BEng (Hons) Robotics, Autonomous and Interactive Systems

The course

UCAS code
4 years
Delivery type


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Robotic and autonomous systems are now used in areas such as autonomous vehicle guidance, healthcare, remote surgery, industrial manufacturing and domestic assistance. This multi-disciplined BEng Robotics degree brings together electronics, computer software, and mechanics. In the first three years, you’ll be given a background in all three disciplines, along with the opportunity to build integrated systems. In the final two years, you can either continue with a broad-based curriculum, or specialise in particular aspects of contemporary robotics.

The MEng Robotics degree includes a six-month industry placement, during years 4 and 5. Advanced courses can also be chosen from the three departments: Electronic Engineering, Computer Science, and Mechanical Engineering.

Our teaching philosophy

The philosophy behind all of our programmes is 'learning by doing'. Our programmes are designed to be practical and allow students to develop skills beyond traditional academic content. 

Students work on both individual and group projects from the third year onwards, providing them with valuable hands-on experience. The projects challenge you to solve a 'real life' problem – such as the project in which our students helped design an electronic egg to monitor penguin incubation.


Heriot-Watt's new GRID will be the hub for all of our undergraduate project and laboratory work. This specially designed centre has innovative labs that exemplify our learning-by-doing approach, offering facilities for electronics, electrical power, computing, embedded systems, communications, robotics and mechanical prototyping. This will enable you to undertake a wide range of learning activities and to progressively develop your skills and knowledge throughout the degree programme.

GRID will also foster multi-disciplinary working and will provide you with experience of working in project teams, similar to being in the actual workplace. In addition, the facilities are available for students who want to work on their own projects either individually or as part of student societies. 

Heriot-Watt IEEE student chapter

The Heriot-Watt IEEE student branch is very active and organises events and activities for all EECE students, whilst encouraging students to join the IEEE.  A variety of academic and social events are held throughout the semester including industrial seminars and soft skills workshops to improve career opportunities. Find out more on the IEEE student chapter Facebook page.

Graduate destinations

Our robotics graduates are highly employable and have progressed to careers in a wide range of industries, working for organisations such as Bosch, Rolls Royce, Leonardo, Mott MacDonald, BP and Texas Instruments. Explore our alumni profiles to find out more about electronic, electrical & computer engineering graduate destinations.

Global College pathway for this degree

If you do not meet the entry requirements for this degree, have a look at Heriot-Watt Global College, where you can follow an accelerated pathway which will get you onto the second year of this degree.


Accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) on behalf of the Engineering Council for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as an incorporated engineer and partially meeting the academic requirement for registration as a chartered engineer.

Course content

Year 1

Semester one

  • Introduction to Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Praxis Electronic Design
  • Mathematics for Engineers and Scientists (one)
  • Software Development (one)

Semester two

  • Praxis Programming
  • Robotics Group Project
  • Mathematics for Engineers and Scientists (two)
  • Software Development (two)

Year 2

Semester one

  • Digital Design and Programming
  • Circuits and Analysis
  • Mathematics for Engineers and Scientists (three)
  • Introduction to Data Structures and Algorithms

Semester two

  • Computer Architecture and Embedded Systems
  • Introduction to Robotics
  • Mathematics for Engineers and Scientists (four)
  • Data Structures and Algorithms

Year 3

Semester one

  • Sustainable Development and Engineering Management
  • Engineering Mathematics and Statistics
  • Signals and Systems
  • Artificial Intelligence and Intelligent Agents

Semester two

  • Electrical Power and Machines
  • Time Frequency and Signal Analysis
  • System Project

Year 4

Semester one

  • Fourth Year Project
You'll choose two optional courses from:
  • Linear Control
  • Embedded Systems
  • Robotics Systems Science
  • Dynamics (one)
  • Biologically Inspired Computation
  • Data Mining and Machine Learning
  • Intelligent Robotics

Semester two

  • Fourth Year Project 
  • Fourth Year Individual Project
You'll choose two optional courses from:
  • Distributed and Parallel Technologies
  • Data Visualisation and Analytics
  • Advanced Network Security 
  • Big Data Management
  • Embedded Software
  • Image Processing
  • Robotic Mechanical Systems
  • Advanced Human Computer Interaction
  • Computer Games Programming
  • Advanced Software Engineering
  • Advanced Reading
  • Image Processing
  • Advanced Digital Electronics

Discover Uni course data

Discover Uni provides data on each university's degree courses across a range of measures including student satisfaction, graduate jobs and salaries.



  • The average salary of students 15 months after graduating: £28500
  • The average UK salary of students 15 months after graduating from a similar course: £29000

Potential career paths

  • Engineering professionals

Entry requirements

Year 1

Standard entry requirements

  • Highers ABBB (to include Mathematics plus Physics, Technological Studies or Engineering Science at B)
  • A-Levels BCC - BBB (including Mathematics and Physics with one at B)
  • IB 29 (with Mathematics and Physics at Higher Level 5)
  • BTEC DMM in relevant subject
  • HNC A in graded unit in relevant HNC with additional Mathematics

Minimum entry requirements*

  • Highers BBBC (to include Mathematics plus Physics, Computer Science, Technological Studies or Engineering Science at B)
  • A-Levels CCC (to include Mathematics and Physics)

* Minimum: under our Fair Access Policy, we will relax our standard entry requirements for some Scottish students depending on their circumstances. Our minimum requirements will apply if you:

  • live in an area within the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation lowest 20% (SIMD20), or
  • are care experienced.

We can also make exceptions for some Scottish students with grades above minimum but below standard. Read more about our Minimum and standard entry requirements

Year 2

  • Advanced Highers BB (Mathematics and Physics plus AABB Highers)
  • A-Levels ABB (including Mathematics and Physics with one at A)
  • HND AA in graded units in relevant HND with additional Mathematics
  • BTEC DDD in relevant subject
  • Global College Successful completion of our Engineering with Accelerator Programme

Additional information

English language requirements

  • If English is not your first language, you have to show that your English is good enough to succeed on your course. Please see our English language requirements.


Tuition fees for 2024 entry
Status* Scotland England / Wales / N Ireland / Rep of Ireland International**
Fee Paid by SAAS £9,250 £24,048

* 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.

** 'International' includes applicants from European Union countries who do not hold Pre-Settled or Settled status in UK. (This does not include students from the Republic of Ireland - see above). Read more about the application process for EU nationals.

Additional costs

You may incur additional costs in the course of your studies at Heriot-Watt over and above tuition fees in an academic year. Depending on your programme of study, these may include: protective equipment, field trips, professional memberships, studio fees, required course texts or other study resources.

Scholarships and bursaries

Featured scholarships

Bursaries for students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales

In addition to government loans and grants towards the costs of fees and living costs, we are offering generous financial support to attract and support eligible undergraduate students from England, Northern Ireland or Wales:

  • Heriot-Watt University Bursary (up to £3,100 per year)
View details about the Heriot-Watt University Bursary

View our full range of undergraduate scholarships.