The Faculty of Technology at Bielefeld University is a center of interdisciplinary research. Its cognitively oriented Computer Science cooperates with Linguistics, Biology, Psychology and Sports Sciences for the development of intelligent technologies in the areas of machine learning, robotics, interactive assistants as well as web and multimedia information systems. The Faculty is home ground of several research institutes with many interdisciplinary and international co-operations, such as CITEC (Research Institute for “Cognitive Interaction Technology”), CoR-Lab (Research Institute for Cognition and Robotics) and CeBiTec (Center for Biotechnology). The strong interdisciplinary and research-oriented focus is also reflected in teaching. At an early stage, students of the M.Sc. programs get in touch with the research carried out in these institutes and are well prepared for study visits abroad.
The aim of the Master’s program “Intelligent Systems” is to provide knowledge and skills that enable students to analyze, design and develop complex cognitive systems. Such cognitive systems are characterized by the fact that they perceive their environment and can act appropriately and intelligently in it. Another essential feature of intelligent cognitive systems is their ability to learn and thus to be able to adapt to changing and complex environments, tasks or users. Such systems are particularly relevant in the areas of robotics, virtual agents, multimedia and web information systems. The students are increasingly enabled to work independently according to the scientific principles of cognitive computer science. In addition to imparting knowledge, the Master’s program explicitly focuses on providing practical, professional skills and abilities.
Since the winter semester 2015/16 there is a so-called "Double Degree" programme with the University of Bologna. Up to five students per university and semester can go on an exchange. The students visit the partner university in their third semester and have the option of adding another semester to write their master’s thesis there. In the end, they will receive a master's degree in "Intelligent Systems" from Bielefeld University and a master's degree in "Computer Science" from Bologna University. If you are interested in the "Double Degree Programme", please contact Prof. Dr. Philipp Cimiano for student advisory service.
The master’s degree (120 credit points) deepens the skills and knowledge acquired in the bachelor’s degree and serves to establish the main thematic focus. The Intelligent Systems master’s program completes with a Master of Science (M. Sc.). The regular duration of study is four semesters.
International Exchange and Cooperation
Students are offered various opportunities to gain experience abroad and to acquire international competence. The Erasmus+ program brings them to universities in Europe. In addition, Bielefeld University maintains international collaborations and partnerships with universities on all continents. The International Office provides advice on all matters related to the choice of place to study, foreign scholarships and applications.
The Central Webpages about Study Programmes of Bielefeld University (Dezernat Studium und Lehre) contain information about the programme of lectures for this course in the eKVV (lecture timetable), a link to an overview of the introductory and information events, about the course start, length and scope of studies, admission requirements, application, admission and enrollment, study and examination regulations, and subject-specific regulations.
More detailed informationen about Application, Admission, and Enrollment you will find on the webpages of the Student Office (Studierendensekretariat).
In order to enable the students to specialize individually throughout the first 3 semesters, suitable modules can be selected from the areas “Complementary Basics”, “Advanced Intelligent Systems”, and “Interdisciplinary and Cognitive Science Basics”. In the 2nd semester, the module “Basic Project Intelligent Systems” should be completed. As part of this module, two projects of 5 CP each must be completed independently and as largely practical work. At least one project is to be worked on in a group of more than two students. The tasks of both projects should be based on courses from the 1st semester or the bachelor's degree. In the project module of the 3rd semester, the project-oriented work method is deepened such that students acquire practical competencies and skills for the development of intelligent cognitive systems. They further practice and strengthen their skills in planning and realizing projects. Finally, in the master's thesis the students learn to familiarize themselves independently with a scientific problem and to develop an appropriate solution for it.
This course has an English-speaking branch in which courses are guaranteed for non-German-speaking students. A list of the modules taught in English can be found under “Service”. Knowledge of English is usually proven by a language test (TOEFL (iBT) with at least 87 points, or TELC English with at least level B2). The Faculty does not cover any costs for German courses of international students.
In industry, services and research, there is a high demand for Computer Scientists with an interdisciplinary training in the field of intelligent systems. Wherever robots, intelligent assistants, virtual agents (avatars) or smart information systems are developed, knowledge of the methods and techniques taught in the Intelligent Systems master program are required. Opportunities for a career can therefore be found, for example, in the development departments of companies specializing in mechanical and plant engineering, production facilities, automotive, or media industry, in the development of autonomous systems (robots, avatars, dialogue systems, intelligent assistants) or computer games, as well as in scientific research.
A doctoral study is particularly relevant for students who are aiming for a scientific career after completing their master’s degree. The PhD focuses on the development of innovative research and consists of an independent scientific work (dissertation) and an oral examination (disputation). In order to provide the best possible support for PhD students, the University of Bielefeld is continuously and strategically expanding its dense network of international and national graduate colleges and structured doctoral programs.
At the Faculty of Technology there is the possibility of free PhD studies, as well as of enrolling in the following structured PhD programs:
These Doctoral Programmes include not only the completion of the doctoral degree (“Dr. rer. nat.” or “Dr.-Ing.”) but also offer further individual study, intensive academic supervision, and a range of courses where non-subject qualifications such as presentation skills, writing academic texts or career planning are discussed.