Skip to main content

MSc Mechanical Engineering Design

Book an Open Day
  • Delivery:
    Full time according to Funding Council definitions, Part-Time

If you have ambitions of being a Chartered Engineer (CEng) then this course will provide you with the ideal start. It is accredited by the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) on behalf of the Engineering Council for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Graduates holding professional status and accredited degrees are highly valued by employers in the UK and internationally.

This course has been designed to suit those in work as well as full-time students, with units taught intensively (normally over 4.5 days) to enable effective, practical learning and minimise time away from the workplace. Dates for the units in the current academic year are given below as an example. Assessment normally takes place five to six weeks after the delivery of the unit.

During the course you'll apply mathematical and computer-based models for solving problems in engineering design. The nature of this course is business driven and you will apply your knowledge to specific design problems. The research undertaken as part of the Individual Master's Project will give you an opportunity to explore your particular area of interest in greater depth.

If you choose to take this degree on a part-time basis, it will take two years to reach Master's level and you will then have a further six-month project to undertake.

Find out more: Watch a recorded webinar about our Master's degrees in Design and Engineering. This is presented by Dr Mehran Koohgilani, the programme leader for postgraduate courses.

For 2019 entry: In order to take advantage of new approaches to learning and teaching, as well as developments in industry to benefit our students we regularly review all of our courses.

This course is currently going through this process and we will update this page in August 2018 to give you full information about what we will be offering once the review process has concluded.

Key information

Next start date:

September 2018, September 2019


Bournemouth University, Talbot Campus


1 year full-time, 2 years with an optional work placement, or 2 years part-time


Institution of Engineering Designers, Engineering Council and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Required subjects:


Entry requirements:

A Bachelors Honours degree with 2:2 in a required subject, or equivalent. If you want to apply for Chartered Engineer status (standard route), you will need to have an IEng accredited Honours degree or academic qualifications that have been approved at IEng level, to meet the Engineering Council's registration requirements.

All applicants to the programme will be interviewed to determine if they are standard or non-standard route applicants. All non-standard route applicants will be made fully aware that they will not be entitled to use the Mechanical Engineering Design qualification to meet the academic requirements for CEng status.

International entry requirements:

If English is not your first language you'll need IELTS 6.0 (Academic) or above. For more information see our full entry requirements.

Course details

To enable effective, practical learning and minimise time away from the workplace, units are taught intensively, usually over 4.5 days, with assessment normally taking place five to six weeks after the delivery of the unit. Dates for the current academic year are given as an example; the next set of dates will be published as soon as they are confirmed.

Core units

  • Design Simulation: Explore the strengths and limits of current solid modelling applications in respect of part and assembly design. You'll gain an understanding of the strengths and limits of using simulation tools for analysing and validating design problems. This unit explores critical awareness in using modern analytical techniques and tools for the product development process. Dates: 5 days’ attendance in the 2 weeks commencing 29 January and 5 February 2018

  • Business Innovation & Enterprise: You will learn how to identify and exploit a company’s strengths. The unit will evaluate external opportunities that exist, conceiving strategies to overcome internal weaknesses and threats that might be imposed by the industry environment. Dates: 5 days’ attendance in the 2 weeks commencing 6 and 13 November 2017

  • Structural Integrity: After completing this unit you will have developed a professional competence and critical awareness of selecting appropriate methods for designing and analysing structural components. You'll be able to independently apply structural integrity theories for solving a range of engineering problems, and have the ability to diagnose the causes of structural failure and propose methods of avoiding them in the future. Dates: 5 days’ attendance in the 2 weeks commencing 25 September and 2 October 2017

  • Group Project: Gain professional management skills for working in a team to produce a solution to a technical problem. Develop the ability to determine basic personality characteristics in self and others, undertaking a rationale analysis of how personality characteristics affect group dynamics and understanding strategies for managing self and others when working in a team. Dates: 5 days’ attendance in the 2 weeks commencing 27 November 2017

  • Materials Failure & Prevention: Develop an understanding of the underlying reasons and mechanisms of materials failures in order to design against and diagnose failure in engineering materials. Dates: 5 days’ attendance in the 2 weeks commencing 19 and 26 February 2018

  • Research Methods: This unit will adequately prepare you for writing a project proposal and for conducting and disseminating the Individual Master's Project. You will use key research skills in areas such as literature reviews, critical analysis of research findings, project proposals, planning, experiment design and analysis, and dissemination. Dates: 5 days w/c 12 March 2018

  • Individual Master's Project: Using real life problems you will use your knowledge gained from the programme, research findings and industrial experiences to produce an independently conducted piece of work. Your project may be linked to your workplace or to research being undertaken within one of BU's research themes. This project will develop your knowledge of philosophy, methodologies and techniques of research provide you with an opportunity to critically investigate and report on a particular issue in depth and enable you to engage in complex issues and present an analytically rigorous and well-argued case.

Programme specification

Programme specifications provide definitive records of the University's taught degrees in line with Quality Assurance Agency requirements. Every taught course leading to a BU Award has a programme specification which describes its aims, structure, content and learning outcomes, plus the teaching, learning and assessment methods used.

Download the programme specification for MSc Mechanical Engineering Design.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the programme specification, the information is liable to change to take advantage of exciting new approaches to teaching and learning as well as developments in industry. If you have been unable to locate the programme specification for the course you are interested in, it will be available as soon as the latest version is ready. Alternatively please contact us for assistance.

Placement opportunities

The optional placement provides an excellent opportunity for you to gain first-hand industry experience and apply the learning that you have achieved through the course. The placement should be a paid job but voluntary work can be just as enjoyable.

Experience gained on the placement is invaluable in helping you to make informed decisions about your future career path, as well as enhancing your employment prospects upon graduation. Our dedicated Placements Office helps you to obtain placements and you will receive support throughout the placement experience. Interview techniques and advice are also provided to help you successfully gain a placement. A number of companies habitually accept students from this course for the placement year.

You will begin your placement after completion of the taught units.

Our students have previously worked for:

  • Jaguar Cars Ltd
  • Xerox
  • Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd
  • Dyson Appliances Ltd
  • The Gillette Company.

Full entry requirements

The normal requirements for embarking upon this course are:

A Bachelors Honours degree with 2:2 in a required subject, or equivalent.

Professional membership

Applicants who wish to gain the academic requirements for IED Chartered Engineer status (standard route) will need to have:

  • a degree accredited by IED to MIED level or
  • academic qualifications that have been approved at MIED level through the IED Education and Training Committee or equivalent.

If you wish to register as a Chartered Engineer (CEng) in the UK, you will need to make sure that your undergraduate degree (or other relevant academic qualification) is recognised by the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) at the correct level. If your qualification was awarded outside of the UK, you can choose to send it to the IED for review (the IED will charge a fee for this).  We are happy to discuss professional membership options with you during the application process.

It is a requirement of the professional accrediting body that we speak to you about your academic status, so we will invite you to participate in an interview in person, on the phone or by Skype.

If you lack the formal academic qualifications needed to enter a postgraduate or post-experience degree, there are several alternative routes to follow - some based on experience. Contact the Future Students Enquiry Team for more information.

International entry requirements

If English is not your first language, you will need to provide evidence that you can understand English to a satisfactory level. English language requirements for this course are normally:

  •  IELTS (Academic) 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component of writing, speaking, listening and reading, or equivalent.

View further information about our English language requirements.

A number of pre-sessional English and preparatory programmes are offered through our partner institution, Bournemouth University International College, and will get you ready for study at BU at the appropriate level.

You can also find further details of the international qualifications we accept, and what level of study they apply to, on our postgraduate entry requirements page.

Selection criteria

Background and experience

For MSc Mechanical Engineering Design we are looking for applicants who:

  • Have an interest in applying mathematical and computer-based models for solving problems in engineering design
  • Wish to gain comprehensive knowledge and understanding of a wide range of materials, manufacturing processes and failure criteria
  • Wish to become fully aware of the enterprise and business driven aspects of design
  • Wish to gain the ability and confidence to apply their knowledge and skills to specific design problems individually or in a group
  • Wish to communicate effectively with both those working in the field of design engineering and with the wider public.

MSc Mechanical Engineering Design is a course for graduate engineers who wish to enhance their skills, knowledge and experience in design engineering. You may also want to gain the internationally recognised title of Chartered Engineer (CEng) but do not currently meet the academic requirements. It is a requirement of the professional accrediting body that we speak to you about your academic status, so we will invite you to participate in a telephone interview.

It is generally accepted that professionals holding CEng status benefit from significantly improved careers prospects than their peers. Applicants may be recently qualified graduates or those who completed their degrees some time ago.


If you have ambitions of being a chartered engineer (CEng) then this course will provide you with the ideal start. In order to achieve CEng status it is recognised that most chartered engineers will hold an appropriate Master's degree like this one. Graduates holding professional status and accredited degrees are highly valued by employers in the UK and internationally, meaning you will be well equipped to embark on a successful career in the engineering industry.

Some of our Mechanical Engineering Design graduates are now undertaking roles such as:

  • Chartered engineer
  • Mechanical engineering designer
  • Project manager.

Industries worked in

  • Mechanical engineering design
  • Engineering
  • Project management
  • Business.

Further study

If you want to continue your studies after achieving your Master's, you can look into our range of doctoral programmes.

No hidden extras

As a student at BU we will provide many things to support you and there will also be additional costs you may encounter whilst studying at BU. The information below will help you understand our provision and what you need to budget for.

Course specific material(s) included in your tuition fee:

  • A student version of the relevant 2D/3D CAD package (Solidworks, AutoCAD) to use for the duration of the course.

What you can expect from us

All of your teaching and assessments are included in your tuition fees, including, lectures/guest lectures and tutorials, seminars, laboratory sessions and specialist teaching facilities. You will also have access to a wide range of support and services.

  • One set of study-related consumables such as a memory stick/ DVD
  • Materials for laboratory and field-based teaching activity
  • Support for placements (UK or abroad) and fieldwork and non-financial support whilst on placement
  • A range of student services – advisors, help desks, counsellors, placement support and careers service
  • The Library – access to a wide range of electronic resources (databases, e-journals and e-books), print and multimedia collections, subject librarians and study spaces
  • IT labs (some open 24/7), wireless network, AV equipment to borrow
  • Peer Assisted Learning (PAL) scheme
  • Disability and additional learning support
  • The BU Language Centre to help you develop/improve foreign or English language skills
  • 24 hours a day, 365 days a year security team.

Costs of living and other expenses you need to consider

  • Accommodation and living costs: view our price guide
  • Text books: remember that our award-winning library is stocked with a large range of text books for all courses, as well as online resources such as industry journals, free of charge
  • General stationery and other supplies such as print and presentation materials: the Students’ Union shops stock a wide range of stationery supplies on both campuses
  • Travel to, from and between BU campuses: our bus service operates in the local areas offering a subsidised travel rate; we also have a large number of secure bike storage compounds
  • SportBU membership: check out our student membership packages, sports events, varsity teams, information about our new facilities and more on the SportBU webpages
  • Optional fieldwork travel, outdoor wear and footwear (where applicable)
  • Telephone and travel costs incurred when undertaking interviews for coursework/securing placements.
  • A fee will be payable towards the cost of an Educational Psychology Assessment if this is required in connection with additional learning support. BU pays for approximately two-thirds of the cost of this assessment for UK students. For more details and current pricing please visit the Students section of the website.

Repeat Units

If you need to repeat one or more units during the course of your studies, you may be required to pay additional fees equivalent to one ninth of the tuition fee per 20 credit unit.

Financial help available from BU

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to students who are beginning their studies at BU. Our website also provides details on living costs, budgeting and paying your tuition fees.

Meet our staff

Course leader for the MDes (Hons) Product Design,  Franziska Conrad designed the QuickPitch pop-up tent when she was a student here at BU.

Dr Bryce Dyer, a Senior Lecturer in Product Design, created a new limb for athlete Colin Lynch, which was used as he represented his country at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

Associate Professor Dr Tania Humphries-Smith is the current Chair of the Institute of Engineering Designers (IED), the UK’s only professional body representing those working in the many fields of engineering and product design. The IED accredit this course.

Read more about the expertise of other members of the Department of Design & Engineering, and book on to an open day to come along and meet some of them.


Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)

The MSc Mechanical Engineering Design will meet in part, the exemplifying academic benchmark requirements for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Accredited MSc graduates who also have a BEng (Hons) accredited for CEng will be able to show that they have satisfied the educational base for CEng registration. 

It should be noted that graduates from an accredited MSc programme who do not also have an appropriately accredited Honours degree will not be regarded as having the exemplifying qualifications for professional registration as a Chartered Engineer with the Engineering Council; they will need to have their first qualification individually assessed through the Individual Case Procedure if they wish to progress to CEng.

Institution of Engineering Designers

The course is also accredited by the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) on behalf of the Engineering Council for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer. 

Course changes

The table below indicates the latest changes to this course.

Date Changes to this course Where the change was made Previous text

After an annual review of the placement year tuition fee,  a price increase in line with current inflation, equating to 3% has been introduced.

Fees £790

Additional information

Simon Phelps

Career development

Read about career and development opportunities and discover how gaining industry experience could help you.

Purbeck House common room

International students

We have a strong international student community. Find all the practical advice and information you need here.