Telecommunications – Communication Technologies

Communication Technologies

The Communication Technologies track brings together classical subjects and novel trends in the fields of digital transmission, networking, signal processing, and electromagnetism.

This curriculum is devised to give students an opportunity to explore the various applications of communication engineering, Internet, and multimedia.

This track is closely related with the Smart Industry 4.0 one (which can be found here).

How does the study plan work

A list of the courses available in the Communication Technologies track for the 2022-2023 academic year is reported below.


There are two mandatory courses: Telecommunication Principles (composed of Wireless Networks and Digital Communications) and Stochastic Processes.

The other courses can be freely chosen subject to some ground rules: 5 courses chosen among the ICT subjects and 3 courses among the related subjects.

Furthermore a soft skill course must be selected and students must pass the B2 English exam. 


It is further advised to choose about 30 ECTS credits per semester to keep your workload balanced.

Our core subjects:

Our related subjects:

Mandatory Subjects

There are two mandatory subjects:

The Telecommunication Principles course, composed of 2 parts: Wireless Networks and Digital Communications, and the Stochastic Processes course

Wireless Networks (mod. A of Telecommunication Principles)

The course aims at providing some advanced knowledge on network protocols for wireless communications, including the analysis of distributed wireless networks, state of the art wireless technologies and current trends.


The topics that will be covered range from link layer technology to routing over ad hoc wireless networks and application layer.

Digital Communications (mod. B of Telecommunication Principles)

The objective of this course is to illustrate problems, principles and techniques in modern digital communications. The aim is to give tools for evaluating performance, simulate and design modern digital transmission systems. In particular, we cover both single carrier modulation using decision feedback equalization or sequence detection and multicarrier modulation with OFDM using a cyclic prefix.

Stochastic Processes

This is a theoretical course intended to provide knowledge of the main mathematical tools and modeling techniques for the study of telecommunication networks and networking protocols.

The students will get to know the theoretical basics of Markov chains, renewal processes, queueing theory and traffic models. These instruments will be further applied to the analysis of datalink and networking protocols.

ICT Subjects

Select 5 courses from the following list

5G Systems

The course discusses forthcoming 5G communication standards, focusing on two key technologies: orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM), and multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems.


The evolution of mobile networks is presented at different layers (physical: filterbanks, massive MIMO; medium access: mm-wave, OFDMA; network: small cells/cloud), also discussing resource allocation, channel estimation, and decoding techniques for MIMO/OFDM, as well as standard developments.


The course will discuss design, implementation, and experimental characterization of antennas and wireless links.


Topics include, among others, antenna parameters, dipole, wire and patch antennas, antenna arrays, antennas for satellite, GPS and mobile communications. During the course students will attend a laboratory of antenna design with professional software.

Digital Signal Processing

The course exploits basic signal analysis knowledge that the student is assumed to have acquired from previous studies to explore advanced concepts in the field of digital signal processing.


The course will review Z-transform, linear time-invariant systems, FIR/IIR filters, to investigate the design and usage of digital filters, interpolation/decimation of digital signals, frequency analysis of digital signals.


Practical application examples, useful in many areas of information engineering, will be provided.

Fiber Optics

The course focuses on the physical layer of wired telecommunication systems, with special emphasis on fiber optics.


The student will also perform 5 laboratory experiments.


The main topics of the course are: principles and fundamental equations of electromagnetism, Poynting vector, polarization; transmission lines and characteristic impedance; metallic waveguides (modes, dispersion, losses); and finally optical fibers (ray model, modes, attenuation, modal and chromatic dispersion).

Information Theory

Course details will be available soon


The subject aims at providing basic knowledge of modern telecommunication architectures, as well as fundamental mathematical tools for the modelling, design and analysis of telecommunications networks and services.


The course will also give you some practical experience with network protocols and devices, thanks to a series of lab experiences that will introduce you to the art of router and socket programming.


Ancillary to all this knowledge, the course will help you develop some basic management skills that shall belong to the baggage of each engineer.


Some of the topics that will be considered by the course are data traffic sources, multimedia streams and content, packet switched networks: basics of data networks, ISO/OSI and TCP/IP protocol stacks, congestion control and scheduling algorithms and the application layer

Machine Learning

Intelligent systems capable of automated reasoning are emerging as the most promising application of ICT.


The aim of this course is to provide fundamentals and basic principles of the machine learning problem as well as to introduce the most common techniques for regression and classification. Both supervised and unsupervised learning will be covered, with a brief outlook into more advanced topics such as Support Vector Machines, neural networks and deep learning.


The course will be complemented by hands-on experience with Python programming.

Millimeter-wave Devices

Course details will be available soon

Multimedia Coding

The goal of the course is to provide the principles and tools needed to analyze and develop techniques for compression of multimedia data.


Both lossless and lossy coding techniques will be considered. Methodologies for the evaluation of coding gain and rate distortion will also be discussed.


Finally, applications to present coding standards will be presented, such as data (ZIP), audio (MP3), pictures (JPEG), and video (MPEG) compression, as well as their implication to multimedia communications.

Optical and Quantum Communications

The course consists of two parts. The former analyzes design and performance of a transmission link over optical fibers; to this end, standard characterization from digital communications will be revisited, including fibers as channels, light impulse propagation and amplification, and shot noise analysis.


The latter discusses quantum theory applied to telecommunications: quantum operators and projectors, spectral decomposition, quantum decision theory, and the design of a quantum communication system.

Optical Networks

The course discusses the physical layer of optical communication systems. Fiber optics will be reviewed for coupled mode theory and nonlinear propagation.


Then, instruments such as the optical time domain reflectometer and the optical spectrum analyzer will be described. Passive (couplers, isolators, filters) and active (amplifiers, modulators, diode lasers, photodiodes) devices and transmission equipments will be characterized. Students will also have the opportunity to perform 8 laboratory experiments.

Quantum Criptography and Security

Satellite Communication Systems

Course details will be available soon

Visible-light and Metasurfaces Communications

Course details will be available soon

Related Subjects

Select 3 courses from the following list

Convex Optimization

This course adopts a mathematical approach to theory and algorithms for optimization in many fields of network and data analysis. Linear optimization will be explored first, with a review of theory and algorithm (Simplex, interior point).


This is followed by convex optimization, both unconstrained (gradient-type) and constrained (polyhedral approximation, gradient projection).


Finally, the course will discuss large-scale network optimization and clustering methods.

Programmable Hardware Devices

This course presents the basics about electronics for real-time data management systems and offers some Hands-on Laboratories of data management with FPGA

Programming for Telecommunications

The course will provide a solid knowledge of C++ object oriented programming with a special focus on telecommunication applications.

Quantum Information and Computing

The course introduces the basics of quantum information and then presents some quantum computing strategies

Scientific Computing with Python

This course expands programming skills already acquired by the students to give a special emphasis on scientific programming.

The students will be guided through the object-oriented programming paradigm to design and develop software in the Python language.

It will be given the competence to analyze formal correctness, computability, and complexity of a program, with a clear problem-solving purpose.

Soft Skills

Select 1 course from the following list.

Public Speaking Lab

The lab aims to help students improve their oral communication through the study and practice of the elements contributing to successful communication.


The focus is on raising the students' awareness on the importance of verbal and non verbal language in interactions to make communication more effective.


The students will learn the meanings of body language and paralanguage (voice intonation, volume, etc), how they are used in different types of interactions (one-to-one, one-to-many, computer-mediated, etc.), and will have to apply them in a number of assigned tasks.


The lab requires the students' active participation in all class activities, aimed at applying the communication strategies learned.

Project Management

This course will provide the foundations of the project management.


Traditional (such as the Project Management Institute approach) as well as more advanced techniques - such as the Agile Methodology - will be reviewed. Special focus will be put on the methodologies more suited for the ICT environment.

Public values in media and ICT

The learning outcomes are: the understanding of the nexus between media and communication development and democratic principles of access, inclusion, participation, pluralism, and equality; the role and responsibilities of actors involved in the design, development and regulation of media and ICT through a critical reading of the multistakeholder approach; the understanding of trends and prospective visions in the implementation of values and democratic principles in the development of knowledge and communication societies; the acquisition of a gender-aware perspective through which communication processes and practices can be understood.

Elective credits

Select one course (6 ECTS) among all the courses of this Master’s (free choice). In addition, you have to select two courses (up to 15 ECTS) from this Master’s or any other one of the University of Padua, submitted to the condition of being relevant for the ICT scientific area.


These are mandatory activities

English language B2

Students must certify that they have a proficiency level "English B2" according to the CEFR scheme.


To this end, students can:


  • Submit a certificate issued by a recognized external certification agency;
  • Take an internal test at the University of Padova Language Centre (CLA) to verify that they can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party.

Final project

Students are asked to carry out a substantial individual project in their final year. The project can be carried out either at the University of Padova (30 ECTS combining a 21 ECTS Final Project and a 9 ECTS Report), or in an external institution, such as an Industry or a Research Center, either national or international (30 ECTS combining a 21 ECTS Final Project and a 9 ECTS Internship). It is also possible to do the internship in an external institution, and the final project at the University, though we suggest to carry out the whole work in a single place.

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