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KTH semester course pattern

My last post about KTH was mainly describing the different campuses and locations of the classes for the MTLS courses. Here I am going to explain the general organization of the semester and the mandatory courses and electives for MTLS students at KTH.

Semester at KTH

KTH has a different system of organization of semester as compared to the previous semesters at KI and SU. It is partially overlap of both systems to some extent. Coming from KI and SU, it can seem a bit confusing (as Dexter seems to be below) at the beginning, but here’s a short guide to it.

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Source: KTH blogs

Introduction to the period system

The semester is divided into 2 periods or two halves. Each period is independent of the other and so are the courses in each semester. One can take multiple courses in each period, and the examinations for those courses are at the end of that period. Typically the autumn semester’s (Hösttermin = HT) first period spans from the last week of August to mid of October including exams. After a weeks break the second period starts from the end of October to mid December followed by exams in January post the Christmas break. The schedules for the year with official dates are posted at the beginning of each academic year on the KTH website.

The courses run in parallel to each other similar to that at KI and the exams are at the end of the course like in SU and KI. Although, the courses can have different number of credits, all are of equal length in terms of time from the start of the course to the final exams. However, the work load depends on the number of credits.

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Balanced work load for each course                                                                      Image source:

Teaching pattern at KTH

Since KTH is a technical university, the general pattern of teaching and work load is significantly different as compared to KI and SU. The courses demand longer hours of work and the teaching pattern is such that the content of the course is repeated in greater detail over multiple iterations through different ways for Eg. by the professor in the class, followed by assignments and a small projects or lab exercises. The repetition enables us to not just cover most part of the studies in the class and during the semester but also ensures detailed understanding of the material by sequentially increasing the depth of the subject matter over each iteration.

MTLS courses at KTH

MTLS students have 3 mandatory courses in the 1st period and and option to take up 2 electives in the 2nd period.

1st period courses (all 3 mandatory courses) :

  1. Clinical applications of biotechnology
  2. Applied gene technology and large-scale data analysis
  3. Applied programming for life science 3

2nd period courses (2 out of 3) :

  1. Systems biology
  2. Project in molecular life science
  3. Drug Development

I will be talking about each of the courses in detail in my following posts. Stay tuned!