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Guide to Studying Mechanical Engineering

What is Mechanical Engineering?

  • Mechanical engineering is the discipline that applies the principles of engineering into the design, analysis, manufacturing, and maintenance of machines and mechanical production techniques.
  • MechEng is the branch of engineering education that has been around for the longest period of time. Nowadays, alongside the traditional practical application of techniques, much is based on computer simulations.

Why study Mechanical Engineering?

  • One of the most expansive and lucrative engineering fields today is mechanical engineering. With skyscrapers going up in all parts of the world, to the constant demands for housing, mech engineers are a valued breed.
  • A mechanical engineering student gains a very wide set of skills. Computer applications, electricity, structures, mathematics, physics, drafting - basically knowledge of nearly every other type of engineering.
  • It is considered to be one of the most challenging undergraduate degree courses available. Once students have pushed through the core curricula, they have proven themselves capable of most professional challenges.
  • In later years of the degree, MechEng allows for a lot of branching out and option exploration. Some go into aerospace engineering, engine design, robotics, manufacturing or even theme park ride design.
  • Mechanical Engineering is a field changing so quickly, that you may study things in your final year that were thought almost unfeasable in first year (3D printers anyone?). If that excites you, give MechEng serious thought.

Coursework, assessment and exams

  • Teaching methods for most courses include lectures, seminars, tutorials and laboratory sessions backed up by design classes and practical workshops.
  • Assessment methods are usually split between exams and continuous assessment, such as reports, computer exercises, laboratories and essays.

What degree can I get? 

  • MEng Mechanical Engineering
  • MEng Mechanical Engineering with a year abroad
  • MEng Mechanical Engineering with Management
  • MEng Mechanical Engineering with Sustainable Energy

What qualifications do I need?

  • Mechanical Engineering often requires high grades for entry.
  • Always check the entry requirements for the particular university or college course you are interested in.

Use our Course Chooser to search through Mechanical Engineering courses.

What are the postgraduate opportunities?

  • There is an exciting range of taught MAs and research degrees at postgraduate level.
  • Examples include an MSc in Engineering Management, Operations Management, Project Management, and Advanced Mechanical Engineering. A straight MSc in MechEng is also available.

Graduate job prospects

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*Professional employment refers to a job or occupation which normally requires a degree.
**Non-professional employment refers to a job or occupation which doesn't normally require a degree.

What are the job opportunities?

  • Mechanical Engineering has the obvious focus of setting graduates up for life as an engineer, but there are other options available for those who would prefer a job on the administrative side.
  • Particular job areas include as an engineer in aerospace, civil contracting, controls and instruments, maintenance and of course mechanisms. Banking, patents and management are also pathways.
  • Several professional organisations offer specialised positions for Mechanical Engineering graduates, such as Capita.