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What is mechanical engineering?
Mechanical engineers build the world around us. From the smallest nanotechnology to cars and buildings, airplanes and space stations, mechanical engineers are responsible for the design and development of most things.
The study of mechanical engineering is a combination of natural sciences, mathematics and computer science. It is the study of the machines and how to make and maintain them at all levels. It's a borderless topic, playing a role in everything from vehicles to cities, from energy to artificial intelligence, from the military to health, and everything in between.
Admission requirements for studying mechanical engineering
Mechanical engineering is considered one of the most demanding majors in universities, so it will come as no surprise that admission requirements can be high. Typically, you will need a degree in mathematics and/or physics. But just as important, you must have good grades in the subjects you study.
Other subjects that support a mechanical engineering application include more mathematics, design technology, computer science, product design, and other sciences. When it comes to your extracurricular skills and activities, colleges look for practicality, attention to detail, proficiency in technology, computer science, and arithmetic.
what will you have to do
- Apply before the January deadline
- Attend an interview
- show work experience
What you don't have to do
- send portfolio
- Audition for a vacancy
Can I apply if I don't have good grades in math and physics?
Each university has its own entry requirements. Mathematics and physics are usually the most important subjects for mechanical engineering, but many students manage to get into a degree without having studied them. A strong personal profile can sometimes be just as important as an academic profile. Always check with the university you are applying to.
Discover what it's like to study engineering
Now talk to Ismail, who can tell you everything.
Why study mechanical engineering?
Mechanical engineering is the broadest engineering field that gives you insight into others and the broadest career opportunities. When you combine that with the fact that mechanical engineers are in demand in almost every industry, you play your cards right and you could end up being one of the best-employed graduates in the world.
If you're looking for a future-proof skill, remember that mechanical engineers are heavily involved in automation, renewable energy, and artificial intelligence. The rapid development of technology also ensures that studying mechanical engineering never gets boring. You will be among the first to experiment with new techniques and technology, and much of your study will be practical and straightforward.
Some modules you can study are:
- structural materials
- technical concepts
- solid mechanics
- biomedicine and bioengineering
- system modeling
Even if you don't decide to stay in engineering, the transferable skills you master will prepare you for careers in a variety of industries.
What professional experience do I need to be able to show?
By the time you're 17 or 18, you probably won't have much mechanical engineering experience. Colleges are looking for personal or professional experience in something related: working with cars, maintenance or something technical. Universities want to focus on the skills of an engineer, not just engineering itself.
Check out our tipswrite your personal statement for engineering.
in levels– Admission requirements range from CCC to A*AA, with universities and colleges often requiring AAB.
Scottish superiors– Entry requirements for Highers (the most common degree) range from ABBB to AAAAB, with universities or colleges most commonly requiring AABBB. Occasionally, faculties ask for advanced superiors to complement the superiors. When advanced highs are applied for, universities or colleges typically apply for the AA.
professional courses– Other Level 3/Level 6 qualifications (e.g. a Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended National Diploma or SCQF Level 6) may be accepted by some providers as an alternative to A/Superior levels. Be sure to find out about alternative entry requirements at universities or colleges.
What can you do with a mechanical engineering degree?
Most mechanical engineering graduates will stay in engineering because:
- mechanical engineer
- structural engineer
- Aerospace Engineer
- civil engineer
But some engineering graduates use their diverse skillset to break into other industries, such as:
- electric car
- traffic planner
- model maker
- CNC machinist
What is it like to study mechanical engineering?
Mechanical engineering is challenging but also rewarding. Don't expect to attend lectures and seminars during your career, which typically lasts three or four years. During this time you will participate in many demonstrations and hands-on sessions, as well as laboratory courses and workshops. Engineering graduates receive a BEng rather than the more common BA or BSc.
As the broadest engineering major, mechanical engineering provides a general foundation in the discipline before you can specialize from year one. You may decide to branch out into aerospace, medical, structural, or robotics by taking specific modules. To support this, some universities offer internship years that allow you to spend time in the industry, with a company related to your passion or specialty.
By studying Mechanical Engineering you will:
- Write reports and essays
- participate in lectures, seminars and internships
- Participate in design workshops and hands-on sessions
- Do group and project tasks
- Complete project and computer-based tasks
Mechanical engineering requires a lot of study, theory and practice. For some colleges, this means up to 24 hours a week with tutors. For others it means a lot of self-learning and such. high motivation. Whatever it is, you'll spend your time in many different settings: classrooms, labs, and workshops.
Are you considering accelerated study?Click here to read moreabout the possibility of completing his studies in two years instead of three.
Let's talk engineering internships
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Not sure if a traditional title is right for you? Listen to our new podcast to learn more about studying undergraduate engineering internships.
If you want to combine work and study while earning a paycheck, consider an internship. Which internships are offered and how you apply depends on where you live.
Find out about internships across the UK.
Around 90 engineering positions are available in England and more are under development.
Each apprenticeship sets occupational standards for specific occupations that are set by employers. The standards describe the skills, knowledge and behaviors required to demonstrate that an apprentice is fully competent on the job.
Higher Education (Level 4)
- Aircraft Maintenance Certifying Engineer
- Technician for automation and control technology.
- Infrastructure engineer and bullet train
- drive technician
- Senior technician in the field of railway technology
- Head of Road Traffic Engineering
- Vehicle damage expert
Apprenticeship certificate (levels 5 – 7)
- air traffic controller
- Aerospace Engineering (Bachelor)
- Aerospace Software Development Engineer (Diploma)
- Controls Engineer/Technical Support (position)
- Electrical/Electronics Technical Support Engineer (Title)
- Engineer for Design and Development of Embedded Electronic Systems (Bachelor)
- Senior Electronic Systems Engineer
- Manufacturing Engineer (Title)
- Production Manager (position)
- Materials Process Engineer (Diploma)
- Process Automation Engineer (Titel)
- Product Design and Development Engineer (non-integrated title)
- Project Manager (Diploma)
- Railway and Railway Systems Engineer
- Senior Railway and Railway Systems Engineer (Title)
- Senior Railway and Rail Systems Engineer (Titel)
- Systems Engineer (Diploma)
- By Life Engineering Services Specialist
Find out more about engineering internships
Our guide contains all the information you need to know about an internship in this industry. Find out what it's really like with current interns and decide if it's the right path for you.
Mechanical Engineering Industry Handbook
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