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Joint Masters Sustainable Energy Systems

Start date
July 2024
18 months
Course Type
Postgraduate, Taught

2024 entry.
Option 1:
IIT Madras, INR 300,000
- University of Birmingham, £8,820, plus £1000 bench fee if lab-based project selected
Option 2:
- IIT Madras, INR 600,000
- University of Birmingham, £6,300

Video transcript

Study sustainable energy systems with global experts at both the University of Birmingham and IIT Madras. Prepare for an exciting career by engaging with the energy sector in the UK and India.

This joint MSc Sustainable Energy Systems opens up new and exciting opportunities for you to study in two countries, benefitting from the expertise and industry engagement at both IIT Madras and the University of Birmingham.

This course takes an interdisciplinary approach with a focus on energy systems and technologies deployment for a sustainable future. You will be encouraged to consider technology development, engineering, economic, societal, environmental and policy aspects in the context of net zero targets.

You will learn about the fundamental principles behind the current sustainable energy systems, including fuel cells and hydrogen, energy storage, solar and nuclear energy; and the changes required to meet the energy sustainability targets of the future. You will also have the opportunity to learn about data analysis and numerical modelling, smart power grids, data and digitalisation and policy aspects. The course content will be delivered by research staff who have backgrounds in academia, industry and policy.

Undertaking a substantial individual project with internationally-recognised research groups at both the University of Birmingham and IIT Madras, will give you the opportunity to apply your knowledge to provide solutions to the global energy crisis and address climate change.

You will be able to select from two programme options when you apply. Both programmes begin with 6 months at IIT Madras. Then, the Birmingham majority option sees you spend 12 months at the University of Birmingham for the remainder of the taught programme and to conduct a programme of research over the summer. The IIT majority option has you spending 6 months in Birmingham before returning to IIT Madras to complete the research project and undertake the last part of the taught programme.

Why Study this Joint Masters?

  • Experience studying in India and Birmingham at two leading institutions.
  • Gain a global perspective on sustainable energy systems.
  • Get hands-on experience in industrial training.
  • Become a specialist in this vital and fast-growing industry through first-hand experience of the internationally-recognised innovation at the Birmingham Energy Institute that spans fundamental research through to industrial application.
  • The University of Birmingham is a leading institution of the Energy Research Accelerator, into which government and industry have invested £180m to undertake innovative research, develop the next generation of energy leaders, and demonstrate low carbon technologies that help shape the future of the UK’s energy landscape.
  • The University of Birmingham is ranked in the top 10 for Engineering research in the UK for GPA and 4* research (REF 2021).
  • Benefit from innovative curricula with IIT Madras’ award-winning pedagogy and research methodology, awarded the title of Institute of Eminence
  • IIT Madras is excellent in decarbonisation technologies development, basic and applied research, innovation, entrepreneurship and industrial consultancy.
  • IIT Madras has been ranked top for the last five years, it is the number 1 Engineering University in India by the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF)
  • IIT Madras has 250 hectares of self-contained green campus in Chennai.

Contact us for further information.


Programme Option one

From late July to November you will study at IIT Madras then you will undertake an industrial placement until December. In January, you will transfer to Birmingham for the remainder of the programme.

Compulsory (Core) modules

Optional modules (electives)

All modules are offered subject to sufficient enrolled students. All module descriptions are provisional and subject to minor change. Example optional modules are listed below.

Programme option two

From late July to November you will study at IIT Madras then you will undertake an industrial placement until January. In January, you will transfer to Birmingham to study for six months and then return to IIT Madras in July for a research project.

Compulsory (Core) modules

Optional modules (electives)

All modules are offered subject to sufficient enrolled students. All module descriptions are provisional and subject to minor change. Example optional modules are listed below.


2024 entry:

Programme Option 1

IIT Madras: Tuition fees: INR300,000
University of Birmingham: Tuition fees £8,820.00 and other: Bench fee of £1000 per student dependent on whether students choose a lab-based project

Programme Option 2

IIT Madras: Tuition fees: INR600,000 

University of Birmingham: Tuition fees £6,300.00

Academic requirements

You should have, or expect to obtain, a 2:1 Honours degree from a UK academic institution (or an equivalent overseas qualification*) in engineering or physical sciences.

Consideration may also be given to excellent applicants with degrees in life sciences and economics where these included an adequate component of mathematics.

Further consideration may be given to candidates with extensive, relevant post-degree experience.

Some content on this course will be delivered by Social Sciences and so emphasis on writing proficiency will be more pronounced.

* For applicants from India: Holders of a Bachelors degree of three or four years in duration from a recognised university in India will be considered for postgraduate taught study. Holders of Bachelors degree will normally be expected to have achieved 55% - 60% or higher for 2:1 equivalency, or 50% - 55% for 2:2 equivalency depending on the awarding institution.

Either: A four-year Bachelors degree (first class or very good upper second class)
Or: A three-year Bachelors degree (first class) from recognised institutions in India.

English language requirements

At least a 2.1 first degree in engineering and physical sciences, plus our standard requirements for English proficiency.

For students whose first language is not English or have received a degree from a majority English speaking country, one of the following English language qualifications are required.

The IELTS requirement is 6.0 minimum overall, with at least 5.5 in each component and minimum 6.0 in writing component. The equivalencies for this from the Indian Standard XII English are:

  • 75% from ISC, CBSE, and Maharashtra
  • 75% from West Bengal
  • 80% from Other State boards

TOEFL: 80 overall with no less than 19 in Reading, 19 in Listening, 21 in Speaking and 21 in Writing.

Pearson Test of English (PTE)

PTE Academic: Pearson Test of English (PTE) including online: PTE Academic 64 with no less than 59 in all four skills.

Cambridge English (exams taken from 2015)***

Cambridge English: Advanced Minimum overall score of 169, with no less than 162 in any component.

Language Cert ESOL SELT (UKVI)   

B2 ‘Communicator’ with no less than 25 in each skill

Trinity ISE II

Distinction all skills

Trinity ISE III

Pass in each Skill

Applicants with appropriate grades in Standard XII English (English Core/English Elective/Functional English in CBSE) do not require additional SELT qualifications.

A valid English qualification is required on the enrolment date of the programme, not the arrival date to the UK for the part of the programme studied at Birmingham.

Having a Joint MSc Sustainable Energy Systems will open up a huge range of career opportunities. The programme will give you experience at two of the world’s leading institutions in India and the UK. It will equip you with a unique international perspective, specialised knowledge and skills, and give you access to industry partnerships.

It will also help you develop cross-cultural communication skills and broaden your understanding of renewable energy systems and sustainability, helping you to stand out from the crowd and advance your career in this rapidly evolving field.

Graduates will have specialist, advanced skills and be well prepared for a wealth of jobs including:

  • Energy data analyst
  • Whole energy systems analyst
  • Net-zero consultant
  • Energy consultant
  • Sustainability and climate change officer
  • Energy systems innovation officer
  • Energy systems retrofitting specialist
  • Energy Engineer
  • Applied Scientist

The University of Birmingham has a Careers Network which you can access while studying. An expert team can offer you advice, mentoring and support with CVs and job applications.

IIT Madras’ robust industry connections make it a highly sought-after destination for recruitment, providing students with ample opportunities to participate in the institute’s placement season.