Case study

Richard Cowie — MSc Engineering, physics and technology

University of Southern Denmark
richard cowie

Richard did his MSc course at the University of Southern Denmark after falling in love with the country during his ERASMUS year

How did you choose your course and why did you decide on Denmark?

As part of my Bachelors degree, I had the opportunity to spend a year abroad with the ERASMUS programme. I chose to study at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense. By the time my exchange year was over I was set on also doing my Masters degree in Denmark.

I applied to a number of universities in Denmark, but when it came down to making my final decision, I chose to return to SDU. I knew the university environment that I was going into and that there was a lot of investment going into the engineering faculty with a completely new department building, with new laboratories and equipment.

Tell us about your course…

Having studied electrical and electronic engineering for my Bachelors, I decided that I wanted to move more into the theoretical side of engineering, especially with regards to nanotechnology. The physics and technology course at SDU gave me this opportunity.

Despite the course having a fairly large focus on theory, there is also a strong effort to practically use what is learned in lectures. I’ve been given access to Clean Room facilities for Microfabrication, and it’s extremely exciting to get that hands on experience.

Also we are given the opportunity to visit and co-operate with local companies and industry, which is great for not only for networking, but also giving real world context to the course.

How does studying in Denmark compare to the UK?

In comparison to the UK, the learning environment is much more informal. Lecturers and professors go by their first names and they’re much more open to questions and debate. One of the biggest differences was the examination system. Having mostly done written exams during my Bachelors, it was quite an adjustment to switch to oral exams.

What advice would you give to other students and graduates who are planning to study abroad?

Go for it. It will be one of the best decisions you’ll ever make. Of course not everything is plain sailing, but the amount of opportunities and experience you get from studying in another country is second to none.

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