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The Abbe School of Photonics

The Abbe School of Photonics

The Abbe School of Photonics


Our mission: world-class photonics education

The mission of the Abbe School of Photonics is to offer an education program in photonics at the highest international standards to the most ambitious and motivated students. Our School serves as a career springboard by promoting academic careers, as well as providing opportunities to gain job experience in the photonics industry.

Studying photonics in the city where it all began

The School's concept and philosophy have as the main goal of the establishment of one of the world's leading educational centers in optics and photonics in Jena, Germany. ASP was shaped by the tradition and broad teaching and research activity spectrum in the field of light sciences at our University. The School offers outstanding degree qualification opportunities at the undergraduate and graduate levels in the areas of optics and photonics. The School's qualification strategy is completely research-oriented and based on the principles of academic freedom, competitive research conditions, and internationalization at all levels of education and research.

The School recognizes its responsibility that many of its graduates will continue a career in research-intensive companies. ASP's training programs, therefore, aim to promote and optimally link the academic career phases of young scientists with job experience in research-intensive companies. All of our competitive career development measures are therefore designed to lay the foundation for successful careers both in academia and industry.

ASP was founded in 2008 in a public-private partnership by the German federal and Thuringian state governments, the University of Jena, and the German photonics industry. A key factor of the program is ASP's close collaboration with industrial partners. To sustain our partners' exceptional economic development in the future, the availability of a substantial number of highly qualified employees will be required. ASP graduates are those potential candidates, well-prepared for the German photonics industry.

Jena: a top-ranked German university full of history and tradition

The Friedrich Schiller University Jena, with its ancient Latin name being "alma mater jenensis", is one of the oldest German universities, having been founded in 1558. At that time the classical academic areas of philosophy, theology, law, and medicine were the subjects of research and teaching. During the past centuries, many prominent scholars have been professors at this university. At the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th centuries, Jena became famous during the classic-romantic "miraculous era" when world-renowned poets and philosophers such as Goethe, Schiller, Hegel, and Fichte marked its intellectual atmosphere.

Fully digital, fully online!

The MSc Photonics program was originally conceived as an on-campus study course. We believe that our School is one of the best places in the world to study research-oriented, hands-on photonics in high-end, research-grade laboratories - and we hold ourselves to this standard. Yet, we acknowledge that the COVID-19 pandemic has a long-lasting effect on global academia. Thus, on-campus teaching combined with hybrid streaming is the new standard at our school:

  • At our school, a limited number of online-only study slots for the duration of the first and second semester exist as well. Thus, the program can be studied entirely remotely during the first year of studies, and all 60 necessary credit points (CPs) can be earned during that period of time.
  • However, in order to advance to the third semester and to finally obtain the Master's degree, each first-year online student has to move to Jena at some point before the start of the third semester. It is mandatory for all students to study on-campus during the third and fourth semesters.


  • Jena

    Abbe Center of Photonics Albert-Einstein-Str. 6 07745 Jena, Germany, 07745, Jena