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RI | Education | Master of Science in Information Technology in Robotics Technology Information

Master of Science in Information Technology - Robotics Technology (MSIT-RT)
A Professional Program Training Hands-On Leaders in Applied Robotics

This page: Introduction | Program Structure | Robotics Core Courses | Information Technology Core Courses | Electives | Robotics Projects | Creating an MSIT-RT Program | Admissions | Contacts


In the rapidly evolving business environments for robotics and intelligent automation, technology can no longer be led entirely by academic researchers who run spin-off businesses part time. We need talented and trained product architects and project managers with strong foundations in the underlying requirements and technologies. This is particularly necessary in developing nations, where - much more than in industrialized nations - managers are expected by their supervisors and their team members to be able to do the jobs of the people they supervise. The MSIT-RT program aims to create leaders with these qualities.

The MSIT-RT professional masters degree program trains identified future leaders of robotics and intelligent automation companies and R&D establishments in technology management, software engineering, and foundations and practices of robotics and automation science and engineering. The program builds on strong backgrounds in the underlying computer science, software engineering, and information technology fundamentals. Classroom training is reinforced by an integrated practicum program that exposes the students to real laboratory and industrial environments and requires that they acquire and demonstrate individual and group competence in the skills and practices that their future teams will apply.

The Robotics Institute MSIT-RT program operates in collaboration with select colleges and universities who have identified credible local development opportunities and strong local candidates who can turn robotics and automation opportunities into businesses and products. The pilot program was developed in collaboration with SSN School of Advanced Software Engineering, Chennai, India (learn more about our education partners). It is composed of two phases, the first a distance-education mode in which the Robotics Masters degree core courses are delivered by local faculty with our support, the second an inresidence mode at the Carnegie Mellon main campus in Pittsburgh. During the in-residence phase, advanced courses are taken and research laboratory experiences are gained via individual projects in one of the Robotics Institute's research groups. Upon completion of the program the students receive the Carnegie Mellon School of Computer Science MSIT-RT degree, and, optionally, one or more additional Professional Development Certificates depending on additional coursework or projects completed.

New programs can be structured with collaborating partner institutions to take best advantage of the strengths and needs of the partners and the pool of students available to them. Possibilities include - but are not limited to - 1.) programs conducted entirely in a distance education mode in which the local college or university is the degree-granting institution, 2.) programs conducted in a remote campus mode utilizing visiting Carnegie Mellon faculty and in which Carnegie Mellon is the degree-granting institution, and 3.) programs delivered entirely at Carnegie Mellon after a preliminary foundations-delivery and final-admissions testing phase at the local institution.

 Structure of a Typical Program

The two-year program is composed of two one-year phases. First year studies are at the partner's campus via distance education materials provided by the Robotics Institute and delivered by the partner's faculty. Successful students transition to Carnegie Mellon's main campus to complete a second year of classes and an extensive research project. After graduation, students are eligible to pursue additional practical training in the US before returning to their home countries. Typically the additional training is provided by internship with a company in the US who plans to employ the student at an overseas division in the student's home country.

 First Year of Study (at educational partner campus location)

 Typical Robotics Core Courses (by distance education at partner campus)

  • General Robotics
  • Sensing and Sensors
  • Computer Vision
  • Artificial Intelligence

 Typical Information Technology Core Courses (by distance education at partner campus)

  • Architectures for Software Systems
  • Real-Time Software and Systems
  • Managing Software Development
  • Personal Software Process

Upon certification of readiness by the partner institution's faculty, an RI faculty member administers individual oral examinations in the core subjects. Students who pass the examinations are invited to apply to complete the program at Carnegie Mellon. The application includes a statement-of-purpose in which the student is expected to elucidate his or her personal goals, the needs of his or her home country or region, and the how the connection between them will be facilitated by the student completing the program. Admitted students are invited to join the graduate student body at Carnegie Mellon University.

In their year at the main campus the students complete elective coursework and a research project. The class works as a team to assess home country or region technology-based industries and develop employment and entrepreneurial opportunities. Their education and specialized training makes them attractive employment candidates in robotics and automation industries and R&D institutes, as well as in allied areas of computer science and engineering, software engineering, and information technology.

 Typical Elective Courses (at Carnegie Mellon Pittsburgh Campus)

  • Manipulation for Robotics
  • Mobile Robot Design
  • Mobile Robot Programming
  • Embedded Systems Design and Programming

 Typical Projects (in Robotics Institute Research Laboratories)

  • Path Planning and Optimization
  • Multi-modal Data Acquisition and Sensor Fusion
  • Wide Baseline Stereo Matching
  • Registration of Range and Video Images
  • Physiological Monitoring to Assess Operator Alertness
  • Design and Assessment of a Single-Lens Stereo Vision System
  • Control by Visual Servoing
  • Robot Localization by Monitoring Wireless Access Points

 Creating Your Institution's MSIT-RT Program

MSIT-RT program graduates have enormous potential to affect development in their home countries by creating new businesses within existing companies, creating job opportunities by launching new companies, and fostering the emergence of strong indigenous academic, government, and industrial research groups. Collaboration with indigenous educational institutions, communities, and companies is an essential part of the MSIT-RT experience. Program graduates are expected and encouraged to return to their home countries and participate in their sustainable development programs. Collaborative programs with this philosophy can be developed to meet your institution's and your region's specific needs and goals. If you are interested in adopting a program in one of the existing models or if you would like to work with us to develop a program tailored to your region's and your institution's individual needs and capabilities please contact us.

 Admissions Requirements and Process

Our graduates lead the revolutions underway in robotics and automation. A Carnegie Mellon Robotics Institute degree - and the network of faculty, project mentors, and classmates that comes with it - gives its holder a competitive advantage in the marketplace of IT-enabled sustainable development. MSIT-RT program eligibility is not restricted to specific undergraduate majors, nor are applicants required to have prior robotics experience. We look for applicants with unique individual strengths, and we give significant weight to work experience in all related technical disciplines. We invite prospective students to apply to the nearest MSIT-RT program through our local educational partner. If an MSIT-RT program does not yet exist in your region, please ask the academic head of a qualified local institution to contact us regarding a partnership.

 MSIT-RT Contact Information for Academic Issues and Alternative Program Structures

Mel Siegel, PhD
Director, MSIT-RT Program
Associate Research Professor
Director, Intelligent Sensors, Measurement, and Control Lab
The Robotics Institute - School of Computer Science
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh PA 15213 USA
+1 412 260 2626 phone
+1 412 291 1509 fax

 MSIT-RT Contact Information for Administrative Issues and Existing Program Information

Rachel Burcin
Coordinator, MSIT-RT Program
The Robotics Institute - School of Computer Science
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh PA 15213 USA
+1 412 268 4272 office

The Robotics Institute is part of the School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University.
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