Mechanical Engineering (BEng)

Mechanical Engineering is the creative application of science and expertise to the design, construction and operation of products and processes.

Mech Eng

Mechanical engineers are essential to the workings of the modern world, combining imagination and technology to offer innovative solutions across society and industry.

Mechanical engineers can work across all industrial sectors, developing and manufacturing well-designed products through efficient manufacturing processes. Choosing our BEng Mechanical Engineering degree means you will receive a sound training in the fundamentals and applications of engineering principles and can look forward to a challenging and rewarding career.

Note that if Chartered status is important to you, a four-year Cardiff MEng course may offer a quicker, more direct route than the BEng course.

Other Cardiff University Mechanical Engineering courses available may include:

  • The opportunity to follow a sandwich year in industry if you choose the relevant four-year BEng or five-year MEng degree option
  • The opportunity to study abroad at a partner institution for one semester if you choose the relevant MEng (International) degree option
  • The opportunity to study a language if you choose the relevant MEng degree option with a sandwich year at a university in France, Germany or Spain

Distinctive features

The distinctive features of the course include:

  • The opportunity to learn from leaders in their fields, through direct access to academic staff, many of whom are Chartered Engineers or have worked in industry
  • Accreditation from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers
  • The opportunity to participate in the design, development, construction, testing and competition of a proven Formula Student racing car
  • An open and engaging culture between students and staff

“I really love Cardiff. It’s absolutely fantastic. I really like that it’s not a campus university so you’re not isolated. Cardiff University has everything I expected a University to have.”

Hannah Little, undergraduate Engineering student

Key facts

UCAS CodeH300
Next intakeSeptember 2017
Duration3 years
ModeFull time
AccreditationsEngineering Council
Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)
Typical places availableThe School typically has approx 230 places available.
Typical applications receivedThe School typically receives approx 1270 applications.
Typical A level offerAAA A-level Mathematics is required (or equivalent).
Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offerWBQ core will be accepted in lieu of one A-level (excluding Mathematics).
Typical International Baccalaureate offer32-36 points, including 5 in higher level Mathematics and a Science.
Other qualificationsApplications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome. Detailed alternative entry requirements are available for this course
Admissions tutor(s)

This is a three-year full-time degree. The course includes a carefully chosen balance of core modules and optional modules. Most modules are worth 10 credits, some are worth 20 and the final-year project is worth 30. You need to earn 120 credits a year.

There are two semesters each year, each semester consisting of 11 teaching weeks, one revision week and an examination period.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2017/18 academic year. The final modules will be published by July 2017.

Year one

Year one consists of a series of lectures underpinned by practical laboratory sessions.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Communication Skills in English and Professional StudiesEN104710 credits
Engineering AnalysisEN109020 credits
Engineering ApplicationsEN104820 credits
Electrical TechnologyEN104010 credits
THERMOFLUIDSEN110320 credits
MECHANICSEN110220 credits

Year two

Year two again consists of a series of lectures underpinned by practical laboratory sessions.

Module titleModule codeCredits
DesignEN260220 credits
Engineering AnalysisEN203010 credits
Fluid MechanicsEN203310 credits
Introduction To Economics, Law, Accounting and Management ScienceEN200910 credits
Materials and ManufactureEN203110 credits
Solid MechanicsEN200210 credits
DynamicsEN203210 credits
Thermodynamics and Heat TransferEN204110 credits
Mechanical Engineering LabsEN202410 credits
Control and InstrumentationEN203710 credits
Module titleModule codeCredits
Computing 2EN200810 credits
Biomechanics 1EN245110 credits
Manufacturing Systems DesignEN290410 credits

Year three

Year three includes a major project, with a value of a quarter of the overall year. For this you will work individually, alongside a supervising staff member. 

There are core modules in Business Management and Product Design but also a choice of optional modules, building upon the foundations established in the earlier years.

Module titleModule codeCredits
ProjectEN310030 credits
Product DesignEN390610 credits
Business ManagementEN300410 credits
Module titleModule codeCredits
Materials and ManufactureEN303310 credits
Fluid MechanicsEN303410 credits
Energy StudiesEN303610 credits
Solid MechanicsEN303710 credits
Thermodynamics and Heat TransferEN304210 credits
Robotics and Image ProcessingEN306210 credits
Biomechanics 2EN345010 credits
Fluid Power & ControlEN351310 credits
Automotive Power TransmissionEN360710 credits
Object Oriented Engineering ComputingEN308510 credits
The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

How will I be taught?

Teaching is through lectures, examples classes and extensive laboratory, IT and practical work. The taught modules in the first two years are largely compulsory, but options are usually available in year three. All students must complete a 30-credit individual project in year three, for which they are allocated a supervisor from among the teaching staff. There are opportunities for interactions with potential employers.

How will I be supported?

You will be assigned a personal tutor who is a member of the academic staff associated with your degree course. Your tutor will be there to advise you on academic, non-academic and personal matters in a confidential and informal manner when you need some guidance. We aim to help you overcome any problem, however big or small, as smoothly and quickly as possible.

For the 30-credit project in year three, you will be allocated a supervisor in the broad area of research specialism and meet regularly.

You will have access through the Learning Central website to relevant multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises and discussion circles. Opportunities for you to reflect on your abilities and performance are available through the Learning Central ‘Personal Development Planning’ module.

The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.


We’ll provide you with frequent feedback on your work. This comes in a variety of formats including oral feedback in classes like design and project work and via return of marked coursework.

The opportunity to test your knowledge and understanding will be provided throughout the semester via class tests in Years 1 and 2, plus feedback on written assessments. Occasionally, peer assessment of an individual’s contribution to a group may be used, and you may also receive oral feedback on presentations and contributions to group activities.

How will I be assessed?

Your progress in each module is usually assessed at various stages through each semester (through a short test) to give you feedback on your progress, then finally at the end of the appropriate semester. Assessment is undertaken using methods including formal written examinations, case studies, assignments and project work.

Examinations count for 60% to 70% of all assessment throughout the course, depending on the options chosen. The remainder is mainly project work and larger pieces of coursework, plus performance in laboratories.

The opportunity to test knowledge and understanding is given through class tests throughout years one and two, plus feedback on written assessments. Occasionally, peer assessment of an individual’s contribution to a group may be used, and students may also receive oral feedback on presentations and contributions to group activities.

What skills will I practise and develop?

This course is accredited via the Engineering Council, meaning the core competencies of UK-SPEC (UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence) are integrated throughout the taught years.

Through lab work you will develop practical skills focused on the application of a range of engineering principles to real-life technological, regulatory and ethical problems encountered in the engineering profession.

You will also:

  • Enhance your communication skills, both orally and in writing through a series of reports and assignments
  • Develop your knowledge, skills and confidence to solve multidisciplinary problems in an engineering context
  • Enhance your team-working skills, ability to exercise original thought and good professional judgement

In 2013/14, 96% of the School’s graduates were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

Many graduates work in product design for the automotive, aeronautical, communications and energy industries. Some work in medical engineering, some are travelling the world for the petrochemical industry, while others are involved in development, production and general management.

A few choose to use their degrees as a qualification to enable them to work in other disciplines. Those who have followed this route typically work in the Armed Forces, the financial sector, the legal profession, chartered accountancy or computing.

With such high-calibre and broad opportunities, a career in mechanical engineering is varied, challenging and rewarding.


  • Civil engineer
  • Graduate mechanical engineer
  • Project manager

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2017/18)

Please see our fee amounts page for the latest information.

Students from outside the EU (2017/18)

Please see our fee amounts page for the latest information.

Will I need any specific equipment to study this course/programme?

No specific equipment is needed. The University will provide resources such as computers and associated software, laboratory equipment (including any safety equipment) and any required learning resources.

Key Information Sets (KIS) make it easy for prospective students to compare information about full or part time undergraduate courses, and are available on the Unistats website.