MSc Medical Engineering
The master's programme in Medical Engineering covers the broad and interdisciplinary field of Medical Engineering, exploring the merits and limitations of the technology used in clinical and preclinical applications. Students choose a specialisation in Computer Science, Electronics or Physics, and further specialise in Biomechanics, Health Systems or Imaging. Professionals with experience in both technology and medicine face vast career opportunities.
Medical Engineering at KTH
This is a two-year programme (120 ECTS credits) given in English. Graduates are awarded the degree of Master of Science. The programme is offered at KTH Campus and KTH Flemingsberg in Stockholm by the School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health (at KTH). The school has many relevant research collaborations with the globally recognised Karolinska Institutet and Karolinska Universitetssjukhuset. Students are strongly encouraged to spend at least a term at another university (in Sweden or abroad) through an exchange programme.
The master’s programme aims at training students’ understanding of the merits and limitations of the technology currently used in clinical and preclinical applications. Students also acquire the necessary knowledge needed for them to improve and develop the medical technology of the future.
Medical Engineering is a broad and interdisciplinary field. The programme is divided into three tracks to help students choose a coherent study plan that fits their background knowledge and their aspirations. The tracks are Computer Science, Electronics, and Physics. In addition to the track, you will choose one of three specialisations in different Medical Engineering application areas. These are Biomechanics, Health Systems, and Imaging. The eight possible combinations of track and specialisation are presented in the following table:
The Computer Science track has the aim of helping students with a strong interest in computer science to train their ability to use state-of-the-art computer-science tools in Biomechanics, Imaging or Logistics and management of Health care. Computer simulations of brain damages occurring in car crashes, automatic segmentation of lesions in medical images with neural-network-based algorithms or optimised design of the workflow in a hospital ward through computer simulations, are few examples of applications in this track for the different specialisations.
The Electronics track has the aim of helping students with a strong interest in Electronics to train their ability to use state-of-the-art electronics tools in Biomechanics, Imaging or Logistics and management of Health care. Designing and producing sensors that track and measure human movement, reading out and processing signals from an imaging detector in an efficient way or studying the behaviour of staff and patient using electronic devices, can be typical applications in this track for the different specialisations.
The Physics track has the aim of helping students with a strong interest in Physics or Mathematics to train their ability to use state-of-the-art tools from Physics or Mathematics in Biomechanics or Imaging. Modelling of human movement, optimisation of imaging protocols or design of new imaging systems, are some examples of applications in this track for the different specialisations.
On a practical level, the programme is organised as follows:
During the first year of the programme students from all tracks and specialisations take mandatory courses in Statistics, Simulations, Signal Processing and Theory and Methodology of Science. Also, all students take a Project Carrier course where the theory and practice from the four mandatory courses is applied in projects that are specific to the chosen track and specialisation. Please note that the Project Carrier course constitute 50% of the first year showing that the programme focus lies on the actual application of advanced engineering tools into real practice.
The second year of the master is devoted to elective courses within the track and specialisation and the final degree project. Students are also required to take one course from a list of conditionally elective courses selected by our faculty.
In the final term, each student will complete a degree project. The degree project has a twofold scope. It is used to examine the programme learning outcomes, ensuring that the student has acquired all the necessary knowledge to become a professional in Medical Engineering. The degree project should also be considered the first step to either an academic career or to work in industry. It can therefore be completed at an industrial company, a hospital or an academic institution in Sweden or abroad. Faculty at the Biomedical Engineering and Health Systems department regularly offer opportunities to carry on research projects at their laboratories.
Find out what students from the programme think about their time at KTH.
Healthcare is becoming increasingly technologically advanced; an ageing population requires technical aids. Economic and demographic changes are demanding structural reforms in society and healthcare. This demand generates the need for professionals with an understanding of both technology and medicine.
The master's programme in Medical Engineering train students’ ability to produce and develop medical technology as part of a project group, in private companies or healthcare. A broad professional role makes it possible to work in functional areas such as technical development, sales or administrative project management, depending on competence and personal interest.
The labour market mainly consists of small enterprises, specialised in specific products, and the expanding field also offers good possibilities to start one's own business. Alumni of the programme have had as their first occupation jobs as diverse as a PhD student, engineering consultant or programmer for companies in various technical fields, support engineer, quality control engineer or sale consultant for clinical related companies. Prominent research centres that hired our former students are ETH, EPFL, UCL, CERN and KI. The list of large companies contains Siemens, Philips, GE, Elekta, Maquet, Johnsons & Johnson, SAAB, Skandia, among others. Examples of small and medium companies that have been consistently hiring the programmes newly graduates are RaySearch, Episurf, HotSwap, Sectra and Tobii. Last but not least, hospitals and public organisations with interest in healthcare are also typical employers of our former students.
Graduates from KTH have the knowledge and tools for moving society in a more sustainable direction, as sustainable development is an integral part of all programmes. The three key sustainable development goals addressed by the master's programme in Medical Engineering are:
In the programme, students will study and learn how the human body functions both under normal and abnormal conditions and what techniques are available for preventing, diagnosing and curing various diseases. The programme offers courses that deal with economic and social aspects of technology, as well as ethical issues surrounding technology and healthcare. Courses are offered in anatomy/physiology, economics and entrepreneurship, ergonomics and sustainable development.
Students will receive training in how to communicate with medical staff, as well as in looking at technological solutions from the perspective of clinical practitioners. Specific courses in medical technology aim to develop technical solutions that focus on technical, medical, economic and social aspects.
During their degree project or during any of the strongly encouraged internship courses, students will typically work on developing healthcare technology where it is used or manufactured (for example hospitals or industry). Students can also choose to work on developing healthcare in developing countries and ensuring that care is organised in an economically and socially sustainable way.
Faculty and research
The research at the KTH School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health covers many different areas of biomedical engineering. Some examples are Medical Imaging, Neuronics, Healthcare Logistics, Structural Biotechnology and Environmental Physiology. It is possible for students to participate in several of the ongoing research projects as interns or during the degree project course. Our master's programme graduates and PhD students have been hired by prestigious institutions as MIT, Stanford University, ETH, CERN, among others.