Maria Koroliyk, 1:st year of the Erasmus Mundus Masters in Complex Systems Science 2014

Written by

What is your educational background?

I have a bachelors degree from Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Mechanics and Mathematics faculty.

What made you apply to Chalmers?

I applied for the Erasmus Mundus Complex System Masters program, and it was possible to spend one year here at Chalmers.

Why did you choose CAS in particular?

I like the way complex systems could be applied for solving different problems. Also, the program fitted well with my previous background (here I must say, that one advantage of CAS is that it fits well with basically any scientific background).

After finishing my bachelor I was not sure what I wanted to do in the future, and studying CAS gives possibilities and inspiration both to concentrate on the areas you are interested in or to explore the areas you have never worked with before. 

How satisfied are you so far with the program?

Overall, despite that the studies is very challenging, I am completely satisfied. This is exactly what one should expect after reading the program description.

Could you please name the elective courses you have taken already and are planning to take?

I took "Humanoid Robotics" during the last term. I have not decided concerning he courses for the next semester.If I could, I would take all of them,  but unfortunately we are not supplied with time turners :)

In what way do you believe the CAS program is likely to boost your future career or personal development? 

Courses here are not only concentrated on gathering knowledge, but also on using it. Take for example a group project in "Simulation of Complex Systems" - it allows us to get the experience of working in a team as well as the ability to decide what methods to use while working on it. This is an experience that each one of us will use in the future, no matter what we will choose to do.

One thing I already learned from the program is, as it is said: "In theory, practice and theory are the same, but in practice they are completely different". What we learn here resembles the real world as much as possible with current possibilities of science. 

Is it hard for you studying CAS coming from mathematics?

It is challenging, as I said. For me, the hardest part is the amount of programming, as I have never worked with it before. However, all the assignments are doable. From the other side, they could require some work, so be prepared to spend time on them.

Any suggestions or recommendations for students considering coming to Sweden?


Do not be afraid of the weather! It is not that cold here as I expected it to be. Actually, do not be afraid of anything! Instead of reading how cool it is just come here and study complex systems with us!:)

How do it find it in Sweden?

Sweden is a very calm and comfortable country to live in. I feel safe here.  

The vast majority of people speak English fluently and are willing to help you. For international students there are free lessons in Swedish culture and language. In addition, before arriving I got a student buddy that was available for all kinds of questions and help.  

I was amazed by the nature here, and more importantly, howpeople have managed to keep it virgin.

Which universities did you choose to study at and why did you choose them?

For Erasmus students there is a choice of two universities out of three: Warwick, Chalmers and École Polytechnique. Unfortunately, you can not take all of them. I would not say that any choice is worse or better that the other. This is a decision of everybody to make on their own.Talking about me, I have my first year here and my second at Warwick, England. What does matter is that I am here right now and I amhappy about that.

Would you like add additional comments to students considering the Erasmus Mundus Master?

Two things:

You do not loose anything for trying.

Wish you all good luck with applying, and patience in waiting for results!

Which country are you from?

Ukraine.

Why did you choose Sweden and Gothenburg in particular?

It was part of the Complex Systems program that I was interested in.