MSc in Communication Systems


Program Description

  • Start: August 2021
  • Place of study: Linköping
  • Level: Second cycle

We are living in an increasingly networked society. The number of mobile phone users is rising by 50 million per month, while video streaming and social networking are pushing data volume demands. New applications for the Internet of Things are set to revolutionize the coming decades by creating a new paradigm in which not only humans but also machines communicate with each other. The exponential growth in the use of communication devices requires skilled engineers to drive technological development and inspire new inventions.

The Communication Systems master’s program has a solid theoretical base in communication systems engineering. Topics covered include communication theory, coding, modulation, signal processing, and the design and optimization of communication systems and networks. This program is highly competitive. Applicants must have advanced skills in mathematics and a strong sense of dedication.

Mandatory and elective courses

The first year comprises mandatory courses in communication systems engineering, such as digital communication, wireless communication, information networks, and data compression. The third semester offers elective courses in electrical and computer engineering, mathematics, and physics. It also includes a compulsory project, during which students learn project management, apply their knowledge to build a communication system and work in teams with other students. The final semester is devoted to your thesis, which may be carried out in collaboration with a tech company, such as Ericsson or Saab, or as an internal project at the university.

Award-winning 5G research

Most courses have traditional lectures and tutorials, and all courses include practical laboratory work. Linköping University is at the forefront of research into 5G, the next generation of cellular network technology, and you will learn the core concepts in this program. We are a partner in the EU-sponsored 5GWireless project and a member of the Swedish government’s strategic initiatives ELLIIT and Security-Link. Our seminal, award-winning research on the Massive MIMO multi-antenna technology is conducted in collaboration with Ericsson Research, Nokia Bell Labs, and other prominent partners. You will thus get the opportunity to learn 5G-related topics from renowned experts.



The Communication Systems master's program offers a broad curriculum in communications systems focusing on the fundamental principles of systems engineering and the design of digital and wireless communications systems. This master's program is highly competitive and requires a high amount of effort and dedication from the students.

The Communication Systems master's program prepares the students for a continued career as engineers working in the telecommunications industry or as Ph.D. students. Students will have access to world-class research infrastructure at Linköping University. Current projects focus on the design and optimization of wireless communications networks and signal to process for communications.

Specifically, the program offers a range of courses with a solid theoretical nucleus in communication systems engineering. Topics covered include communication theory, coding, modulation, signal processing, and design and optimization of communication systems and networks. The program is given in close association with the industry and students will have access both to an extensive network of industry contacts and opportunities to complete their master's thesis work.


Graduates from the Master's program in Communication Systems should in

Knowledge and reasoning in mathematics, natural sciences, and engineering

  • have a solid knowledge of signal theory, telecommunication theory, and modern wireless communication systems.
  • have specialized knowledge in modern radio communications and baseband signal processing techniques
  • be able to carry out modeling, simulation, and design of modern communication links and networks.

Personal and professional skills and attributes:

  • be able to formulate a model for a relevant problem and critically evaluate its validity.
  • be creative, enterprising, and take responsibility for their own contribution to the solution of a problem.

Interpersonal skills: Teamwork and communication:

  • be capable of teamwork and active collaboration within a group by sharing tasks and responsibilities
  • be able to initialize, plan, carry out and evaluate scientific and engineering projects
  • be able to communicate and to give presentations in English, orally and in writing

Conceiving, designing, implementing, and operating systems in the enterprise and social context:

  • shape a deep insight into the broad field of science and engineering, from initial concepts to implementation aspects  

Teaching and working methods

The program comprises four semesters and begins with two semesters of compulsory courses in communication systems engineering, for example, digital communications, wireless systems, information networks, and image and audio coding. From the third semester, the students can select a set of elective courses from the general area of electrical and computer engineering, mathematics, and physics. In addition, the third semester includes a compulsory project course that teaches the student's project management skills and gives them the opportunity to apply their knowledge in practice in a team environment. The final (4th) semester is dedicated to the master thesis project. The thesis project can be carried out either in the university, at a company, or abroad (the academic requirements are the same).

Career opportunities

The program prepares you for a career in engineering within several branches of telecommunications – not only with traditional communication companies but also start-ups and companies that are taking the first steps to realize the Internet of Things. Graduates may also continue with doctoral studies in various fields of communications, such as 5G, machine-to-machine communication, satellites, RFID, and positioning. Our alumni have found employment as senior software developers, technical coordinators for product development, and researchers into defense communications.

Entry requirements

  • Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering or equivalent. The Bachelor's degree (equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen) shall be from an internationally recognized university.
  • 30 ECTS credits in mathematics/applied mathematics, including courses in linear algebra, probability theory, and signals and systems.
  • A course in basic programming.
  • English corresponding to the level of English in Swedish upper secondary education (English 6/B). This is normally attested by means of an internationally recognized test.

The selection for the January application round is based on merit rating (grade tariff) at three levels. If necessary, applicants within the same merit group will be selected by lot.

  • Group 1: High
  • Group 2: Good
  • Group 3: Low 
Last updated Oct 2020

About the School

In close collaboration with the business world and society, Linköping University (LiU) conducts world-leading, boundary-crossing research in fields including materials science, IT and hearing. In the ... Read More

In close collaboration with the business world and society, Linköping University (LiU) conducts world-leading, boundary-crossing research in fields including materials science, IT and hearing. In the same spirit, the university offers many innovative educational programs, many of them with a clear vocational focus, leading to qualification as, for example, doctors, teachers, economists, and engineers. Read less
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