Tietotekniikan laitos

Simulation and Optimization (SIMO)

last modified Feb 20, 2007 08:02 PM

Professor in charge: Raino A. E. Mäkinen

What is the shortest route to the university? How to divide time between studies, work, hobbies and rest? Daily life provides plenty of examples of problems, to which we try to find the optimal solution. However, these problems are usually solved only approximately, using experience or guesswork. Problems that contain complex  dependencies and that often involve for example big investments or risks to the environment must be solved using mathematics and information technology. This is when optimization and modelling is needed.

To guarantee the reliability of the results of optimization, the used calculation models must be accurate enough. Accurate models, in turn, demand more efficient algorithms. This line of study gives the students the necessary ability to respond to these challenges.


The line of study focuses on developing mathematical modelling methods, numerical simulation methods and optimization methods and implementing them to scientific and technical problems in particular. In Master studies, students can direct their studies to the "industrial mathematics" or information technology (e.g. computer graphics) direction through the choice of optional courses. The line of study has a strong tradition of post-graduate education. Quite a few demanding modelling and simulation tasks in the industry also require at least pre-doctoral level studies (licentiate).


The teaching in the line of study is based on research in scientific computing done at the department . Scientific computing and its technical applications are the strong areas of research at the University of Jyväskylä. The object of research is mathematical modelling of scientific and technical problems as well as numerical solution methods for models. One focus for research is efficient implementing of solution methods in different computer architectures.

The social need for research in scientific computing has been growing, especially in the electronic industry, chemistry and metal industry. Its methods are also used in economic planning and traffic planning.

What Will I Do When I Grow Up?

The simulation and optimization line of study teaches systematic thinking and problem-solving skills. These skills will probably not be harmful in any situation. Your place in the working life depends on your choice of minor subjects. The Master's Thesis can be part of a project carried out with a company or with the researchers of the Department of Mathematical Information Technology.

Once they have finished their studies, our students work in the training, research and development and leading positions in both private and public sector.