Mechanical Engineering is a professional discipline that is hugely important in day-to-day life, and supplies solutions to a vast range of sectors. Mechanical engineers design, analyse and manufacture machines that move using gears: from giant earth-moving machines and huge turbines in power stations, to all types of road and rail vehicles, space rockets and satellites. In the medical sector, Mechanical Engineers supply solutions in terms of life-saving equipment, life-enhancing artificial limbs, pacemakers, microscalepumps and incubators. We also make industrial robots; the machines that make other products.
Mechanical Engineering at Birmingham produces graduates who are creative, highly numerate and skilled at solving problems and delivering results. We are a friendly community of self-assured professionals, determined to guide you to wherever your engineering talents will thrive.
This programme is accredited by the
Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).
Our MEng programmes fully meet the exemplifying academic benchmark requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Our BEng programmes meet, in part, the exemplifying academic benchmark requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer, graduates will need to complete an approved format of further learning.
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MEng Mechanical Engineering with Industrial Year
“I have always had a massive interest in car design and engineering so Mechanical Engineering at Birmingham was the first choice for me. The department is exceptional and has fantastic links with industry that I knew would be incredibly useful for stabling contacts and work after my degree. I love the setting, the leafy campus and the friendliness of staff and students.”
This course has been designed to be relevant to the needs of modern industry and to produce graduates who have the personal and intellectual qualities to be successful in their chosen careers. By the end of the course, you will be equipped to play leading roles in a professional capacity in both industry and academia, and thus able to deal with issues at the forefront of our discipline.
You will learn how to take energy from a source like petrol, the wind or hydrogen, and convert it into useful motion in machines such as racing cars, industrial robots or microscopic pumps. You will consider the movement of mechanisms, the strength of the individual parts, the efficiency and environmental impact of your designs, and the methods that can be employed to make your product profitably. The programme is organised into integrated modules covering core mechanical engineering subjects that are designed to develop your learning progressively.
The opportunity is also open to you to get involved in work on UBRacing – our own Formula Student racing team, which competes throughout the world.
First and second years
The first two years are common to all Mechanical Engineering programmes. Our first year has been designed to provide a contemporary and flexible educational model that builds upon essential engineering fundamentals to develop students’ broader understanding of behaviour, policy, entrepreneurship, and global perspectives and kindles the passion necessary to address the societal challenge agenda. The first year is shared across the disciplines of Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering.
In the final year of the BEng programme these fundamentals of engineering are used to explore advanced engineering topic areas such as Powertrain and Vehicle Engineering. For all programmes, in your final year you work with engineers based in one of the Mechanical Engineering research centres on a major individual project linked to your chosen field of specialisation. You will also undertake a group design study project exploring the associated commercial, legal and safety aspects of developing a new product.
For all programmes:
In your final year you work with engineers based in one of the Mechanical Engineering research centres on a major individual project linked to your chosen field of specialisation.
For the first two years of the degree, all of our undergraduates follow an integrated BEng or MEng route. Once you’ve finished your second year, you’ll then choose whether to complete a BEng or MEng degree.
At Birmingham, we provide diverse, yet balanced, courses, enabling our graduates to gain employment in a wide range of industries. Teaching is provided by lecturers who are global experts in their field, with multi-million pound investment providing leading-edge teaching facilities and laboratories. We produce graduates who can function in today's fast-changing marketplace, and your career prospects will be excellent.
Your Birmingham degree is evidence of your ability to succeed in a demanding academic environment. Employers target Birmingham students for their drive, diversity, communication and problem-solving skills, their team-working abilities and cultural awareness, and our graduate employment statistics have continued to climb at a rate well above national trends.
Our first year has been designed to provide a contemporary and flexible educational model that builds upon essential engineering fundamentals to develop your broader understanding of behaviour, policy, entrepreneurship, and global perspectives and kindles the passion necessary to address the societal challenge agenda. The first year is shared across the disciplines of Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering.
Electrical Engineering 1
In this module, the fundamentals of electronic and electrical engineering
are covered. It will begin with analogue circuits describing the fundamentals
of circuit analysis and the design of analogue devices. The fundamentals
of digital systems will then be covered using Boolean algebra and related
techniques to analyse digital circuits up to an introduction to flip flops.
Finally electrical power and machinery systems will be introduced.
1 & 2
The aim of the module is to introduce the range of materials and their
key properties used in engineering in order to allow them to select the appropriate
materials for a given application. The module also introduces fundamental
science that determines the electrical or mechanical properties of materials,
such as atomic / molecular structures. In addition students will also be
introduced to software which will allow them to model the properties and
behaviour of engineering materials and analyse the results of experiments.
Engineering Mathematics 1
The module aims to enhance student knowledge and understanding of the
mathematics used in engineering and to develop the skills of its use.
1 & 2
Fluid Mechanics and Energy Transfer
In this module, the fundamentals of fluid mechanics and energy conservation,
and introduce associated engineering applications.
||1 & 2
Integrated Design Project 1
The aim of the module is to introduce students to the design process
and the skills employed therein, within an engineering context.
||1 & 2
|Computing for Engineers
The aim of this module is to introduce engineers to computers and computer
programming using an important modern programming language which has applications
from small embedded systems to supercomputers.
In this module, the mathematics and scientific principles related to
mechanics in the context and application in engineering. The module covers:
general principles, the mechanical properties of material and the basic
principles of analysis, all underpinned with essential mathematics. Where
relevant, historical examples are embedded into the module in order to
provide context for the taught material.
||1 & 2
- Integrated Design Project 2 (20 credits)
- Engineering Mathematics 2 (20 credits)
- Mechanics 2 (20 credits)
- Mechanical Design A (20 credits)
- Thermodynamics and Fluids (20 credits)
- Mechatronics and Control Engineering (20 credits)
- Integrated Design Project 3 (BEng) (20 credits). Automotive project must be taken.
- Powertrain and Vehicle Engineering (20 credits)
- Mechanical Design B (20 credits)
- Computational Fluid Dynamics and Finite Element Analysis (20 credits)
- Sustainable Energy and the Environment (10 credits)
- Individual Project (30 credits). Automotive project must be taken
Please note: The modules listed on the website for this programme are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up-to-date and informed by the latest research and teaching methods. Unless indicated otherwise, the modules listed for this programme are for students starting in 2019. On rare occasions, we may need to make unexpected changes to compulsory modules; in this event we will contact offer holders as soon as possible to inform or consult them as appropriate.
Annual tuition fees 2019/20
tuition fees page for more information.
At Birmingham we ensure that fears about finance do not constrain prospective students from considering university and that excellence is rewarded.
- Number of A levels required:
- Typical offer:
- Required subjects and grades:
- A level Mathematics (Further Mathematics and Physics are not required but are advantageous). You must also pass the practical element of any reformed science A levels which include Biology, Chemistry and Physics taught from 2015.
General Studies not accepted
International Baccalaureate Diploma
6,6,5 at Higher Level to include Mathematics with a minimum of 32 points overall.
BTEC Extended Diploma will be considered for BEng programmes providing there is sufficient Mathematics content and applicant satisfactorily completes our Mathematics aptitude test.
Grades: BEng; D*D*D* plus Distinction in all units required.
BTEC Diploma considered in combination with A Level.
Grades: BEng; D*D* plus B. If the A level taken is not in Mathematics, then the BTEC Diploma must include Maths and Further Maths units, and the applicant must satisfactorily complete our Mathematics aptitude test.
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma considered in combination with 2 A Levels
Grades: BEng; D*plus A B. If A level Mathematics is not taken, then the BTEC Subsidiary Diploma must include Maths and Further Maths units, and the applicant must satisfactorily complete our Mathematics aptitude test.
Other qualifications are considered - learn more about entry requirements.
Standard English language requirements apply, learn more about
international entry requirements.
Depending on your chosen course of study, you may also be interested in one of our foundation pathways, which offer specially structured programmes for international students whose qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to UK universities. Further details can be found on Birmingham International Academy web pages.
Apply through the UCAS website using code H302.
UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.
View advice on '
How to apply for undergraduate courses', including advice for UK, EU and overseas applicants.
Key Information Set (KIS)
Key Information Sets (KIS) are comparable sets of information about full- or part-time undergraduate courses and are designed to meet the information needs of prospective students.
All KIS information has been published on the Unistats website and can also be accessed via the small advert, or ‘widget’, below. On the Unistats website you are able to compare all the KIS data for each course with data for other courses.
The development of Key Information Sets (KIS) formed part of HEFCE’s work to enhance the information that is available about higher education. They give you access to reliable and comparable information in order to help you make informed decisions about what and where to study.
The KIS contains information which prospective students have identified as useful, such as student satisfaction, graduate outcomes, learning and teaching activities, assessment methods, tuition fees and student finance, accommodation and professional accreditation.
You will be taught by a mixture of professors, doctors and postgraduates, thereby receiving a rich diversity of academic knowledge and experience.You can find out more about the members of staff in the Department of Mechanical Engineering where you can read about their qualifications, publication history and specific areas of interest.
Collaborative Teaching Laboratory
The Collaborative Teaching Laboratory (CTL), planned to open in 2018/19, will become a hub for science & engineering teaching, with multifunctional labs suitable for subject-specific and cross-disciplinary teaching and team working.
What you can expect
Throughout your degree, depending on module choice, you can expect about 20 hours of contact time per week on average. This consits of approximately 14 hours of lectures and 6 hours of tutorials/labs.
Personal Tutor: At the start of your degree, you will be assigned a Personal Tutor who will remain with you throughout your studies to help you in three important areas: supporting your academic progress, developing transferable skills and dealing with any welfare issues.
Delivery of the course
In your first and second years, the course is delivered as lectures, small group workshops, laboratories, computer-based activities, enquiry-based learning and tutorials. A strong emphasis is placed on design and research project work in your third and fourth years respectively.
Laboratory-based practical work forms an integral part of the Department's degree programmes. Laboratory classes not only develop your experimental practical skills, but also reinforce concepts introduced in lectures or explore a particular phenomenon. Practical sessions, typically, last three hours.
Small-group tutorials/personal tutorials run alongside the lecture course, addressing any individual problems you may have and allowing you to consolidate the lecture material, as well as test your understanding through problem-solving exercises. Your Personal Tutor is assigned to you at the start of your course and remains with you until graduation, helping you in three important areas: supporting your academic progress, developing transferable skills and helping with welfare issues.
Enquiry Based Learning (EBL) provides an environment where your learning process is driven by enquiry. The lecturer's role is purely as a facilitator. Typically a group activity, this requires working in a team and you can be assessed in a variety of ways: in either a group or individually, by written reports and sometimes as a presentation. EBL will give you a research-orientated approach to a problem, and has a synergy within research-led institutions like the University of Birmingham.
Project work: The range of projects in your final year includes practical work in the laboratory, computer-based projects, or theoretical studies. You can choose the topic of your project from a pool of titles and work with your project supervisor to tailor it to your particular research interests. Many projects are directly linked to supervisor's current research projects and many have industrial links. Students are also free to propose their own projects, so long as a suitable supervisor can be identified.
As a Birmingham student you are part of an academic elite and will learn from world-leading experts. At Birmingham we advocate an enquiry based learning approach, from the outset you will be encouraged to become an independent and self-motivated learner, qualities that are highly sought after by employers. We want you to be challenged and will encourage you to think for yourself.
Your learning will take place in a range of different settings, from scheduled teaching in lectures and small group tutorials, to self-study and peer group learning (for example preparing and delivering presentations with your classmates).
To begin with you may find this way of working challenging, but rest assured that we'll enable you to make this transition. You will have access to a comprehensive support system that will assist and encourage you, including personal tutors and welfare tutors who can help with both academic and welfare issues. During your first year it is important that you have a smooth transition into University. You will be able to talk to your tutors about this and discuss if there are particular areas where you need support.
Studying at degree-level is likely to be very different from your previous experience of learning and teaching. You will be expected to think, discuss and engage critically with the subject and find things out for yourself. We will enable you to make this transition to a new style of learning, and the way that you are assessed during your studies will help you develop the essential skills you need to make a success of your time at Birmingham.
You?ll be assessed in a variety of ways, and these may be different with each module that you take. You will be assessed through coursework which may take the form of essays, group and individual presentations, laboratory-based work (depending on your chosen degree) and formal exams. Nearly 64% of the assessment of this course is by written examination, which compares favourably with many other universities, who range from 42%-70%.
Each module is assessed independently. Assessment methods used include end-of-year examinations, written assignments, oral and poster presentations, computer-based tests, class tests and laboratory and project reports. Some modules are completely assessed by coursework. Examinations are taken in May and June.
Credit is awarded under three headings:
Examinations for lecture courses.
Continuous assessment for various kinds of project work.
Early years are dominated by examination as you concentrate on the underpinning engineering principles. As you move into later years, the increased emphasis on project work shifts the balance towards continuous assessment.
We place strong emphasis on providing prompt and informative feedback on all pieces of work that you submit during your studies. Feedback comes in a variety of forms, including written feedback on pieces of assessment, class feedback sessions and one-on-one discussions with your tutors. In all cases, the feedback will highlight the good points as well as those areas that require more attention.
During your first year the University will require you to undergo a formal 'transition' review, mentioned above, to see how you are getting on and if there are particular areas where you need support. This is in addition to the personal tutor who is based in the Department and can help with any academic issue you encounter. Our Academic Skills Centre also offers you support with your learning. The centre is a place where you can develop your mathematical, academic writing and general academic skills. It is the centre?s aim to help you to become a more effective and independent learner through the use of a range of high-quality and appropriate learning support services. These range from drop-in sessions with support with mathematics and statistics based problems provided by experienced mathematicians, to workshops on a range of topics including note taking, reading, writing and presentation skills.
At the beginning of each module, you will be given information on how and when you will be assessed for your particular programme of study. You will receive feedback on each assessment within four weeks, so that you can learn from and build upon what you have done. You will be given feedback on any exams that you take; if you should fail an exam, we will ensure that particularly detailed feedback is made available to enable you to learn for the future.
The Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey 2016/17 shows that 94% of our Mechanical Engineering graduates are in employment or further study six months after graduation.
As one of our Mechanical Engineering students, a huge and exciting array of career opportunities will be open to you when you graduate - both at home and abroad. You could pursue a career in one of the major manufacturing industries (the UK has the 6th largest manufacturing base in the world); or you could work in other areas of science and technology, such as sustainable energy. Other areas that favour the problem-solving skills you will acquire are finance, law and marketing as well as teaching and/or research.
If, at the end of the second year of your BEng programme, you meet the MEng progression requirement you may consider transferring to the MEng programme which will all you to add a year to your programme and spend this time out on a year in industry; usually at the end of your second or third study years. You will gain relevant work experience, and earn money putting into practice the skills and knowledge gained from your degree. Students on placement get involved in serious projects that ask difficult questions that require good scientific/engineering answers - and which often lead to sponsorship and/or the offer of a graduate job
Career destinations of previous graduates include:
Rolls Royce, Derby
PA Consulting, London
MultiMetal Works, Malaysia
Atomic Weapons Establishment, Berkshire
Oxford Technologies, Oxford
RBCCM Banking, London
BAE Systems, Barrow in Furness
IBC Solar, Malaysia/Germany
Saudi Aramco, Saudi Arabia
Ball Packaging Europe, Wreham
Vehicle Certification Agency, Birmingham
Porterbrook Railway Co - Rosco, Berkshire
Petronas oil & Gas Company
British Army, Sandhurst
Zener Company, Iran
DFM Medical, Germany
The graduate employment market is competitive, many employers require evidence of employability or being ready for the world of work.
Internships represent a great way for you to gain experience of the workplace. They also offer employers the opportunity of clarifying what they are looking for and perhaps even assessing interns for future employment.
We offer our students the opportunity of internship placements during their time at Birmingham.
The video below talks to students, staff and employers about their internship experience:
"I think the best way to get an experience out of university is to get involved with as many things as you possibly can, say 'yes' to everything. You start to meet people and network and you gain experiences and that's what makes you, yourself. That's what gives you the opportunities that you're going to get outside of university. Rather than just being in a crowd of people, you start to stand out."
Daisy Partlow, MEng Mechanical Engineering graduate, 2016
Watch Daisy's video profile
University Careers Network
Preparation for your career should be one of the first things you think about as you start university. Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.
Our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area, offering a specialised team (in each of the five academic colleges) who can give you expert advice. Our team source exclusive work experience opportunities to help you stand out amongst the competition, with mentoring, global internships and placements available to you. Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs and job applications will help give you the edge.
And once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs, interview practice and job applications will further help to give you the edge. In addition, our employer-endorsed, award-winning Personal Skills Award (PSA) recognises you extra-curricular activities, and provides an accredited employability programme designed to improve your career prospects.
If you make the most of the wide range of services
you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.
Visit the careers section of the University website for further information.
Birmingham has transformed into one of Europe's most exciting cities. It is more than somewhere to study; it is somewhere to build a successful future.
Clubs and societies
The Guild has over
200 Societies, community volunteering groups and associations for you
to join; they cover every topic and activity that you can think of - there
really is something for everyone.
Watt Undergraduate Society brings
together students within Mechanical Engineering and provides a social side
to your degree so you can make the most of your time at Birmingham. UBRobotics offers the opportunity to be involved in the multi-disciplinary field of
robotics and develop unique skills such as coding, mechanical design and
Coming to Birmingham might be your first time living away from home. Our student accommodation will allow you to enjoy your new-found independence in safe, welcoming and sociable surroundings.
The City of Birmingham
One of Europe's most exciting destinations, Birmingham is brimming with life and culture, making it a wonderful place to live, study and work.
Our students fall in love with the city - around 40% of our graduates choose to make Birmingham their home.
The University of Birmingham has been welcoming international students onto our campus since 1900.
We have one of the largest and most vibrant international student communities in the UK, with 5,000 international students from more than 150 different countries and 31% of our academic staff from overseas.
If you would like further information about entry requirements, how to apply and funding options, then you can visit our international students webpage. You may also wish to take a virtual tour of our campus and watch the video below to hear our international students say their favourite thing about the University of Birmingham.