Master Projects

Master project (PDM) dates and duration

PDM done at EPFL usually start in the first or second week of the semester, and end during the following exam session. The dates are fixed in agreement between the student and the teacher in charge (if applicable, also with the host company or the host institution).

PDM can start between January 1 and May 31 (Spring semester) or between June 1 and December 31 (Fall semester). They should in any case start on Monday, and be submitted on Friday at noon.

PDM can in no circumstances start before the successful completion of the Master’s cycle (or the conditional admission to the Master’s project) has been checked after the exam session (first Monday of the Spring semester for the Winter semester, and last Monday of July for the Summer semester).

PDM must be registered on IS-Academia between the opening of the academic re-registration form (FRAC) and the Friday of the second week of the semester.

The duration has been fixed by the Section’s rules to 17 weeks if the project is carried out in an EPFL laboratory and 25 weeks if the project is done in an off-campus company or University.

Further information and links to legal texts, available here.

How to register and hand-in your master project (PDM)

In case you choose to do a PDM in the industry, you have to make sure that a Mechanical engineering professor will supervise or co-supervise your work (in case the main professor does not belong to our section).

Before registration

Once the topic has been defined and a Mechanical engineering professor has accepted to supervise your work, you must clarify the dates and conditions of your PDM. If off-campus, you will probably be offered a contract that states this information. It will be a private contract that binds you, the company and the professor. No internship agreement will be signed by the Section. Note: please, beware of visa deadlines if you travel abroad!

IS-Academia registration

Register in IS-Academia as soon as registration opens. Save and print your registration form, then have it signed by the professor and hand it in to the section’s office. For any modification or issue about PDM registration please, contact the section’s secretary.

Confidentiality and plagiarism control

You must tick the confidentiality box upon registration in IS-Academia and the professor must validate it. If your project is not confidential, on the hand-in date, you will be asked to upload your PDM report in the system in order to take the school anti-plagiarism test.

PDM report hand-in procedure

You have to provide the Section with a pdf version of your report, by email to, on the hand-in day indicated in IS-Academia (“date de rendu”), before midday. Please, do not forget to cc the professor in charge of your project and the expert. We remind you that, since Fall 2017-18 semester, paper versions of the report are not required anymore.

PDM poster hand-in procedure

Poster is mandatory, even when the subject is confidential. It has to be drawn in A1 format and a pdf version has to be sent to before your oral examination date. It will be posted in the Mechanical engineering building and web site at the end the September. Confidential posters will not be advertised. In order to help you design your poster, you may read our instructions as well as take a look at previous works.