Master of Science in Computer Science Engineering
The Master of Science in Computer Science Engineering trains engineers to creatively and professionally apply information technology in socially and economically relevant applications.
The Master of Science in Computer Science Engineering trains engineers to creatively and professionally apply information technology through socially and economically relevant applications. These applications range from apps for mobile devices, to artificial intelligence, embedded systems, and scientific computing for supercomputers. A computer science engineering graduate has a broad basic knowledge and has the creative skills to conceive, design, build, and exploit information processing systems. This knowledge entails both hardware and software. Computer science engineers use specific models, methods, and techniques that allow them to control the complexity of modern applications. They will take into account the requirements of the customer, the environmental and societal impact, the economic reality, safety requirements, ergonomics, etc. The programme closely interacts with existing research programmes in various university labs and in the IMEC research institute. Students will participate in ongoing research during their study. This will teach them the skills required to carry out personal scientific research. Finally, we ensure that graduates also acquire non-specialised and transferrable skills. In addition to this, the programme also stimulates the development of soft skills, such as team work, effective communication, project management, etc. These skills are acquired through the execution of various projects throughout the entire programme.
The Faculty of Engineering and Architecture (FEA) offers most of its Master’s Programmes in Engineering in English. This underlines the faculty's international ambition, as well as the importance of international education and multiple language skills for students.
The admission requirements vary. Depending on your preliminary training, you are either able to enrol directly, or there are additional requirements.
The computer science engineering education consists of two phases. The first phase is a three year programme leading to the degree of Bachelor of Science in Computer Science Engineering. The second phase is a two year programme leading to the degree of Master of Science in Computer Science Engineering. The Bachelor of Science programme consists of 180 credits. Of this programme, the first year and a half offers a broad education in science and engineering. This is followed by a specialised education in the fundaments of computer science. This structure ensures that a graduate benefits from a combination of a broad technical training and a specialised computer science training. The bachelor’s degree gives access to a range of master’s programmes, including the Master of Science in Computer Science Engineering. The master’s programme is split into two parts of 60 credits each. The first part consists of compulsory courses. The second part consists of elective courses: a master’s dissertation of 24 credits, and 36 credits of coursework. This coursework can either consist of a major in Artificial Intelligence or Embedded Systems, or a minor in Industrial Engineering or Biosystems, or it can be freely picked by the student. This flexibility allows students to give expression to their personal study interests. Students are encouraged to use this flexibility to do preparatory work to kickstart their own business through Dare to Think, which is the local student-entrepreneurship project. Similarly, students can take a range of specialist courses as preparation for doctoral studies.
The Master of Science in Computer Science Engineering trains students to design the complex information processing systems that are at the core of our modern information society. Since information technology is only a means to a goal, graduates will have to get familiar with different application domains (such as health care, financial, production, accounting, …) to make the right design decisions. Graduates start as developer, but will quickly move to higher positions, such as those of designer, project leader, director … The students‘ broad education and their ability to deal with complex situations and challenging engineering tasks will help them throughout their careers to function effectively and to take leading positions in society.
At Ghent University, we strive to educate people who dare to think about the challenges of tomorrow. For that purpose, we provide education that is embedded in six strategic objectives: Think Broadly, Keep Researching, Cultivate Talent, Contribute, Extend Horizons, Opt for Quality.
Ghent University continuously focuses on quality assurance and quality culture. The Ghent University's quality assurance system offers information on each study programme’s unique selling points, and on its strengths and weaknesses with regard to quality assurance.
Ghent University's Education Objectives
Unique Selling Points
- Balanced Range of Contents: the programme sets great store by the discipline’s fundamentals on the one hand, and by applications, practical competences, and soft skills that are crucial for a professional IT worker on the other. Practical competences and soft skills are practised in the project learning pathway.
- Flexible and Topical Curriculum: the curriculum contains 63 ECTS-credits worth of profiling course units which enable the students to specialize and/or broaden their knowledge. The elective course units are adapted to the latest trends and evolutions annually, and are all, without exception, based on current international research conducted at Ghent University.
- Ample Focus on Research and Academic Education: our students need not only have mastered their expert knowledge, they are also trained to becoming competent researchers and professionals with an academic framework of thinking and of values, including a critically constructive attitude, ethical conduct, an appreciation for reality’s complexity, having an open mind, being daring, meticulous, respectful…
- Engineering Education: our students are explicitly trained to take on important leading technical positions in the work field, either as employee or as entrepreneur. In addition to technical competencies, they also acquire management and business competencies.
- Entrepreneurial Programme: the programme explicitly stimulates entrepreneurship. We encourage our students to present their own project proposals in the project course units. Dare to Venture (in Dutch: Durf Ondernemen) and The Foundry are two university-wide initiatives that originated in the Computer Sciences programme. An increasing number of graduates establishes their own job. The companies that have been established by graduates in the past 10 years employ about 500 employees.
- Structure: the programme boasts a clear structure, made up of 80% of compulsory course units and 20% of elective course units. Spanning the first four years, the well-wrought compulsory curriculum ensures that all students acquire every internationally required basic competency. The fifth and last year leaves room for specialization and/or broadening.
- Lecturing Staff: all lecturers are actively involved in international state-of-the-art research, which ensures our education’s topicality. Taken together, all core curriculum lecturers are either author or co-author of 250 academic publications each year. Three lecturers are holders of prestigious research grants issued by the European Research Council.
- State of the Art: our students and alumni agree that the programme is an excellent preparation for advanced studies or for a first job. Computer Science students are regularly admitted to advanced studies at the most prestigious universities in the world. Eleven percent of our alumni works abroad, half of which at large global IT companies outside of Europe.
- Communication: we painstakingly inform our students of the programme’s activities, ranging from events relevant to them, to work placements and student jobs in the IT sector. Master’s students also receive weekly job offers to familiarize them with what the job market has on offer. We start each academic year with a common opening lecture for students from all years.
- Alumni: ever since its foundation in 1992, the programme has been monitoring all graduates’ career paths on LinkedIn, and their accomplishments in the specialised press. Major alumni news is shared with lecturers and students. Alumni are involved in the programme’s quality assurance via of the advisory board.
- Diversity: our programme would benefit from a more diverse student intake, but we realize that this, in turn, depends on the student intake in the programme years, from which we recruit. To that purpose, the programme actively contributes to the implementation of the Faculty of Engineering and Architecture’s diversity action plan.
- Internationalization: the Master’s programme is English-taught but scarcely attracts good international students. Conversely, very few local students complete part of their curriculum abroad.
- Campus Commutes: students are right to point out their frequent commutes between Campus Boekentoren (Plateaustraat) and Campus Zwijnaarde. We regret this and are actively looking for a solution so that education activities can be centralized at one single campus.
This study programme is accredited by the Accreditation Organization of the Netherlands and Flanders (Dutch: NVAO). Accreditation was extended following the positive outcome of the institutional review in 2022. Programme quality was validated by a quality review, i.e. a screening of the Education Monitor by the Education Quality Board. The Quality Assurance Resolution (in Dutch) can be found here.
This information was last updated on 14/02/2023.
In case of questions or suggestions with regard to the publicly available information, please contact the study programme.