Mechanical Engineering study guide 2023/24

Mechanical Engineering at Bristol

Mechanical systems make all our machines work, from satellites to miniature cameras. Mechanical engineers design and implement practical solutions for products and processes, making the best use of new materials and technologies. If you like using science to solve real-world problems and have a flair for design and creative thinking, this is the subject for you.

The research in mechanical engineering covers diverse topics, such as advanced materials for aero-engines, adaptive control systems theory, and energy studies in power stations. You will benefit from teaching influenced by the latest developments and expertise, for example through work with the Bristol Robotics Laboratory, which is the largest robotics lab in the UK.

From 2023/24 onwards, Mechanical Engineering is part of a new School: the School of Electrical, Electronic, and Mechanical Engineering.

Unit structure

Many Mechanical Engineering units are taught across the academic year (known as 'TB4' units), which means they start in September and end in May/June. There are some single-semester classes, but we encourage students interested in this subject to consider studying with us for the full academic year (September–June) so they have more unit choices available to them.

Unit levels

Mechanical Engineering offers units across all undergraduate levels of study – Year 1 (Level C/4), Year 2 (Level I/5), and Year 3 (Level H/6) – and selected postgraduate units (Level M/7). Level M/7 units are normally taken by students who have studied the subject for at least 3 years beforehand and are at an appropriate level of study to take postgraduate units.

Unit codes

Mechanical Engineering units begin with 'MENG'. This is followed by a number indicating the year (1, 2, 3). For example:

  • MENG10000 = year 1 unit
  • MENG20000 = year 2 unit
  • MENG30000 = year 3 unit.

For more information about each unit, check the University's unit catalogue for 2023/24. Applicants on all study abroad programmes must review the unit details on the catalogue before listing unit choices on their application form. This includes checking the format of assessment for each unit. The unit catalogue for 2023/24 is updated by April 2023.

Your unit choices cannot be guaranteed. Some units may not have capacity to accommodate all of the unit requests we receive. Registration on a unit also depends on whether you meet the pre-requisite conditions through prior study at your home university.

Study Abroad (Subject pathway)

If you have been nominated to Bristol on the Study Abroad (Subject pathway), you are expected to take the majority of your credits in this department.

Research Project units

Mechanical Engineering offers 2 project units:

  • Individual Research Project (TB2) - MENG35000
  • Research Project (TB1 or TB2) - MENG30005

IMPORTANT: these units are only available if a supervisor is agreed before arrival. A potential supervisor must be contacted by the student before 1st September. It will not be offered after arrival if supervision is not preliminary agreed. Students can take a maximum of one research project.

Units available on the study abroad programme in 2023/24

The following units from the Department of Mechanical Engineering are open to inbound Study Abroad students.

Year 1 (level C/4)

There are no Year 1 TB1 only units.


  • Principles of Mechanical Engineering (TB2) - MENG10006


  • Engineering by Investigation (TB4) - MENG10005
  • Engineering Science (TB4) - MENG10004

Year 2 (level I/5)

There are no Year 1 TB1 only units.


  • Engineering Practice (TB2) - MENG20007


  • Dynamics and Control (TB4) - MENG20004
  • Materials Engineering (TB4) - MENG20005
  • Thermofluids (TB4) - MENG20009

Year 3 (level H/6)


  • Applied Solid Mechanics (TB1) - MENG30011
  • Behaviour of Dynamic Systems (TB1) - MENG30006
  • Fluid Mechanics and Heat Transfer (TB1) - MENG30008
  • Research Project (TB1 or TB2) - MENG30005 - Please see the 'Research Project units' section of this guide for more information on this unit


  • Engineering Management (TB2) - MENG30012 - Please note this unit must be taken with MENG35000 Individual Research Project. Students cannot take MENG30012 by itself under any circumstances.
  • Individual Research Project (TB2) - MENG35000 - Please see the 'Research Project units' section of this guide for more information on this unit
  • Research Project (TB1 or TB2) - MENG30005 - Please see the 'Research Project units' section of this guide for more information on this unit

Year 4 (level M/7)

All Year 4 units begin in September. 


  • Multivariable and Nonlinear Control (TB1) - MENGM0067 
  • Nuclear Reactor Engineering and Materials (TB1) - MENGM0066
  • Product and Production Systems (TB1) - MENGM0056
  • Renewable Energy for a Sustainable Future (TB1) - MENGM0064
  • Structural Integrity and Non-destructive Evaluation (TB1) - MENGM0058


  • Advanced Topics in Mechanical Engineering (TB4) - MENGM0059

Application queries

Contact the Centre for Study Abroad inbound team if you have any queries about the application process for the study abroad programmes:

Phone: +44 117 39 40207


Students cannot audit units. Study abroad students are fully registered on units for credit purposes and must attend teaching only for classes that they are registered on.

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