You are viewing information for England.  Change country.

Engineering: mechanics, materials, design

Engineering is about extending society’s horizons by solving technical problems – from meeting basic needs for food and shelter to generating wealth by trade. Engineers prefer to see difficulties as challenges or opportunities – they appear to be solving problems, but they’re actually creating solutions: an altogether more imaginative activity. In exploring how technical solutions are created, this module combines the mechanics of solids and fluids with the structure and properties of materials. It includes aspects of engineering analysis, design, and modelling methods, using appropriate mathematical software. Analytical, communication, and learning skills are developed in a context that provides grounding for higher-level, more specialised study.

Modules count towards OU qualifications

OU qualifications are modular in structure; the credits from this undergraduate-level module could count towards a certificate of higher education, diploma of higher education, foundation degree or honours degree.

Browse qualifications in related subjects

Module

Module code
T207
Credits
60
Study level
OU SCQF FHEQ
2 9 5
Study method
Distance Learning
Module cost
See Module registration
Entry requirements
See Am I ready?

Student Reviews

Wow what a module. This was my first OU module as I gained credit transfer for the level 1 modules...
Read more

I started this course concerned that, as someone not currently working in an engineering role, I was going to find...
Read more


Request your prospectus

Explore our subjects and courses

Request your copy now


What you will study

The module is based around six themes: the nature of problems, static structures, dynamics, energy, endurance and human factors. Study is arranged in six blocks, one for each theme.

The opening block develops a view of engineering problems as challenges and opportunities for technical people. The creation of solutions calls for a clear analysis of what is to be done and an appreciation of how to establish an understanding of the task in hand. It is important to be able to identify how and where to find the necessary knowledge and skills.

Providing shelter was one of the earliest challenges faced by civilisations. The study of static structures in Block 2 is based on building things so that they don’t fall down. The analytical methods developed here have wider applicability to all static, load-bearing structures. The third block looks at a variety of mechanisms that are at the heart of machines; it also considers how those machines use power to do useful things, from cleaning your teeth to operating a commercial airliner. Behind all our activities as humans is a thirst for energy. Electrical energy is considered in Block 4 as a resource that is essential to modern life – so what happens if we all want to switch on at once? Hydroelectricity is one solution and it involves fluids, not only in the pipes but also in the bearings. The fifth block examines the durability of our technical solutions. Having made structures and devices that provide some useful function, it is in our interests to know about the factors that limit their useful life, whether it be overload, corrosion or merely fashion.

The module closes with the Human Factors theme. We can survive only in narrow ranges of temperature, pressure, air composition, acceleration and so on, yet we expect to be able to plunge to the depths of the ocean, to fly through the air and to travel out into space. The ultimate solutions to find are those that enable us to continue to extend our horizons while staying within the limits of survivability. (To boldly go …)

Teaching and assessment

Support from your tutor

You will have a tutor who will help you with the study material and mark and comment on your written work, and whom you can ask for advice and guidance. It is expected that the majority of the tutorials will take place online. We may also be able to offer group tutorials or day schools that you are encouraged, but not obliged, to attend. Where your tutorials are held will depend on the distribution of students taking the module.

Contact us if you want to know more about study with The Open University before you register.

Assessment

The assessment details for this module can be found in the facts box above.

You will be expected to submit your tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) online through the eTMA system unless there are some difficulties which prevent you from doing so. In these circumstances, you must negotiate with your tutor to get their agreement to submit your assignment on paper. 

Future availability

The details given here are for the module that starts in October 2015. We expect it to be available once a year. 

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the Module Regulations and the Student Regulations which are available on our Essential documents website.

Course work includes:

7 Tutor-marked assignments (TMAs)
Examination
No residential school

Course satisfaction survey

See the satisfaction survey results for this course.


Entry

This is an OU level 2 module and you need a good knowledge of the subject area, obtained either from level 1 study with the OU, or from equivalent work at another university.

It is assumed that you have the mathematical competencies provided by study of a module such as Essential  mathematics 1 (MST124) or its predecessor MST121, and that you have a familiarity with the broad base of engineering as would be obtained from studying Engineering the future (T174) or its predecessor T173.

If you have any doubt about the suitability of the module, please speak to an adviser.

Register

Start End England fee Register
03 Oct 2015 Jun 2016 £2700.00

Registration closes 10/09/15 (places subject to availability)

Register

You may need to apply for some payment or funding options earlier. Please check the Fees and Funding information or contact us for information.

This module is expected to start for the last time in October 2017.

Additional Costs

Study costs

There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as a laptop, travel to tutorials, set books and internet access.

If you're on a low income you might be eligible for help with some of these costs after you register.

Ways to pay for this module

Open University Student Budget Account

The Open University Student Budget Accounts Ltd (OUSBA) offers a convenient 'pay as you go' option to pay your OU fees, which is a secure, quick and easy way to pay. Please note that The Open University works exclusively with OUSBA and is not able to offer you credit facilities from any other provider. All credit is subject to status and proof that you can afford the repayments.

You pay the OU through OUSBA in one of the following ways:

  • Register now, pay later – OUSBA pays your module fee direct to the OU. You then repay OUSBA interest-free and in full just before your module starts. 0% APR representative. This option could give you the extra time you may need to secure the funding to repay OUSBA.
  • Pay by instalments – OUSBA calculates your monthly fee and number of instalments based on the cost of the module you are studying. APR 5.1% representative.

Read more about Open University Student Budget Accounts (OUSBA).  

Employer sponsorship

Studying with The Open University can boost your employability. OU qualifications are recognised and respected by employers for their excellence and the commitment they take to achieve one. They also value the skills that students learn and can apply in the workplace.

More than one in ten OU students are sponsored by their employer, and over 30,000 employers have used the OU to develop staff so far. If the qualification you’ve chosen is geared towards your job or developing your career, you could approach your employer to see if they will sponsor you by paying some or all of the fees. 

  • Your employer just needs to complete a simple form to confirm how much they will be paying and we will invoice them.
  • You won’t need to get your employer to complete the form until after you’ve chosen your modules.  

Credit/debit card

You can pay part or all of your tuition fees upfront with a debit or credit card when you register for each module. 

We accept American Express, Maestro (UK only), Mastercard, Visa/Delta and Visa Electron. 

Mixed payments

We know that sometimes you may want to combine payment options. For example, you may wish to pay part of your tuition fee with a debit card and pay the remainder in instalments through an Open University Student Budget Account (OUSBA).

For more information about combining payment options, speak to an adviser or book a call back at a time that is convenient to you.


Please note: your permanent address/domicile will affect your fee status and therefore the fees you are charged and any financial support available to you. The fees and funding information provided here is valid for modules starting before 31 July 2016. Fees normally increase annually in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees. 

This information was provided on 30/07/2015.

What's included

Module books, other printed materials, DVD, online forum and a website.

You will need

A calculator.

Computing requirements

You will need a computer with internet access to study this module as the study materials and activities are accessible via a web browser. Any other computer-based activities you will need to carry out, such as word processing, using spreadsheets, taking part in online forums, and submitting files to the university for assessment, are specified in the module materials. If any additional software is needed for these tasks it will either be provided or is freely available. For this module you will also need to install software provided by the OU on a disk or USB stick.

A Windows desktop or laptop computer running Windows 7 or later operating system is suitable for this module. You will be required to install Microsoft Windows specific software.

A netbook, tablet, smartphone or Linux computer that supports one of the browsers listed below may be suitable. The screen size should be at least 1024 (H) x 768 (W) pixels. If you intend to use one of these devices please ensure you have access to a suitable desktop or laptop computer in case you are unable to carry out all the module activities on your mobile device.

We recommend a minimum 1 Mbps internet connection and any of the following browsers:

  • Internet Explorer 9 and above
  • Apple Safari 7 and above
  • Google Chrome 31 and above
  • Mozilla Firefox 31 and above.

Note: using the latest version for your browser will maximise security when accessing the internet. Using company or library computers may prevent you accessing some internet materials or installing additional software.

See our Skills for OU study website for further information about computing skills for study and educational deals for buying Microsoft Office software.

If you have a disability

The study materials are available in Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF). Components may not be available or fully accessible using a screen reader and mathematical, scientific, and foreign language materials may be particularly difficult to read in this way.

You will need to spend considerable amounts of time using a personal computer and the internet.

If you have particular study requirements please tell us as soon as possible, as some of our support services may take several weeks to arrange. Find out more about our services for disabled students.