Joint degree studies 4.0

Lara Strukelj

The KUKA composite students have developed a game in which a human being can compete against a robot. Here we explain how this works and what a collaborative study program is all about.

Red on blue, turn, take off – done! The robot is defeated! Anyone who now thinks it’s a computer game is wrong. Because competing against a robot is now also playful in “real life”. The collaborative students of mechanical engineering, mechatronics, electrical engineering and computer science made this possible as part of their project, the KUKA Building Challenge.

The faster wins

The idea: The faster you stack a tower of colored blocks, the faster you win. With their project, the Joint degree students want to show how industry 4.0 can improve processes.  “The basic idea is to evaluate and illustrate process data. In our application, this includes, for example, information about the course of the game, prize statistics and game times. These are collected and displayed online. So you can observe the course of the game live,” explains Armin Straller, a joint degree student of electrical engineering and project manager of the Building Challenge. The game consists of a programmed robot training cell (Agilus KR6 R700 sixx) and a player table for the human opponent. To start the competition, the player scans a QR code with his smartphone. This calls up a website with the game and the challenge begins.

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Learning by Doing

Although you can already compete against the robot and the technique of the game is final, the software still needs some test runs. Markus Keppeler, a computer science student, also explains why: “The whole game is based on a web solution. Since the computer science study group otherwise does not deal with the area of web development, we initially lacked empirical values. It was a lot of learning by doing and research work, but we achieved a lot by trying it out. Our goal is for the application to soon be able to stand independently at trade fairs and for the software to run smoothly without a supervisor”.

The joint degree study program at KUKA

The Joint degree students implemented the project completely on their own and they agree that it was a great experience that they didn’t want to miss in their studies. But what is the structure of a joint degree study program?

Basically, it’s similar to a dual course of study, but in contrast to this, you spend the first year of your studies completely in the company, explains Verena Hattler, Verbund student in electrical engineering. After that, the normal bachelor’s degree in the respective subject area begins, but the semester breaks are spent in the company again. That sounds first times like more stress in the study, but it brings also many advantages, knows Verena: “Actually many students look for a job for the semester break and we have evenly already safe that. We’re also allowed to spend our practical semester at KUKA, which saves us a time-consuming application process with many different companies.”

In addition, you not only have a bachelor’s degree in your pocket after completing your joint degree studies, but also a completed vocational training course at the Industrie- und Handelskammer.  “I would always opt for a combined joint degree course again, because it is great to be able to take on responsibility in the company during my studies.” At KUKA, it is possible to complete a combined course of study in the fields of electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, mechatronics and (business) information technology.


Are you interested in an apprenticeship or a joint degree study at KUKA? On the KUKA website you will find all vacancies and information about KUKA as an employer.

To be fit for tomorrow’s world of work, businesses must move on from the “Chalk Age” to Education 4.0. Find out how this could look like on our KUKA Blog.

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