Prof. Dr. Werner Damm



Lars Rölker-Denker



International Masters Programme "Critical Systems Engineering in Socio-Technical Systems" (tentative title)

The interdisciplinary research center CSE is driving a unique interdisciplinary study programme scheduled for a start in the winter semester 2017/18. The two-year masters programme "Critical Systems Engineering in Socio-Technical Systems" is open to candidates holding a BSc degree in computer science, psychology, or related subjects, and having a strong interest in the safe design of human-in-the-loop cyber-physical systems. Bringing all kinds of physical processes, even geographically or otherwise remote ones, into the sphere of our control, cyber-physical systems will fundamentally change the way we interact with our environment, akin to the way the internet changed our interaction with the virtual world. Interacting via traditional human-computer interfaces, e.g. through smartphone GUIs, and substituting classical controls, e.g. in remotely controlling household appliances, are just the small beginnings; future applications will inevitably offer more diverse, direct, and partially subconscious user interfaces, they will extend the sphere of control from isolated facets and clearly localized physical items to global networking, and they will rapidly grow in criticality, inducing a societal dependency on continued availability and correct function. Shaping such a future requires a combination of skills and expertise in such diverse areas as

  • cognitive psychology,
  • cognitive neuroscience,
  • human-machine interaction,
  • cooperative decision making,
  • design of embedded and cyber-physical systems,
  • reliability and safety engineering,
  • robotics
  • domain-specific design techniques and requirements within medicine, transportation, supplies, etc.,

to name just a few. The masters programme will start with a foundational semester providing students from psychology and related subjects with the necessary engineering skills, and providing engineers with adequate foundations in psychology and the neurosciences. It will thereafter delve into the above-mentioned matters, thereby offering two strands: one focusing on human-machine interaction and one dedicated to system design. The study programme will be international, emplying English as its language of instruction.

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