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BEng (Honours) Aerospace Engineering

Work in a rigorous, dynamic and supportive environment to prepare for your career as an in-demand aerospace engineer.

Course length 3-4 Year(s)
Location City Campus
UCAS H415 Course code

Course description

What you study
Develop towards a career at the highest level of engineering, with the skills to work in product design and development or senior management within the aerospace industries.

Key areas include • aerodynamics (both engineering and computational) • propulsion systems • structural analysis • aerospace materials • flight mechanics and simulation • aircraft systems and design.

The first year builds a foundation of mathematics, science and engineering. The basic principles of flight, aerodynamics, mechanics and aircraft systems are introduced, and other areas including engineering practice, computer methods and personal skills are also be developed.

In second year you start to apply core mechanical engineering principles together with the analysis and design to airframe structures and a specialised version of thermofluid dynamics applicable to aerospace engineering. You develop specialist knowledge on flight dynamics, control, instrumentation and materials in preparation for the next year's aircraft design and individual project practices.

You improve your mathematical skills with focuses on numerical, simulation and computer-modelling techniques, including the use of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and finite element analysis (FEA) methods to relevant engineering problems. You also study business, management and environmental issues to broaden your knowledge of the commercial aspects of the engineering industry.

In your final year, you gain specialist knowledge of • aerodynamics • propulsion systems • structural integrity and analysis • flight mechanics and simulation • aircraft design principles. You have the opportunity to experience a flight test at Cranfield.

The culmination of your final year is a major individual project. This allows you to apply your knowledge and skills to an aerospace topic of your choice, under supervision.

Placements and work experience
In year three, you take an optional one-year work placement. It’s your chance to work as an engineer or designer, applying what you've learned in a commercial environment, learning how industry works and making connections for your future career.

We have a dedicated and experienced team to help you to find a placement. Our strong links with industry and excellent reputation means that many companies tell us they want to work with our students, who often return from their industrial placements with sponsorships and job offers.

Previous students have worked in a variety of technical roles for companies including • Rolls-Royce • Airbus • Boeing • Bombardier • Lockheed Martin • Meggitt Aircraft Breaking Systems • Jaguar Land Rover and many others.

As well as your placement, you have opportunities throughout your course to gain extra-curricular experience on a variety of projects within the aerospace community. For example, by joining our student UAV society or rocket team, or by becoming a student ambassador or a student peer. You may also have the opportunity to spend time on a pilot training programme in the USA, run by Northwestern Michigan College.

You can also take part in national and international engineering competitions, including

The Heavy Lift Challenge or UAS competition, which involves designing and building a remote-controlled UAV model and testing it in a competition
Formula Student, where you design and build a race car and race it at Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix
Engineering Without Borders, a competition to find an engineering solution to a problem in the developing world

Each year one or two students attend the annual national conference of the Association of Aerospace Universities, showcasing their final year project work on a national level and networking with aerospace professionals from around the UK.

If you join this course you will join a strong community of aerospace students and academics. Our students are renowned in the aerospace industry for their dedication, spirit and sense of teamwork. You can see this on the eve of competitions like the Heavy Lift Challenge or UAS National Competition, when groups of students and staff can often be found working overnight to get their model fixed and ready for flight again.

We have a mentoring scheme where you are paired with students from the second, third and fourth year, helping you settle in and form friendship groups that last throughout your course and beyond.

Our aerospace community is based on excellent staff-student relations. Our lecturers have an open door policy, so if you have any queries or need some help you can speak to your tutor or supervisor. Our MEng course won a faculty course award in 2015 and our BEng course won a faculty course award in 2016.

You study in our recently refurbished Sheaf Building, which is home to all our engineering students.

On the course you will have access to industry-standard engineering facilities, including a precision workshop, digital design centre, sub-sonic wind tunnel, gas turbine engine and state-of-the-art flight simulator, which can simulate the effects of enhancements you design in a realistic context.

These also include professional engineering software, such as Ansys, Solidworks, Matlab and Abaqus, which can run various engineering design and simulation practices in specialist areas.

Alongside their teaching, our lecturers conduct research and consultancy for industry, either in our Materials and Engineering Research Institute, one of the best in the UK for engineering research - or in collaboration with other organisations. This keeps your lectures and seminars up to date, giving you the latest knowledge in your subject.

Professional recognition

This course is accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE) on behalf of the Engineering Council. This means that when you complete the course you can register as an Incorporated Engineer, and with further study as a Chartered Engineer.

Entry requirements

2017 entry requirements

Normally five GCSEs at grade C or grade 4 or above including English language and mathematics, plus one of the following

• 112 UCAS points from at least two A levels or equivalent BTEC National qualifications (to include mathematics (or a mathematics-based subject) and at least one other subject from Physics, Physical Science, Engineering science • Computer Science • Chemistry • Electronics • other Mathematically-based science or technology subject.) We accept AS Levels. We do not accept general studies


• 96 UCAS points from three A levels or equivalent BTEC National qualifications (to include mathematics (or a mathematics-based subject) and at least one other subject from Physics, Physical Science, Engineering science • Computer Science • Chemistry • Electronics • other Mathematically-based science or technology subject.) We do not accept General Studies.

New UCAS tariff points system for courses starting from September 2017. This is significantly different to the current points system and uses an alternative method of calculation. You can find information about these changes on the UCAS website and use the UCAS tariff calculator to work out your points.

• Foundation – pass from our Extended Degree Programme Engineering and Mathematics, dependent on academic performance, or from another suitable science or technology foundation course containing an appropriate level of mathematics.

• Access – an Access to HE Diploma with at least 45 credits at level 3 and 15 credits at level 2. At least 15 level 3 credits must be at merit grade or above, in a mathematics-related programme from a QAA-recognised Access to HE course, or an equivalent Access to HE certificate.

If English is not your first language you must have an IELTS score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all skills or equivalent. If your English language skill is currently below IELTS 6.0 we recommend you consider a Sheffield Hallam University Pre-sessional English course which will enable you to achieve an equivalent English score.

We welcome applications from people of any age. We may be flexible in our normal offer if you can show a commitment to succeed and have the relevant skills and experience. This must show that you will benefit from and finish the course successfully.

International and European entry qualifications

If you are an International or non-UK European student, you can find out more about the country specific qualifications we accept on our international qualifications page.

Course structure

Four years full-time (including one year work placement) or three years full-time

Typical modules may include

Year one modules

• aerospace engineering principles • aerodynamic principles • aerospace engineering practice • engineering mathematics • aerospace materials and manufacturing processes • aircraft systems and avionics

Year two modules

• aerospace structures and dynamics • thermofluid dynamics • aerospace numerical methods and applications • control and instrumentation • computer aided manufacture and engineering • aerospace professional practice

Year three

• optional work placement

Final year modules

• aerospace project and project management • propulsion systems and aerodynamics • aircraft flight mechanics and simulation • aerospace structural integrity • aircraft design

  • coursework
  • examinations


Aerospace engineering is a global industry with excellent graduate employment opportunities and the chance to travel and work abroad.

You may find employment opportunities in primary aircraft design and manufacture for the commercial markets, such as the Airbus A380, or military aircraft, such as the Typhoon (EFA).

Your employment opportunities may also emerge from specialist aerospace sectors such as • Rolls-Royce • Airbus • QinetiQ • MOD • RAF • European Space Agency • Bombardier. There are also many opportunities in the mechanical and general engineering sectors.

Careers broadly exist in specialist organisations involved in • researching and developing flight control and simulation systems • aircraft systems, design and maintenance • communications and navigations • remote sensor systems • rocketry • missiles • space vehicles.

International air travel would not be possible without the ground-based staff who maintain aircraft and operate aircraft management systems, providing further employment opportunities.


Home / EU student

We do not charge course fees during a placement year.

Please note tuition fees may increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation. More information can be found in the ‘Tuition Fee Increases’ section of our Fees Regulations (PDF, 2.10 MB)

For the course fee and further information on scholarships and bursaries please visit our fees and funding pages.

International student

We do not charge course fees during a placement year.

2016/17 academic year

Typically £12,250 a year

2017/18 academic year

Typically £12,750 a year

Additional course costs

This link allows you to view estimated costs associated with the main activities on specific courses. These are estimates and, as such, are only an indication of additional course costs. Actual costs can vary greatly depending on the choices you make during your course.

Additional costs information

How to apply

You apply for this course through UCAS.

Any offer of a place to study is subject to your acceptance of the University’s Terms and Conditions and student Regulations.

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