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Engineering

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A picture to illustrate studying engineering at The Open University

Engineering affects almost every part of our lives, and a qualification in this field can be your passport to a huge variety of rewarding careers. Qualified engineers are in great demand all over the world, and are among the best-paid professionals. You’ll need to be imaginative and to enjoy solving problems, but as a graduate engineer your broad-ranging skills and knowledge will be highly valued.

You can get a head start to your engineering career by studying with the OU. Our qualifications and courses cover computing and information technologies, design, environment, materials and structures. And after a degree in engineering, you could – like many of our 2,500-plus students – work towards a masters (and chartered status). See the MEng on our postgraduate pages.

As a graduate engineer the job options are all yours. Advances in technology mean there are always opportunities in areas as diverse as cosmetics, communications, energy, health care, manufacturing, music and transport. Or you may choose to work in a particular engineering discipline such as aerospace, chemical, civil or mechanical engineering. You can even use your skills to develop a career in other areas such as design and development, marketing, project management, research or technical sales.

Degrees ( More about Degrees
More about Degrees
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Undergraduate or bachelors degrees are nationally recognised qualifications consisting of academic study designed to help you gain a thorough understanding of a subject.

For a degree in a named subject, such as business studies or humanities, you'll study mainly in your chosen subject, although you may be able to include some modules from other subjects.

With The Open University you could also study an Open degree where you can combine a range of modules from similar or different subjects to suit either your particular career or personal interests.

You can use a degree to:

  • change careers or progress your current career
  • gain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of a subject you are interested in
  • gain professional recognition
  • go onto postgraduate study, such as a diploma or masters degree.
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  • Engineering
    An opportunity to study general engineering, with some specialisation in one of several engineering disciplines including design, environment, materials, mechanics and ICT.
  • Top-up Bachelor of Engineering with Honours
    If you’ve already completed a foundation degree in engineering or materials fabrication and engineering (or equivalent), this top-up will give you a full honours degree.
  • Open degree
    The BA/BSc Open Degree is a qualification that gives you a huge choice in terms of subjects and modules that you study to make up your degree.

Foundation Degrees ( More about Foundation degrees
More about Foundation degrees
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Foundation degrees are nationally recognised qualifications focusing either on a particular job or profession; they combine work place learning with academic study. Designed and developed with external partners, you must be working either as a paid employee or as a volunteer in a related work setting.

A foundation degree is equivalent to two thirds of an honours degree. They aim to enhance the professional and technical skills of staff within a profession or those intending to go into that profession.

You can use a foundation degree to:

  • change careers or progress your current career
  • gain technical and professional skills
  • gain professional recognition
  • achieve a full honours degree through further study.

Most of our foundation degrees are also offered as diplomas of higher education for those living and working in Scotland.

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  • Engineering
    This qualification combines the study of engineering fundamentals, including mathematics and problem solving, with personal development planning and work-related issues such as health and safety and project management.
  • Materials Fabrication and Engineering
    Count your TWI (Welding Institute) Diploma at Technologist level towards a foundation degree and gain technical and professional skills that are in demand from employers.

Diplomas of Higher Education ( More about Diplomas of Higher Education
More about Diplomas of Higher Education
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A Diploma of Higher Education (DipHE) is equivalent to two thirds of an honours degree. They are nationally recognised qualifications focusing either on a particular job or profession, or academic study.

DipHEs are designed to increase the professional and technical skills of staff within a profession or extend your knowledge and understanding of a particular subject. A DipHE shows that you are capable of extended study at university level.

You can use a DipHE to:

  • change careers or progress your current career
  • gain technical and professional skills
  • gain a greater knowledge and understanding of a subject you are interested in
  • gain professional recognition
  • achieve a full honours degree through additional study.

The Diploma of Higher Education might be of particular interest to those living and working in Scotland.

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Certificates of Higher Education ( More about Certificates of Higher Education
More about Certificates of Higher Education
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A Certificate of Higher Education (CertHE) is a nationally recognised qualification focusing on either a particular job or profession, or academic study. Equivalent to the first year of a full honours degree, they are the most basic level of qualification that can be gained in higher education and show that you are capable of studying successfully at university level.

You can use a CertHE to:

  • gain confidence to study successfully at university level
  • change careers or progress your current career
  • build on your existing experience and gain new skills
  • gain a broad introduction to a subject you are interested in
  • achieve a foundation degree, DipHE or full honours degree through additional study.
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Getting started with an Access module

There are two ways to start a qualification. If you haven’t studied for a long time or need to build your confidence, beginning your studies with an Access module may be the right choice for you.

Choose a qualification to find out more.

Study a module as a standalone course

You can study a single module on its own for personal interest or to improve your career prospects. See the list of all our individual courses in Engineering.

Postgraduate options

If you already have a degree, you may want to see postgraduate courses and qualifications in Engineering, Technology and Design.

Are you already an OU student ? Go to StudentHome for information on choosing your next module.

Studying outside of UK and Europe?

If you live outside of the UK, Republic of Ireland and Europe, please visit our website for international students.

Your questions

Try our frequently asked questions.

Come and meet us at an event near you.

Or contact an adviser by Email or call +44(0) 845 300 60 90 +44(0) 845 366 60 35

Employers' questions

Contact Corporate Enquiries
Visit our website for employers or Email us

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