS credits
- graded seminar from the catalogue of seminars offered by the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology – 4 ECTS credits
- ungraded soft skills, including a language course, one additional seminar (ungraded), and/or one to two additional lab courses or projects from the overall Master’s course (all study programmes included) – 12 ECTS credits
- ungraded industrial internship (including an internship-related seminar) – 22 ECTS credits
- Master’s thesis (including the required colloquium) – 30 ECTS credits
- The Master’s programme utilises the following basic forms of teaching to achieve the defined goals:
- lectures – a serial presentation of material, including specific methodologies
- tutorials – solidifying and deepening expert knowledge and capabilities by solving problems associated with the lecture material
- seminar work – the elaboration of complex questions and scientific knowledge (Basic knowledge is presupposed. Students give oral presentations in the seminar.)
- intensive courses – compact intensive courses composed of lectures and tutorials
- Important additional options for gaining technical competence are available, such as:
- semester and Master’s projects completed in small groups or individually
- excursions – expert guided tours of technical installations and facilities outside the university
- practical (e.g., laboratory) work directly related to lectures
- a minimum of 18 weeks of industrial experience and practice
- Language training provided
- Training in intercultural skills
- Study trips
- Projects with partners in Germany and abroad
Students are required to complete an industrial internship for a minimum period of 18 weeks as an integrated and compulsory part of their curriculum.
Description of e-learning elements
The continuous improvement of teaching is a high priority at RWTH Aachen University. This includes the use of didactically well-founded methods of blended learning. For many years, the lecturers of the faculty have been offering learning materials for their respective courses via the RWTH electronic learning portal L2P. Though these materials initially consisted primarily of lecture scripts and exercises and solutions, the offers have been extended in recent years to include lecture recordings and electronic homework. At present, around 40% of the courses in the Bachelor’s degree programme and 60% of the courses in the Master’s degree programme are offering electronic services known as “blended learning”.
The funding for the digitisation of teaching currently amounts to 550,000 EUR.
Participation in the e-learning course elements is compulsory:
Can ECTS points be acquired by taking the online programmes?
Can the e-learning elements be taken without signing up for the course of study?
- Tuition fees per semester in EUR
- Semester contribution
- Approx. 260 EUR student services contribution per semester
The fee includes a semester ticket covering public transport in all of North Rhine-Westphalia.
- Costs of living
- The average cost of living and studying, including food, accommodation, personal and social expenses, and study-related costs, is estimated to be 800-900 EUR per month.
Please note that single individuals have to give proof of a minimum income of 659 EUR per month at the immigration office in Aachen in order to be eligible for an extension of the residence permit (as of 24 January 2017).
- Funding opportunities within the university
- Academic Admission Requirements
- In order to apply to the RWTH Master’s programme Electrical Engineering, Information Technology, and Computer Engineering with a specialisation in Biomedical Systems Engineering, applicants should have completed their basic studies (Bachelor of Science or Engineering or an equivalent academic degree) at an internationally recognised university. The basic study should fulfil both the subject requirements listed below and those listed in detail on the homepage of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology (https://bit.ly/2FaAyk7).
- at least 28 ECTS credits for advanced mathematics
- at least 10 ECTS credits for physics and physical principles of electronic devices
- at least 34 ECTS credits for fundamentals of electrical engineering including circuit technology
- at least 12 ECTS credits for informatics (computer science) and programming
- at least 8 ECTS credits for fundamentals of control and mathematical systems theory
- at least 8 ECTS credits for advanced electromagnetic field theory or theoretical information theory
- at least 20 ECTS credits for application-oriented courses
- In addition, at the time of application, all applicants are obliged to prove that they have taken the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test and received the following scores: above 75% of all test takers in the subject area quantitative reasoning and above 15% of all test takers in the subject area verbal reasoning as indicated in the official GRE test report. Applicants who are citizens of a member state of the European Union or the European Economic Area (EEA) as well as those with prior educational qualifications from Germany (so-called “Bildungsinländer”) are exempt from this rule.
- Conditional admissions are possible. In this case, additional study requirements have to be fulfilled. Conditional admissions are only possible as long as the additional requirements to be fulfilled do not exceed 30 credit points.
- Admission to this Master’s course requires proof of an adequate knowledge of the English language of TOEFL iBT 90, IELTS 5.5, or equivalent.
- Language requirements
- Admission to this study programme requires proof of adequate knowledge of the English language (TOEFL-iBT 90, IELTS 5.5, or equivalent).
International students who cannot provide proof of German language skills at level B1 or better (according to the CEFR) are obliged to take German language courses as part of their curriculum (equivalent to 8 ECTS credits).