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MJ2510 Methods of research in sustainable energy 7.5 credits

This course introduces theory and methods of particular relevance to research on sustainable energy. Course participants are prepared for their degree project according to KTH's requirements, as well as for a future career full of opportunities in research and development. The course covers basic concepts, methodological issues and ethical dilemmas that arise in science. In addition, we practice critical assessment of methods and results so that participants can evaluate and analyze research material and evidence after completing the course. An active reflection on relevant research questions and approaches within the student's own subject area is a central part of the course examination.

About course offering

For course offering

Spring 2025 Start 14 Jan 2025 programme students

Target group

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Part of programme

Master's Programme, Energy Innovation, åk 1, RENE, Recommended

Master's Programme, Innovative Sustainable Energy Engineering, åk 1, Mandatory

Master's Programme, Sustainable Energy Engineering, åk 1, Mandatory


P3 (4.5 hp), P4 (3.0 hp)


14 Jan 2025
2 Jun 2025

Pace of study


Form of study

Normal Daytime

Language of instruction


Course location

KTH Campus

Number of places

Places are not limited

Planned modular schedule


For course offering

Spring 2025 Start 14 Jan 2025 programme students

Application code



For course offering

Spring 2025 Start 14 Jan 2025 programme students


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Course coordinator

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Headings with content from the Course syllabus MJ2510 (Spring 2023–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

The course introduces theory and methods of special relevance for research about sustainable energy. As a course participant, you are thereby prepared for your degree project, according to the requirements of KTH Royal Institute of Technology, and for a future career full of possibilities in research and development:

Research starts with an understanding of the research subject, followed by a clear definition of research questions and methods to address these. Of importance to the research process is also sources of data, and to treat and analyse data and results. Whether qualitative or quantitative, experimental or theoretical methods are used, scientific research requires systematic treatment of data and methods so that the research results can be validated and knowledge be built. An important starting point is that new knowledge is based on previous knowledge in a perpetual process.

The intended learning outcomes of the course are about how you can problematise in a defined field, and from that retrieve relevant research questions and formulate objectives for your research. As a support to the process, the course trains you to carry out a literature survey with high quality that also becomes a part of the research process. This is connected to learning outcomes 1 and 2.

Furthermore, the course focuses on critical assessment of methods -- you should learn to analyse and evaluate the research process as a whole and carefully consider alternative methods in relation to the objectives and research questions that are treated. Likewise, at the end of the course, you should be able to discuss and propose how both sustainable development and ethical dimensions should be handled in relation to a specific research assignment. This is also reflected in the intended learning outcomes 3 and 4 of the course.

Furthermore, we practice critical assessment of results so that you after completing the course can evaluate and analyse research results, your own or that of others, and assess their relevance and weaknesses. Data and result analysis, interpretation and evaluation as well as analysis of statistical relevance is therefore also included in the course. Here, e.g. regression analysis and correlations is applied, as well as statistical evaluations such as covariance and standard deviation, and this is assessed according to intended learning outcome 5.

Intended learning outcomes

After passing the course, the student should be able to:

  1. Carry out a systematic literature survey in a delimited field related to energy systems and – technology.
  2. Problematise a well described (via literature survey) field, and out of that formulate research questions and suggest relevant aims for research.
  3. Compare and discuss alternative research methods in relation to given research objectives, and based on this give a well justified proposal for a method.
  4. Discuss and propose how both sustainable development and ethical dimensions should be handled in relation to a specific research assignment.
  5. Analyse and interpret, and discuss uncertainty in research results by means of established methodology.

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

English B/English 6, and 15 credits in the subject of Energy at master level  (e.g. the equivalent of MJ2508 Energy Systems for Sustainable Development, 6 credits, or MJ2411 Renewable Energy Technology, 6 credits, and MJ2509 Energy in the Built Environment, 9 credits, or MJ2405 Sustainable Power Generation, 9 credits)

Recommended prerequisites

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Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • INL1 - Assignment, 2.0 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F
  • SEM1 - Seminars, 1.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • SEM2 - Seminars, 1.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • TEN1 - Written exam, 3.5 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

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Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course room in Canvas

Registered students find further information about the implementation of the course in the course room in Canvas. A link to the course room can be found under the tab Studies in the Personal menu at the start of the course.

Offered by

Main field of study

Mechanical Engineering

Education cycle

Second cycle

Add-on studies

No information inserted

Supplementary information

Replaces MJ2475