Honours Class Next Generation Robotics (NGR)

Robotics is a multi- and interdisciplinary engineering domain. The creation of innovative robots needs high level research in all disciplines involved. It is a “mission” in which top level engineers of these disciplines work closely together. Currently the TU Delft does not offer bachelor programmes with this “mission” scope. It is expected that industry will need more and more these broadly educated and mission driven engineers (Kamp & Klaassen, 2016). We want to attract excellent and motivated students from this mission driven group already in the first year of study, by offering them a challenging robotics programme. The size of the programme is 25 EC on top of the regular programme and both programmes have to be completed within three years.

The Interdisciplinary Honours Class NGR is an extra programme and starts in the first year of the regular bachelor programme. It has a duration of 2.5 years with a size of at least 25 EC, in which students complete a full “design circle”. They do this by starting with the definition of a mission in the first year and ending with implementation, operation, evaluation of the results and suggestions for a next step in a dedicated minor and bachelor end (team) project. The NGR programme aims for the same target group as the students that are aimed for at the regular Honours programmes. Therefore, a successful first year in the NGR programme will meet the requirements for selection into the HPB.

The size of the programme is 25 EC on top of the regular programme. The EC should be distributed across interdisciplinary courses (5 EC), theory/masterclasses (7 EC), projects (13 EC), and other activities (1 EC). More details are provided below.

Interdisciplinary Part (mandatory for the BHP): 5 EC

In the interdisciplinary part of the Honours Programme Delft you work alongside honours students from other faculties on your academic and professional development. You must obtain at least 5 or 6 ECTS for the interdisciplinary part. There are several ways to obtain these ECTS. For more info consult check here.

Theory and masterclasses: (min) 7 EC

Extra courses from other domains to acquire theory necessary for developing robots next generation. Extra theory is dependent of major regular programme. Necessary knowledge: mechanics, programming skills, electronics, data-acquisition, systems and control, sensors, micro controllers, basics embedded systems, basics human-machine interaction.

Projects: (min) 13 EC

  • The students define a mission that can be used to create a consistent set of projects over the years.
  • Students can choose a project to work on in small groups (2-3 students).
  • Students can choose for small projects or one large project.
  • Students write an individual report by the end of Q2 and a final report as result of at (largest) project s/he pursued.
  • Every student will give feedback on the reports of two other students (outside their team) by using the rubric.

Other parts of programme: 1 EC

  • Participation (international) conferences in the Robotics field
  • (International) collaboration (competitions/summer courses etc.)
  • Industry visits and projects
  • Implementation of the full mission, demonstrate it and interpret the results
  • Be part of the outreach programme of the university

Excellent and talented first year bachelor students from:

  • Aerospace engineering;
  • Electrical Engineering;
  • Computer Science and Engineering;
  • Mechanical Engineering

Max. 15 participants: 3-4 from each faculty. The students will form a team.

  1. Your grades at high school (min. GPA Math B and Physics: 8 or equivalent for international students) and high grades in the first semester at TU Delft, will give us confidence how you cope with your regular programme. The higher these grades, the higher your chance to be selected.
  2. Next to these pieces of evidence (high school grade list and OSIRIS list with courses and grades first quarter), we expect a motivation letter and a recommendation letter from one of your teachers at high school.
  3. In the motivation letter we expect that you describe:
    • your experience in the past with making a robot;
    • your experience with solving complex problems in a team;
    • examples that prove you are goal-oriented and have the perseverance to achieve your goals;
    • describe robot applications that inspire you;
    • your motivation and ambitions to make a difference in the NGR programme.

If you are, or plan to become a member of a student association, we advise you not to apply because this membership will take up too much of your time.

Please contact Yke Bauke Eisma ( via email with the subject of the email being “Application NGR”.

The email shall contain the following:

  1. 300 words max motivation letter
  2. Letter of recommendation - max 300 words
  3. CV - 1 page max & picture
  4. High school grade of Maths, English & Physics

28th May 2021: Deadline of applications

1st week June 2021: Selection applicants

Last week june/first week July: Interviews.

An average student needs 28 hours of study to obtain 1 ECTS point. It is expected that excellent students need less time than average students. The honours class NGR starts in the second semester and the programme will cost you on average 8-10 hours extra per week. It is our experience that students selected for this programme in the previous years, also used part of the (summer) holidays to work on projects.

No additional fees are charged for enrolling into the honours class NGR. It is possible that during the programme students can have some additional (travel) costs.

Students should meet the selection criteria of the faculty’s honours programme. Hence, participation in this programme will be stopped if the student does not meet the selection criteria for the honours programme.

  • Students are expected to finish the first year of their regular study in one year with a grade point average of 8 or higher with inclusion of the assignments.
  • Students are expected to finish regular programme and the integrated honours programme in three years in order to receive an honours certificate and a certificate from the Robotics Institute (some extension is possible depending on the faculty policy with regards to the duration of the honours programme).
  • Expected study load: First year: ~8 EC; Second year: ~10 EC; Third year: ~7 EC.
  • Students must take the interdisciplinary courses (~5 EC) offered by TU Delft and meant for all honours students. These credits are necessary to fulfill the requirements of the faculty’s honours programmes.
  • The students write a midterm report, two peer evaluations, and a final report, as discussed below.
  • Taking the minor (advanced) Robotics is strongly advised.
  • It is expected that selected and admitted students also choose a robotics research/development assignment in their final bachelor thesis (supervision and assessment according the guidelines and assessment criteria from their major programme).

  • Early orientation and preparation to become inter- and multidisciplinary innovative team players in Robotics.
  • Experience to work with (research and industrial) experts and motivated peers.
  • Extra challenge to broaden and deepen knowledge and experience.
  • Possibility to experience state of the art developments in research and industry.
  • Possibility to explore your own creativity, communication and innovative skills.
  • After the first year regular programme students become member of the TU Delft honours community (if they have met all the demands).
  • This special programme will enable early network building in the Robotics field.
  • Possibility to work on a mission from the start with enough time and skills to accomplish this possibility to write and present a scientific paper.
  • Possibility to work in an interdisciplinary team and to experiment with the different engineering roles.
  • Possibility to choose for master track Robotics from four faculties (LR, EE, CE/CS and Mechanical Eng.).
  • This honours programme is embedded in the TU-Delft Robotics Institute and students become part of the (international) robotics community

If you successfully complete the Interdisciplinary Honours Class NGR within 3 years, you will receive a TU Delft Honours certificate. More information about the TU Delft Honours programme can be found on this website. Next to this honours certificate you will also receive an extra statement letter from the TU Delft Robotics Institute that you have successfully completed the Next Generation Robotics Interdisciplinary Honours Class.

If you feel you have misjudged the level of the Honours Class NGR or the amount of work, you can stop at any time and continue as a regular student with your bachelor studies. It is a good idea to discuss this with the project leader/coordinator.

Organisation, infrastructure and coaching

The NGR programme is now formally hosted by 3mE.All projects for all NGR students (independent of faculty) will be registered through this faculty.

The team consists of the following members:

  • Chris Verhoeven
  • Chris is the architect of the NGR programme. He makes sure to be present for the yearly selection of new NGR students as well as the formal presentations (such as final presentations) by the NGR students. Informally, he is always ready to serve as a source of inspiration, and to re-emphasize the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration.

  • Yke Bauke Eisma
  • Yke (3mE) will coordinate the kick-off days and will most likely continue to care for the occurrence of regular meetings. Yke is interested to be a first point of contact for any questions from NGR students.

  • Laura Ferranti
  • Laura (3mE) will focus on the academic quality of the written reports that NGR students will create.

  • Martin Klomp
  • Martin is the coordinator of the Minor Robotics, and as such he has many contacts with companies that provide assignments. For NGR, Martin is the go-to-person regarding all cont(r)acts with companies.

  • Martijn Wisse
  • Martijn (3mE) is formally the responsible person for the NGR programme.

  • Jilt Sietsma
  • Jilt (3mE) is the coordinator of the 3mE “regular” honours programme, and he is the only one allowed to enter the results of the student projects in OSIRIS.

  • Formal project supervisors
  • Each NGR project has a formal academic supervisor. This could be any staff member of TU Delft. It could be one of the staff members listed above themselves, or they could help find someone else. Or the NGR students can propose a formal academic supervisor themselves. This supervisor should check the quality of the NGR project work, also using the NGR report requirements. At the end of the project, this supervisor and the NGR student together will sign a form stating that the project was completed satisfactorily. This form will then be sent to prof. Sietsma who will enter the project scores in OSIRIS.

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