FdSc Embedded Systems Design

Petroc is one of the largest colleges in Devon and is committed to driving forward educational success in further and higher education. 

We are passionate about raising the aspirations, knowledge and skills of individuals, and year after year our students produce exceptional results, enabling them to progress further in training or employment. 

Petroc has been delivering a range of degree-level courses for over 30 years and is proud to be able to provide a wide variety of programmes (from HNCs and Foundation Degrees to Higher Apprenticeships and Honours Degrees) in subject areas including education, computing, science, engineering, and health and care. 

Petroc has three campuses situated across North and Mid Devon with modern and stimulating learning environments. We also offer small classes, extensive student support and exceptional links to local industry. 

Visit the Petroc website to find out how we can help you go further in life.

Course details

  • Year 1

  • Core modules

    • Electronics (PETR1091)

      This module provides an introduction to fundamental electronic theory considering a range of analogue and digital circuits and components so that students will have a firm base from which to work when they undertake further studies.

    • Analytical Methods (PETR1092)

      This module focuses upon the mathematical strategies and processes involved in solving a wide range of engineering problems. Develops analytical and algebraic skills transferable to engineering subjects. Gives students the analytical tools to solve problems in their own field and also exposes them to the application of complex number, matrix methods, calculus and statistics across engineering.

    • Engineering Graduate Skills (PETR1140)

      This module is designed to enable students to demonstrate that they have all the qualities and transferable skills necessary for appropriate academic work and employment requiring the exercise of responsibility and decision making, including the ability to relate their professional practice to underlying theory and principles. Students use reflective techniques to inform and evaluate progress.

    • Electrical and Electronic Fundamentals (PETR1142)

      This module provides an introduction to electrical and electronic engineering including the key underlying theorems and concepts associated with circuits and components. Developing the both direct and alternating current analysis to form a basis for further studies. Basic level of complex analysis and waveforms is also explored.

    • Organisational Behaviour (PETR1152)

      This module considers how organisational behaviour and attitude influences the behaviour of individuals and groups at work. The module will use a range of theories and managerial approaches to analyse and explain human behaviour at work.

    Optional modules

    • Introduction to Programming (PETR1096)

      No prior programming knowledge needed. This module introduces students to the core concepts of programming with an introduction to algorithms and the characteristics of programming paradigms. Among the topics included in this unit are: introduction to algorithms, procedural, object-orientated & event-driven programming, security considerations, the integrated development environment and the debugging process.

    • Mechatronics (PETR1141)

      On successful completion of this unit students will be able to explain the basic mechatronic system components and functions, design a simple mechatronic system specification for a given application, use appropriate simulation and modelling software to examine its operation and function, and solve faults on mechatronic systems using a range of techniques and methods

  • Final year

  • Core modules

    • Electronic System Design (PETR2107)

      This module builds on the principles of electronics and develops standard circuits and components into more complex systems. A wide range of both analogue and digital systems will be designed, built and, tested to specification in relation to the customer's needs. Selecting and applying appropriate design tools and techniques. Formulate the key design and performance requirements from a customer’s brief.

    • Embedded Systems (PETR2108)

      Embedded systems are a key aspect of modern engineering and the direction of engineering design and practice, in machine-to-machine communication and in the Internet of Things. This unit builds on introductory knowledge gained in electronics and mechatronics. It develops their knowledge and programming of microcontrollers, focussing on this type of computer, usually used in embedded systems.

    • Level 5 Project (PETR2123)

      This module is an individual investigation of a specific problem in any of the engineering disciplines encountered in the programme. It represents a significant amount of work in which the student is proactive in managing their own learning and other resources needed to find a solution to the task which will normally relate to the student’s place of work

    • Micro Programmable Systems (PETR2124)

      This module provides an implementation from micro programmable system theory to application relating hardware and software programming to engineer working systems. Students will have a good base from which to work when they undertake further study.

    • Control Principles (PETR2125)

      This module applies the principles of electrical and electronic theory to the analysis and design of control systems. Develop analytical skills to solve analogue control systems and introduce the background to digital control system design and implementation. Networks and systems will be investigated.

    Optional modules

    • Power Electronics (PETR2109)

      This module provides an introduction to basic electrical theory to industrial electronics. A topic which is increasingly required by technical staff to be prepared to work safely in an industrial environments using electronic power controls. This module provides understanding of the technical knowledge and skills required to appreciate modern industrial systems.

    • Communication Engineering (PETR2126)

      A study of commonplace systems to uncover the underlying design philosophy and performance characteristics. To further investigate the underlying principles related to modern electronic communications by applying knowledge of communication theory to current systems.

    • Instrumentation and Control (PETR2130)

      This module introduces electrical and mechanical engineering students to basic instrumentation in terms of measuring system approach. Develops knowledge understanding sensor technologies in the application and determining the calibration requirements. Solve problems using modern control systems approach. Appreciate the major developments in digital technologies that impact on instrumentation and control.

The modules shown for this course are those currently being studied by our students, or are proposed new modules. Please note that programme structures and individual modules are subject to amendment from time to time as part of the University’s curriculum enrichment programme and in line with changes in the University’s policies and requirements.

Fees, costs and funding

As this course is delivered by one of our partner colleges, please contact the college directly for information on fees and funding.

How to apply

All applications for undergraduate courses are made through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).
UCAS will ask for the information contained in the box at the top of this course page including the UCAS course code and the institution code.
To apply for this course and for more information about submitting an application including application deadline dates, please visit the UCAS website.

Progression routes

Completing this course enables you to progress onto these related courses and programmes with the University of Plymouth at level 5 or level 6, as specifically defined by this programme’s progression agreement.

For further information, including the progression from foundation degree form, please visit

Our partnership with Petroc

The University of Plymouth has developed partnerships with institutions around the world with the sole purpose of making higher education more accessible to those people who need something just a little different.

Our Academic Partnerships enable students to enrol for a degree at a partnership institution closer to home, or engage in distance learning – even when they’re in the middle of the ocean. They are there for those people looking to return to education, or enhance their professional development. Full- or part-time; foundation degree to masters-level – we cater for a huge variety of needs and aspirations.

Many of our partners offer specialist degrees, unique facilities, and smaller class sizes at a competitive price. And as a student of two institutions, you get the best of both worlds; a supportive learning environment as part of a close-knit community, and a university-level qualification awarded by the University of Plymouth. You’ll enjoy not only the facilities and services your partnership institution provides, but also all of the additional support and resources you need from us, and you’ll automatically become a member of our Students’ Union, too.

We are continuing to grow the number of partner institutions and expand our academic community to new locations around the UK and overseas. Why not visit the Academic Partnerships page on our website for a full list of partners and for more details on studying with us?

One of our partners delivers this particular course – so please visit their website for full course details, entry requirements, tuition fees and information on what student life is like there. 

Open days

Partner college open days

This course is run at one of our partner colleges. Open days are held at the college and more details of these can be found on the college website. You'll find contact details below, on this page.

University of Plymouth open days

You are also very welcome to attend a University of Plymouth open day, to get a flavour of the courses you can progress to from a partner college. There will however be limited information on this specific course and college.

Studying with Petroc

With main campuses in Barnstaple, Tiverton and Brannams, if you decide to study at the combined college, you’ll be able to take advantage of increased resources and the plethora of learning opportunities associated with them.
Plymouth students working on a group project