Erasmus mundus master in Quality in analytical laboratories (EMQAL)

February 11, 2022

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Location (s):

  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Spain
Bergen, Gdansk, Algarve, Barcelona, Cadiz


The Erasmus Mundus Master in Quality in Analytical Laboratories (EMQAL) is a master's course for laboratory managers and scientists who wish to implement and manage quality systems in analytical laboratories, or work in a quality system environment in accredited analytical laboratories. EMQAL is a high-level integrated international study programme of 120 ECTS leading to a Joint Master's Degree.


EMQAL is aimed at scientists and managers specialize in:

  • Quality management
  • Analytical methods
  • Data analysis

The first year you take classes in quality management, analytical methods, data analysis and professional skills. The final year consists of a research project and a three month internship. Study in at least two European universities. All classes are taught in English by experts from around the world.


After ten years of running as an Erasmus Mundus Master's Course, EMQAL was in 2019 reevaluated and reselected by the European Commission for Erasmus Mundus funding.

In the 2019 call, EMQAL was one of only 44 programs to be selected for Erasmus Mundus funding. As a result, EMQAL is again able to offer Erasmus Mundus grants to students and scholars. Fundiong has been awarded for four intakes, starting in 2020. The last intake in this funding period will be in 2023, and these students will graduate in 2025. 

This third phase of EMQAL is coordinated by the University of Bergen. The master is offered by a consortium of five European universities:

  • University of Bergen (Norway, NO) - coordinator
  • University of Algarve (Portugal, PT)
  • University of Barcelona (Spain, ES)
  • University of Cadiz (Spain, ES)
  • Gdansk University of Technology (Poland, PL)

EMQAL has more than 50 associate partners. These including several higher education institutions, private and public companies, accredited laboratories and research centers. The Partner Institutions section includes details anout the partners. 

The programme duration is 24 months, which corresponds to 120 ECTS. The first year (60 ECTS) consists of 30 theoretical and practical modules taught at one of the partner universities. The second year involves a research project and a three month internship in an accridted laboratory or a laboratory with an implemented quality management system. The activities undertaken are summarixed in a master's thesis.  

In the first year, classes take place at a host university. Classes are taught by specialists from all the partner institutions, as well as invited scholars. The role of host university rotates among the partners of the Consortium.


The Master’s course lasts for two years with a total of 120 ECTS. There are three main components:

  • A fully integrated taught course lasting the first year
  • A nine month research project
  • A three month internship

The joint degree is awarded after the submission and public defence of a master's dissertation.

The taught course consists of 4 main disciplines: Quality Management; Analytical Methods, Data Analysis and Professional Skills. These disciplines are essential for the training of a successful laboratory manager. Each discipline is made up of  modules worth 2 ECTS. All modules in Quality Management, Data Analysis and Professional Skills are mandatory. This means that every student will have 20 ECTS Quality Management, 12 ECTS Data Analysis and 10 ECTS Professional Skills. The remaining 18 ECTS are selected individually from the Analytical Methods modules, to arrive at a total of 60 ECTS. The analytical modules are selected so as to best meet the professional development needs of each student. There may also be extra modules presented by invited scholars and other externals. The content and number of such modules will vary from year to year. These modules may be taken as extra-curricular modules, or may replace up to 4 of the analytical modules for a student.

In the Quality Management discipline students are taught how a quality system works. They develop the skills necessary to implement laboratory quality systems. Students are familiarized with the existing standards for quality systems in analytical laboratories, that is ISO/IEC 17025 and all the items included in their management and technical requirements are covered by different modules. The bases of Good Laboratory and Manufacturing Practices are also covered. 

Through the Analytical Methods discipline students acquire a deep understanding of a host of analytical techniques and sample pre-treatment strategies. Methods and strategies presented are the ones most commonly found in various fields of analysis, enabling the student to select modules that could be more adequate to their personal profile and professional development. Students will study the techniques in detail, covering their scientific basis, instrumentations and applications. 

The Data Analysis discipline provides the students with the statistical tools and mathematical skills necessary for optimization of analytical methods, for quality control and for uncertainty estimation. While all students are expected to have at least basic knowledge of statistics from previous educations, these allow the students to strengthen their knowledge and skills in this essential field. Commercial software packages are used in these modules to ensure that the students gain not only theoretical knowledge, but also skills to be used in research projects and in a work environment later. 

The Professional Skills discipline is a collection of five modules aiming at providing students with a set of skills preparing them for employment after graduation. These are focused on communication, both orally and in writing. Project management abilities and leadership skills are important in most careers, and these modules gives a good introduction to these topics. There is also a module on job search strategies, which will involve extensive contact with external laboratories and industries.

All parts of the programme (modules, internship, and research project) contribute to  8 learning outcomes:

Upon successful completion of the programme, graduates will be able to: 

  1. design, implement and manage a quality system in an analytical laboratory;
  2. implement suitable internal and external quality control activities in an analytical laboratory
  3. understand, select and apply a set of instrumental analytical techniques appropriate for a given problem;
  4. develop and validate new methods of analysis;
  5. plan a validation program for a given method of analysis;
  6. critically analyse and evaluate data using statistical tools and software
  7. prepare and compile a scientific report and communicate the findings orally
  8. seek employment and be a valuable asset in a professional environment

Opportunity is About:


Candidates should be from:

Description of Ideal Candidate:

General eligibility criteria

The Master's degree is designed to provide additional education or training in the student's specialized branch of knowledge. The minimum requirements for admission to the Masters are:

1) Strong Academic Background in appropriate disciplines

A "strong academic background" in appropriate disciplines means candidates must hold a high education diploma issued by a competent High Education authority attesting the completion of a degree equivalent to a 1st cycle (180 ECTS), in a field where analytical laboratories play an important role. This may be a degree in Chemistry, Biology, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Biochemistry, Environmental Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Food Engineering, Clinical Analysis, Medicine, etc.

2) Demonstrated command of the English language

A "demonstrated command of English" means the candidate must prove he/she can understand, speak and write English proficiently enough to take the modules, which are all taught in English.

Possible examples include:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language, TOEFL scores paper 575 / computer 232
  • Internet based TOEFL (TOEFL iBT™ ) total score 94
  • International English Language Testing System, IELTS scores 6.5
  • General Certificate of Education, GCSE, AS Level, A Level
  • Cambridge Proficiency Certificate, CPE, Level 4-5
  • Oxford Higher Certificate, International Certificate Conference (ICC Stage 3 Technical)

In case the candidate cannot present an official test of English language in time for the deadline for applications, he/she may take the self-test included in the online application. A minimum classification of B2 is required in all fields.

In case of selection, candidates who only took the self-test will be interviewed. The interview will have the objective of confirming the self-test of English proficiency presented in the application. In case the interview shows the proficiency is below what was stated in the application, the application will be cancelled.

3) Adequate financial resources

When you apply there is no guarantee that you will be considered for an ERASMUS or ERASMUS MUNDUS studentship so you should be fully aware of the financial costs of the programme. All candidates must take the financial aspects in consideration when applying. The studentships are extremely competitive and only the very best students in a field of many excellent applicants will be awarded the studentships.

You should indicate clearly if you are relying on ERASMUS, ERASMUS MUNDUS or other studentships to finance your study.

Before final acceptance, candidates who were not awarded a studentship will be required to submit a Guarantee of full financial support for the duration of the studies. The University needs to now that you have sufficient funds to cover the entire period of study. This document must be signed by whomever is meeting your university expenses. It may also have to be certified by a bank or lawyer. Keep a copy of this form since you may also need it to apply for your student visa. Please note, however, that the university will issue the relevant certificate of eligibility for a student visa only if you are able to document fully your source(s) of income. 

Individuals who have already benefited from an Erasmus Mundus Master studentship are not eligible for a second studentship in order to follow EMQAL.

One individual may apply only to a maximum of three Erasmus Mundus Master courses at the same time. Candidates who do not comply with this rule may have their applications cancelled by the EACEA.


Deadline: February 11, 2022

Cost/funding for participants:

Each year the European Commission provides a limited number of grants Erasmus+: Erasmus Mundus scholarships for selected students after the selection process and ranking of the eligible candidates. 

Contribution to subsistence costs:

  • A monthly allowance of 1000€ for the entire duration of the EMQAL study programme (24 months).
  • Contribution to subsistence costs will not be given to the scholarship holders for the study/research/placement/thesis preparation periods spent in their country of residence.

Contribution to the travel and installation costs

  • 1.000€ per year per scholarship holder resident of a Programme Country (see NOTES) for travel costs.
  • 2.000€ per year for travel costs + 1.000€ for installation costs for scholarship holder resident of a Partner Country (see NOTES) whose location is situated at less than 4.000 km from the coordinating Higher education institution (HEI), that is University of Barcelona.
  • 3.000€ per year for travel costs + 1.000€ for installation costs for scholarship holder resident of a Partner Country whose location is situated at 4.000 km or more from the coordinating HEI (University of Barcelona).
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