MSc Professional Engineering

Why chose this course?

  • Course developed in conjunction with the UK Engineering Council
  • Offers progression to Chartered Engineer status
  • Requires no time away from employment
  • Uses learning through immediate application to real-life work problems to reduce costs or increase value for the employer

Duration of programme: 2 to 5 years work-based distance learning
Start date:
October, January, April or July
Distance learning available: This programme is work-based distance learning only
Intake: Up to 25 per year

Intake conditions: If you wish to apply for this programme you must be employed in the engineering field in which you hope to advance. Your employer will need to be supportive of you, and willing to ensure you can undertake a good range of workplace projects to build the learning needed for the MSc and additionally the competences to qualify for CEng.

Fees (2014):  

Home/ EU: £4900 plus operational cost (from October 2014)

Outside EU: £5800 plus operational cost (from October 2014)

This programme usually lasts three years and fees are charged on a pro-rata basis. Programmes which extend beyond three years will incur a supplementary annual fee.

If you would like to discuss this programme further, please feel free to contact Bill Glew, the Programme Director, on b.glew@aston.ac.uk.

MSc Professional Engineering brochure

The MSc Professional Engineering provides the advanced engineering knowledge and understanding needed to qualify for full chartered engineer (CEng) status, and helps with building the range of practical competences also needed for CEng.

The programme comprises a set of modules, each of which has a credit rating, and a complete MSc needs 180 credits.
You will study five core (compulsory) modules totalling 120 credits, then choose the remaining 60 credits from a wide range of optional modules, giving scope to match the course to your particular interests and objectives.

All modules after the initial Professional Development Audit are highly flexible – they are designed to be tailored to suit each participant’s engineering area, particular interests and employment circumstances. How the learning for each module is composed from workplace projects and distance study of supporting formal material is also flexible and will be negotiated to suit individual needs.

Core modules

Optional modules (choice of 3 or 4)

MSc Professional Engineering is suitable for people who aspire to fully qualified professional engineer status (CEng) and are already part way there, normally through a first or good second class UK accredited honours degree at Bachelor’s level (BEng or BSc) supported by several years of employment experience gaining practical competence and responsibility. We can also accept people without an honours degree (eg qualified to HND level) but with greater relevant experience.

Qualifications from outside the UK will also be considered: the Admissions Officer will advise as to whether these qualifications are the equivalent of the level of Honours degree required.

International students whose native language is not English will also need to demonstrate English Language ability (e.g. IELTS 6.5, TOEFL score of 93, Pearson score of 63 or equivalent).

Standard TOEFL requirement is IBT 93 overall (minimum of 23 in writing, 19 in listening and speaking and 18 in reading) accept SCM – 93 overall (minimum 26 in writing, 22 speaking, 19 listening, 18 reading.

The course begins with a Professional Development Audit (PDA), where we help students evaluate what they have done previously and what they need to add to gain the MSc and qualify for CEng. Based on the PDA, the student and Aston University set up an individual Learning Agreement which specifies the areas of study to be undertaken and how that study will be carried out, through suitable combinations of workplace projects and distance learning, and assessed – mainly through reports on the workplace projects. The student then works through the agreed study and assessment, with support from Aston University staff and a workplace mentor, gradually building over an agreed period to completion and award of the MSc.

Successful completion of MSc Professional Engineering combined with membership of a suitable engineering institution guarantees access to the institution’s process for professional review for CEng registration. Possession of the MSc will meet the educational requirements for CEng. You will still need to satisfy the institution about your practical competences, but MSc Professional Engineering study will help you with this.

The MSc Professional Engineering course is approved, delivered and managed by Aston University, but support for and recognition of the course is much broader.

Engineering council
Engineering Council accredited degree

The concept behind MSc Professional Engineering was developed by the Engineering Council (ECUK), the overall regulator of the engineering profession in the UK, with UK government support - please see www.engc.org.uk. Aston has signed an agreement with ECUK establishing Aston as a provider of an MSc Professional Engineering course meeting ECUK expectations. Major professional engineering institutions have signed an agreement with the ECUK to recognise and support MSc Professional Engineering courses.

For more information, see www.engc.org.uk/engineering-gateways.

As part of the MSc we will work with you to draw up a plan for achieving the full range of personal development expected of a Chartered Engineer under UKSPEC (the UK standard for professional engineering competence). As well as technical competence, this includes the ability to provide technical and commercial leadership, strong interpersonal/communication skills, and a personal commitment to professional standards, society in general and the environment.

MSc Professional Engineering can be studied in any engineering area taught at Aston covered by a signed-up engineering institution. Currently this covers:

British Computer Society (BCS)

Chemical Engineering:
Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE)


Institution of Engineering Designers (IED)

Electronic Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering, Product Design, Engineering Management:     
Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)

Mechanical Engineering:
Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE)

Materials, Minerals and Mining:

The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining (IOM3)

To study for MSc Professional Engineering, you should already be a member of, or be willing to join, an engineering institution covering your chosen engineering field.

Programme Director: Mr Bill Glew

Bill is a senior Chartered Engineer and member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers with many years of industrial experience. He started his career as an Engineering Officer in the merchant navy, and then worked as a maintenance engineer in a number of industries, before eventually moving into production management where he finally became Operations Manager for a large heavy manufacturing company. In 1992 he became a university lecturer where he used his industrial experience to increase the relevance of engineering degree courses for manufacturing companies. As part of this he was one of the first developers of work-based learning programmes in the UK.

In 2006, whilst Director of Work-Based Learning Studies for the Faculty of Engineering at Kingston University, he project managed the development of a new work-based learning MSc Professional Engineering course for the UK Engineering Council. This innovative approach to integrating academic engineering education with professional competence development within practical industrial environments is proving to be a major success and is popular with many companies because of its ability to rapidly improve the practical skills of engineers at all levels.

Bill has now been appointed by Aston University in Birmingham to develop their version of this course which is going to be made available both in the UK and internationally. Aston is a highly respected, technically focused university, with particular strengths in chemical and manufacturing engineering. Under the leadership of Professor Julia King CBE, herself an engineer who advises the UK government in a number of important ways, it is now growing its international partnerships as part of its ambition to become one of the UK’s top 10 UK universities by 2012. The Aston MSc Professional Engineering is one part of this research-led growth strategy.

Dr Anthony Beaumont
Academic Supervisor

Dr Robin Clark
Module Owner
Academic Supervisor

Dr Philip Davies

Module Owner

Dr George Drahun
Academic Supervisor

Dr Aniko Ekart
Module Owner

Chris Evans
Module Owner
Academic Supervisor

Dr Nagi Fahmi

Module Owner
Academic Supervisor

Dr Sudhir Jain
Module Owner

Stephen Luke

Academic Supervisor

Dr Xianghong Ma

Module Owner
Academic Supervisor

Dr Trevor Oliver
Module Owner
Academic Supervisor

Dr Michael Peters
Module Owner

Brian Price
Module Owner
Academic Supervisor

Professor Mike Wood

Lead Professional Supervisor- IED

Aston  Professional Engineering Centre

School of Engineering & Applied Science
Aston University
Aston Triangle
Birmingham B4 7ET

Tel: +44 (0)121 204 3555
Fax: +44 (0)121 204 3676
E-mail: msc_profeng@aston.ac.uk
Student Profile

Student Profile

Ben Murphy - BAE Systems
MSc Professional Engineering
“The course is developed around workplace needs and projects… From a personal perspective, the benefits are substantial, having access to academics and peers, all working towards the same goal of developing World Class Engineers.”
Student Profile

Student Profile

Chris Hinton - BMW Plant Hams Hall
MSc Professional Engineering
"The MSc helped me to develop particular skills and strengths within the workplace, engendering a greater technical ability and more innovative approach to engineering activities and projects.”
Student Profile

Student Profile

Farida Alizadeh - AMEC Engineering
MSc Professional Engineering
“I enrolled onto the MSc in Professional Engineering programme at Aston as part of my ongoing role in AMEC and to gain Chartered Engineering status.”

Employable Graduates; Exploitable Research