Biosystems Engineering (BAT) / BSc


Biosystems Engineering is a broad engineering programme on BSc level. The objective of the programme is to educate academic professionals who are able to solve technology related problems in the field of biosystems engineering. The bachelor programme focuses on acquiring knowledge and understanding of the basic disciplines of biosystems engineering, and the awareness of multidisciplinary approaches. Typical problems in protected cultivations are for example efficient organisation and transport of plants or products in a greenhouse, energy management, light management or management of the indoor climate. Energy is needed for crop growth but is also a major cost; light is needed too but too much artificial light hampers the environment. In animal production improving animal welfare and reduction of emissions are important issues. Similar issues play a role in the housing of companion and other non-production animals. Issues in the field of arable farming are for example fertilisation, crop protection, soil quality, and environmental impact. In the biobased society there is still a growing need for renewable resources, either for energy or as resource for the industry. Optimisation of production chains, integration of consumer demands, food safety, or handling perishable products is becoming more and more important. For all these areas the availability of qualified labour at reasonable costs is a main point of concern. All these issues in the domain of biosystems have in common that technology plays a very important role in solving these problems.
Students acquire basic knowledge on mathematics, statistics, physics, chemistry, and applied biology. Students are also educated in several engineering disciplines as agricultural, mechanical, electrical, and control engineering, engineering physics, engineering design, modelling, informatics, and operations research and logistics. They also get acquainted with the relation between economics, society and technology development in the field of biosystems engineering. The students are trained in integral thinking and handling continuous variable systems. Systems approach is a connecting thread through the programme.

Learning Outcomes

After successful completion of this BSc programme graduates are expected to be able to:
- explain, following a systems approach, the different functions, and for these functions the underlying engineering aspects the technology has to fulfil, for a biosystem used for the production of food, non-food, and resources;
- explain the biology of the biosystem, with emphasis on the factors that influence the growth or behaviour of the biosystem (and can be controlled or affected by technological solutions);
- explain the position and the interactions with stakeholders of the biosystem in the production chain and society;
- apply the relevant knowledge and methods from basic sciences as mathematics, physics, chemistry, and biology in cases related to biosystems engineering;
- apply the relevant knowledge and methods from general and biosystems engineering in cases related to biosystems engineering;
- apply procedural knowledge, including the main phases of a scientific research or design process, by writing a research plan and carrying out this research plan or making a design for a biosystems engineering related problem;
- gather and interpret relevant data in the field of biosystems engineering for sensing, control, and management of biosystems;
- apply programming, measuring, and modelling techniques, system analysis, and mathematical and statistical methods;
- apply a methodical approach for the design and evaluation of technology for the biosystem with respect to the requirements set;
- communicate orally and in writing ideas, problems and solutions on the results of learning, experiments, and project work to both specialist and non-specialist audiences in Dutch, and in English where relevant;
- work adequately in a team of students on a pre-defined biosystems engineering related case (research or development problem);
- make judgements based on the societal needs and requirements that arise in the field of biosystems engineering;
- retrieve and evaluate information from different sources (research, literature, internet, ...);

Programme Director

Dr. ir. J.W. Hofstee
Radix, Building 107, Droevendaalsesteeg 1, 6708 PB Wageningen
Phone: 0317-(4)84194

Study Adviser(s)

Ir. G. Straver
Phone: 0317-(4)83908

Programme Committee

Chair: dr. ir. J.W. Hofstee
Secretary: dr. ir. J.W. Hofstee


Study Association

Heeren XVII, Technotron Bornse Weilanden 9, 6708 WG Wageningen
Phone: 0317-(4)84192

Unconditional Admission to the MSc

MAB Biosystems Engineering
MDR Development and Rural Innovation