Computer Aided Engineering (Foundation Entry) BEng (Hons)

Computer Aided Engineering (Foundation Entry) BEng (Hons)

School of Engineering




Under- graduate



Contact UCLan

University of Central Lancashire
Preston, PR1 2HE, United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400

  • Duration:

    Full Time: Four Years

  • Level:


  • Delivery:

    Campus, Full-time

  • UCAS Code:

    C385; Short form: CAE/Fe

  • Campus:

    Preston (Campus code: U)

  • Start Date:


  • Award Type:

    BEng (Hons)

Why study this course?

Foundation Entry degree courses are designed for students who have the ability to study for a degree, but don’t have the necessary formal qualifications to enter directly onto their chosen Honours degree programme. Develop the core knowledge and skills you need to thoroughly understand modern engineering processes on this long-standing course. Our engineers graduate with the ability to skilfully apply their engineering experience to the research, design and development, manufacture, operation, and maintenance of high technology products, systems and services.

The course includes advanced, industry-standard CAE techniques for design, manufacture and production, supported by all the appropriate engineering science and knowledge. You’ll leave with an appreciation of the role of the engineer in industrial wealth creation and society as a whole - and the skills you need for a rewarding career.

Entry Requirements

Our typical offer is 72 UCAS Points. We operate a flexible admissions policy and treat everyone as an individual. This means that we will take into consideration your educational achievements and predicted grades (where applicable) together with your application as a whole, including work experience and personal statement. General Studies accepted

BTEC Extended Diploma: Merit, Merit, Pass
BTEC Diploma: Distinction, Merit
Pass Access Course: 72 UCAS Points
International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 72 UCAS points from Higher Level Subjects
IELTS: 6.0 with no score lower than 5.5
GCSE: 5 at grade C/4 including Maths & English or equivalent

For changes to 2017 UCAS tariff entry requirements please see our important information. UCLan requires all undergraduate applicants to have a minimum attainment of five GCSEs at grade C and above, or equivalent, (including Maths and English). In 2017 and beyond we will view the new Grade 4 as being equivalent to a C grade and will therefore require students to achieve GCSE Grade 4 or above. However, if the subject is relevant to our degree programme and requires a higher GCSE grade (e.g. GCSE B grade), and/or includes a Professional body that governs the entry requirements, Grade 5 or above may be required.

Register for our Open Evening 19 March Register for our Open Evening 19 March

Course at a Glance

Year 1

  • Study Skills
  • Basic Mathematics
  • ICT


  • Practical Skills
  • Design Studies
  • Analytical Studies

Year 2

The module listings below apply to full-time study. If studying part-time you can take up to four modules per year. With a suitable HND in Engineering it is possible to enter the final year of the course.

Compulsory modules

  • Engineering Applications
  • Engineering Analysis
  • Engineering Design
  • Engineering Science

Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Operations Management A
  • Instrumentation and Interfaces
  • Software Development 2
  • Design and Manufacture
  • Further Engineering Mathematics and Simulation

Year 4

Compulsory modules

  • Advanced CAD
  • Engineering Simulation
  • Operations Management B
  • Manufacturing Simulation
  • A major project

Optional modules - choose one:

  • Computer Aided Tribology
  • Control Systems
  • Engineering Design

Further Information

During your studies at the UCLan Preston campus you’ll benefit from our new £35 million Engineering Innovation Centre (EIC).

Located within one of the most intense engineering and manufacturing areas in the UK, the EIC provides an integrated space for teaching and research with direct links to industry enabling you to work on live, real-world projects with commercial partners in state-of-the-art facilities.

Find out more

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Throughout the course you will experience and develop analytical skills for design, manufacturing and organisational skills; all essential to the modern graduate engineer. Studies provide the core knowledge and skills essential to a thorough understanding of engineering processes and include: manufacturing engineering; electronics; mechanics; engineering drawing; and analytical methods. Subsequently, competence is further developed by taking more specialised CAE modules in computer-aided design, finite element analysis and simulation. Final year projects encourage detailed exploration of your own specific areas of interest.

Our close links with industry mean everything you’ll learn reflects current best practice - especially as you’ll be taught by staff with successful careers in the aerospace and automotive industries.

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Sandwich Placement Year

This course offers an optional 48-week sandwich placement in industry – this comes between the second and third years. You are responsible for finding your own placement. We will support you in preparation for this with the Faculty Placement Team and UCLan Careers, who can help you plan and develop your CV and applications, and have practice interviews.

Placements are an invaluable opportunity to help consolidate your first two years learning, gain experience, and radically enhance your employability. The benefit of the experience gained during a placement is often evident in improved performance in the final year of the course, and when competing for graduate jobs.

If you’re in any doubt about placements, do it! It gives you an idea of being in the industry you have chosen to be a part of. You can make sure it is right for you and gives you an idea of what area within that industry you enjoy, what you don’t like and where the most money is made. That way you can focus your time learning and honing the skills required for that chosen area while the facilities are still available while you are a student.


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The course is delivered by staff from the School of Engineering who are active in both research and knowledge transfer.

  • Matthew Dickinson is lecturer and course leader for the BEng (Hons)/Meng Computer Aided Engineering course. He is lecturing in Fundamental Engineering Simulation. He is currently completing a PhD in investigating the role of running-in in race Engines.

    Course Leader, Matt Dickinson Q&A

  • Tony Broad has academic and practical engineering skills with expertise in practical composites manufacturing. Active industrial links with local companies to promote visits and graduate placement opportunities.

Areas of Expertise include:

  • Engineering Design and Manufacture, 2D & 3D CAD/Drafting with AutoCAD - CAD/CAM with Alphacam, 3D CAD Solidworks, Autodesk Inventor, 3D Studio Max, Engineering Simulation - FEA, Motion Analysis, Fluid Dynamics, Advanced Composites Design and Manufacture, Advanced Manufacturing Technology, Materials Technology.
  • Prof Ian Sherrington has an inter-disciplinary background in physics, mathematics, computing, and engineering, and has interests in wear prediction, wear measurement, friction measurement, effects of wear debris, lubricant leakage and oil film thickness measurement.
  • Graham Calderbank is an engineering lecturer and researcher at the University of Central Lancashire. He teaches across several engineering courses in a variety of subject areas, including fluid dynamics and thermodynamics, dynamic systems relating to motor sports, engineering focussed computer programming with MATLAB and LabView, and the design & development of engineering products. Graham is also involved in research with the Jost Institute, and is currently investigating the lubrication of crosshead engines with a view to developing a control system to optimise the lubrication of two-stroke marine diesel engines. Prior to joining UCLan, Graham spent several years as a product engineer for a Lancashire based company that designed and manufactured automotive components.


For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:

For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.

Fees 2020/21

Full-time: The fee for the first year of the course will be £5,500 (UK/EU). Fees for years 2 to 4 will be £9,250* (UK/EU) per year

*Tuition Fees are per year unless otherwise stated.

Further information:

For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

Scholarships and bursaries

Industry Links

Students are offered a year in industry between second and third year/third and fourth year if on Foundation, with companies including: Velocity Composites, Totally wicked, Leyland Trucks, BAE systems, Unison and Triumph Motorcycles.

Professional Accreditation

The quality of this course has been recognised with accreditation for partially meeting education requirement for Chartered Engineer status (CEng) by the Institution of Engineering Designers (IED) and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE).

Learning Environment and Assessment

We use lectures and applications based learning through assignments and design briefs. You'll use a substantial student workshop for the module in manufacturing as well as traditional lecture rooms for other modules. In recent years, the School of Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences has moved into a brand new building with impressive computer facilities and specialist labs.

You’ll have the opportunity to join the Innovation Club and work with a diverse group of students and staff on innovative projects.

Our close links with industry mean everything you’ll learn reflects current best practice - especially as you’ll be taught by staff with successful careers in the aerospace and automotive industries.

Assessment is done using formal examinations and coursework. As the course progresses, less emphasis is given to assessment by examination and more to coursework.


This course offers an optional 48 week sandwich placement in industry. You will be managed by an industrial supervisor to solve real problems to a professional standard. The benefit of the experience is evident in improved performance in the final year and when competing for graduate jobs.

Engineering graduates are in greater demand than ever, which means the options for you are rich and endless, including careers in aerospace, the automotive industry, the Ministry of Defence and research development.

A first or second class honours degree in Computer Aided Engineering will allow you to proceed to master studies. You may consider our MEng Computer Aided Engineering. You may apply to a suitable masters in mechanical engineering, manufacturing, product design or management. A third class honours degree in Computer Aided Engineering will allow you to proceed to further to postgraduate studies.


You’ll have access to modern computer facilities and specialist laboratories in electronics, manufacturing and motor sports, and learn how to use state-of-the-art engineering software including Solid Works, Ansys, MatLab and Excel, and how to perform advanced simulations.

Engine Build / Dynamometer Workshops

Engineering / CNC Workshops

Composites (GRP bodywork) Workshop

Motorsports Workshops