School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics

MEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering

Are you fascinated by technology and design? Primarily problem solvers, mechanical engineers design, create and use tools and methods in every industry from atomic physics to space exploration. They play a vital role in tackling problems that affect us all such as energy security; efficient manufacturing and smart cities. Our engineering students are taught by enthusiastic staff with strong industry links who use laboratory sessions and physical demonstrations to reinforce academic learning.

Our accredited BEng Mechanical Engineering is designed to start your journey to becoming a qualified professional mechanical engineer. Our engineering courses rely strongly on practical work and you will develop your design skills throughout the course. We offer the opportunity to undertake a paid placement year to help consolidate and develop your engineering knowledge and many students receive job offers as a result of their time in industry.

Specialise further:

Our BEng and MEng Mechanical Engineering and Marine Technology course can all be taken with composites engineering as a specialist pathway. For more advice on which course is right for you, see our 'Which course?' advice. 

Opportunities available...

  • A course-specific scholarship scheme is available: for more information, see the 'Fees, costs and funding' section, below.
  • Excellence schemes: we may make you a personalised offer if you are a strong candidate – visit our webpage for details.

Call our Clearing hotline: 0333 241 6929

Contact us today to discuss your options and secure your place on one of our courses with vacancies this September.

Find out more about Clearing

Key features

  • Open the door to a successful future - with starting salaries from £23,000, our graduates have gone on to work for Hoare Lea, Babcock Marine, Becton Dickinson, e2vEdwards, the Shaw Group and the Ministry of Defence.
  • Define yourself with an IMechE-accredited degree – the course has been designed to fully satisfy the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng).
  • Be flexible – our combined first year allows you to switch to marine technology or civil engineering in line with your career ambitions. A choice of modules in the final year allows you to specialise further.
  • Be unique –our course are the only ones in the country to have a named 'with composites' pathway; choosing this will allow you to stand out in the job market.
  • Learn hands-on with the latest industry-standard software, laboratory sessions and practical classes.
  • Put learning into practice by taking a paid year in industry - many of our students receive job offers or sponsorship as a result of their placements.
  • Go on to thrive in sectors as diverse as aerospace, automotive, manufacturing and energy.

Course details

  • Year 1
  • In the first year of your mechanical engineering course, you will study alongside other engineering students to learn about the fundamental principles underpinning the subjects studied throughout the course. You will develop your mathematical skills and study engineering materials, structural mechanics and fluid mechanics. You will learn about generic design processes and computer-aided design, and work in a team to undertake a real-world design challenge. Laboratory sessions will form an important part of your learning.

  • Year 2
  • The second year introduces subjects like control systems engineering and quality management while further developing your thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, mathematics and design skills. These subjects are explored in lectures, in laboratory sessions and workshops. At this point, you can opt in to the 'with composites' pathway.

    The placements module will develop your professional and transferable skills for the workplace and support you in finding an appropriate placement.

    Core modules

    MATS235 Materials & Structural Integrity

    This module’s study of design is based upon principles of engineering mechanics and application of finite element analysis (FEA). We will utilise appropriate software tools eg Solid-works, ANSYS etc. in a practical mechanical design context. Students will learn to follow a structured design process to enhance creativity, logical analysis and commercial awareness then apply this process to solve a design challenge.

    MECH233 Manufacturing Processes

    This module provides students with a comprehensive introduction to manufacturing. It will cover both the fundamentals of forming, shaping, joining and traditional machining processes in relation to a range of engineering materials and the relationship between structure, manufacture and properties. It will also include hands-on workshop activities to reinforce understanding and to develop additional engineering competences

    CONT222 Engineering Maths & Control

    This module provides engineering mathematical techniques and methods (Laplace transform and linear algebra) for the analysis of practical engineering problems and introduces classical control systems theory.

    MECH235 Mechanical Engineering Design & Commercialisation

    This module’s study of design is based upon principles of engineering mechanics and application of finite element analysis (FEA). We will utilise appropriate software tools eg Solid-works, ANSYS etc. in a practical mechanical design context. Students will learn to follow a structured design process to enhance creativity, logical analysis and commercial awareness then apply this process to solve a design challenge.

    MECH234 Thermo-Fluids

    This module will introduce student’s key concepts in thermodynamics and fluids mechanics theory (1st and 2nd laws) pertaining to mechanical engineering. It will also include an introduction to heat transfer and its application in design and performance of heat engines and other applications.

    MFRG209 Engineering Quality Management

    This module provides the student with an understanding of the importance of Total Quality to a manufacturer, its measurement and some of the tools available to the designer/manager to ensure it is profitably achieved. It introduces the concept of the World-Class organisation, its culture and management as well as the international (ISO) management systems (quality, environment and H&S) involved. 

    BPIE215 Stage 2 Mechanical Placement Preparation

  • Optional placement year
  • By taking the opportunity to spend an optional year in paid employment whilst still a student engineer, you will obtain recordable professional experience, build a network of industry contacts and often obtain offers of summer work, sponsorship or employment on graduation. Our placements team will support you in finding a placement, and we have an extensive network of employers across all sectors.

    Optional modules

    BPIE335 Engineering Related Placement
  • Year 4
  • The fourth year will deepen your understanding of computer aided engineering tools and control systems. You will also focus your specialism choosing to further your understanding of thermofluids and design methodology or choosing to study the theoretical and practical aspects of composites engineering on the 'with composites' pathway. Your dissertation project enables you to research the topics that interest you and will allow you to bring together all you have learnt so far.

    Pure mechanical engineering pathway
    Core modules

    PRME307 ME Honours Project

    In this module you will carry out Independent project work closely aligned to their programme of study. This will be carried out under the guidance of an appointed supervisor.

    MECH341 Computer Aided Engineering (FEA/CFD)

    In this module, students learn to use two of the Computer Aided Engineering methods that are most commonly used in industry; finite volume Computational Fluid Dynamics (to solve fluid flow problems) and Finite Element Analysis (to solve structural problems). Students gain an overview of the theory that underpins these methods, and learn how to use a validation process to assess reliability of simulation results.

    CONT317 Control and Intelligent Systems Design

    This module explores the application of control engineering and artificial intelligence techniques in the design of engineering control systems.

    THER307 Thermo-Fluid Engineering

    This module provides further studies in thermal and fluid engineering relating to specific topics relevant to mechanical engineering.

    MECH342 Mechanical Engineering Design in Practice

    This module further develops a methodical approach to engineering design. Students will create solutions to a complex engineering problem, embodiment designs using CAD tools, validate functionality, optimise technical performance and consider design for excellence targets across the product lifecycle. The module also considers the professional responsibilities of engineers, codes of conduct and typical ethical issues.

    Mechanical engineering with composites pathway
    Core modules

    PRME307 MEC Honours Project

    In this module you will carry out Independent project work closely aligned to their programme of study. This will be carried out under the guidance of an appointed supervisor. 

    MECH341 Computer Aided Engineering (FEA/CFD)

    In this module, students learn to use two of the Computer Aided Engineering methods that are most commonly used in industry; finite volume Computational Fluid Dynamics (to solve fluid flow problems) and Finite Element Analysis (to solve structural problems). Students gain an overview of the theory that underpins these methods, and learn how to use a validation process to assess reliability of simulation results.

    CONT317 Control and Intelligent Systems Design

    This module explores the application of control engineering and artificial intelligence techniques in the design of engineering control systems.

    MATS347 Composites Design and Manufacture

    The module provides an integrated approach to design, materials and processing selection for engineering composite materials.

    MATS348 Composites Engineering

    This module introduces stress analysis and appropriate numerical methods in the context of composite materials and integrates the learning in a practical assignment to produce a prototype composite component.
  • Final year
  • The core subject of design, materials and computer-aided engineering tools are taken to an advanced level in the MEng year. You will have the opportunity to choose modules to complement your specialism, allowing you to tailor your studies to suit your interests and career plans.

    Pure mechanical engineering pathway
    Core modules

    MECH550 Design for Excellence

    In this module students are expected to develop a prototype of an engineering system through the application of contemporary design science. They will work within groups to develop environmentally sustainable solutions to complex engineering problems. They will be required to produce a prototype which shows innovation and creativity in the use of technology, including a socio-economic impact assessment of their designs.

    MECH545 Advanced FEA & CFD

    This module will develop knowledge and understanding of Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) in the context of an advanced analysis / design project. Develops an understanding of the limitations inherent in industrial Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) tools and the need for validation / verification strategies to quantify and reduce uncertainty.

    MECH551 Advanced Materials & Nanotechnology

    This module develops an enhanced knowledge and understanding of contemporary engineering materials (metals and alloys, polymers, composites, rubbers, ceramics and glass and nanomaterials). Students will investigate product failure; critically evaluate a broad range of alternative materials; and use the principles of eco-design for sustainable development to optimise material usage.

    Electives (two options)

    MECH544 Data Processing, Simulation and Optimisation

    The data processing part of the module explores the benefits and limitations of data processing in engineering practice. State of the art tools and techniques will be introduced in this module. The Simulation and Optimisation of Engineering Systems part will provide the tools to enable the students to develop dynamic simulation of engineering systems, predict their behaviour and optimise their performance using MATLAB/Simulink.

    ROCO508Z Intelligent Sensors and Control for Autonomous Systems

    The module covers a range of classical and smart sensors and actuators, which can be applied in interactive and automated system, with emphasis on several key sensors. This module introduces the basic and advanced concepts of linear and nonlinear modelling analysis and design of intelligent control systems. This module has a strong hands-on component.

    MAR528Z Marine Renewable Energy Structures

    This module will cover engineering aspects of marine renewable energy conversion. The module comprises lectures and tutorials, invited industry lectures, a field trip visit to a marine engineering company and a wave energy converter performance experiment in the COAST lab.

    MECH549 Medical Engineering & Biomechanical Systems

    This module will develop specialised knowledge and understanding required for designing medical devices and implants used in medical engineering applications and biomechanical systems; evaluate the selection of appropriate materials and appraise material-tissue interactions; develop computer aided analytical techniques to evaluate behaviour and performance of medical devices and biomechanical systems.


    Mechanical engineering with composites pathway
    Core modules

    MECH550 Design for Excellence

    In this module students are expected to develop a prototype of an engineering system through the application of contemporary design science. They will work within groups to develop environmentally sustainable solutions to complex engineering problems. They will be required to produce a prototype which shows innovation and creativity in the use of technology, including a socio-economic impact assessment of their designs.

    MECH545 Advanced FEA & CFD

    This module will develop knowledge and understanding of Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) in the context of an advanced analysis / design project. Develops an understanding of the limitations inherent in industrial Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) tools and the need for validation / verification strategies to quantify and reduce uncertainty.

    MECH551 Advanced Materials & Nanotechnology

    This module develops an enhanced knowledge and understanding of contemporary engineering materials (metals and alloys, polymers, composites, rubbers, ceramics and glass and nanomaterials). Students will investigate product failure; critically evaluate a broad range of alternative materials; and use the principles of eco-design for sustainable development to optimise material usage.

    MECH548 Advanced Composites Technology

    In the context of advanced composites engineering this module is concerned with developing a good understanding of composites manufacture, process modelling and materials characterisation.

    Electives (one option)

    MAR528Z Marine Renewable Energy Structures

    This module will cover engineering aspects of marine renewable energy conversion. The module comprises lectures and tutorials, invited industry lectures, a field trip visit to a marine engineering company and a wave energy converter performance experiment in the COAST lab.

    MECH549 Medical Engineering & Biomechanical Systems

    This module will develop specialised knowledge and understanding required for designing medical devices and implants used in medical engineering applications and biomechanical systems; evaluate the selection of appropriate materials and appraise material-tissue interactions; develop computer aided analytical techniques to evaluate behaviour and performance of medical devices and biomechanical systems.

Every undergraduate taught course has a detailed programme specification document describing the course aims, the course structure, the teaching and learning methods, the learning outcomes and the rules of assessment.

The following programme specification represents the latest course structure and may be subject to change:

MEng Mechanical Engineering programme specification 2020 3383

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.

Entry requirements

UCAS tariff

120 - 136

Applicants exceeding our entry requirements may be eligible for an offer under our Engineering and Navigation Excellence Scheme.

A level: Typical offer will be 128 points including Grade C at Maths and Grade C at second relevant subject: Applied ICT, Applied Science, Applied Business, Biology, Business/Business Studies, Chemistry, Computing, Computer Science, DT (Product Design Resistant Materials), DT (systems and Control Tech), DT Product Design (Textiles Tech), Economics, Economics and Business, Electronics, Engineering, Environmental Science, Design and Technology, ICT, Physics, Science, Statistics, Further Maths, Use of Maths, Pure Maths. Excluding General Studies.

International Baccalaureate: 30-32 overall to include 5 at Higher Level mathematics and 5 at Higher Level science or a technology subject at Higher Level. English and Mathematics must be included. 

GCSE: mathematics and English language grade C or above is required.

All BTEC courses: Not accepted for MEng, unless the applicant has additional qualifications or experience.

BTEC National Diploma modules
If you hold a BTEC qualification it is vital that you provide our Admissions team with details of the exact modules you have studied as part of the BTEC. Without this information we may be unable to process your application quickly and you could experience significant delays in the progress of your application to study with us. Please explicitly state the full list of modules within your qualification at the time of application.

All Access courses: Not accepted for MEng, unless the applicant has additional qualifications or experience.

Other qualifications also considered, please enquire.

We welcome applicants with international qualifications. To view other accepted qualifications please refer to our tariff glossary.

Please note: We understand that many applicants remain anxious about meeting the exact terms of our standard conditional offers. We will look again at your application and revise our offer for those applicants who we continue to believe are a good match to our courses, once we have the certainty of your actual results in August.

Course requires ATAS

ATAS is the Academic Technology Approval Scheme which was introduced by the British government to certify students from outside the EU who wish to study or conduct research in Britain in certain sensitive technology related fields. For selected courses, obtaining a valid ATAS certificate is a requirement for gaining visa approval so should be taken seriously as part of any application. Areas related to ATAS include chemistry, engineering, physics, biophysics, metallurgy and microbiology. ATAS is used at all British universities and is enforced by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office. More information.

Fees, costs and funding

EU applicants should refer to our dedicated Brexit webpage for details of the implications of the UK’s plans to leave the European Union.

New Student 2020 2021
Home/EU £9,250 To be confirmed
International £13,800 To be confirmed
Part time (Home/EU) £770 To be confirmed
Full time fees shown are per annum. Part time fees shown are per 10 credits. Please note that fees are reviewed on an annual basis. Fees and the conditions that apply to them shown in the prospectus are correct at the time of going to print. Fees shown on the web are the most up to date but are still subject to change in exceptional circumstances. For more information about fees and funding please visit www.plymouth.ac.uk/money.

The Plymouth Engineer Scholarship: Mechanical engineering and marine technology degrees.

Up to £1,000. Students are automatically paid £500/£250 for an A / B in Mathematics A level and one further sum of £500/£250 for an A / B in a relevant science or technology subject. This is awarded to home/EU applicants who put us as their firm choice before the 1 August 2019. The scholarship is paid during the first semester of the first year.

There are additional prizes and awards to reward high achievement in later years of the degree.

Undergraduate scholarships for international students

To reward outstanding achievement the University of Plymouth offers scholarship schemes to help towards funding your studies.

Find out whether you are eligible and how you can apply

Additional costs

This course is delivered by the Faculty of Science and Engineering and more details of any additional costs associated with the faculty's courses are listed on the following page: Additional fieldwork and equipment costs.


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.

Support is also available to overseas students applying to the University from our International Office via our how to apply webpage or email international-admissions@plymouth.ac.uk.

Welcome to mechanical engineering at the University of Plymouth

Optional work placement year


Get your career off to a great start by spending a year working professionally as a student engineer between years two and three. You could earn £15,000 a year or more, and possibly gain sponsorship through your final year(s) at university. 

Gain experience that will help you find a job when you graduate and a Certificate of Professional or Work Experience in addition to your degree award.

"I spent a year on work placement with Plymouth-based Fine Tubes, a manufacturer of precision tubes for a wide range of industries including aerospace, oil and gas, medical. As a result of my performance, the company sponsored the final year of my degree and offered me a job"

Russell Lloyd – BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering graduate

The Tamar Engineering Project

Funding and mentoring for high achievers who might not otherwise consider higher education as a route to a career in computing and engineering.

Learn if you are eligible for this scholarship at the University of Plymouth through the Tamar Engineering Project.

Successful applicants will receive:

  • £3,000 towards living costs per year of study
  • £1,500 course fee waiver per year of study
  • one-to-one mentoring from an industry expert.

People

*These are the latest results from the National Student Survey. Please note that the data published on Unistats is updated annually in September.