It is possible to predict properties of materials "from scratch" or "ab initio": by applying the laws of quantum physics to the atoms that make up the material. The methods for doing this have been developed by solid state physicists, and are now sufficiently mature to tackle materials engineering problems. These so-called "ab initio methods" are becoming a mandatory item in the toolbox of modern materials scientists. This course teaches you in a practical and hands-on way how to become a responsible user of these tools.
All content is offered via prerecorded videos. Each video comes with a task, and after submitting the task there is in many cases either automated feedback or peer feedback. During the fall term at Ghent University (September-December), instructors are present in the course to give a weekly feedback webinar in which student's questions are discussed. At any other time of the year, you can still study this course in a self-paced way. There is the opportunity to be part of a team to work on a project. The course is free of cost and open to anyone. Emphasis is on conceptual understanding and hands-on training, not on mathematical theory.