Horticultural Science Master of Science (M.Sc.)
The international master's program Horticultural Science trains experts in the fields of breeding and production of horticultural plants and addresses one of the core issue of our time: securing high quality and adequate nutrition for the world population by conserving ecological, economic and social resourcesat at the same time.
The study program covers the whole area of horticultural production. Abstract lessons are supplemented by practical modules to a high degree. The research oriented education gives the students insight into bioscientific methodology and prepares them for national and international research and development positions in the plant science sector.
The international master's program in Horticultural Science is a cooperation between the Technical University of Munich, and five partner universities, which bring site specific research and teaching expertise to the program. Students can create an individual competency profile for themselves, thanks to that structure.
In 2008 and 2013 the Master Horticultural Science was awarded with the European Unions Erasmus Mundus award. This honor is received by international master degree programs, which raise the quality of European university education and promote intercultural exchange.
- Type of Study: Full Time
- Required Language Proficiency: English
- Language of Instruction: English
- Main Locations: Weihenstephan (Freising)
- Admission Category: Aptitude Assessment for Master
- Start of Degree Program: Possible for both winter and summer semester
- Standard Duration of Studies (Number of Semesters): 4 semesters fulltime
- Credit Points: 120 ECTS
- Costs: Student Fees: 129,40 €
The english master’s program Horticultural Science is an specialty degree program with scientific, but also technical and economic aspects. It offers a scientific and primarily research-oriented training for the horticultural industry, and its up- and downstream sectors.
The Master course is carried out by a teaching and research consortium composed of six European universities. The course has a unique structure since students perform part of their training at a partner university. This enables them to freely select courses out of a large course pool, assembled by all partners, and thereby specialize in many different areas of the horticultural sciences including research with all major horticultural crop classes (vegetables, fruits, ornamental plants, grapes, medicinal plants and herbs) as well as in higher-level areas such as horticultural economics, production technologies, ecophysiology, product quality or plant breeding.
At TUM in particular the thematic complex of applied, modern plant sciences is strongly represented in research and teaching. Based on the current understanding of plant biological principles students are educated in the areas of plant breeding, phytopathology, plant nutrition, growth and yield physiology, plant growth regulation, plant biotechnology and population genetics.
In addition to that there are Double Degree treaties with the Humboldt Universität Berlin and the Szent Istvan University, Budapest.
The BOKU puts emphasis on exploring, exploiting and conserving renewable resources. The university promotes a diversity of disciplines that work to secure the basis for life of future generations. Research with practical relevance and ecological research concepts are important founding principles of the BOKUs modern education.
Major research topics in horticulture are holistic methods in horticultural crop production (ecological production systems) and clonal genomics and quality management in viticulture.
The University of Bologna is one of the oldest universities in the world, but at the same time offers one of the most up to date plant research facilities in Europe. The newly established 'College of Agriculture' is located in these research facilities. Main topics of the institution are fruit production and viticulture with special emphases on ecophysiology and plant breeding. The universities research intends to unite traditional knowledge with the latest insights of plant molecular biology.
Research foci are the physiology of growth regulation and plant hormones in fruit trees and quality and research in abiotic and biotic stress resistance in fruit production. The University of Bologna cooperates in the program with the
Humboldt's ideal of the unity of research and teaching has become a model for universities all over the world. Central to this model is the idea of research-oriented teaching and the transfer of knowledge based on research. The Faculty of Agriculture and Horticulture is dedicated to this principle and cooperates closely with research centers. In addition to a broad range of interdisciplinary courses, it focuses mainly on urban horticulture, food quality management and biosystem technologies.
The horticultural faculty was founded in 1853 and was the first institution in Hungary, which offered an education in horticulture. Today in teaching an emphasis is placed on sustainable Horticulture with the horticultural staff aiming to convey a solid foundation of basic knowledge as well as also to teach contents with relevance for practical applications.
Research foci are plant genetic resources and plant breeding especially with medicinal plants and herbs and ecological plant production schemes.
Aims and content
What does this program cover?
The Master Studies 'Horticultural Science' at TUM is conceived as a special branch of studies with emphases in aspects of the natural, technical and economic sciences.. It conveys knowledge relevant for the whole area of horticultural production. A special focus lies on methods of plant production and plant based nutritional substances, from the laboratory to the field and greenhouse, and other closed systems.
The thematic complex of applied plant sciences is a main focus of this study program. It reaches from the classical agricultural chemistry, to methods and principles of investigating the molecular make-up of plant cellular biological systems, to biotechnology and population genetics. This covers for example the biological, genetic and molecular basis of plant growth and development, of plant disease and plant-pathogen interactions as well as the understanding of their coevolution. But also concepts and methods of plant breeding, of the genesis and typology of soils, mechanisms of nutrient transport and kinetics of uptake as well as their biochemical functions in plants are being taught. Thereby, the course enables for an understanding of material and energy flows in horticultural cropping systems a perception of external factors that impact on crop quality.
Students benefit from the degree program's international strategy and can create an individual competency profile for themselves, thanks to the different areas of specialization on offer at participating institutions of higher education.
For a comprehensive description of the program, please refer to the degree program documentation:
Students of the international master program Horticultural Science may start their study program in winter and summer term.
During the first semester, all partner universities cover the discipline-specific fundamentals, such that all students enrolled on the course acquire a similar level of knowledge.
At TUM two compulsory modules convey vital expertise in the fields of Crop Physiology and Crop Quality with focus on horticultural crops. This covers the genetic, molecular and biochemical basis of plant physiology, in particular the physiology before and after harvest of horticultural crops and their fruits, but also stress physiology (abiotic and biotic). In addition to that the compulsory modules give knowledge on understanding of material and energy flows in horticultural cropping systems a perception of external factors that impact on physiology and quality.
The compulsory modules are supplemented with a wide range of elective modules, which offer specialization in various areas during the progress of the program, especially during the second and third term.
From the second semester onward, the program supports a high level of mobility through institutionalized cooperation with the partner universities in Germany, Italy, Austria and Hungary. Students can complete modules at a partner university of their choice. During the course of the degree, at least 20 Credit Points must be accrued by completing courses at a partner university.
At TUM it is especially possible to specialize in the areas of molecular plant sciences, biotechnology and population genetics with relevance for horticulture, phytopathology and plant-pathogen interactions, biology, biotechnology and analytical chemistry of secondary metabolites of fruits and vegetable crops and human resource management in horticulture.
Term four is a research semester in which students complete their master thesis. The thesis shall include experimental and analytical aspects and refines the students' professional profile. Due to its scientific excellence with international reputation, a rich spectrum of possibilities for thesis projects at the bachelor, master or Ph.D. level are offered at TUM.
The thesis may be co-supervised by a lecturer of one of the partner universities. The master colloquium after the master thesis is the end of the study program.
Job perspectives with a master degree in the horticultural sciences are excellent. The studies qualify for executive positions in enterprises of horticulture and related industries, such as sectors of the pharmaceutical industry active in agricultural and horticultural plant production. Owing to its scientific contents it prepares in particular for research and development activities in the area of plant breeding, plant production, quality management (analytics), plant protection, and plant nutrition.
Moreover, a master degree in the horticultural sciences qualifies for research positions in academic or non-academic research institutions, in federal research facilities such as the 'Landesanstalten' in Germany, but also for research and teaching positions at colleges or universities, active in horticulture or related fields.
Also, positions in federal ministries, governmental agricultural departments, horticultural associations, or international organizations such as the EU, the UNO or the WHO are employment possibilities. Other examples of job opportunities for graduates are positions in research funding organizations, in the area of scientific or agricultural/horticultural journalism, or in the field of intellectual property right or plant variety protection.
Click here for the online application for the master program Horiticultural Science via TUMonline.
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For more information regarding the application procedure: Application and Admission.
Students can find all relevant information (lecture syllabus, examination periodes, etc.) here: Students.