The Foundation Year aims to extend access to university education to students from a wide variety of educational backgrounds and age groups and prepares these students for our three-year Engineering degrees.
This programme is for students who do not have the grades they need for direct entry on to our BEng programmes. On successful completion of your Foundation Year, you can go to the Mechanical Engineering degree or the Mechanical Engineering with a Year in Industry degree.
Mechanical Engineering is a fundamental discipline that is responsible for the design and the development of mechanical systems and it is vital in many tech industries. At the University of Kent, we focus in the modern applications of Mechanical Engineering, e.g. robotics, assistive technology, smart materials and autonomous vehicles.
Our research led degrees mean our graduates can work at the forefront of the major areas of mechanical engineering, combining theory with practical and project work, turning ideas into real systems.
We have strong links with the Royal Academy of Engineering and with institutions that provide accreditation to university degrees (Institution of Engineering and Technology and Institution of Mechanical Engineers). Our engineering students' work has won international prizes and our visiting industrial professors contribute to a strong industrial relevance of our courses.
Applicants for September 2020 entry can apply for a scholarship of a £2,000 one-off payment. For more information and to apply, see DA VINCI Academic scholarship.
Our degree programme
This programme covers all aspects of mechanical engineering, from robotics to manufacturing, from fluid dynamics to materials. This will allow you to enter any branch of mechanical engineering following graduation.
The first year of our course lays the foundation for the rest of your studies and includes modules on mechanics, CAD, introduction to mechatronics, engineering analysis and mathematics. In the first year project you will engineer a system to solve a problem using mechanics, sensors and actuators.
In the second year, you further develop your understanding of the field, gaining advanced practical experience, specifically in mechanisms, mechatronics, fluid dynamics, manufacturing and design. As your knowledge of mechanical engineering grows, you discover which areas particularly interest you, so that in your final year you can begin to specialise in preparation for your final-year project.
For students (Home/EU) wishing to apply for BEng Mechancial Engineering for 2020 entry, it is possible to be considered for stage 1 entry by undertaking one of our Foundation Year courses. Please contact us for further information about this route.
Year in industry
It is possible to take this programme with a year in industry, see Mechanical Engineering with a Year in Industry.
We provide first-class facilities to support your studies, including:
mechanical workshop staffed with skilled mechanical engineers120-seat engineering laboratoryopen access to high-end computersCAD and development softwarerobotics/wheelchair laboratory3D printing and laser cutting facilities.
Kent School of Engineering and Digital Arts is undergoing a £3 million redevelopment and modernisation which is due for completion in July 2020. You gain state-of-the-art engineering and design facilities which include
a virtual reality suite a production studio (including photography, video and green screen facilities) a large teaching and design studio engineering workshop and fabrication facilities a dedicated makerspace.
There are many ways to get involved in School life. You could become a student representative, giving students a voice on School committees or become a student ambassador and work with us in secondary schools to promote engineering and technology.
We also host events where you can meet industry experts and former students.
In addition, you can take part in student-led societies including:
UKC Digital Media Kent Engineering Society TinkerSoc – Kent’s Maker Society.
The School has strong links with the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). We have several visiting industrial professors who contribute to the strong industrial relevance of our programmes.
Teaching includes practical work in conventional laboratory experiments or projects, lecture modules and examples classes, which develop your problem-solving skills, and staff hold regular ‘surgeries’ where you can discuss any questions you have. Practical work is carried out in air-conditioned laboratories, with state-of-the-art equipment and outstanding IT infrastructure.
Stage 1 modules are assessed by coursework and examination at the end of the year. Stage 2 and 3 modules, with the exception of the Stage 3 project, are assessed by a combination of coursework and examination. All years include project work to replicate industrial practice and develop skills to maximise employability.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain a knowledge and understanding of:
- Mathematical principles relevant to mechanics, material properties, fluid dynamics, and mechatronics.
- Scientific principles and methodology relevant to mechanical engineering with an emphasis on practical applications in mechanical engineering and mechatronics.
- Advanced concepts of mechanics, material properties, fluid dynamics, design and mechatronics, influenced by ongoing and current industrial needs and informed by internationally recognised relevant research expertise.
- The value of intellectual property and contractual issues for professional and entrepreneurial engineers.
- Business, management and project management techniques, seen mainly in a case study context, which may be used to achieve engineering objectives.
- The need for a high level of professional and ethical conduct in mechanical engineering, directly applied in a case study context.
- Current manufacturing practice with particular, example led emphasis on product safety, environmental standards and directives.
- Characteristics of the materials, equipment, processes and products required for mechanical and mechatronic systems.
- Appropriate codes of practice, industry standards and quality issues, directly applied in a case study context.
- Contexts in which engineering knowledge can be applied, particularly explored in student-led project work, to solve new problems.
You gain the following intellectual skills:
- Analysis and solution of problems in mechanical engineering using appropriate mathematical methods with a strong emphasis on engineering example based learning and assessment.
- Ability to apply and integrate knowledge and understanding of other engineering disciplines to support study of mechanical engineering particularly through student based led practical project design.
- Use of engineering principles and the ability to apply them to analyse key mechanical engineering processes with an emphasis on simulation and practical learning.
- Ability to identify, classify and describe the performance of systems and components through the use of analytical methods and modelling techniques with an emphasis on simulation and practical learning.
- Ability to apply and understand a systems approach to mechanical engineering problems by top level analysis to consolidate learning of underpinning principles.
- Ability to investigate and define a problem and identify constraints including cost drivers, economic, environmental, health and safety and risk assessment issues largely by undertaking individual and group projects work.
- Ability to use creativity to establish innovative, aesthetic solutions whilst understanding customer and user needs, ensuring fitness for purpose of all aspects of the problem including production, operation, maintenance and disposal expressed through student led group project work and consolidated by individual project work.
- Ability to demonstrate the economic and environmental context of the engineering solution with an emphasis on sustainable, and professional and enterprise case studies.
You gain the following subject-specific skills:
- Use of mathematical techniques to analyse problems relevant to mechanical engineering, material properties, fluid dynamics, design and mechatronics.
- Ability to work in an engineering laboratory environment and to use a wide range of mechanical and mechatronic equipment, workshop equipment and CAD tools for the practical realisation of mechanical and mechatronic systems throughout the programme.
- Ability to work with technical uncertainty or incomplete knowledge particularly through experimental learning in practical project design.
- Ability to apply quantitative methods and computer software relevant to mechanical engineering in order to solve engineering problems in analytical, simulation based, and practical engineering activities.
- Ability to design mechanical and mechatronic systems to fulfil a product specification and devise tests to appraise performance, consolidated by student-led individual and group project design.
- Awareness of the nature of intellectual property and contractual issues and an understanding of appropriate codes of practice and industry standards, explored through case studies.
- Ability to use technical literature and other information sources and apply it to a design, largely through student-led practical project work.
- Ability to apply management techniques to the planning, resource allocation and execution of a design project and evaluate outcomes, consolidated through student led projects.
- Ability to prepare technical reports and give effective and appropriate presentations to a technical and non-technical audience’s.
You gain the following transferable skills:
- Ability to generate, analyse, present, interpret data and solve problems.
- Use of Information and Communications Technology.
- Personal and interpersonal skills, work as a member of a team
- Communicate effectively to peers and professional engineers (in writing, verbally and through drawings).
- Learn effectively for the purpose of continuing professional development.
- Ability for critical thinking, reasoning, reflection and self-learning.
- Ability to manage time and resources within an individual project and a group project.
The programme aims to:
- Educate students to become mechanical engineers who are well equipped for professional careers in development, research and production in industry and universities, and who are well adapted to meet the challenges of a rapidly changing discipline.
- Produce professional mechanical engineers with a well-balanced knowledge of mechanics, material properties, fluid dynamics, design and mechatronics.
- Enable students to satisfy the partial educational requirements of the IMechE for Chartered Engineer (CEng) registration.