IMACS is an integrated Master of Science designed by 4 institutions with a wide range of leadership in clay science.
Masters in Materials Science in Vienne in France. ENVIRONMENTS- ECONOMIC GEOLOGY-SOIL MANAGEMENT-GEOTECHNICAL ENGINEERING-GEOMATERIAL-NANOMATERIAL
IMACS is an integrated Master of Science designed by 4 institutions with a wide range of leadership in clay science :
the University of Poitiers (UP) in France (co-ordinator),
the University of Aveiro (UA) in Portugal,
the Technical University of Crete (TUC) (Chania) in Greece,
the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS) (Porto Alegre) in Brazil.
Why clay minerals ?
Interest in clays results from their common availability, and their unique physical and chemical properties. No other minerals currently attract so great an interest.
In addition to their conventional ancient use as bricks, tiles, ceramics and for paper coating and waste management more recently, clays have found many novel applications. Clay minerals have provided a boost in technology, because they are inexpensive nanomaterials, and as such, they have a huge potential for the synthesis of polymer nanocomposites with superior mechanical and thermal properties. The optimisation of adsorption, colloidal and rheological properties also opens prospects of using clay minerals for medical uses, pollution control, and environmental protection. Clay minerals play a role in economic geology (both as important mineral resource and in energy resource exploration) and soil management. Clays also have many negative effects in geotechnical engineering, manifested in the form of landslides, mudflows, and the deterioration of clay-based construction materials.
Clay knowledge is extremely inter- and multidisciplinary as it includes geological, geotechnical, mineralogical, physico-chemical and bio-geochemical aspects. The IMACS is the first master course addressing analytical techniques and their recent developments, clay mineral properties as well as their main application domains.
Thus, the complex and versatile nature of clays, as well as their numerous uses and applications, demand that clay engineers have a multidisciplinary education.
Objective of the IMACS programme
Most existing Masters Courses dealing with clays focus on a single discipline or domain in which Clay Science does not necessarily constitute the main part of the course (Earth Sciences, Civil and Geotechnical Engineering, Materials Science, Environmental and Life Science, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering). However, Clay Science is a multidisciplinary endeavour, combining geology, mineralogy, crystallography, with physics, geotechnology and soil mechanics together with inorganic, organic, colloid chemistry and biochemistry.
IMACS (International Master in Advanced Clay Science) is the first multi-disciplinary programme that brings together the widely-distributed knowledge of clays.
IMACS is an integrated 2 years master programme delivered by four Universities : the University of Poitiers (France), the Technical University of Crete (Chania - Greece), the University of Aveiro (Portugal) and the Federal University of Rio Grande Do Sul (Porto Alegre – Brazil), and is supported by the French Clay Group (GFA) and AIPEA (International Association for the Study of Clay Minerals) which are associated members of IMACS. This programme approved by the European Commission under a very competitive application scheme as an Erasmus Mundus Joint Master programme in July 2009.
During the first year, basic knowledge on clays, recent developments in clays and analytical techniques are provided, followed by a first specialization in Environment, soil and geological systems. After this training period, a master project completes the first year programme. The second year incorporates two specializations 1) Geomaterials and civil engineering, and 2) Advanced clay – nanomaterials, and Healing minerals. The master thesis (4 to 6 months) completes this second year and can be carried out at any of the partner research laboratories which constitute a network of more than 20 labelled research laboratories and numerous private companies.
The objective of this Master is to form high level graduates by providing them a wide range of competences with applications in Environment, Earth Sciences, Materials (Geomaterials and Nanomaterials)... The interdisciplinary of the IMACS programme gives access to a large job market on the international level. A great number of research laboratories will be able to welcome for PhD IMACS students. IMACS students will be attractive for any engineer vacant positions requiring clay knowledge (Environment and waste management, Civil Engineering, Soils, Industries linked with mineral and energetic resources, Geo materials, Cement and Ceramic industry, Nano-materials, Cosmetics and medicine...).
The teaching language is English. The completion of the curriculum is rewarded by a Master Degree or multiple Master Degrees depending on the student mobility.
This Masters Course is open to students holding a BSc (or a degree equivalent to 180 ECTS) or an academic equivalence based on professional experience (validation of acquired experience is required), and a fluent understanding of the English language.
In connection with the industrial demand.
Analysis expertise for mineral-geomaterial characterization : X-Ray Diffraction, Infrared Spectroscopy, Scanning and Transmission Electron Microscopy, Thermal Analyses, Tomography…
A transdisciplinary approach.
Two periods of internship in a partner laboratory (university or industry), conditioned by the grades acquired.
An international training course.
The applicant will have to send the following documents:
Degree equivalent to BSc
A certified (translated in English) copy of the required degree for application in a Masters Course (at least a Bachelor Degree or a nationally recognized degree equivalent to 180 ECTS).
If requested, the applicant must prove the international recognition of the mentioned Degree as equivalent to a Bachelor and provide such official recognition translated in English. An academic equivalency could be attributed based on the professional experience of the applicant (validation of acquired experience). In consequence, the programme is not only open to B.Sc. students.
Note: The application can be sent even if the B.Sc. is not fully completed at the deadline. This situation shall be explained precisely in the additional explanation letter. The IMACS selection board will decide if the application will be processed or not.
Students from the following countries must contact the French Embassy or Consulate in their country as soon as possible:
Algeria, Argentina, Benin, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Congo Brazzaville, Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon, Guinea, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Lebanon, Madagascar, Mali, Marocco, Mauritius, Mexico, Peru, Senegal, Russia, South Korea, Taiwan, Tunisia, Turkey, USA, Vietnam.
These students must follow the standard CEF (Centre for Studies in France) online application process on the Campus France website.The Campus France pre-enrolment certificate is compulsory.
Excepted for native speaker, a certified fluent level in English is needed as proof of the sufficient knowledge of the English language. Additional proficiency in French, Greek or Portuguese could also be sent.
Transcript of records
Transcript of records presenting the complete list of courses validated during the Bachelor with the grade obtained in an explained scale (preferentially the ECTS grading scale or the international norm defined by the NCEFEC on a scale from A+ to E).
This document must be an official document emanating from the concerned institution with the name and the signature of person in charge of the formation and must be in English or a copy of a certified translation in English must be provided.
Two letters of reference emanating from two different teachers, researchers and/or professionals, who have directly known the applicant during a teaching or work period, explaining the applicant's suitability with respect to the programme applied for.
The evaluation form completed by the person in charge of the last training (Bachelor or Master courses).
Letter of motivation
Typewritten or word-processed, in English, in which the applicant explains why he/she is applying, how he/she thinks that this application can help him/her and favor his/her personal project, what are his/her professional objectives.
This letter must also present the candidate's arguments explaining his/her preference for the training mobility.
A curriculum vitae (in English) giving additional information useful for the evaluation and perception of the applicant's interest and suitability to the IMACS programme (the applicant's experience, project, training or studies abroad ; work experience, actual and past professional activities, miscellaneous & language skills).
The creation of the CV Europass is performed on the EU website.
Duly completed and signed Application form.
Copy of passport (or Id)
Note that selected non European students have to possess a passport with an expiration date posterior to the normal date of the end of the course to which he/she is enrolled for (e.g. around 3 years).
Additional explanation letter (if necessary)
The applicant can explain in a separate letter specific issues, for example : special needs, missing documents...