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Cartography

Master of Science (M.Sc.)

The international Erasmus Mundus Master program in Cartography is a cooperation between the Technical University of Munich, Vienna University of Technology, TU Dresden and the University of Twente. The program is devoted to a broad education in cartography and geoinformatics.

Department of Aerospace and Geodesy

Key Data

Type of Study
  • Full Time
Required Language Proficiency Language of Instruction
  • English
Main Locations
Admission Category Start of Degree Program
  • Winter Semester (October)
Standard Duration of Studies
(Number of Semesters)
  • 4 semesters fulltime
Credits Costs

Information on Degree Program

What does this program cover?

The program in cartography covers knowledge of and competencies in the visual representation, analysis and exploration of the digital Earth, together with its spatiotemporal elements and circumstances. The content of the program focuses chiefly on methods and applications in the areas of data modelling, data analysis and the visualization of geographical information.

The master's program in Cartography is devoted, in particular, to answering complex questions relating to the spatiality of a globalized and digitalized society. As such, it considers how the cartographic visualization and analysis of our environment is gaining an ever greater significance in many disciplines – from environmental and climate protection to geology, spatial planning or agriculture and forestry.

In addition to conveying the fundamentals of the discipline and its methodologies, the program concentrates on the readable, aesthetic, and user-friendly visualization of geographical data, as well as the development of new methods of representation in the area of modern cartography (Web and Internet cartography).

Given the program's international character, each semester takes place at a different partner university. As an international master's, the program is taught entirely in English.

For a comprehensive description of the program, please refer to the degree program documentation:

How is the program structured?

The full-time program comprises four semesters (120 ECTS). Students obtain 30 ECTS per semester/at each university as well as 30 ECTS for the master's thesis. All graduates are awarded a M.Sc. in Cartography and they receive a "Joint Degree" certificate from the four partner universities.

Students form a single group during the first three semesters and proceed together to the next university at the start of each new semester. The program begins in the winter semester at the Technical University of Munich.

The first semester is devoted to conveying the fundamentals of cartography, providing the basis for the subsequent program. Students complete the second semester at TU Wien and the third at TU Dresden. Central to the second and third semesters is the acquisition of knowledge from specific areas of cartography that allows individuals to pursue their own specialization. In addition, online modules provided by the University of Twente accompany the first and third semesters. Students choose one of the four universities at which to spend their forth semester completing their master's thesis.

What is the language of instruction?

Required language skills for admission:

You need sufficient English language skills if you wish to apply for this program. Evidence of your language proficiency has to be submitted before the end of the application deadline. Learn more about recognized certificates and other ways to prove your English language skills.

This evidence of your language proficiency confirms that you comply with the minimum language requirements for admission to the program. Depending on the program and your individual background, it may be necessary for you to keep working on your language skills during your studies. Be sure to take a look at the services of our Language Center.  

Language of instruction:

The language of instruction for this program is English.

Which further expertise and skills will I acquire?

Graduates of the international master program Cartography have in-depth competence in the entire field of cartography. Fundamental knowledge in spatial data modelling, analysis and visualization of geographic information is acquired by all students. Students learn to master recent theories, methods and procedures connected to map production and map use in the context of modern cartography and geoinformatics. Graduates are capable of developing cartographic research projects and implementing them in a professional and economic way.Degree holders have the ability to capture, model, manage, analyze and visualize spatial data. They can competently handle databases and geographic information systems and manage rule-based graphic data processing in all forms and for all user groups. They are able to master all publication forms and media, from print media to electronic multimedia including web-publishing. Students gain those skills in various techniques and methods for processing and visualizing geodata that are complemented by professional evaluation procedures.Graduates are in a position to strongly influence and shape cartography as an independent science with its own research and object of knowledge, but also with strong relations to earth sciences, information sciences and communication sciences.As Cartography is an international master program, it involves students from a wide variety of cultural groups. Participants, thus, not only develop theoretical, methodological and technical skills, but social and intercultural competencies as well.Due to the requirement to write scientific project reports and a Master’s thesis, graduates of the Cartography program are able to define milestones and to meet related deadlines, to problem-solve, and to critically evaluate their own work through self-reflection. 

Which professional opportunities can I take up with this qualification?

The qualification of M.Sc. in Cartography opens up excellent professional opportunities on national and international levels, both in the private sector and in administration or research. Graduates can work for government authorities, for map and atlas publishers or for companies specializing in GIS, location-based services, or navigation systems. Further opportunities arise in the areas of town and landscape planning, environmental protection, disaster management, tourism, transportation, or telecommunications.

In addition, the completion of the M.Sc. qualifies graduates for the PhD program. Cooperation with the four universities provides graduates with access to an international research network and thus an optimal start to a career in science.

Binding Regulations for Progression of Studies, Examinations and Application

Application and Admission

How do I apply? (start of program in winter semester 2019/20)

Minimum requirements to apply for a Master's program at TUM are a recognized undergraduate degree (e.g. a bachelor’s) and the successful completion of the aptitude assessment procedure. Aptitude assessment allows the TUM school or department to which you are applying the opportunity to evaluate your individual talents and motivation for study.

You must apply online using the TUMonline application portal. After completing the online application process, you will receive a list of documents you must submit to TUM in hard copy by the application deadline.

In detail:

How do I apply? (start of program in summer semester 2020)

Minimum requirements to apply for a Master's program at TUM are a recognized undergraduate degree (e.g. a bachelor’s) and the successful completion of the aptitude assessment procedure. Aptitude assessment allows the TUM school or department to which you are applying the opportunity to evaluate your individual talents and motivation for study.

During the application period, you must apply through the TUMonline application portal and upload your application documents.

If you receive an offer of admission, you will additionally have to submit individual documents as notarized hardcopies by post to be enrolled.

Generally, applicants with a qualification for postgraduate studies (e.g. a bachelor’s) obtained outside of the EU / EEA must have their documents reviewed in advance through uni-assist.

In detail:

What application deadlines do I need to meet? (start of program in winter semester 2019/20)

Application period for winter semester: 01.01. - 31.05.

Our online application portal TUMonline will create an application form and a checklist with the documents you have to hand in. The checklist shows which documents you need for admission and which for enrollment

You must submit the signed application form before the application deadline. We also ask you to submit the documents you need for admission within the application deadline. If individual documents for admission are not available to you in time, you can hand them in until 15.08.  

Please also submit the documents we need for your enrollment as soon as possible. If individual documents for enrollment are not available to you yet, you can hand them in up to five weeks after the start of the lecture period. However, we recommend that you submit all required documents well before the semester begins, as you will not be enrolled until all documents have been received. 

Please check your TUMonline account regularly, to see if we have any queries to your documents or if you have to amend one or more documents. 

On what basis does TUM select applicants for admission?

Selection takes place through an aptitude assessment procedure. Aptitude assessment is a two-part procedure after the submission of an official application to a program. In this procedure, the TUM school or department determines whether you meet the specific requirements for its master’s degree program.

In the initial stages, the grades you obtained during your bachelor's program, as well as your written documents, will be evaluated using a point system. Depending on the amount of points accumulated, applicants are either immediately admittedrejected or invited to an admissions interview

Where can I find the online application portal?

The online application process takes place through our application portal TUMonline.

Do I have to complete an internship?

This degree program does not encompass a compulsory internship nor is an internship a requirement for admission. However, it is recommendable, as a rule, to gain practical experience as soon as possible.

What are my options after earning this degree?

You have earned your master’s degree and are ready to start your career? TUM Alumni & Career can assist you with questions regarding professional orientation, job search and job application.

If you are interested in continuing your studies, you will find information of doctoral studies at TUM, here.

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