Teaching method

Methods that promote multidisciplinary studies

The Master’s degree programme in physical engineering is interdisciplinary because acts as an interface between physics and materials science. Its versatile foundation exposes students to the wide scope of applied physics from practical training and cutting edge research to majors in the main branches of physics and materials science: nano-technologies, materials science, photovoltaics, fundamental and applied physics and light-matter interaction. Students also have the possibility of studying management thanks to majors in management and small and medium sized business creation. The programme includes a significant portion of the classes with the PHYS (or PHY) designation as well as MATH, INMA and MECA classes, which is evidence of the programme’s multidisciplinary nature. Finally students are allowed to select up to 40 credits of elective courses offered as part of the programmes in natural sciences or medicine at UCL and up to 6 credits of courses in human sciences, which allows for tailor made course schedules.

Various teaching strategies

The pedagogy used in the Master’s degree programme in physical engineering is consistent with that of the Bachelor’s degree programme in engineering sciences: active learning, an equal mix of group work and individual work, and emphasis on the development of non-technical skills. A major characteristic of the programme is the immersion of students in professors’ research laboratories (and at times teaching laboratories, case studies, projects, theses) that expose students to advanced methods used in the discipline and allows them to learning by questioning, a process inherent in the research process. An optional 9-week internship of 10 credits (or 5 credits if completed alongside a thesis) places students at the centre of research and allows them to develop their skills through their contact with the professional world.

Diverse learning situations

Students will be exposed to varied pedagogical methods: lectures, projects, exercise tutorials, problem-solving sessions, case studies, experimental laboratories, computer simulations, internships in industry or research, graduation projects, group work, individual work, conferences given by outside researchers, exposure to cutting edge research, etc. This variety of teaching techniques allows students to learn in an iterative and progressive manner all the while developing their autonomy as well as their organisational, time management and communication skills.