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“The move to electrical vehicles means there is a need of at least 10,000 engineers with expertise in electric vehicles. This is why it is necessary for us to take a new approach and offer programmes that make it easier for the automotive industry to manage this transition,” says Per Nylén, head of the Department of Engineering Science at University West.

“We have developed two new programmes and several freestanding courses in close collaboration with companies in our region, including NEVS, Volvo Cars and Scania. The process has moved forward quickly – we went from idea to programme start in just one year.”

In August, a three-year programme started for electrical engineers with specialisation in electric vehicles. From autumn 2021, a one-year master's programme will also be offered. It is being designed for mechanical engineers who want qualifications in electric vehicle development. In spring 2021, the University will begin new freestanding courses with specialisation in electrical vehicle batteries. The courses are aimed at engineers who already develop or manufacture vehicles and who want to specialise in electric vehicles. The short courses can be taken in parallel with their jobs.

“The labour market is booming for these students, both in Sweden and internationally. There is a large demand for engineers who can develop electric vehicles in many parts of the world. For this reason, the master's programme is being offered in English and online to make it available to international students, as well.”

The programmes are unique both in terms of content and the contacts the students make with the automotive industry during their studies. Working-integrated learning is a common theme throughout the studies. This means that theory is linked to practice through laboratory work, guest lectures, study visits to companies, and the opportunity to complete a degree project on current issues in the automotive industry.

“The companies involved in designing the programmes have contributed valuable input on relevant course content. They also participate in regular evaluations of the programmes. This will help prepare students for the challenges of the automotive industry,” concludes Nylén.

Potential future automotive industry employers emphasise the importance of including the right knowledge and skills in the programmes.

“We are always interested and open to working with students and researchers from University West,” says José Guerrero, Chapter Leader of Energy Systems at NEVS in Trollhättan. “Once the students have graduated, we try to keep the ones that have worked with us. We need new minds in addition to our more experienced employees.”

Caroline Kjellin, propulsion solution management expert at Volvo Cars in Gothenburg, is also positive about the new programmes: “The market is changing rapidly, and new technologies are constantly emerging. These programmes provide students with a very strong and broad knowledge base for developing electric cars with a focus on developing electric powertrains.”

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UNIVERSITY WEST’S NEW ENGINEERING PROGRAMMES FOR ELECTRIC VEHICLE DEVELOPMENT

Electrical Engineer/Electric vehicle Programme, 180 credits, held on campus in Trollhättan. Starts August 2020.

Master in Electrical Vehicle Engineer, 60 credits, held on campus in Trollhättan. Programme start autumn 2021.

In spring 2021, two new freestanding courses will begin with specialisation electric vehicle batteries.

University West conducts cutting-edge research and provides education in production technology. It is Sweden’s leading university in the field of work-integrated learning (WIL). Read more

 

Updated by Christina Axelsson