Course details

Study options

Part-time: 2-3 years

UK/EU fee

£850 per 20 credits* (2019/20)

International fee

£14,250 for the full programme (2019/20)

Course level




Start dates

January, September


Markeaton Street, Derby Campus

Course description

Chartered Engineer (CEng) status opens up an exciting range of career progression and promotion opportunities. As a flexible work-based learning route to CEng registration, our MSc is a smart choice for ambitious engineering professionals who want to balance their studies with their other commitments.

A similar course can also be taken online. Find out more here. 

We have developed this MSc in association with the Engineering Council. It forms part of the Engineering Gateways programme to help you achieve Chartered Engineer (CEng) status. This type of course has already been approved by a number of professional engineering institutions.

It is a work-based route to the academic qualification and professional development that you need to demonstrate for registration as a CEng.

Because the course is flexible, it can be adapted to almost any work situation, engineering industry or location. You will be able to acquire professional competencies and an MSc without taking time off work.

There are three phases to this MSc:

Appropriately qualified academic and industrial tutors will work with you and your employer to design a unique programme tailored to your work situation, which takes into account your present level of education and experience.

You will study two compulsory modules: Research Methods: Application and Evaluation, and CPD and Strategic Management. The other modules allow you to negotiate the content of your course so that you can meet the requirements of your professional institution for CEng registration.

What you will study

This course is made up of three stages – Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma and MSc.

You will study modules such as:

Research Methods: Application and Evaluation

This module will advise, guide and develop you in the various elements that constitute the skills required for identifying and applying appropriate research methods and developing an overall research plan. Your learning will include how to identify, evaluate and apply different research philosophies, research approaches, research strategies, research methods, and methods of data collection and analysis.

Professional Development Audit (PDA) and Learning Contract

This module enables you to complete a personal Professional Development Audit (PDA) which is a reflective examination and assessment of your education, qualifications, experience and proficiency when you enrol on the MSc and start working towards the Entry Gateway to become a Chartered Engineer. You will then use the PDA to undertake a competence mapping exercise to determine the goals you need to address and the difference between your current competence and the CEng standards set out in UK-SPEC and your chosen professional body. This will define the scope of your MSc Learning Contract. This module can be accessed through blended/face-to-face delivery or online learning depending on your programme of study.

Negotiated Advanced Technical Module

This module encourages you to engage with your Professional Development Audit (PDA). You will undertake a work-based project in a technical area. This could include identifying the constraints in which you work and any opportunities for improvement, development or exploitation of intellectual capital within your field, or the introduction and exploitation of new and advancing technology.

Negotiated Module (Environmental and Ethical Responsibility)

To complete this module, you will seek opportunities to explore, report on and review your own and your company’s attitudes, performance and aspirations in relation to environmental and ethical pressures. You will be advised if you need to engage in formal postgraduate academic study to support your technical development as part of this module and you will undertake a structured reflection on the experiences of your enquiry into environmental and social responsibility, and locate demonstrable outcomes in an academic context.

You will study modules such as:

CPD and Strategic Management

During this module, you will develop your managerial skills in preparation for working in a global industry environment. You will study strategic concepts and learn how to transfer them into your own industry or specialism using a structured approach. You will focus on managing the global future by analysis rather than by instinct and will become adept at forecasting and financial analysis, while considering business ethics.

Negotiated Module (Commercial and Technical Leadership)

You will undertake a work-based project to explore and report on a specific aspect of managing and leading complex interdisciplinary technical and commercial projects. These can be within or beyond your own area of responsibility at work, provided they relate to your subject area.

Negotiated Module (Innovation in Technology)

This module entails a work-based project where you will assess how new and innovative technologies can be applied, developed or transferred from another sector to improve your company’s processes, products or intellectual capital. This will involve a different process for everyone and your tutor will advise if you need to engage in formal postgraduate academic study to support your technical development as part of this module.

Negotiated Module (Solving Engineering Problems)

You will deliver a significant work-based project to solve a complex technical problem within or beyond your own operational area at work, using academic methodology and applications. Your tutor will advise you if you need formal postgraduate study to support your technical development as part of this module.

You will study one module, such as:

Independent Scholarship

This triple module is an integral and substantial part of your masters degree. It will provide you with an opportunity to use and enhance the knowledge and intellectual skills you have gained during the course through an extensive investigation of a proposed postgraduate study related to the course material. You will produce a coherent, sustained and comprehensive research-based study to demonstrate your ability to generate complex proposals with an awareness of current issues and insights, show originality in the application of subject knowledge and, where appropriate, propose new hypotheses and speculations.

How you will learn

A masters degree using negotiated learning recognises learning that takes place at work and what is involved in completing work-based projects and undertaking staff development. This allows you to be credited for what you are already learning and the contribution you are making to your organisation's success.

The modules on this course have been based on the competencies needed for CEng status, and you can design your own programme around these themes. This means that you may already have skills and competencies within certain module areas. In just one example, Environmental and Ethical Responsibility could be covered through the implementation of ISO 9000, 14000 and 18000 in your organisation, so that particular module could be awarded to you via the system of Accredited Prior Experiential Learning.

You may also be able to take a standard module at the University to update your skills and these can be credited to you in place of one of the negotiated modules. For instance, a module in Environmental Performance Management could be studied in place of the Negotiated Module (Environmental and Ethical Responsibility). You can also negotiate your own project within your organisation in line with the learning outcomes of the module.

This course is also available to study through online distance learning, which offers even greater flexibility and opens up exciting opportunities for international students. Find out more

Entry requirements

As the course is designed to take students directly to CEng status, you must also have significant engineering experience. Engineers applying for CEng status need to have demonstrated the ability to apply their engineering knowledge within a practical engineering environment.

For those who have an accredited first degree (either BEng or BSc) we require a minimum of two years' relevant industrial or engineering experience. For those without such a degree, we will require a greater amount of industrial experience.

Fees and funding

2019/20 Fees (August 2019 - July 2020)



£850 per 20 credits*


£14,250 for the full programme


*Note – at postgraduate level, you’ll need to gain the following number of credits in total to obtain the awards below.

Postgraduate Certificate60 Credits
Postgraduate Diploma120 Credits
MA or MSc180 Credits

This means you will gain 180 credits in total to complete the full MA or MSc. If you are studying part time you will normally complete your studies over two or three years, depending on the course structure.

Please note that all fees may be subject to annual increase.

Additional costs and optional extras

How to apply


Our MSc Professional Engineering provides an ideal route to CEng status, improving your career prospects and employability. As a registered Chartered Engineer, you are likely to command higher salaries across your working life because employers are keen to recruit and promote high-calibre professionals with recognised expertise. Respected across the world, the CEng title on your CV proves you have a positive attitude and drive to succeed within the industry.
Graduates from this course go on to secure employment in a range of sectors including rail, automotive, industrial gases, specialist fabrication, heavy plant equipment and tribology.

Programme leader

Dr Patrick Barber

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

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† Additional information about your studies

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, state-of-the-art facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

Included in your fees

Mandatory costs not included in your fees

Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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