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Research Part (3rd and 4th Semester)

The Research Part of the Computational Sciences master program consists of three consecutive modules: the Literature Seminar (6CP), the Project Work (12CP) and the Master Thesis (30CP). All three modules are compulsory for all students and deal with the same research topic (i.e. your research question) where you conduct your own research in one of the research groups of your Area of Specialization.

All three modules give a total of 48 CP for the Research Part of your master and are intended for 2 semesters (the third and fourth). In other words, the Research Part usually takes a whole year of your studies and you should make sure that you have chosen a supervisor and research topic a year prior to the end of your master (i.e. before you start with the literature research in the Literature Seminar).


Before you start with the Literature Seminar

The Literature Seminar is the first step of the research part of your master studies. Following that, you continue with the Project Work and finally your Master Thesis. Carefully plan ahead (also together with your mentor), when you best start with the Literature Seminar, so that you can focus on your research towards the end of your studies.

If you wish to take part in the Literature Seminar, make sure you first

  1. Find a topic of interest within your Area of Specialisation,
  2. Find a suitable supervisor (and possibly advisors who help you further).

Once you know what the topic for your research part is and who is going to supervise you, please send an email to with the following details:

  • Your research topic
  • Name and contact email of your supervisor/s
  • Research Part examination form issued by the examination office


Research projects and supervision from external institutions

It is possible to conduct the research part for the Computational Sciences master at an institution outside of the University of Cologne (for example at a Max Planck Institute or in the industry).

For this, your prosposed research project needs to meet certain criteria:

  1. You have at least one examiner from the Faculty of Mathematics and Science of the University of Cologne, who is eligible to examine the content of your Master Thesis and able to co-supervise you during the conduction of your research
  2. There is at least one person at the external institution who is eligible to examine your Master Thesis (usually that means, this person must hold a doctorate degree in the field of your research topic and is teaching at a University)
  3. The results of your research must be available for publication (and not withheld from the public as private property by the external institution)
  4. Your proposed research project at the external institution must be approved by the examination board

If you would like to propose a research project at an external institution, please send your request to and state how your proposal meets criteria 1-3. The examination board will then inform you whether your research project is eligible for the Computational Sciences master program.

In case of questions or problems please contact:

Module Descriptions