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Master of Engineering - Learning outcomes

Educational aims

The MEng is a 480-credit qualification which aims to satisfy in full the Engineering Council’s (EC’s) educational requirements for Chartered Engineer (CEng) status. It requires 360 credits of study up to OU level 3 (FHEQ level 6) followed by 120 credits at postgraduate level (FHEQ Level 7).

Like the OU BEng (Hons), its learning outcomes are closely aligned with the EC’s UK-SPEC generic output standards for degrees in engineering that are appropriate for CEng. These output standards fall into two groups. First, there are degree-level general outcomes covering acquisition of knowledge and understanding, intellectual abilities, practical skills and general transferable skills. Then there are more specific outcomes related to engineering under the headings: science and mathematics; engineering analysis; design, economic, environmental, ethical, legal, and social context; engineering practice and additional general skills.

In accordance with the UK Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education benchmark statement on engineering, the MEng programme aims to differentiate itself from the BEng (Hons) programme by stimulating a deepening of technical understanding, some broadening to include management or other non-technical topics, an additional emphasis on team/group working, providing an increase in the use of industrially relevant applications of engineering analysis, and expecting an enhanced capability for independent learning and work.

Learning outcomes

As a graduate of the MEng you will have demonstrated that you have satisfied these learning outcomes with your assessed work. Your enhanced engineering ability will have been acquired through involvement in individual and group design projects as well as continuous personal study and tuition.

Knowledge and understanding

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • use your knowledge and understanding, acquired and developed through study and through personal investigations as an individual and as part of a team, of relevant engineering principles, analytical methods, modelling techniques, quantitative methods and appropriate computer software to respond systematically to complex engineering challenges
  • review or report on appropriate social, commercial, ethical/legal and management practices in contemporary engineering in your present or future professional work.

Cognitive skills

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • integrate your comprehensive knowledge and understanding of underpinning scientific principles, mathematical methods and engineering practice to analyse complex engineering problems and formulate solutions to them
  • create designs where a user’s needs and preferences are transformed into cost-effective, innovative engineered solutions that are demonstrably fit for purpose in terms of production, operation, maintenance and de-commissioning.

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • propose reasoned solutions to engineering challenges (even where uncertain conditions exist) using a range of engineering analysis and evaluation skills applied to a working knowledge of particular materials, equipment, processes and products, workshop and laboratory methods, technical literature and other information, taking into account appropriate quality standards, codes of practice, industry standards, and intellectual property and contractual issues
  • undertake and manage engineering projects responsibly, professionally and ethically, with regard to environmental risk and sustainability, and the framework of relevant legal requirements (covering issues such as personnel, health, safety, etc.)
  • evaluate the significance of findings through investigation of your chosen specialism using a comprehensive understanding of the engineering principles, new and emerging technologies and current professional practice, when applied to an unfamiliar situation.

Key skills

On completion of this qualification, you will be able to:

  • practise a range of transferable skills (including problem solving, communication, working with others – especially team-working – IT skills, information retrieval, planning self-learning and career development, and reflection), at a level appropriate to a senior professional engineer.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

Teaching and learning is through a combination of study materials (including study guides, module websites, textbooks, set books, audio and video material, and module-related software), optional online tutorials, compulsory practical work, plus individual tutor feedback.

Assessment is through a mix of written tutor-marked assignments, interactive computer-marked assignments, examinations and end-of-module assessments.