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Skip to content MSc in IT: Software Development and Technology

MSc in IT: Software Development and Technology

Last updated on 2015-04-09International Student > International Degrees > MSc in Software Development

Software Development 

MSc in Software Development is a modern software development programme with strong relevance to industry, which builds on up-to-date solid theoretical foundations and close links with modern software research. The program lasts 2 years, during which you learn how to design, develop and maintain high quality software in a collaborative diverse and globally distributed environment.
See why Rasmus recommends Software Development

The study programme is open both to students with an undergraduate degree in computer science or software development, and to graduates from other study areas. Whether you hold a bachelor in computer science, or in business and marketing, we help you to grow research level expertise in software science.

Software Development gives you access to cutting edge knowledge in software design, programming languages, databases, distributed systems, artificial intelligence, algorithms, software development processes, requirements, organisation and management. The programme gives you opportunity to work with all phases of the development process – analysis, design, development, test and launch, and you will learn how to design and program software systems of all scales, from mobile applications to web based business solutions.

The programme has an international perspective and is therefore taught in English. In 2011, 38 % of students admitted to Software Development were international students and 20 % were female students.

The programme

You can choose between two different admission areas depending on whether or not you have an IT-related background.

  • Design track
  • Advanced Computing track 

Design Track

The Design track is aimed at ambitious students who do not have an IT-related educational background.  You enter the Design track to supplement your excellent existing experience from your bachelor’s degree with software development skills in order to create a unique interdisciplinary mix. This is a technical program, so you will learn to apply mathematical modeling and logical reasoning in your studies.

This track prepares you to work on application specific software development for end users in public sector and in private enterprises. Your broad experience in software and in your bachelor field of study will make you very well positioned to work with non-technical project members as well as with more specialized programmers.

Design Track (Fall)
1. Semester Programming Foundations Software Engineering
Introductory Programming 7,5 ECTS credits Programming Workshop 7,5 ECTS credits Foundations of Computing: Discrete Mathematics 7,5 ECTS credits Software Engineering and Software Qualities 7,5 ECTS credits
2. Semester Programming Foundations Elective Module Specialisation Part 1

Introduction to Database Design 7,5 ECTS credits

Foundations of Computing: Algorithms and Data Structures 7,5 ECTS credits Course or Project 7,5 ECTS credits Specialisation Course 1 7,5 ECTS credits
3. Semester Elective modules Specialisation Part 2
Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits Specialisation Course 2 (and 3) 15 ECTS credits
4. Semester Master Thesis 30 ECTS credits

NB: This track only accepts new students for the Autumn semester. The mandatory modules (45 ECTS) of this track form an intensive crash course in the basics of software creation, which allows you to explore deeper topics already in the second semester:

  • Programming (22.5 ECTS): Introductory concepts in programming and practical experience, including imperative object oriented programming and database design.
  • Foundations (15 ECTS): The most fundamental structures and behaviours in computer programs, such as algorithms, data structures, models of computation and discrete mathematics.
  • Software Engineering (7.5 ECTS): The module focuses on software development methods for assuring quality.

These mandatory modules are supplemented with a specialisation and two elective courses.  If you are interested in combining your non-IT education with your specialisation, you can do this by creating your own individual specialisation.  You can also spend elective course credits on courses or individual projects to create synergy with your prior background (for example from other programmes at IT University).

Advanced Computing Track

The Advanced Computing track is aimed at students who hold a bachelor degree in software development or in a related area e.g. computer science or computer engineering. Combined with previous experience in programming and software development, you have the opportunity to design your own study programme to best fit you and your qualifications. This track prepares you to work in the core of the software development industry, to contribute to development of new software technologies and tools.

Advanced computing track (Fall)
1. Semester Software Design  Elective Modules
Practical Concurrent and Parallel Programming 7,5 ECTS credits Algorithm Design I 7,5 ECTS credits Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits
2. Semester Software Design Elective Modules Specialisation Part 1
Model Driven Development 7,5 ECTS credits Software Architecture and Security 7,5 ECTS credits Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits Specialisation Course 1 7,5 ECTS credits
3. Semester Elective Modules Specialisation Part 2
Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits Course or Project** 7,5 ECTS credits Specialisation Course 2 (and 3) 15 ECTS credits
4. Semester Master Thesis 30 ECTS credits

NB: This track accepts new students for both the Spring and Autumn semester. The track differs slightly depending on whether you start in the autumn or spring term.

The mandatory content (30 ECTS) aims at giving you highly relevant skills in problem solving and designing software using modern methods and technological platforms. The study activities are gathered in one module:

  • Software Design (30 ECTS): The module focuses on advanced techniques and methods for designing and  implementing drawn from both computer science and software engineering research, including model-driven development, problem solution techniques, programming languages, project organization, software architecture.

The Advanced Computing track courses, including mandatory courses, build on knowledge of basic discrete mathematics, algorithms and data structures and programming languages as well as Software Engineering. Therefore, it is vital that a student applying for the Advanced Computing track has passed similar courses during her/his BSc degree. The courses correspond to the mandatory modules of the Design track.

Specialisations and electives The programme offers several specialisations, and you must choose at least one during your studies.  Specialisations are well organised collections of courses that allow you to reach advanced level in a specific area, and prepare you to write an MSc thesis. See list and description of the various specialisations.

You also have an excellent opportunity of shaping your own profile through electives. You can choose between all the courses offered at the IT University at master’s level, and even take electives at a different university. See all courses offered in the course list.

Curriculum See curriculum for Software Development.


The teaching method for Software Development includes project work, which demands independent effort, collaborative skills and project management as well as ordinary lectures as you will find at any other university, and studying literature including books and research papers. Your teachers are the best in their field - therefore they will also make demands on your abilities and commitment.

Software Development is developed in close cooperation with the business community, and the programme is designed to give you the opportunity to collaborate with private companies. This means you will always be working with current challenges, and you will have an opportunity to make a network in the business community even before you graduate.

We integrate our research projects in our study programme, so the best candidates have the opportunity to try make their first steps into a research career and continue into a PhD programme.

Career prospects

The competencies of Software Development and the global perspective of the programme prepares you for a career in both Danish and global context, working as e.g.:

  • System Developer
  • Programmer
  • Software Architect
  • Database manager
  • Quality Engineer
  • Project manager
  • System consultant in a broader sense

Studies abroad and student exchange

It can be a professional boost and an advantage on your CV to do part of your studies at a foreign university. The IT University has exchange agreements with universities around the world, and to students with software development as their core competence, we recommend:

Admission requirements

To apply for admission to the IT University’s MSc programme you are required to have:

  • A university or professional bachelor’s degree, or corresponding degree.
  • If you hold a bachelor's degree from a country outside the EU/EEA, your degree should preferably be within the area of science or engineering.
  • English corresponding to the Danish B-level See en.iu.dk to find out how your marks correspond to the Danish marking system.
  • From term start 1 February 2014 it is required that applicants to Software Development, for the Advanced Computing admission area, have a qualifying degree (bachelor degree) related to software development with substantial programming content. Additionally, applicants must have, during their bachelor studies, studied Programming, Foundations and Software Engineering (corresponding to the mandatory modules of the Design track). This should be thoroughly described in the cover letter. See here whether the Advanced Computing track is for you..
  • From term start 1 September 2015 it is required that applicants for the Design admission area must have a bachelor degree in a non-software area. See here whether the Design track is for you.

Please note that the MSc programme has restricted competitive admission.

Tuition fees

EU/EEA citizens are not to pay any tuition fees (including citizens of the Nordic countries). Non EU/EEA citizens are to pay tuition fees. Learn more about tuition fees.


The IT University of Copenhagen offers state scholarships to three or four exceptionally talented MSc applicants (full-degree students) from outside EU and EEA every year. The scholarships will be offered to the applicants who achieve the best scores according to the criteria in our admission rules. The state scholarships consist of free tuition and partly covering of living expenses.

Applicants cannot apply for the scholarships. The IT University considers all admitted MSc students for the scholarships and informs the students chosen for the scholarships in their letter of admission.

Please note that if you receive a scholarship, you will have to follow and pass full time studies.


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