Academic content

Inside of building

During the Master’s programme in Building Energy Design, you gain an integrated understanding of the relation between energy efficient design of buildings, optimal operation concerning indoor climate, energy consumption, and overall economy.

You obtain specialised knowledge about energy design in buildings, and you will be able to create cost-efficient solutions with minimal environmental impact in terms of design, construction, and HVAC systems.

You will work with topics such as:

  • Building energy use
  • Indoor environmental quality
  • Heat and moisture flow in building
  • Energy modelling
  • Ventilation
  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Building energy systems

The teaching combines lectures, laboratory work and project work. On the first two semesters, you will spend half of your study time on courses and course work, while the other half will be spent doing a semester project. Each semester has an overall theme and within this theme, you conduct a semester project with your project group, where you investigate and attempt to solve a relevant issue within your field of study.

The study programmes at AAU are based on problem based learning and project work, which gives you a unique opportunity to acquire new knowledge and competences at a high academic level in an independent manner. You get to apply theory to practice in your semester projects, which will prepare you better for your future career.


inside of building


On the first semester, you will work with energy demand reduction and healthy indoor climate. You will learn how to analyse a building’s indoor climate and on the basis of this you will explore how the energy demand can be reduced.


  • Introduction to PBL, Heat and Moisture Transport in Building (5 ECTS)
  • Indoor Environmental Analysis and Measurements (5 ECTS)
  • Building Energy Modelling (5 ECTS)


  • Building Energy Use and Indoor Environmental Quality (15 ECTS)

examples of pROJEcT topics

  • Renovation of a residential building from 1940s
  • How can a building’s envelope and indoor climate be optimised to meet new regulations?
  • Building energy consumption and Indoor environmental comfort
  • Building energy modelling
  • Validation of building simulation software
  • Energy frames and calculations software
  • Integrated energy simulation of a single family house


On the second semester, you will focus on ventilation, heating and cooling systems for buildings. You will analyse the systems and suggest how they can be optimised while considering factors such as finances and the level of comfort for the users of the building.


  • Building Ventilation (5 ECTS)
  • Building Heating and Cooling Systems (5 ECTS)
  • Control and Analysis of Building Energy Systems (5 ECTS)


  • Building Ventilation, Heating and Cooling (15 ECTS)

examples of pROJEcT topics

  • Design and implementation of an hvac system
  • Ventilation and heating for a school
  • Control and analysis of building energy systems
  • Energy renovations

Experiment setup


During the third semester, you have different options to earn the required 30 ECTS:

  • You can do an internship in Denmark or abroad, where you take part in the day-to-day operations in the business. During the internship, you will write a project about one or more of your tasks during the process
  • You can study a semester at another educational institution abroad or in Denmark
  • You can do a regular semester at AAU with courses and project work
  • You can begin your Master’s thesis, so your work is spread out over both your 3rd and 4th semester

Aalborg University has collaboration agreements with universities around the world, and the programme’s research environment has a wide range of internship contacts.

Find out more about studying abroad and internships here.

If you choose a semester at AAU, you will focus on how the operation of a building can be optimised in a way that minimises the environmental impact in relation to heating and cooling. You may consider the use of natural daylight, passive solar heat and natural ventilation in your assessment. You will follow the courses and project topic below.


  • Environmental Assessment Methods and LCC Analysis (5 ECTS)
  • Elective course (5 ECTS)
  • Elective course (5 ECTS)


  • Building Commissioning Operation and Environmental Impact (15 ECTS)

example of pROJEcT topic

  • Energy producing and energy converting systems


On the fourth semester, you write your Master’s thesis, where you draw on all the knowledge, experience and skills you have acquired during your studies. Depending on your topic choice, the thesis will be in the nature of developmental work, further development, or actual research.

master’s thesis

  • Topic of own choice (30 ECTS)

examples of thesis topics

  • Development of a decision-making tool for energy efficient renovation of single-family houses from 1961 - 1978
  • Domestic hot water consumption and its impact on systems with circulation
  • Electricity for off-grid houses
  • Optimisation of heating control in existing buildings

job and career

More about the programme

Study Method at AAU - Problem Based Learning

Study Method at AAU - Problem Based Learning

The study method at AAU is called Problem Based Learning (PBL). Together with your fellow students you will work with real life problems by way of problem based project work.

learn more about Pbl at aau