Photonics (Master)

Brief overview

DegreeMaster of Science (M. Sc.)
DepartmentDepartment of Engineering Physics
Special type of studyfull-time
IntakeWinter semester
Standard period of study4 semesters
Semester fee€ 264,94 / semester

Requirements and application

Admissions restrictions No local entrance restrictions
Pre-study placementNo
Additional entrance requirements

The requirement for entry is a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant subject, such as Engineering Physics specialising in Laser Technology, organised by the Department of Engineering Physics. A similar technical or physics degree from a university or a university of applied sciences also qualifies as relevant.

Your Bachelor’s degree must demonstrate a considerable level of academic success. This is automatically the case if you finished with a grade of 2.5 or better. You will also qualify if you can demonstrate that you accomplished particularly successful achievements in the second half of your Bachelor programme, if you completed an outstanding final thesis or one that was particularly relevant to photonics, or if you accomplished special achievements in professional practice.

Applicants who did not acquire their qualification to study or their undergraduate degree at a German-speaking establishment must demonstrate that they have adequate knowledge of German, for example by proving that they have passed the TestDaF (Deutsch als Fremdsprache) with an average score of ‘4’, or must furnish equivalent proof.

ApplicationIt is not possible
to apply at present.

Detailed description of the degree programme

Many scientists agree that the 21st century will be the technological century of the photon. Photonics is a collective term for all optical technologies, i.e. classic optics, laser technology and non-linear optics. These technologies form the basis of a dynamically growing industry. Optical data transmission via optical fibres, the use of high-powered lasers to cut, weld and drill all kinds of materials, the development of LED lighting and the use of photovoltaics are just a few examples of the industrial and commercial use of photonics. Our degree programme is perfectly designed to meet the requirements of industrial research and development.


Our degree programme offers you training in engineering physics that covers virtually all areas of photonics. We attach great importance to a sound education with a specific emphasis on practice. At the start of the programme, you will concentrate on the foundations of photonics; in the second half, you will focus on the applications and development of lasers and other optical systems.

Throughout the programme, you will apply mathematical methods and computer simulations, enabling you to become confident in this area. Almost all lectures are accompanied by lab classes, where you will learn how to handle state-of-the-art measurement techniques as well as how to plan and conduct experiments. Some of the lab classes are organised as projects, enabling you to work on your own small research project. In this way, you will be gradually introduced to independent work in research. You will learn skills beyond the subject area as training on the job, including project management, group work and the presentation of your findings in the form of a simulated conference presentation.

Occupational fields

Once you have obtained your Master’s degree in Photonics, you will be able to work in the development department of a leading industrial enterprise involved in photonics in Germany and abroad. Or you may decide to pursue a doctorate and go on to work at a Fraunhofer Institute, a university or another research institution. Both career pathways will be open to you, because our degree course covers not only the foundations of physics, but also industrial applications.

Development work in industry usually takes place in small teams. Since photonics represents the decisive innovative aspect for many products, engineers have a great deal of responsibility. For example, car manufacturers have been trying for years to develop innovative headlights. Thanks to the new LED technology, headlights and rear lights can be made smaller and integrated into a curved body surface. Other exciting innovations concern the development of cornering lights, which follow the turning of the steering wheel, and automatic dimming, when a vehicle’s integrated camera detects oncoming traffic. Thanks to these new technical possibilities, a seemingly minor component such as a headlight becomes important for the market success of a vehicle. And yet the applications of photonics in automotive engineering are much more far-reaching. High-powered lasers are used in production for cutting, welding, drilling and marking. The car itself now also contains new optical systems, such as heads-up displays and infrared night-vision systems.

Photonics is increasingly permeating other areas of life, too: optical systems for diagnosis and therapy in medicine, and systems for optical data transmission and data storage. Our homes contain LED lighting, high-resolution screens, TVs and projectors, while photovoltaic systems are installed on our rooftops.

All of these applications require excellently trained engineers. With a Master’s degree in Photonics, many options will be open to you, as this technology is spreading into all areas of life at an ever-increasing speed.

Content and course sequence

We offer you a balanced mix of fundamental and practice-related subjects. Our courses can be divided roughly into four areas:

1. Mathematical-scientific and technological essentials (Theoretical Optics, Finite Element Method, Laser Physics, Wave and Quantum Optics)

2. Development of systems (Development of Optical Systems, Development of Micro-Opto-Electro-Mechanical Systems, Development of Lasers)

3. Applications (Industrial Image Processing, Optical Metrology, Laser Measurement Technology, Microscopic Methods and Surface Analysis, Optical Communications Technology)

4. Optional subjects (Photovoltaics, Optical Functional Materials, Incoherent Light Sources, Nanotechnology)

The programme is four semesters in duration, whereby the final semester is set aside for completing the final thesis. Depending on your interests, you will either complete your final thesis in industry or in one of the labs at Münster University of Applied Sciences.

Why choose us

Our Master’s programme explores photonics in its entire breadth and depth, and not just as a specialisation. You will gain comprehensive training, preparing you perfectly for the high demand for experts in industry and research. The great successes achieved by our graduates on the job market is an indication that our concept works.

We offer you individual support: Class sizes in lectures, practicals and lab classes are small, meaning that questions can be answered and academic discussions can be held at all times. Due to the wide range of research projects undertaken in our labs, excellent technical equipment will be available for your lab classes. Our professors have excellent industry contacts, which often result in employment contracts for our graduates.