Semester at SiPN

Emerging topics in STEM - Engineering, Technology and Sustainability

Addressing complex global challenges and contributing to a fairer world requires a new generation of professionals equipped with an interdisciplinary mindset and strong scientific and technical skills in emerging areas. The semester program in Emerging Topics in Engineering, Technology, and Sustainability, taught at University Lisboa’s Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) allows students to  select courses in the following areas (taught in English): 

  • Energy for the Future and Renewable Energy Systems 
  • Engineering for Sustainability 
  • Humanitarian Engineering 

The program is directed to 3rd or 4th-year university students, especially those with backgrounds in engineering. Students with other backgrounds (e.g., Physics or Chemistry) are also welcome. 


Research Assistant Opportunities
Research Assistant Opportunities through IST open doors to research centers and other organizations for students who wish to tackle real-life challenges head-on through short-term interdisciplinary research work. Research Assistant Opportunities are offered in (but not limited to) these two main areas: 

  • Circular Economy –  (possibly involving IST-ID research centers: CERENA, CERIS, CQE, IN+)
  • Humanitarian Engineering (TBC) – (possibly involving NGO’s operating in this area)

Emerging topics in STEM

Program's Course Structure

The Emerging Topics in STEM Program is unique in its course structure. Whereas other programs organize their courses on a per-semester basis, the STEM program offers quarterly basis designIn other words, instead of taking 4-5 courses over one entire semester, the STEM course load is divided into 2 quarters, with most courses being only one-quarter long. 

Here you may find a timeline of what your semester may look like.

Organizing the program on a quarterly basis allows students to focus on no more than 2-3 courses at once, offering a more balanced workload throughout the semesterMoreover, STEM students are evaluated via exams as opposed to continuous assessment as in other programs. Therefore, this structure allows STEM students to prepare for final exams a few at a time. 


Sample Student Schedule:

  • Sample 1: 2 Quarterly Courses (Q3) + 2 Semester-Long Courses (Q3 + Q4)* = 24 ECTS
  • Sample 2: 3 Quarterly Courses (Q3) + 1 Semester-Long Courses (Q3 + Q4)* = 24 ECTS

*All Research Opportunities are Semester-Long Courses (Q3+Q4)

Note: Portuguese Language classes are also semester-long courses, even though the dates differ from the quarter system. See the timeline to understand it.


To access the syllabi please click on the course name.

Add a Research project

Students will have the opportunity to enrich their knowledge through hands-on experience working alongside researchers and engineers in their area of interest.

Research opportunities
Topic (Research Centre)
Project in Circular Economy I Q3+Q4 6 Research Projects in:
Plastics in a Circular Economy (CERENA)
Water Cycle (CERIS)
CO2 Cycle (CQE + CERENA)
Recovery of Used Food Oils and other waste (agricultural waste and forest biomass) (CERENA)
Recovery of Waste / Sludge-Production of Biogas (IN+)
Project in Circular Economy II Q3+Q4 6 Recovery of Waste / Sludge-Production of Biogas (IN+)

Add a Portuguese Language Course

All levels available
Contact hours
Portuguese Language for Foreigners (A1) 6 56 Download
Portuguese Language for Foreigners (A2) 6 56 Download
Portuguese Language for Foreigners (B1) 6 56 Download
Portuguese Language for Foreigners (B2) 6 56 Download
Portuguese Language  for Foreigners (C1) 6 56 Download

About Técnico Lisboa

Established in 1911, Instituto Superior Técnico (IST) currently has approximately 12,000 students of over 60 different nationalities. It’s a highly internationalized school of engineering, and architecture, which promotes the relationship between the university, business and society by encouraging innovation, entrepreneurship, job creation, and knowledge. Técnico is known as a prestigious school, both in Portugal and abroad, for its academic excellence. 

Instituto Superior Técnico aims to contribute to the development of society by promoting excellence in higher education and lifelong training in all its fields, while developing Research, Development, and Innovation (RD&I) activities, which are essential to provide a base in education that meets top international standards. 

Técnico has three campuses with privileged access to Lisbon’s main points of interest. With this current offer, SiPN’s activities will take place at the Alameda Campus. Located in one of Lisbon’s most central areas, the Alameda campus is surrounded by a wide range of public transportation networks, allowing easy access to all points of the city. There is a wide range of cultural, leisure, and sports activities around the campus as well.