M.Sc. Horticultural Science
The international master's program Horticultural Science trains experts in the breeding and production of horticultural crops, addressing one of the key challenges of our time: guaranteeing the quality and quantity of food for the human population worldwide, while simultaneously protecting ecological, economical and social resources.
The study program covers the entire field of horticultural production.Theoretical lectures are supplemented to a large extent by practical modules. The research-oriented teaching strenghens the students' bioscientific methodological competences and prepares them for national and international research and development positions in the field of plant science.
The international master's program in Horticultural Science is carried out by a teaching and research consortium of six European universities with location-specific research and teaching skills. Thanks to this cooperation students can develop an individual competence profile during their studies.
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.
- Degree: Master of Science (M.Sc.)
- Standard Duration of Studies: 4 semesters (full time)
- Start of Degree Program: Winter semester and summer semester
- Language of Instruction: English
- Requirements: Bachelor's degree of at least six semesters awarded at a German or foreign university, or at least an equivalent degree in the field of life sciences with a focus on applied plant sciences; these are in particular the study programs Horticultural Sciences, Agricultural Sciences, Forest Sciences and Renewable Resources or comparable study programs; adequate knowledge of English (proof by e.g. TOEFL with at least 88 points or IELTS with at least 6.5 points) as well as passing the aptitude assessment.
- Admission Category: Aptitude Assessment for Master
- Main Locations: Weihenstephan (Freising)
- Credits: 120 ECTS
- Costs: Student Fees
- Student/Admission Advising: hortsci[at]wzw.tum.de
The master’s program Horticultural Science with English as language of instruction is conceived as a special branch of studies with emphases in aspects of the natural, technical and economic sciences. It offers a scientific and primarily research-oriented training for the horticultural industry, but even more so for its upstream and downstream sectors.
The Master course is carried out by a teaching and research consortium composed of six European universities. The course has an unique structure since students can 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.
Double Degree options exist with the Humboldt Universität Berlin and the Szent Istvan University in 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
The Free University of Bolzano developed the Master program to meet the present and future challenges of the horticultural sector. The programme is a joint initiative with the University of Bologna, well known for its long tradition in higher education.
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 are the main contents of the study program?
The master's program Horticultural Science at TUM is conceived as a special branch of studies with emphases in aspects of the natural, technical and economic sciences. It aims to convey contents, which shall form the basis for the whole of the horticultural sciences. In particular research findings and methodology with relevance for the production of plants and plant-based products, from the test tube to the field and to protected cultivation in greenhouses or other closed production systems, are being taught.
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 international structure of the study program and can develop their own individual competence profile through the different specialties of the participating universities.
For a comprehensive description of the study program, please refer to the degree program documentation:
The international master program Horticultural Science can be started in winter and summer semester.
During the first semester two compulsory modules convey key competencies in the areas of "Crop Physiology" and "Crop Quality" with a focus on horticultural crops. This includes the genetic, molecular and biochemical basis of plant physiology, especially the pre- and post-harvest physiology of horticultural plant species and their fruits, but also of stress physiology (abiotic and biotic). In addition, the compulsory modules provide knowledge in material flows in horticultural culture systems and an understanding of those factors that affect physiology and quality.
Besides the compulsory modules, the degree program offers students a large number of elective modules, which enable them to specialize in various fields during the course of their studies, but especially in the second and third semesters.
Mobility is an integral part of the study program that is characterized by our institutionalized cooperation with partner universities in Germany, Italy, Austria and Hungary. In semester two and three students can complete part of their lectures (max. 30 ECTS) at one of our partner universities.
At TUM a specialization is possible in the fields 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.
Semester 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 course concludes with a Master's Colloquium after the Master's thesis.
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.
You can find all information regarding your application here.
Students can find all relevant information (lecture syllabus, examination periodes, etc.) here: Students.