Forms of study and teaching style

We want our students to think independently and use engineering methods to meet future challenges. To achieve this, we encourage them to use their creativity and test their ideas. Our students have the possibility to shape their programme to fit their ambitions and our teachers and staff are always there to guide and help.


T
eaching style and learning environment

At Chalmers, as in Sweden in general, the learning environment is open and informal. Students address their professors on a first name basis and discussions in the classroom are encouraged. When you study at Chalmers, you learn to think independently, and to use engineering methods to tackle future challenges. We encourage your creativity, and believe in the importance of free thinking, letting you test your own ideas for real. Sustainability, entrepreneurship and equality are essential aspects of everything we do. Through project-based assignments, we provide hands-on, collaborative experience, focusing on applying theoretical knowledge to solve current and future problems. We have excellent connections with many relevant industrial and social partners, ensuring that our research and education is always closely linked to real-world challenges and applications.​

Forms of study

The forms of study at Chalmers University of Technology are many and varied, depending on what subject you study. You may have everything from lectures in large groups to individual tuition. Some courses have a large number of scheduled hours whereas for others you will have to study more independently. Regardless of the programme, students are expected to take responsibility for their own learning and development, with the support of teaching staff. You can learn more about the different forms of study below:

  • ​Lectures/lessons: Lectures are a classical form of teaching often given before a large group of students. During the lecture the teacher highlights important aspects of the required reading. Lessons are similar to the lecture but it is normally conducted in smaller groups and provides a greater opportunity for discussion in detail with the lecturer and consideration of the required reading material.

  • ​Seminars: Seminars are a form of teaching where students and their teacher carry out a group discussion on a certain topic or book. This form of learning is based to a great extent on the active participation of those present.

  • Laboratory sessions: Students who are going to study subjects within natural sciences and technology will encounter laboratory sessions as a form of teaching. In the laboratory session students carry out practical experiments, in groups or individually, on the basis of what has been taught in lectures or lessons. The laboratory sessions are often reported in writing and, as a general rule, they are compulsory.

  • Group projects: Group projects are a form of study often used in the Swedish education system. In a group project, students work together on a task or they find the solution to a problem. Group projects are often examined through written reports and/or oral presentations.

  • Examination: After each course or part of a course your knowledge is tested. The most common form of examination is the written exam, but other forms, such as the oral examination, project work, laboratory session or essay writing, are also used. You will receive information about examination and grading at the beginning of each course.

The most common grading scale at Chalmers is one to five, where five is the highest grade. You will need at least three in order to pass an exam. On some courses you can only be awarded “fail” or “pass”. If you do not manage to pass an exam on the first attempt, you will have several opportunities for re-sit examinations. In some cases you might be able to gather the credits needed through other forms of examination.

Master's programme structure​

The master's programme runs for a duration of two years, leading to a Master of Science (MSc) degree. During each year, students can earn 60 credits (ECTS) and complete the programme by accumulating a total of 120 credits. Credits are earned by completing courses where each course is usually 7.5 credits. The programme consists of Compulsory courses, Compulsory elective courses and Elective courses. 

  • Compulsory courses: All students enrolled in the programme will study these courses. They are obligatory to finish the programme and provide a good foundation in the study field of the programme.

  • Compulsory elective courses: These are elective courses within your programme where you can choose between different tracks of specialization. 

  • Elective courses: You also have the option to choose elective courses from outside the programme plan. Through these courses you can add different aspects to your degree and form your study plan after your interests.

  • Tracks courses: Tracks courses are part of Chalmers' educational offer, but do not belong to a specific programme or department. Students and alumni work together on challenges based on real-world problems and it can be as a part of your programme or as an extra curriculum. Through the courses you can choose to learn more about subjects that isn't included in your ordinary educational programme​.​

Master’s thesis

All master’s programmes are completed with a master’s thesis, which comprises 30 or 60 credits (ECTS). A 30 credits thesis is done in one semester and a 60 credits thesis takes two semesters to finish. The thesis is an important part of your studies as it shows that you’ve acquired the knowledge you’re supposed to get from the courses in the programme. This is also the part of the programme that you control the most, since you can choose a focus area that really interests you and maybe even will give you a job when you’re done.

When you work on your master’s thesis, or on other projects, you are often provided with supervision from a professor or lecturer. A supervisor will support you and guide you through problems that may occur during your project/thesis. Supervision is usually conducted individually or in small groups. Typical tasks that you can get help with are oral presentations, planning or designing your thesis, conducting a study etc.​

Page manager Published: Fri 03 Sep 2021.