Engineering at University

After completing your A-Levels, T-levels, IB, Highers, BTEC Level 3 or equivalent, you may decide to go on to study engineering at university. 



Which degree is for me?

There are a variety of degrees to choose from. Universities offer Foundation degrees, Bachelor of Science (BSc) or Bachelor of Engineering (BEng), Master of Science (MSc) and Master of Engineering (MEng). Some degrees are offered with a year in industry or abroad.


Universities offer degrees in general engineering, as well as in specific engineering areas. Specific areas include civil, electrical, chemical, mechanical and many others. These provide the specialist knowledge relevant to that field. For an overview of different engineering disciplines, look here.



Foundation degree

🔷Usually involves studying for two years

🔷Involves work-based learning/ Higher Apprenticeship

🔷Provides solid training in a particular field of engineering for careers in that sector




🔷Usually involves studying for three years (four in Scotland)

🔷Provides solid training in general engineering or a particular field of engineering for careers in that sector

🔷Options may include a year abroad, a year in industry, or a foundation year if you need to get up to speed with entry requirements




🔷Usually involves studying for four years (five in Scotland)

🔷Provides a more in-depth study than a BEng/BSc and usually involves a final year research project

🔷Provides a good basis for a specialised engineering career or PhD/Engineering Doctorate (EngD)



Accredited degrees

Many engineering degree programmes are accredited by the Engineering Council – this means they meet the standards set out by the engineering profession. Visit the Engineering Council’s website to search for accredited degree programmes.



Engineering with a year abroad

There are many degrees available with a year overseas. Your first and final years of the degree are the same as a regular degree. One of the other years will be spent studying at the overseas university. Students often value the experience of living and working in an environment very different from home, as well as the contacts and friends they make.



Engineering with industrial experience

🔷Allows you to apply your learning and practice/improve your skills in a real work environment

🔷Gives you the opportunity to see if a career in that field is right for you

🔷May allow you to earn while you learn

🔷Helps establish useful links with potential future employers

🔷Enhances your CV – helpful for recent graduates



How to choose your university

Universities are ranked by various organisations which look at different aspects such as quality of teaching or student experience. Several websites and newspapers publish their rankings annually.

Times Higher Education

The Guardian University League Tables

The Complete University Guide

Links and resources

Engineering at University Booklet
Engineering subject areas
How do I choose a course
Engineering Council Accredited Degrees
Vocational Qualifications