Skip to main content
To KTH's start page To KTH's start page

What do the teachers have to say?

Teachers from ITM, CBH and EECS talk about what motivates them to create these kinds of courses and share their best tips.

Mathias Ekstedt portrait

Mathias Ekstedt, EECS

"My course exists thanks to my personal motivation"

Extreme lack of competence in cyber security and a call from the school. This led Mathias Ekstedt and Robert Lagerström to create the further education course "Cybersecurity analysis". This autumn, it will be held for the fourth year.

Quick facts

Course: Cyber ​​security analysis (3 credits), further education

Course managers: Robert Lagerström  & Mathias Ekstedt

Statistics HT22: 316 applicants, 65 first-time applicants

What motivates you to create courses for professionals?

– It feels responsible partly because it was a request from the school and partly because there is an extreme lack of competence in cyber security.

I think one should design further education courses partly differently than "regular" courses. Now we make minimal changes since the content comes from an existing course; the further education students only get to tag along with the other students. But our current incentive structure does not make this possible, as I understand it. You can not waive a student course because you have an LL course. So my course is currently living on my motivation but will surely pass…

What advice would you like to send to those who have never put together an independent course?

– The tip is to do it and not worry about how it will work. And to reuse existing courses.

What is the biggest challenge in putting together and running a course?

– It isn't easy to know how many will take the course in the end. I feel that of all those registered, 10-20% take the course and maybe 50% of those complete it. This significant dropout is not a big problem in itself any more than it is challenging to plan the size of the premises.

Text: Charlotta Alnersson, EECS

Andrea Eriksson portrait

Andrea Eriksson, CBH

“A Lifelong Learning course is a great way to reach out with current research and knowledge.”

Andrea Eriksson, Associate Professor at the Ergonomics division, is motivated by sharing her research and knowledge with professionals. She will now give her Lifelong Learning course, Leadership and sustainable works, for the second time.

What motivates you to create courses for professionals?

– I would like to contribute to a better work environment – this is a perfect way to reach out with current research and knowledge. I get very much out of participating in the participants’ different experiences and practical examples. In the course, the participants work with producing action plans for improved leadership within their work organisations, which is very inspiring to me as a course leader.

Why did you initiate the course Leadership and sustainable works?

– Many work organisations experience that they need support in which substantial efforts they can make to create a more sustainable and health-promoting leadership. For many years, I have researched questions relating to this very thing. This course will become yet another way to support critical people in work organisations in working with leadership issues in research-based practice.

What tip would you give someone who never has put together a standalone course?

– My course is a shorter version of an existing master’s course, which is a good tip. Also, think about scheduling the course so that it is possible to combine working life with studies. I have limited the number of mandatory elements and have tried to place lectures and seminars on late afternoons. In addition, the course is entirely digital, with many lectures recorded.

– Professionals want to apply the knowledge from the course directly in their work. This can be good to think of when designing the course content. Perhaps the participants can apply learnings from the system in their work already during the course – for example, in the form of home assignments?

Text: Åsa Karsberg, CBH

Read the full interview with Andrea Eriksson (CBH website)

Markus Lithander portrait


“I like to try different pedagogical methods”

The opportunity to design a course from scratch and test new pedagogical methods attracted Marcus Lithander to the Department of Learning. He created the course "Learn Online", given for the first time this spring.

What motivates you to create courses for professionals?

– I like to have the opportunity to design a course from scratch and try new pedagogical methods. The course I give does not need to be adapted to other courses students have taken or courses in a program. A freedom that is, of course, also a challenge.

What tip would you give someone who never has put together a standalone course?

– Use a clear course structure and start by designing assignments and questions before creating lectures.

What is the biggest challenge in putting together and running a course?

– When it comes to lifelong learning courses, our team uses to talk about trying to create tasks and materials that connect with real needs. It is not always enough to convey knowledge; students also need to be allowed to use and test their knowledge. In practice, we try to integrate case assignments, discussion forums and quizzes where students get an opportunity to test their knowledge – which aligns with lifelong learning.

Text: Anna Gullers, ITM

Read the full interview with Marcus Lithander (ITM website)

Linda Söderlindh portrait


"The connection to working life challenges and enriches"

Engineers' writing and rhetoric courses challenge Linda Söderlindh at the Department of Learning at the ITM School. But they also enrich KTH students at Linda’s regular courses.

What motivates you to create courses for professionals?

”I like the challenge of finding new perspectives on my teaching. Professionals also have a lot of practical experience that will be used in the discussions during the course. They ask other questions and can also relate theory and practice to real-life workplace situations. Since the participants also have different experiences, the discussions will be extra fun and challenging for me as a teacher. This also enriches my “ordinary” teaching. I use many examples from my further training courses for programme students at KTH. They always appreciate these links with working life.”

Why have you initiated these courses?

A degree does not mean you stop learning things; quite the opposite. Most of us, and perhaps professional engineers, need skills development and further training in relevant areas. Communication in speech and writing are essential skills for all engineers. Many may not have been able to develop these skills during their studies or face different demands in their working lives than those made during their education. That is why we need to provide courses that are also relevant for engineers.

What is the biggest challenge in putting together and running a course?

”These require a little different preparation than you might be used to. For example, participants may never have seen a learning platform like Canvas before, which requires more information for participants from your side. It can also be difficult at first to adapt the course to the target group because you do not know in advance who will apply. But that is also what is fun.”

”Practical things also require a little more, or different, planning. For example, the number of places in the courses must be decided in advance. Think through how many participants you want, as it is challenging to add more later, even if there is significant demand. It is also challenging to get a schedule that suits all participants. You have to try it out. Also, ensure that the course administration knows what kind of course it is; that can make it easier for you and the participants.”

 Text: Anna Gullers, ITM

Read the full interview with Linda Söderlindh (ITM website)