This is a 2-year MSc progamme, offering practical application as well as advanced teaching, design and research in mechanical engineering. It is specifically for graduates with an engineering degree looking to enhance their career opportunities. Students will gain the technical, scientific and managerial abilities essential for a career as a professional mechanical engineer. The programme enables students to obtain an MSc as well as gaining practical experience in an industrial setting. Heriot-Watt is ranked 3rd in Scotland by The Complete University Guide 2021 and 2nd in Scotland by Guardian University Guide 2021 and The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021 for Mechanical Engineering.
The programmes delivered by Mechanical Engineering are accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.
In Year 1 there are two semesters of teaching which take the form of lectures, tutorials and lab work. Students study a total of 8 courses, including both core and optional modules. Further details can be found below in the course content section.
In Year 2 students will spend one semester working on a dissertation. The second semester will be spent in an industrial setting or completing an interdisciplinary project. These two semesters are also credit bearing.
During the 2nd year of the programme, students will have the opportunity to apply their knowledge in industry. Help will be provided, however, it is the responsibility of the student to find and apply for a suitable placement. Heriot-Watt has extensive industrial connections and you will also have access to the University’s award-winning Careers Service.
This programme is designed to enable graduates to undertake a wide range of technical and managerial careers across the sector, e.g. process and plant design, construction, commissioning, operation, management to specialist consultancy and advanced research and development.
Each year there are two university-wide recruitment fairs held and seven industry-specific recruitment and networking events, giving you the chance to meet with graduate employers and find out about opportunities.
I’ve really enjoyed my programme at Heriot-Watt. The quality of teaching is extremely high and the cross-culture experience is really unique. I love the fact that the University is established, with great history, and the campus is stunning – it’s so green and spacious. I’m really looking forward to my work placement.
Year 1: Semester One - Mandatory Unit
Specialist Engineering Technologies 1: The first of the specialist engineering technologies courses is based on computational fluid dynamics and assessed by a group project.
Year 1: Semester One - Optional Units (Choose two)
In this course students interact with companies in a real life small R&D project supplied by the industrial partners. Working in teams, the students have to manage the design of a prototype, product or system and interact with the industrial contact putting into practice problem-solving skills from other engineering topics studied elsewhere in the programme.
Fluid mechanics applied to aerodynamics, including ideal flows, boundary layers, and aerofoils and their use for analysis and design purposes.
Advanced Mechanics of Materials 1
Advanced classical mechanics including 3D stress and strain with particular application to thin walled vessels. Fatigue analysis and design for fatigue limit.
To provide students with a thorough understanding of vibration theory and an appreciation of its application in an engineering environment
Thermodynamic cycles including heat engines and reverse heat engines and means of evaluating best performance.
Introduction to the stages required for evaluating an oilfield for production. This covers geological considerations and fluid flow from oil bearing rock.
Year 1: Semester Two – Mandatory Units
Critical Analysis and Research Preparation
This course provides research training and addresses literature review skills, project planning, data analysis and presentation with a focus to critically discuss literature, and use data to support an argument.
Failure Accident Analysis
To acquaint students with the potential causes of material, structure or component failure; framework under which a failure or forensic engineering investigation should be carried out and give them the opportunity to work case studies through from information-gathering to preparation of reports and an awareness of fire and explosion engineering.
Specialist Engineering Technologies 2
To present advanced theory and practice in important or emerging areas of technology including non-linear final element materials to include contact mechanics, design of components subjected to high stress applications.
Year 1: Semester 2 - Optional Units (Choose one)
To provide a methodology for analysing one-dimensional compressible flow systems.
Advanced Mechanics of Materials 2
To provide students with an opportunity to: carry out advanced analyses of mechanics of materials problems; analyse mechanics of materials where time is a significant additional variable; use final element analysis for cases involving viscoelasticity and complex geometry engage with the findings of recent research in a mechanics of materials topic
To provide students with a thorough understanding of control theory and an appreciation of the subject of environmental acoustics and passive noise control
Investigation of heat transfer mechanisms with a view to the design of effective heat exchangers for given operating conditions. The study of radiation heat transfer and combustion equilibrium.
To provide the student with a detailed understanding of the importance and integration of advanced manufacturing technology and manufacturing systems within the context of product engineering. On completion, the students should have acquired a detailed understanding of the product development process from initial conception through to product support as well as appreciate the impact of each stage of the process on the business and organisationally with respect to information dependence and manufacturing processes employed.
A continuation of Flame Appraisal, this course looks at the well-head arrangement for oil extraction. This is an introduction to drilling engineering and the techniques required for oil extraction.
Year 2: Semester 1 - All students complete a Masters Dissertation. An individual project led by a research active member of staff on a current research theme with the aim of leading to the production of a journal article.
Year 2: Semester 2 - This semester will be spent applying your knowledge and skills in industrial application or undertaking an interdisciplinary research project.
A upper second honours degree in engineering, or other relevant disciplines with a numerate background. Equivalent overseas qualifications will also be considered.
English language requirements
If your first language is not English, or your first degree was not taught in English, we’ll need to see evidence of your English language ability.
The minimum requirement for English language is IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. We offer a range of English language courses to help you meet the English language requirement prior to starting your masters programme:
- 14 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with no more than one skill at 4.5)
- 10 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with minimum of 5.0 in all skills)
- 6 weeks English (for IELTS 5.5 with minimum of 5.5 in reading & writing and minimum of 5.0 in speaking & listening).
- Your residency 'status' is usually defined as the country where you have been ordinarily resident for the three years before the start of your course. Find out more about tuition fees.
- Overseas includes applications from European Union countries who do not hold Pre-Settled or Settled status in the UK. Read more about the application process for EU nationals.
Additional fees information
Year 2 fees: Fees are payable for both years of this degree. The fees listed above apply to Year 1 of this MSc. The fees for the Industry Placement year are indicated below.
Scholarships and bursaries
We aim to encourage well-qualified, ambitious students to study with us and we offer a wide variety of scholarships and bursaries to achieve this. Over £6 million worth of opportunities are available in fee and stipend scholarships, and more than 400 students benefit from this support.
View our full range of postgraduate scholarships.