Please note! Course description is confirmed for two academic years, which means that in general, e.g. Learning outcomes, assessment methods and key content stays unchanged. However, via course syllabus, it is possible to specify or change the course execution in each realization of the course, such as how the contact sessions are organized, assessment methods weighted or materials used.


After completing this course, the student is able to

1. explain the classical nuclear magnetic resonance phenomenon and its use in MRI,
2. describe the imaging parameters and imaging sequence elements and explain their use in forming an image,
3. explain the principles of spatial frequency space, Fourier imaging, and their use in MRI,
4. explain how the properties of the image can be influenced.

Credits: 5

Schedule: 10.01.2023 - 18.04.2023

Teacher in charge (valid for whole curriculum period):

Teacher in charge (applies in this implementation): Lauri Palva, Simo Särkkä

Contact information for the course (applies in this implementation):

The main lecturer/organizers are Professor Simo Särkkä ( and Lecturer Lauri Palva (

CEFR level (valid for whole curriculum period):

Language of instruction and studies (applies in this implementation):

Teaching language: English. Languages of study attainment: English


  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    Basics of MRI physics, image formation, and reconstruction

  • applies in this implementation

    The contents of the course include overview of MRI, physical principles of spins and magnetization, the theory and use of rotating frame and Bloch equations, signal detection concepts, spatially varying fields and echoes, and basics of Fourier imaging in single and multiple dimensions.

Assessment Methods and Criteria
  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    Examination and exercises

  • applies in this implementation

    The evaluation is based on a combination of the exam, mandatory project works, and exercises.

  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    24 h contact teaching, 109 h independent studies

  • applies in this implementation

    The course has weekly learning packages which are to be studied independently.

    Independent studies: Leaning packages 15 * 4 h, exercise problems 8 * 4 h + Matlab exercise 8 h and project work 30 h.


Study Material
  • applies in this implementation

    The main course book is

    • Robert W. Brown, Y.-C. Norman Cheng, E. Mark Haacke, Michael R. Thompson, Ramesh Venkatesan, "Magnetic Resonance Imaging: Physical Principles and Sequence Design", 2nd Edition, Wiley, 2014. It is available as an  e-book via Aalto University Learning Centre

    The following books are also useful on the course, but the exercises will be taken from Brown's book:

    • Zhi-Pei Liang, Paul C. Lauterbur, "Principles of Magnetic Resonance Imaging: A Signal Processing Perspective", Wiley-IEEE, 1999
    • Donald W. McRobbie, Elizabeth A. Moore, Martin J. Graves, Martin R. Prince, "MRI from Picture to Proton", 2nd Edition, 2007

Substitutes for Courses
SDG: Sustainable Development Goals

    3 Good Health and Well-being


Further Information
  • valid for whole curriculum period:

    Teaching Language : English

    Teaching Period : 2022-2023 Spring III - IV
    2023-2024 Spring III - IV

    Enrollment :

    Registration for Courses on Sisu (

    At least 10 participants are required in order for the course to be held. If the minimum is not reached, an option for independent study, a substitute course or another means of study attainment will be arranged or some other course will be sought that is in conformity with the student’s degree requirements.

Details on the schedule
  • applies in this implementation

    The course consists of weekly learning packages which are to be studied and learned by the students independently. The learning objectives for each week are listed in Materials section along with pointers to book chapters, electronic materials, and summary videos containing the information. There is a compulsory project work and an examination.