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Education Master's and PhD degree programmes Nanoscience
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Nanoscience

How can cheaper and more efficient batteries and solar cells be fabricated? Is it possible to make a computer that works like the human brain? Can we control the quantum properties on the nanoscale for useful applications?

Nanoscience is an interdisciplinary field at the border between physics, chemistry, materials science and biochemistry, which allows answering these questions. The manipulation of matter on the nanoscale offers new opportunities to solve scientific challenges in the modern world.

The Top Master Programme in Nanoscience has been reviewed as excellent three times in a row (Dutch Ministry of Education) and is embedded in a top research institute. The mission of the programme in Nanoscience is to educate and train future PhD-students who have the drive to perform cutting edge research in this highly interdisciplinary field, excel in critical thinking and collaborate with their peers to reach out for a larger goal. This is achieved using the advantages of a small, selective programme with students, teachers, and research groups in close contact. This allows for intensive and efficient interaction, with plenty of hands-on experiments in the lab and participation in high-level scientific research projects. Teachers and supervisors represent the excellent research groups of the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials National Research Centre. Students follow a challenging and highly demanding curriculum, combining both the broadness and depth necessary for a successful research career. On average, 95% of the students graduating continue their PhD either in Groningen or abroad.

Selective Master's degree programme
This is a selective Master's programme, welcoming a diverse collection of students from all over the world. An on-site interview is part of the selection procedure, where emphasis is put on talent and motivation. The selected students form a small and tightly bound cohort (about 15 students) and receive ample attention from and interaction with our professors. For more information about the selection procedure, please visit this page.

Scholarships available for all students
Admitted students are awarded scholarships tailored to their specific and individual situation. The aim of the scholarship is that no admitted student will need to obtain a part-time job and can fully concentrate on their studies. Typically, at a minimum level, the entire tuition fee is covered for international students. For more information on the admission procedure and scholarships, please visit this page.

Facts & Figures
Degree
MSc in Nanoscience
Course type
Master
Duration
24 months (120 ECTS)
Croho code
60618
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Science and Engineering
Why study this programme in Groningen?
  • Working together with world-class scientists: Topresearchers from Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials National Research Centre provide education in the courses and supervision in four individual projects. The institute is a leading international research centre in the field. It belongs to the Times Higher Education top 20 of best materials research institutes in the world. It unites around 300 leading researchers including Spinoza Prize Winner Bart van Wees, who teaches in several of the given core courses, and Nobel Prize winner Ben Feringa.
  • Among top-3 of all Master's degree programmes in the Netherlands many years in a row (Dutch Higher Education Guide).
  • You will be studying as a cohort in a small but very motivated and talented group of (international) students.
  • 2-year full or partial scholarships for all admitted students.
  • The programme is built around the research cycle, starting with design, proceeding to synthesis and device building, then characterization and investigation, further to the theoretical foundation and returning to improved design.
Programme

Curriculum

2-year programme; credits per year: 60 ECTS.

For the complete curriculum, please see: https://www.rug.nl/research/zernike/education/topmasternanoscience/

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional

In consultation a part of a project may be done abroad.

Entry requirements

Transfer options

Transferring from...

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Applied PhysicsEindhoven University of TechnologyAdditional requirements
Chemical EngineeringEindhoven University of Technology

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
PhysicsLeiden University

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Molecular Science and Technology (joint degree)Leiden University

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Liberal Arts and SciencesUtrecht University

Additional requirements

More information:

University College Utrecht; for students with a science specialization.

ChemistryUtrecht UniversityAdditional requirements
Physics and AstronomyUtrecht UniversityAdditional requirements
Liberal Arts and SciencesUtrecht University

Additional requirements

More information:

University College Roosevelt; for students with a science specialization.

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
ChemistryUniversity of GroningenAdditional requirements
Chemical EngineeringUniversity of GroningenAdditional requirements
PhysicsUniversity of GroningenAdditional requirements
Applied PhysicsUniversity of GroningenAdditional requirements
Liberal Arts and SciencesUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

For students with a science specialization.

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Molecular Science and Technology (joint degree)Delft University of Technology

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Applied PhysicsDelft University of Technology

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Chemical EngineeringUniversity of Twente

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Applied PhysicsUniversity of Twente

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Chemistry (joint degree)University of Amsterdam

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Physics and Astronomy (joint degree)University of AmsterdamAdditional requirements
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Chemistry (joint degree)VU University Amsterdam

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter
Physics and Astronomy (joint degree)VU University AmsterdamAdditional requirements
Study programmeOrganizationTransition
Physics and AstronomyRadboud University NijmegenAdditional requirements
ChemistryRadboud University NijmegenAdditional requirements
ScienceRadboud University Nijmegen

Additional requirements

Additional requirements:
  • assessment interview
  • (motivation-) letter

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
additional subject
assessment interview

Promising candidates are invited to Groningen for a selection interview, mostly between April and June (depending on date of application and visa requirements).

Early bird application: Applications before 15 November will be processed with priority. Promising candidates are invited for a selection interview in February.

grade list

Please submit your previous study results (Transcript of Records) and planning of the remaining course units (if applicable).

knowledge minimum
language test

Sufficient English proficiency on VWO level.

previous education

A universitary Bachelor's degree in either Physics or Chemistry, Materials Science, or in a related field. This is merely an indication of required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the master programme for which you applied.

More information: https://www.rug.nl/research/zernike/education/topmasternanoscience/

Information about admission possibilities and requirements for students with a different academic Bachelor degree or from a Dutch HBO institute is published here: https://www.rug.nl/fse/education/msc-admissions/

reference letter

This is a selective master. In order to be considered for admission to the programme, your application should contain two letters of reference.

(motivation-) letter

This is a selective master. In order to be considered for admission to the programme, your application should contain a letter of motivation and curriculum vitae.

other admission requirements

Optional admissions requirements include:

  • WRITING SAMPLE (optional document)

Provide a report personally written by the applicant that reflects the ability to produce a well-structured and concise report. The assignment handed in is free of choice and can be a report on a practicum, experiment, a literature review, a bachelor's thesis, etc.

  • RELEVANT COURSE DESCRIPTION (optional document)

BEFORE YOU APPLY
Make sure to visit the MSc Application Procedure' page for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

Registration procedure

Early bird application: Applications before 15 November will be processed with priority. Promising candidates are invited for a selection interview in February.

The Top Master Nanoscience is a selective master's programme for which about 15 students are accepted each year. The Master values high-quality and small-scale education with plenty of room for personal attention and development of our students. Therefore, a selection procedure is part of the admissions process. You can find detailed information about this selection procedure on the website of the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials.

SCHOLARSHIPS: Full or partial scholarships are available for all admitted students. We advise prospective students to also look for other scholarships and funding.

For more information about the programme, application and admission, and the curriculum outline, please check this page.

Selection procedure

This means that an applicant must both meet the admission requirements and successfully complete a selection procedure in order to be admitted to the Master's degree programme.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202301 September 2023
EU/EEA students01 May 202301 September 2023
non-EU/EEA students01 February 202301 September 2023

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
assessment interview

Promising candidates are invited to Groningen for a selection interview, mostly between April and June (depending on date of application and visa requirements).

Early bird application: Applications before 15 November will be processed with priority. Promising candidates are invited for a selection interview in February.

grade list

Please submit your previous study results (Transcript of Records) and planning of the remaining course units (if applicable).

language test

MAKE SURE TO VISIT http://www.rug.nl/fwn/fmns-programme/admissions/msc/language-requirements for all the necessary information about required language tests and minimum scores.

previous education

A universitary Bachelor's degree in either (Applied) Physics, (Applied) Chemistry, Materials Science, Nanoscience or in a related field. This is merely an indication of required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the master programme for which you applied.

More information: https://www.rug.nl/research/zernike/education/topmasternanoscience/

(motivation-) letter

This is a selective master. In order to be considered for admission to the programme, your application should contain a letter of motivation and curriculum vitae.

other admission requirements

Optional admissions requirements include:

  • WRITING SAMPLE (optional document)

Provide a report personally written by the applicant that reflects the ability to produce a well-structured and concise report. The assignment handed in is free of choice and can be a report on a practicum, experiment, a literature review, a bachelor's thesis, etc.

  • RELEVANT COURSE DESCRIPTION (optional document)

BEFORE YOU APPLY

Make sure to visit the MSc Application Procedure page for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

Registration procedure

Early bird application: Applications before 15 November will be processed with priority. Promising candidates are invited for a selection interview in February.

The Top Master Nanoscience is a selective master's programme for which about 15 students are accepted each year. The Master values high-quality and small-scale education with plenty of room for personal attention and development of our students. Therefore, a selection procedure is part of the admissions process. You can find detailed information about this selection procedure on the website of the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials.

SCHOLARSHIPS: Full or partial scholarships are available for all admitted students. We advise prospective students to also look for other scholarships and funding.

For more information about the programme, application and admission, and the curriculum outline, please check this page.

Selection procedure

This means that an applicant must both meet the admission requirements and successfully complete a selection procedure in order to be admitted to the Master's degree programme.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202301 September 2023
EU/EEA students01 May 202301 September 2023
non-EU/EEA students01 February 202301 September 2023
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2022-2023€ 2209full-time
non-EU/EEA2022-2023€ 18850full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

The programme is designed for people who want to pursue a career in scientific research.

A PhD in The Netherlands normally takes four years, after the Master's degree has been obtained. Upon successful completion of the Top Master Programme in Nanoscience, the student will be in an excellent position for a career in research in nanoscience and nanotechnology. 95% of the Top Master Nanoscience graduates continue their career in a PhD position at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials National Research Centre or elsewhere.


Job examples

  • PhD research position at a University or research institute
  • R&D positions at companies
  • Consulting
  • Large companies
  • Innovative start-up companies
Research

Get involved in Research at the Zernike Institute - Ranked in THES World's top 20

The Top Master's degree programme in Nanoscience is closely linked to the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, a leading international research centre, ranked amongst the top 20 of the world.

Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials

The Institute's mission is the design and scientific study of materials for functionality. It aims to maintain its position as an internationally recognised, leading, materials research and training institute. As an institute, it conducts research that is addressing fundamental questions in the fields of functional materials. In this way, it wants to optimise the synergy and knowledge transfer between the sub-disciplines of physics, chemistry and (with less weight) biology. Also, the Institute educates a new generation of researchers in a cross-disciplinary approach to better prepare the graduates for the diversity and quality of skills needed in society.

Research at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials

Basic research on materials is directed towards unravelling the relations between the properties that determine their functionality and their chemical composition and structure. The quest for in-depth understanding of these constitutive relations often leads to unexpected boundaries signifying fundamental gaps in our knowledge. Although the structure-property relationship is in itself a truism, the actual linkage between (micro) structural aspects in a material and its physical/chemical properties is elusive. The reason is that various properties are determined by the collective behaviour of molecules, atoms and electrons and their behaviour may be extremely non-linear on different time and length scales.

The classic materials triangle concerns an integrative approach in the three aspects of structure, property and chemical composition. The Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials adds an extra dimension to this traditional view by an unconventional linkage to the field of biomolecular sciences, which includes the design aspects as well.

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Contact

  • Nanoscience Facebook Page (Like us for the latest news or get in touch with Nanoscience staff and students)
  • Programme Coordinator (For questions regarding the programme)
    Email: escnanoscience rug.nl
  • Study Science E-Mail (For students who are interested in a Campus Tour or who have other general questions)
    Email: studyscience rug.nl
  • Watch this videoClose
  • 
						Testimonial of Machteld Kamminga

    My research proposal got funded and led to a PhD position

    – Machteld Kamminga
    Read more

    With a bachelor's degree in Applied Physics, I joined the Nanoscience Top Master programme in 2012. I found the interdisciplinary nature of this programme the most appealing, as I was interested in gathering expertise on areas in chemistry, physics and biology.

    During the Top Master, I have attended several advanced chemistry courses, did my thesis project on single-molecule studies of DNA-based processes and did my Small Research Project on the synthesis and characterization of organic-inorganic hybrid materials. As part of the curriculum, I wrote a research proposal based on my experience during the Small Research Project, which got funded and led to my current PhD position.

    I believe that the programme and the direct link to ongoing research in the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials prepared me very well for my PhD. The Top Master programme allowed me to evolve from a student with a physics background into a researcher in the field of materials chemistry. Being able to work at the border between physics and chemistry, I find myself in a position where I feel that I can make significant contributions to science. Being able to make and characterize materials, gives me the tools I need to develop my career. In addition, I think that the strength of the Nanoscience programme goes beyond the cross-disciplinary nature of the curriculum. Having a small cohort of students (maximum of 15), significantly adds to the learning process. Working with people who do not only have different scientific backgrounds (physics, chemistry or materials science), but also different cultural backgrounds, was the highlight of my Master's programme and has taught me a lot.

    As part of the curriculum, I wrote a research proposal based on my experience during the Small Research Project, which got funded and led to my current PhD position. I believe that the programme and the direct link to ongoing research in the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials prepared me very well for my PhD. The Top Master programme allowed me to evolve from a student with a physics background into a researcher in the field of materials chemistry. Being able to work at the border between physics and chemistry, I find myself in a position where I feel that I can make significant contributions to science. Being able to make and characterize materials, gives me the tools I need to develop my career. In addition, I think that the strength of the Nanoscience programme goes beyond the cross-disciplinary nature of the curriculum. Having a small cohort of students (maximum of 15), significantly adds to the learning process. Working with people who do not only have different scientific backgrounds (physics, chemistry or materials science), but also different cultural backgrounds, was the highlight of my Master's programme and has taught me a lot.

    Close
  • 
						Testimonial of Alina Veligura, Ukraine

    The lecturers treat you as colleagues rather than as students

    – Alina Veligura, Ukraine
    Read more

    I decided to study Nanoscience because I believe nanoscience is a very challenging and 'hot' topic; it really is the future of physics. I was attracted by the integration of chemistry and physics in the programme. The design of the modules seemed very promising. Also, I had some friends in Holland already.

    The programme is very broad. It really gives you an overview of the relevant parts of chemistry and physics. On the other hand, I sometimes wish we had more time to go into even more depth. I guess that will have to wait until my PhD programme. Another strong point is that it really feels like a family. The lecturers treat you as colleagues rather than as students, and we students form a close-knit community. What also makes the programme attractive is that it is nice to have so many foreign lecturers in the programme, as role models. If I could do it all over again, I would definitely select nanoscience and come to Groningen again.

    Close

Study associations

Masters Association of Science and Engineering

MASE, short for Masters Association of Science and Engineering, is the newly founded study association for students of the small FSE Masters in Nanoscience, Behavioral and Cognitive Neuroscience, Mechanical Engineering and Science Education and Communication.
MASE aims to organize social, cultural, career orienting, networking, and internationalization activities. Study association MASE is housed in the Linnaeusborg, in room 0067.
https://www.masegroningen.nl/
Read more