MENA3100 – Characterization of Materials

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Changes in the course due to coronavirus

Autumn 2020 we plan for teaching and examinations to be conducted as described in the course description and on semester pages. However, changes may occur due to the corona situation. You will receive notifications about any changes at the semester page and/or in Canvas.

Spring 2020: Teaching and examinations was digitilized. See changes and common guidelines for exams at the MN faculty spring 2020.

Course content

The course will give you an introduction to central materialcharacterization methods used to decide the structure, composition and the phase stability. 

The methods you will get familiar with includes among others thermic analysis (TA), light microscopy (LM), scanning- and transmission electron microscopy (SEM and TEM), x-ray- and electron diffraction (XRD and SAD), x-ray- and electron spectrometry (EDS, EELS) in TEM, XPS) as well as secondary-ion mass spectrometry  (SIMS)

There will be a special focus on the interaction between probes and materials and the signals generated and detected.

Learning outcome

After the course, students should be able to:

  • understand and describe the fundamental principles behind the methods of characterization which are included in the curriculum.
  • analyze, interpret and present observations from the different methods.
  • evaluate the uncertainty of observations and results from the different methods.
  • assess which methods of characterization are appropriate for different material problems.

Admission to the course

Students at UiO register for courses and exams in Studentweb.

Special admission requirements

In addition to fulfilling the Higher Education Entrance Qualification, applicants have to meet the following special admission requirements:

  • Mathematics R1 (or Mathematics S1 and S2) + R2

And in addition one of these:

  • Physics (1+2)
  • Chemistry (1+2)
  • Biology (1+2)
  • Information technology (1+2)
  • Geosciences (1+2)
  • Technology and theories of research (1+2)

The special admission requirements may also be covered by equivalent studies from Norwegian upper secondary school or by other equivalent studies (in Norwegian).

Formal prerequisite knowledge

The following HSE course must also be taken in the same semester or earlier than MENA3100:


The course extends over a full semester with 80 hours teaching (32 hours lectures, the rest is colloquia, demonstrations and laboratory.)

As the teaching involves laboratory and/or field work, you should consider taking out a separate travel and personal risk insurance. Read about your insurance cover as a student.


Final written examination (4 hours) counts 100% of final grade.

To qualify for the final examination, all laboratory assignments must be approved.

Examination support material

Approved calculator.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in Norwegian. If the course is taught in English, the examination text will only be given in English. You may answer in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass the original examination.

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) June 3, 2020 6:12:53 PM

Facts about this course

Teaching language