BEng Hons Product Design Engineering


Key facts

  • UCAS Code: H771
  • Accreditation: Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET); Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE); Institution of Engineering Designers (IED)
  • The Independent Complete University Guide 2022: Top 10 in UK for Manufacturing & Production Engineering

  • The Times & Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022: 7th in UK for Aeronautical & Manufacturing Engineering

  • Second-year entry: available for suitably-qualified students

Study with us

  • develop the skills to create fully-functioning new products which are visually appealing and efficiently manufactured
  • learn to combine virtual and physical design and prototyping in our digital design suite
  • option to study abroad in Europe, Australia and Singapore
  • undertake work placements in industry
  • opportunity to undertake an industrial group project with a design engineering organisation
  • accreditation has been awarded for this programme from the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET), Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) and Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) on behalf of the Engineering Council as meeting, in part, the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer

How could the Covid-19 pandemic affect my studies?

Covid-19: information & FAQs
Back to course

Why this course?

Product design engineering is an exciting industry that continually evolves alongside technology, product advancements, the demand for quicker turnaround times, unique and personalised products, and environmentally friendly supply chains and production.

It's about understanding product requirements and functionality, questioning existing ways of doing things and seeing opportunities to change things for the better.

Product design engineering blends a more technical engineering focus (such as mechanics, electronics, maths, engineering calculations of a products' design) with design principles, user experience, and technology to create new functional products or develop existing ones that can then be sold in competitive markets.

This is integrated with manufacturing processes, CAD, rapid prototyping and digital prototyping technologies, software and practical skills to turn the design into reality which is fundamental to global market success and requires not only customer appeal, aesthetics and brand awareness but also consistent and correct functionality, superior quality and fitness for purposes all at a competitive price.

engineering tools on technical drawing

THE Awards 2019: UK University of the Year Winner

What you'll study

You'll focus on engineering classes that allow you to develop your knowledge on how a product works technically such as:

  • Engineering Mechanics
  • Heat and Flow
  • Electrical Machines and Control
  • Product Programming
  • Mechatronics Design and Applications

As well as design classes which allow you to develop your appreciation of feasible design and production options such as:

  • Total Design
  • Design and Manufacturing Management
  • Production Techniques
  • Product Development
  • Advanced Design Methods

If you want to become a Chartered Engineer with an engineering degree, whilst encompassing your creative, idea-generating thought processes, then this is the course for you.

The Times / The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021. University of the Year shortlisted.

We're shortlisted for University of the Year 2021 by The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide

Industrial experience

During the fourth year of your course, you'll undertake an industrial group project. This will help you to develop and apply your skills as a production engineering manager within the real world.

The Industrial Group Project will give you the opportunity to work as part of a team. You'll develop your people, project management and leadership skills. You'll do this by applying your skills and knowledge to address a practical problem for an industrial client, gaining direct industry experience. The Industrial Group Project works in conjunction with major organisations that face challenges with the management of production engineering and management projects and have a demand for the skills gained from this course.

Through this module, you'll gain experience to add to your CV, develop skills, manage a project through to completion and practice working in a multidisciplinary group preparing you for collaborative work throughout your future career.

We work with on around 50 companies and organisations every year. Previous students have worked with organisations such as:

  • Adidas
  • Airlie Ice Cream
  • Drink Baotic
  • Promedics Orthopaedics
  • Rolls Royce
  • Spirit AeroSystems (Europe), Inc
  • Unilever
  • Alexander Dennis
  • Belle Bridal
  • Chivas Brothers Ltd
  • HATSUN Agro Products (India)
  • Johnstons of Elgin
  • Terex Trucks
  • Allied Vehicles
  • Jaguar Land Rover
  • NCR
  • RSPB Scotland
  • Weir Group
  • WEST Brewery


This programme has been awarded academic accreditation from two institutes. This demonstrates the degree meets the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC) as outlined by the Accreditation of Higher Education Programmes (AHEP).

This accreditation is achieved through a panel of trained and expert accreditors looking closely at our programme’s content and delivery, including its relevance, coherence, challenge, assessment, staffing, quality assurance and resources.

The Accreditors also monitor that the programme is continually improving and in line with the latest best practice, providing assurance to our students that they are getting a relevant and quality degree.

Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)

Accreditation has been awarded for this programme from the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) on behalf of the Engineering Council as meeting, in part the requirements for further learning for registration as a Chartered Engineer.

Gaining accreditation isn’t just about ensuring the quality of our programmes, it also benefits you as a student. For example, being accredited by IET means that our graduates will benefit from a more straightforward process when applying for professional registration. Also, being part of an IET accredited programme is part of the eligibility criteria for many IET Scholarships and Prizes, including the Diamond Jubilee, Belling and BP Scholarships and IET Grants.

Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)

Accreditation has been awarded for this programme from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) on behalf of the Engineering Council as meeting the requirements for further learning for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Candidates must hold a CEng accredited BEng/BSc (Hons) undergraduate first degree to comply with full CEng registration requirements.

Our programmes being accredited by IMechE mean that you can become an Affiliate member, giving you access to the library, support network and members-only content. Once you have finished your degree you can apply to be an Associate member, and start progressing to professional registration as an Ieng or Ceng. IMechE also run challenges and competitions for students such as Formula Student, the Railway Challenge and the Design Challenge. 

Institution of Engineering Designers (IED)

Accreditation has been awarded for this programme from the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) on behalf of the Engineering Council as meeting the requirements for further learning for registration as a Chartered Engineer. Candidates must hold a CEng accredited BEng/BSc (Hons) undergraduate first degree to comply with full CEng registration requirements.

Accreditation by IED means students would automatically be offered free IED student membership for the duration of their studies, would receive a bi-monthly journal ‘Engineering Designer’ in which they can submit articles for print and their final year projects would be eligible for entry into the IED Student Prize competition held annually.  These prizes are prestigious and are only awarded for outstanding engineering design projects.  Student members can also place their CV on the IED website and have access to the Job Board which gives details of current vacancies within the field of Engineering Design.  In addition, students will also be able to use IED’s online CPD system.

I wanted to find a way to somehow combine my interests in Maths, Physics and Art. I had been looking at other Engineering programs when I heard about Product Design Engineering, and it seemed like a perfect fit.
Heather Macauley Smith
Go back

Course content

Engineering Mechanics 1

This module aims to give you the basic tools to understand how the world, both natural and man-made, works. Knowledge of mechanics is a fundamental tool for an engineer. Concepts of classical mechanics you will deal with include a study of forces, motion, energy, work, momentum and heat, how these are connected, and how these ideas can be applied to engineering problems. The ideas behind classical mechanics changed the human race absolutely and forever. Most historians agree that no discovery in human thought has been more influential. Students come to engineering mechanics with an elementary understanding of the basic principles of mechanics acquired from introductory school physics together with their application to problem solving. The class focuses on the practice of these skills, rather than factual content. Students’ progress not by absorbing (and regurgitating) information but rather by practicing their skills individually and learning to work effectively with others.

The module covers:

  • statics
  • frameworks
  • friction
  • velocity and acceleration
  • inertia and change of motion
  • motion in a circle
  • balancing
  • periodic motion
  • dynamics of rotation
  • work, energy and power
  • impulse and momentum
  • aircraft mechanics

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • understand and overcome any misconceptions about basic concepts in physics (force, energy, work etc)
  • restate existing problem solving skills in a form more suitable for engineering application
  • interpret basic engineering applications of mechanics in more detail
  • recognise or resolve, contradictions involving their preconceptions about mechanics
  • organise the basic ideas of mechanics in a form suitable for problem solving
  • apply basic principles in mechanics to realistic engineering situations

Assessment and feedback is in the form of in-class polling systems, written homework and two class tests.

Integrating Studies 1

This module aims to develop a broad range of knowledge and skill concerned with studentship, professionalism and ICT and a technical working knowledge of product development resources, processes and procedures.

The module covers:

  • introduction to degree, learning, writing and communication
  • design, fabrication and production processes including practical engineering workshop skills: turning, milling, drilling, fabrication, measurement, plastic processes, and simple electronic manufacture
  • digital product development including professional digital product development systems, the DDMS and CAD, skills in parametric 3D modelling and 2D drawing, prototype and part fabrication via rapid prototyping (RP) and via computer numerical control (CNC).

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • identify a wide range of learning, orientation and communication skills and practically apply them for student learning and work as a product development professional
  • develop presentation skills and sets of visuals
  • identify and explain wide range of design, fabrication and production processes and theoretically and practically apply them to product development projects
  • ability to explain and discuss the engineering, manufacturing and technical aspects of a mass-produced consumer product via a viva and visual slide presentation or a text and visual report
  • ability to digitally design and digitally fabricate components according to a design brief and technical documentation

Assessment and feedback is in the form of an ‘industrial disaster’ assignment (35%), CADCAM assignment (10%), Buggy assignment (55%).

Introduction to Production Engineering & Management

This module aims to provide students with an overview of the manufacturing industry and an appreciation of (1) the range of processes and materials employed in production, and (2) operations management theory and practice, emphasising the key role of managers and engineers within organisations.

The module covers:

  • developments in management theory including scientific management and socio-technical theory
  • the role of engineering managers
  • strategic aspects of business management including analysis of macro and mico environment
  • organisational design
  • process thinking including supply chain and quality management
  • overview of Manufacturing including classes of manufactured goods, manufactured resources (M-M-M-M) and concepts of simultaneous engineering
  • introduction to manufacturing materials and Processes including process classification, a focus on casting and bulk deformation of metals and overview of polymer processing

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of the nature of operations management
  • demonstrate an understanding of the basis of competition and the basic principles of designing and operating business
  • describe the meaning of the term “manufacturing” and the scope of manufacturing industry
  • identify the basic stages in transforming raw material into a useable end product
  • discuss the principle factors involved in material and process selection

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a Report - Business and Operations Strategy (35%) and a Video pitch – The Sustainable Organisation (15%).

Mathematics 1D

This module aims to give a basic understanding of the concepts and applications of mathematical functions, differentiation, integration, matrices and vectors.

The module covers:

  • algebra
  • functions
  • solving equations
  • trigonometry
  • introduction to calculus: Standard derivatives
  • rules of differentiation
  • indefinite integration
  • definite integration
  • matrices
  • vectors and complex numbers
  • further calculus including implicit differentiation – first derivative
  • derivatives of inverse trigonometric functions
  • parametric differentiation – first derivative

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • understand the concept of a mathematical function, its domain and its range
  • be familiar with commonly occurring functions and their properties, and be able to manipulate and solve equations and inequalities involving them
  • know the factorial and binomial coefficient notation, and be able to use the binomial theorem
  • be able to convert a proper rational function into partial fractions
  • be able to differentiate functions, via combinations of the various differentiation rules
  • be able to differentiate functions defined either implicitly or parametrically
  • be able to locate and classify stationary points, and find optimal values of a function of one variable
  • be able to find definite and indefinite integrals using substitutions, partial fractions and integration by parts
  • be able to use integration to calculate area between two curves and volumes of revolution
  • be able to carry out simple matrix operations
  • be familiar with the concept of a vector and the fundamental operations with vectors: addition, multiplication by a scalar, and scalar and vector products
  • be able to manipulate complex numbers in Cartesian form

Assessment and feedback is in the form of submission of assignments and a 3 hour degree examination (exemption from degree examination is possible based upon performance in class tests).

Total Design 1

This module aims to provide a foundation learning experience for engineering product design, through the experience of an integrated design process that ranges across research, specification, concept design, design evaluation, refinement and presentation.

The module covers a foundation course in engineering product design intended to give an appreciation of modern design as the integrator of engineering, business and other specialisms. The class will give practice in the execution of each of the stages of the design process through participation in a team and individual based project. Topics to be addressed include freehand sketching in 2&3D, presentation graphics, and scale drawing. Scale drawing will address orthographic projection, layout drawing, isometric drawing, manufacturing component and assembly drawings. Much of the work of the class will be conducted through studio workshops, coursework and projects. Students will also be required to participate in model making and oral presentations.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • understand the context of design and specialist roles within a design process
  • research and define opportunities for design through: user and market research; the use of product design specifications (PDS)
  • generate and communicate design concepts through: ideation methods; sketching, rendering and sketch modelling techniques
  • refine and communicate designs through design evaluation and development methods; engineering drawing and graphics
  • present design work in the form of a folio, exhibition and critique presentation

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a team presentation and critique (33%), a team folio (33%) and an individual drawing pack (33%).

Elective classes

You can choose from:

  • How Things Work
  • Introduction to French 1A
  • Introduction to Italian 1A
  • Introduction to Spanish 1A
  • Introduction to Business Start-Up
  • The Universe & Everything
  • Introduction to French 1B
  • Introduction to Italian 1B
  • Introduction to Spanish1B
  • Entrepreneurship: Theory & Practice
Engineering Materials

This module is important to those who may be concerned with the selection and use of engineering materials to have an understanding of, and feeling for, the properties of the materials and wider aspects such as abundance and cost, which are relevant in the selection process.

The module covers:

  • polymers
  • thermoplastic, thermosets and rubber, chemical and physical structure, molecular weight, and factors influencing properties
  • glass transition temperature concept
  • copolymers, effect of heat on plastics, fabrication processes of plastics such as extrusion, injection moulding, vacuum forming, bottle and film blowing
  • metals: Atomic arrangements, yielding, slip, defects, stress concentration and fracture
  • the tensile test: important mechanical and physical properties that may be measured, strengthening methods, phase diagrams
  • composites: Particle/fibre reinforced, laminates. Stiffness, strength, toughness and the influence of fibre length and volume fraction
  • materials in design: Sources of materials, supply/demand, cost, energy content, recycling.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • understanding properties of metallic materials
  • knowledge of structure of ceramics
  • review of polymers
  • understanding of composites and applications

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a group case study project (which includes a report) and a multiple choice examination.

Electrical Machines & Control

Engineering students from non-electrical disciplines often require a working knowledge and appreciation of electrical power devices and their use. This class develops the theory underlying simple electrical circuit analysis, transformers and electrical motors, and seeks to develop an understanding of their application through example and laboratory work.

The module covers:

  • practical and safety-related electrical knowledge: single-phase and 3-phase wiring colours
  • circuit breaker types and minimum breaking current
  • revision of DC and AC circuits: power in AC circuits
  • power factor and its correction
  • three phase systems: basic connections, definitions, justification, analysis of circuits with balanced loads
  • electromagnetism: concepts of magnetic fields
  • field quantities
  • material properties
  • permeability
  • B-H loop
  • hysteresis
  • eddy currents
  • inductance
  • force on a conductor and Faraday’s Law/Lenz’s Law
  • basic energy conversion
  • single phase transformer: construction, operation and use
  • the ideal transformer
  • circuit model and performance analysis
  • tests and parameter evaluation
  • efficiency and regulation
  • DC machines
  • induction machines
  • synchronous machines
  • modern power electronics and control techniques

At the end of this modules students will be able to:

  • analyse single-phase AC circuits. To know the single-phase and 3-phase cable colours and to know which type of MCB to use for particular load types
  • understand the relationships between 3-phase voltages, currents, complex load impedances, and real/reactive power flows
  • describe qualitatively the phenomena associated with electromagnetism and carry out calculations involving simple magnetic circuits, forces on conductors and induced emf. Understand the operation of transformers, and carry out experiments and calculations (of efficiency, for example) using the equivalent circuit model.
  • make a good assessment of motor and drive/control choice for a particular application, through an understanding of the general principles governing the action of motors and generators and the nature of energy conversion and power electronics.

Assessment and feedback is in the form of lecture, tutorial and laboratory sessions.

Electrical & Electronic Engineering

This module covers the important issue of how external data is acquired, conditioned and used within mechanical engineering systems. It also discusses how electronics are used to control mechanical systems. It will equip students with an understanding of the basic theories underlying electronics. Based on these, data acquisition technology will be discussed from analogue transducers through signal filtering, amplification and conditioning for use within digital circuits. It will detail the importance of this area within engineering systems through specific case study examples, which include monitoring aircraft, monitoring industrial processes, telecommunications, medical applications, etc.

The module covers:

  • basic electrical theory and definitions: electrons
  • charge
  • current
  • voltage
  • power
  • sources
  • basic DC circuits
  • resistance
  • calculation of total resistance, current and voltage Kirchhoff's Law, Thevenin and Norton equivalent circuits
  • basic models of amplifiers and operational amplifiers
  • basic digital electronics: boolean logic
  • logic gates
  • counters
  • basic AC circuits: concept of phase
  • frequency
  • capacitors
  • inductors
  • impedance
  • use of j operator
  • definition of data acquisition systems and applications case studies of complete engineering systems, covering analogue to digital conversion, digital to analogue conversion and interfaces control systems

At the end of this modules students will be able to:

  • analyse basic DC circuits in terms of voltage, current, resistance and power
  • design DC circuits which convert sensor outputs to known voltages and currents
  • analyse the behaviour, and design of, basic amplifiers
  • analyse and design basic digital electronics circuits
  • analyse and design data acquisition systems which encompass sensors, filtering, amplification and conditioning using the above basic theories
  • explain the use of these data acquisition systems within a variety of industrial applications: analogue to digital conversion; digital to analogue conversion; interfaces; control; etc

Assessment and feedback is in the form of an exam (50%) and coursework (50%).

Design & Manufacturing Management

This module aims to provide an understanding of the key issues faced by designers, engineers, production, and project managers, in the design and development of new products and services.

The module covers:

  • a review of the product development process, particularly front end design process activities (design brief and PDS)
  • introduction to concurrent engineering distributed design and globalisation
  • product types (innovative, evolutionary)
  • product and manufacturing strategies
  • intellectual property management
  • functional layouts: characteristics. Systematic Layout Planning
  • cellular manufacture: Group technology, family formation methods, coding systems cell design
  • facility location: factors to consider on location including globalisation
  • introduction to Lean manufacturing from a manufacturing layout optimisation perspective and more.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • understand product development strategies and frameworks
  • identify the activities and information flows in the development of new products leading to the definition of organisational structures
  • demonstrate understanding of the project management process, its tools and techniques, i.e. gantt & network charts product costing, resource planning and risk management
  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of manufacturing facilities design and management including location selection
  • design and analyse manufacturing layouts for optimum efficiency
  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of established manufacturing optimisation techniques

Assessment and feedback is in the form of:

  • a multiple choice exam (25%)
  • Assignment 1 involves design and planning of a “project/idea” (25%)
  • Assignment 2 involves designing a facility layout and developing a workstation based on the principles of lean, 5S and ergonomic workstation design (25%)
  • an exam (25%)
Integrating Studies 2

The aim of this module is to develop the student’s ability to create appropriate functional prototypes for the purposes of mechanical design and visualisation. To engender an appreciation of different prototyping methods and their application areas.

The module will cover the following areas:

  • manual prototyping methods
  • introduction to the design project laboratory, safe working practices, use of machinery
  • manufacture of simple mechanical and electro-mechanical mechanisms
  • mechanism design and manufacture (competition project)
  • rapid and virtual prototyping methods
  • rapid prototyping/layered manufacture: systems, techniques, data transfer methods
  • computer aided machining technologies; techniques, justification for use
  • modern visualisation methods including stereoscopic displays
  • digital data acquisition of three dimensional solid bodies
  • introduction to, and application of, a range of CAD systems for modelling and visualisation
  • introduction to CAD/CAM highlighting the link between digital information and its translation into physical artefacts

At the end of this modules students will be able to:

  • demonstrate the ability to design and make simple working prototypes within time, personnel and material constraints
  • demonstrate knowledge of simple mechanical and electro-mechanical mechanisms, power transmission, control methods and their application
  • appreciate and understand the capabilities of CAD and CAD/CAM
  • appreciate and understand the capabilities of virtual prototyping and automated capture of solid body data

Assessment and feedback is in the form of two major project design and make assignments, 50% for a team based project; 50% for an individual project.

The individual project is graded from a physical prototype (25%) and a CAD design folio (25%). The team based project is graded from a model (15%), a CAD folio (20%) and a team presentation (15%).

Production Techniques 1

The aim of this module is to increase the depth of production technology knowledge. It introduces students to primary processes for metal and polymer production, metal cutting theory, secondary manufacturing processes, engineering metrology, and the manufacture of electronic components and products.

The module covers:

  • metal casting processes: sand casting, investment casting, die casting
  • metal bulk deformation processes: rolling, forging, extrusion
  • sheet metal working: cutting, bending, deep drawing, superplastic forming, hydroforming
  • polymer processing: fundamentals of polymers, extrusion, thermoforming, blow moulding, injection moulding, rotational moulding, compression and transfer moulding
  • machining processes (chip removal): turning, milling, grinding, honing
  • metal cutting theory: basic metal cutting principles, cutting tool geometry, chip formation, temperature in cutting, cutting tool materials, cutting fluids, machinability
  • heat treatment: theory and processes applicable to heat treatment of steels
  • surface finishing: painting, electroplating, anodising, etc.
  • joining processes. welding processes: gas welding, arc welding, resistance welding, welding, defects
  • engineering metrology: definitions, standards, role in manufacturing, classes of measurement, linear and angular measurement, comparative measurements, limit gauging, link to tolerancing, quality control and process capability
  • electronics manufacturing – component manufacture, IC production, PCB assembly including soldering

At the end of this modules students will be able to:

  • demonstrate good knowledge of a range of primary and secondary manufacturing processes, their operating principles and their appropriate application
  • demonstrate knowledge of the theory behind metal cutting and other processes
  • exhibit an understanding of the principles, technology and application of engineering metrology within a manufacturing context
  • demonstrate knowledge of the production of electronic and electrical components and assemblies

Assessment and feedback is in the form of coursework and an exam.

Heat & Flow 1

Knowledge of Thermodynamics, Heat and Fluid Flow are important for the understanding and design of thermal and hydraulic systems involving energy conversion and transmission, such as engines and turbines, pumps and compressors, and associated pipework. The aim of the class is to introduce the basic concepts of thermodynamics and Fluid Mechanics, and the applications thereof, as a foundation for further studies.

This module covers:

  • unit and dimensions, dimensional homogeneity
  • systems and the properties of systems such as pressure, temperature and energy
  • an introduction to energy conversion processes and systems involving work and heat transfer
  • conversion of energy from one form to another
  • the first law of thermodynamics
  • non-flow processes involving perfect gases
  • the continuity equation
  • Bernoulli's equation
  • applications to flow in pipes, nozzles, siphons

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • understand the basic principles of conservation of energy, work and heat transfer for a closed system
  • apply the first law of thermodynamics to a range of problems involving isothermal, adiabatic, polytropic, constant volume and constant pressure processes, all using a perfect gas
  • understand the basic principles of fluid flow, the continuity equation, and Bernoulli’s Equation
  • apply the basic equations of fluid flow (continuity and Bernoulli) to problems involving pipe flow, nozzles and jets, and siphons

Assessment and feedback is in the form of two exams and four online courseworks.

Total Design 2

The aim of this module is to provide continuation of the first year design class Total Design 1, concentrating on techniques appropriate to different phases of the design process including user centred research, conceptual, embodiment and detailed design.

The module covers:

  • requirement identification including aesthetic, emotional and cultural issues of products
  • user centred design techniques
  • capturing requirements
  • conceptual design methods including PDS to aid concept generation
  • new creative concept generation methods i.e. Analogy, Attribute Listing, Function and Morphological analysis
  • practical application of concept evaluation methods
  • embodiment design methods including Methods to progress from chosen concept through to developed concept
  • application of methods for initial sizing, component, manufacturing technology and material selection, trade-offs
  • detail design methods including application of force analysis, design for strength, stress and deflection, material and component selection. CAD detailing and assembly.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • Understand and evaluate business, customer and user needs, including considerations such as the wider engineering context, public perception and aesthetics
  • Investigate and define the problem, identifying any constraints including environmental and sustainability limitations; ethical, health, safety, security and risk issues; intellectual property; codes of practice and standards
  • Apply advanced problem-solving skills, technical knowledge and understanding, to establish rigorous and creative solutions that are fit for purpose for all aspects of the problem including production, operation, maintenance and disposal

Assessment and feedback is in the form of coursework:

  • team critique 25%
  • team folio 25%
  • individual report 25%
  • individual coursework 25%
Engineering Design

This module aims to provide knowledge and understanding of engineering design principles. Application of the above principles to the detailed and conceptual design of mechanical components and assemblies.

The module covers:

  • analysis of structural systems 1D (beams), 2D (frames), 3D (space frames)
  • practical application of Buckling and instability (Euler and Johnson Buckling)
  • dynamics: velocity, acceleration and inertia analysis in computer based mechanism analysis
  • basic FEA
  • weld design
  • snap fastening design
  • fatigue: stress concentration factors, notch sensitivity, goodman diagram factor of safety
  • bearing types and terminology: static/dynamic loading factors, L10 life
  • gear types and terminology: spur, bevel, pitch, modulus
  • fastening and fabrication: basic stressing of blots, rivets, snap fastening and butt and filet welds.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • carry out analysis of indeterminate systems
  • carry out basic FEA analysis using 3D geometry defined in a CAD system
  • carry out analysis of structures for buckling and instability
  • carry out motion analysis of mechanisms
  • carry out stress analyse for components (i.e. shafts) subjected to fatigue loading
  • perform selection procedures for common components such as gears and bearings
  • carry out stressing of common fastening and fabrication methods

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a class tests (15%), an assignment hand-in (15%) and an exam (70%).

Product Development

The selection and use of design methods within the context of modern design practices and the new product development process will be explored, both for supporting the management of the design process and for specific design activities. Emphasis will be placed on recently developed product independent design methods and their application within a company environment.

The module covers:

  • the product development process and methodologies: key methodologies, innovative and evolutionary development processes, concurrent engineering
  • design methods: design for X, design for multiple Xs, design for manufacture and assembly, quality function deployment, design for sustainability, failure mode and effect analysis, value analysis, inclusive design
  • coordination and information management: information management systems, PDM, EDM, CSCW, coordination and integration frameworks

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the Product Development Process and related methodologies and methods.
  • select and apply appropriate design methods for a product development project.
  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of product development coordination and information management methods and technologies.

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a group presentation (20%), a group poster presentation (20%) and an online test (60%).

Production Techniques 2

This module aims to provide students with knowledge and understanding of modern and non-traditional manufacturing techniques and with the ability to apply this knowledge to the design of tooling and the selection of the appropriate manufacturing techniques for creating components and products. It also aims to provide students with an understanding of the role of manufacturing processes in converting advanced materials into products, and the ability to carry out computer simulations of some of the primary processes.

The module covers:

  • types of advanced materials: properties and applications
  • conversion of advanced materials: processing of polymer composites, powder metallurgy and ceramics technology, processing of modern metals and metal composites
  • simulation of primary processes: principles and examples of computer simulation of material flow in processes
  • the process and considerations of material selection: calculation of the material index for a given problem, material selection by using Ashby charts (AR, 4 hours) tutorial and exercises
  • non-traditional machining and applications: overview of micro-manufacturing
  • principles, process configurations, process capabilities, process parameters and industrial applications of photo-chemical machining, electrochemical machining, electrical-discharge machining, and laser-machining
  • jig/fixture working principle and design
  • rapid prototyping and manufacturing: additive and subtractive techniques, object data capture techniques - e.g. laser scanning, touch probes, etc. and virtual prototyping

On completion of the module the student is expected to be able to:

  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of material properties, processing parameters, manufacturing steps, machinery used and costs involved in converting advanced materials into products
  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of non-traditional manufacturing techniques and their applications to micro-manufacturing.
  • demonstrate a working knowledge of the principles of jig and fixture design
  • demonstrate a working knowledge of the methods used to simulate material flow during manufacturing processes
  • explain meaning of rapid-prototyping and identify and select key techniques for rapid prototyping
  • understand the process and considerations for material selection

Assessment and feedback is in the form of an exam (60%), a group presentation (20%) and coursework (20%).

Multidisciplinary Integrating Project

This module aims to develop design and manufacturing project based skills relevant to each of the four undergraduate degree courses, and to provide practice in the application of engineering, manufacture and design principles.

The module will consist of an individual project and a team project intended to develop and integrate knowledge and skills acquired in the students’ particular course of study. These activities will consist of:

  • team project - concept development, proof-of-concept modelling (physical and virtual)
  • individual project – application of relevant engineering principles, utilisation of CAD/CAM/CAED, project reporting

On completion of the module the student is expected to be able to:

  • undertake the design of a technical product or process requiring multidisciplinary input
  • apply appropriate engineering knowledge and skills to the design of a product or process
  • communicate engineering knowledge effectively to stakeholders throughout the design process

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a project model and demonstration.

Individual Integrating Project

This module aims to develop design and manufacturing project based skills relevant to each of the four undergraduate degree courses, and to provide practice in the application of engineering, manufacture and design principles.

The module will consist of an individual project intended to develop and integrate knowledge and skills acquired in the students’ particular course of study. These activities will consist of application of relevant engineering principles, utilisation of software tools, project planning, management and reporting.

On completion of the module the student is expected to be able to:

  • undertake the design of a technical product or an improved organisational process, as appropriate to course discipline
  • apply appropriate engineering knowledge and skills to the design of a product or improved process
  • communicate engineering and innovation knowledge effectively to stakeholders throughout the design process

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a project, there is no exam.

Product Programming

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of the fundamental programming concepts, knowledge of programming core languages and skills in programming for the development of contemporary products and production equipment.

The module will teach the following topics in the context of designing mechatronic systems:

  • programming languages and product applications
  • software development methodologies, e.g. agile development
  • programming development environment
  • flow diagrams and programme architecture
  • developing code
  • debugging
  • refining code
  • sharing code

On completion of the module the student is expected to be able to:

  • demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of fundamental programming concepts
  • demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of core programming languages
  • demonstrate proficiency in programming
  • demonstrate skills in the development of products with software driven functionality through applied programming

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a project submission (100%).

Mechatronics Design & Applications

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of the fundamental concepts and methods of mechatronic system design and applications including those in manufacturing industry.

The module will teach the following topics in the context of designing mechatronic systems:

  • mechatronic and automation introduction including mechatronic design principles, energy and information Systems, bond graph theory, block diagram, functional design using bond graphs, advantages and disadvantages of electric and fluid power systems, types of electric motors and their control techniques, simple actuators for hydraulic and pneumatic systems, The specifications of robotic and other automated equipment
  • experimental design and data acquisition including methods of programming robots, programming structure and debugging, microprocessors and MPLAB
  • control and its application: open and closed loop control, second order system, problems in robot design and control, types of motion control
  • sensing devices and their applications
  • automation in manufacturing.

On completion of the module the student is expected to be able to:

  • demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of why manufacturing automation and mechatronic systems are used
  • demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of mechatronic design and modelling techniques applied to hydraulic, pneumatic, mechanical, and electrical systems
  • demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of the control principles/technology and their application in mechatronic system and automation systems, including microprocessors, PLCs and their programming
  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of sensing principles and sensor technologies
  • specify the type of automation system suitable for any given application
  • demonstrate an appreciation of the human factor issues in manufacturing automation

Assessment and feedback is in the form of coursework submission outlining the design of a mechatronic system (30%) and an exam (70%).

Optional classes

You must select 20 credits from an approved list of option classes available from the Department of Design, Manufacture & Engineering Management.

Advanced Design Methods

This module builds upon the knowledge of Design Methods acquired in DM306 and will develop knowledge and understanding of the integration, development and application of design methods in the areas of design for manufacture and assembly, sustainability, and design for Xs at embodiment and detail design level.

The module covers:

  • design for manufacture and assembly: DFMA within simultaneous engineering, DFMA methods, economic considerations, manufacturing process considerations (design for casting, machining, assembly and automation, joining), design for plastics (including tool design), standardisation and modularisation
  • sustainable design: review of key concepts, life cycle analysis including practical application, legislation, introduction to advanced sustainable design methods, remanufacture, design for recycling, disposal, and remanufacture
  • design for Xs: frameworks including integrating systems design methods and approaches to support efficient and effective DfX leading to the development of strategies to support DfX

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • evaluate advanced product designs based on a sound knowledge of design for manufacture and assembly, sustainability design principles
  • utilise design methods to improve the manufacturability, assembly and sustainability aspects of a product design in a economic and marketable manner
  • identify, develop and integrate design methods or DFX strategies as appropriate for a given design scenario

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a report (50%) and a reflective report/folio (50%).

Advanced Product Design & Manufacture
This class aims to introduce design and manufacturing techniques and systems at an advanced level. It enables you to understand the application of advanced product design engineering and manufacturing techniques/systems in product development (in particular in mechatronic systems). This includes developing manufacturing plans for product realisation. It provides opportunities for you to develop technology focused products/systems within the class supervised environment as well as to generate plans for the manufacture of these products/systems for volume production.
Individual Project 1

This module aims to consolidate and develop experience in undertaking a major individual project and develop a good appreciation of professional practice by utilising design, manufacturing and management knowledge acquired during the course and applying it to real life situations.

The module covers all aspects of managing a product development or production management project. The project, managed and conducted by the student under the guidance of a supervisor, is taken from project proposal to working prototype/validated production engineering implementation. Regular lectures and seminars presented to students will cover all aspects of project content and conduct; with workshops to support key project stages and activities. Students would normally meet with their supervisor on a fortnightly basis; weekly at key points of project.

At the end of this module students will be able to:

  • carry out an in-depth and broad product development or production engineering project through demonstration of the academic concepts, practical skills and managerial techniques gained throughout the period of study; and how concepts and theories require to meet the specific needs of the market segment
  • communicate effectively. Produce in-depth report (also folio and detailed drawing set where appropriate)
  • demonstrate professional management of a project. Include aspects of business planning in relation to a product or specialist area in production engineering and management
  • appreciate legislative, ethical and environmental requirements and their influence in product and process design and management and to demonstrate their application to a project

Assessment and feedback is in the form of a Brief & Report/portfolio (75% = 5% brief preparation, 70% report/folio/models) and critique assessments (25%).

Industrial Group Project 1

This module aims for students to integrate and apply design, manufacturing and operations management knowledge and skills to an industry based product and process development project and to develop project management skills.

The module consists of a team-based industrial project where an outline project brief is set by an industrial client. The team is expected to manage all aspects of the project through to a finished solution. This can be a product, system or process depending on the nature of the project. Teams meet with academic staff and industrial clients regularly through the project.

On completion of the module the student is expected to be able to:

  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the various elements associated with the respective course disciplines
  • demonstrate knowledge and understanding of products and management practices in industry
  • demonstrate knowledge and ability in applying and using various analysis and modelling tools and techniques in product and process realisation
  • demonstrate project planning and management, data collection and analysis, presentation, consulting and team working skills

Assessment and feedback is in the form of client and risk management reports (10%), a project report (75%) and a presentation to the client (15%).

Optional classes

You must select 20 credits from an approved list of option classes available from the Department of Design, Manufacture and Engineering Management.

International experience

You’ll have the opportunity to choose to gain a truly international experience by studying, integrating and living abroad as part of your (Year 3) studies in Australia, Canada, North America, Singapore or a location in Europe. Many of our undergraduate students also undertake multiple placements and internships as part of their studies. Previous students have achieved internships around the world, for example with Michael Kors in New York, or:


The Department of Design, Manufacturing & Engineering Management has a range of innovative purpose-built design and manufacture laboratories. Our students have access to a range of workshops and facilities including a digital design and manufacture studio. It brings together:

  • data capture
  • CAD
  • 3D visualisation
  • rapid prototyping capabilities

Find out more about our facilities.

Additionally, as a student in the department, you'll also have access to a private undergraduate student community area, including collaboration work areas, computer suites and social areas, as well as vending machines, lockers and display boards.


You'll learn from leading experts in the field of product design engineering and innovation. All our staff have great experience working with innovation management and product development, engineering and improvement projects in a broad range of industries.

Staff include:

  • Dr Hilary Grierson - Director of Teaching and Learning within DMEM, her main interests lie in the area of product design, global design education, distributed design information management
  • Richard Adams - one of the first product designers to work in oil and gas, and his passion lies in human centred design approached to help companies be more people facing
  • Dr Avril Thomson - Associate Dean of Teaching and Learning for the Engineering Faculty, she lectures on the Total Design modules and her main interests include collaborative design, design processes and design for aging
  • Dr Ian Whitfield - Dr Whitfield's main interests include: design co-ordination, collaborative design, process modelling and optimisation, product data and product lifecycle management, engineering risk management, and modular design
  • Ross Maclachlan - Ross has participated in a number of funded product design projects with industry including tennis court pace measurement apparatus. His interests lie in design creativity, design education and innovation management education
  • Dr Andrew Wodehouse - Dr Wodehouse's main interests lie in interactive design, product aesthetics and innovative design teams. Prior to joining DMEM he worked in industry as a product design engineering for a number of consultancies

We are a unique department in the UK combining end-to-end multidisciplinary expertise from creative design, through engineering design, manufacture and management of an entire product or system. By Delivering Total Engineering through innovative education, research and industry collaboration, we can deliver global solutions and help create the future.

Professor Alex Duffy, Head of Design, Manufacturing & Engineering Management

Back to course

Entry requirements

Required subjects are shown in brackets.


Standard entry requirements*:


(Maths and Physics or Engineering Science)

Minimum entry requirements**:


(Maths and Physics or Engineering Science)

A Levels

Year 1 entry: ABB-BBB
Year 2 entry: AAA-ABB

(Maths and Physics)

International Baccalaureate

Year 1 entry: 34-32

(Maths HL5, Physics HL5)

Year 2 entry: 36-34

(Maths HL6, Physics HL6)

A Level, Higher or HL Art & Design, Design & Manufacture or Graphic Communication recommended


Year 1 entry: relevant HNC, A in Graded Unit
Year 2 entry: relevant HND, AA in Graded Units

International students

View the entry requirements for your country.

Additional information
  • deferred entry is accepted
  • SQA Higher Applications of Mathematics is not accepted instead of Higher Mathematics
  • both IB Higher Level Mathematics pathways are accepted

*Standard entry requirements

Offers are made in accordance with specified entry requirements although admission to undergraduate programmes is considered on a competitive basis and entry requirements stated are normally the minimum level required for entry.

Whilst offers are made primarily on the basis of an applicant meeting or exceeding the stated entry criteria, admission to the University is granted on the basis of merit, and the potential to succeed. As such, a range of information is considered in determining suitability.

In exceptional cases, where an applicant does not meet the competitive entry standard, evidence may be sought in the personal statement or reference to account for performance which was affected by exceptional circumstances, and which in the view of the judgement of the selector would give confidence that the applicant is capable of completing the programme of study successfully.

**Minimum entry requirements

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

Widening access

We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

Degree preparation course for international students

We offer international students (non-EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 100 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

Map of the world.

Back to course

Fees & funding

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Go back
  • 2022/23: TBC
  • 2021/22: £1,820

Fees for students who meet the relevant residence requirements in Scotland are subject to confirmation by the Scottish Funding Council. Scottish undergraduate students undertaking an exchange for a semester/year will continue to pay their normal tuition fees at Strathclyde and will not be charged fees by the overseas institution.

England, Wales & Northern Ireland


Assuming no change in RUK fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2022-23, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and integrated Masters programmes). MPharm students pay £9,250 for each of the four years. Students studying on integrated Masters degree programmes pay an additional £9,250 for the Masters year with the exception of those undertaking a full-year industrial placement where a separate placement fee will apply.



University preparation programme fees

International students can find out more about the costs and payments of studying a university preparation programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Additional costs

Course materials & costs

  • we only recommend textbooks, none are compulsory. A number of each are ordered for the library. We tend to use website links due to the nature of the subject and academic journals for the engineering aspects
  • design class materials which are available to purchase at a discount in a pack from a local art store for £35
  • engineering drawing materials and tools cost approximately £15

Placements & field trips

  • Year 3 - international trip in Europe (optional) £250

Study abroad

  • Year 3 - Erasmus (optional). Cost varies depending on location. Basic costs covered by awards but you'll have to fund some of the exchange

Other costs  

  • locker key deposit (£10 refunded) - Year 5 only
  • access card deposit - (£5 refunded)
  • kitchen with microwave access card (£10 refunded)
  • model making – basic costs (up to £50) are covered by the department for undergraduate and postgraduate individual design project classes; if further costs, these are project dependent and to be met by students
  • Year 4 and Year 5 undergraduate and postgraduate individual project report/folio printing - £50
  • poster printing – up to £50
  • Year 3 design exhibition printing up to £50
  • Year 4 mechatronics project - students may spend up to £15 as a member of a team on electronic sensors and components

We have a wide range of scholarships available. Have a look at our scholarship search to find a scholarship.

Please note: All fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my studies?

Go back

Students from Scotland

Fees for students who meet the relevant residence requirements in Scotland, you may be able to apply to the Student Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Scottish students may also be eligible for a bursary and loan to help cover living costs while at University.

For more information on funding your studies have a look at our University Funding page.

Go back

Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland

We have a generous package of bursaries on offer for students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales:

You don’t need to make a separate application for these. When your place is confirmed at Strathclyde, we’ll assess your eligibility. Have a look at our scholarship search for any more funding opportunities.

Go back

International Students

We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.

Back to course


As a design engineer you can be involved in almost every aspect of the product journey, from the initial concept, design, development, testing and management of projects to the manufacturing. Product design engineers use technical knowledge, mathematical problem solving skills and a passion for designing and refining the usability of luxury to everyday items, across a diverse range of industries.

Roles may have responsibilities such as:

  • Concept, specification, tender and development of new projects or components
  • CAD, CAM systems to design and visualise projects to clients or internally within teams
  • Model making, prototyping and product testing
  • Analysis on how to improve existing products, including complex calculations
  • Leadership including effective communication with clients, colleagues, contractors and managing other team members
  • Project management including ensuring projects are delivered to a timescale, to standard and within a budget

Work experience is highly desirable for graduates applying within the product design industry, to best demonstrate their team working abilities, skills and portfolio breadth. Our students truly benefit from the industrial group project which is integrated into their degree, to provide them with this necessary experience to stand out when competing for graduate jobs. Furthermore, many of our students gain placements and internships throughout their studies to advance their professional development ahead of graduation.

Companies return year-on-year to recruit from our department, and specifically companies such as Chivas Regal, Adidas, Rolls Royce, Dyson and Jaguar Land Rover have our graduates covering a plethora of roles across their teams. Some of our graduates go on to graduate trainee programmes with companies such as Diageo, Accenture, Unilever and Procter & Gamble.

Studying in DMEM feels more like working in a top global company. The facilities are second to none, staff are truly there to support your development and the classes are engaging and hands on. There is a real sense of close community and students in different years offer support and guidance to one another.
Paul Marsella

Graduate job titles include:

  • Product Development Manager
  • Associate Engineer
  • Intranet Systems Developer
  • Production Manager
  • Product Designer
  • Product Design Engineer

Recent graduate employers include:

  • Apple
  • Adidas
  • Dyson Ltd
  • Google
  • i4 Product Design
  • Jaguar Land Rover
  • PA Consulting
  • Proctor & Gamble
  • Shore Design
  • Tesla
  • Triumph Motorcycles

According to Prospects a senior product designer can earn in the range of £50,000-£80,000, an experienced Design Engineer can earn between £30,000-£40,000 and a Chartered Engineer can earn upwards from £50,000.

Other DMEM graduates become entrepreneurs and have started up their own companies or work freelance, for example:

  • Colour Academy Publishing Ltd who create educational colouring books was founded by Product Design Engineering graduate Matthew Carter
  • The Freelance Design Engineer who designed the Queen’s baton for the 2014 Commonwealth Games is Product Design Engineering graduate Michael Aldridge
  • VH Innovation Ltd, the parent company of Recoil Kneepads was founded by Product Design Engineering graduate Victoria Hamilton
  • Fiodh Scotland, which produce Scottish heritage watches from old whisky barrels was founded by Product Design and Innovation graduate Michael Youmans
  • and many more!
Back to course


Start date: Sep 2022

Product Design Engineering (1 year entry)

Start date: Sep 2022

UCAS Applications

Apply through UCAS if you are a UK applicant. International applicants may apply through UCAS if they are applying to more than one UK University.

Apply now

Direct Applications

Our Direct applications service is for international applicants who wish to apply to Strathclyde University at this time.

Apply now
Back to course

Contact us

Faculty of Engineering

Telephone: +44 (0)141 574 5484