Pre-Masters in Engineering

Pre-Masters in Engineering

Graduate Certificate or Diploma

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The Pre-Masters has been designed specifically to support international students who wish to study a postgraduate degree at Northumbria University. If you have a strong theoretical background in engineering, this programme will equip you with the necessary practical skills and expertise required to start your postgraduate degree in engineering.

This programme is delivered by experienced staff who have all worked with international students for many years and have expertise in specialist areas. In addition, you will use specialist teaching space and equipment and learn how to use the university facilities including the engineering laboratories and the library.

Depending on your entry level you will study either a one-semester or a two-semester programme.

Key facts

  • Prepare for postgraduate study and enhance your English language and academic skills
  • Build awareness of engineering in the wider social, ethical, and sustainable context
  • Apply scientific principles and mathematical/computational techniques to realise innovative solutions to a range of engineering problems
  • Upon successful completion with a 50% pass rate, you will be ready to join one of our engineering Masters programmes at the Newcastle campus


About this course

What will I study?

Depending on your entry level you will study either a one-semester or a two-semester programme.

1 semester: This course allows students to develop their academic skills gained in previous studies further and enhance their intellectual and professional competencies for an MSc Engineering with programme. This is our Graduate Certificate.

2 semester: Those who require additional English language preparation will study a semester of English in semester 1 – in advance of joining the Graduate Certificate. This combines language development in the context of postgraduate study. This is our Graduate Diploma.

On completing this programme, you will have achieved many of the Northumbria Graduate attributes:

  • ability to think independently
  • ability to communicate effectively to diverse audiences utilising a range of formats and media
  • value curiosity, collaboration and analysis as keystones in the creation of new knowledge and practice
  • gained skills which will support your future employability and long-term career prospects.

How will I be taught and assessed?

To help you assimilate to the academic study at the University, your module assessments have been spread over the duration of the programme to allow you to develop your assessment skills gradually.

  • Teaching on this programme is delivered through interactive lectures and seminars, totalling around 15-20 hours per week
  • You will also be expected to engage in an independent study involving directed and self-directed learning, around 36 hours per week
  • Assessment will include a mix of portfolios, coursework including essay writing, reading and writing skills examination
  • Formative assessment and feedback from your tutors will take place regularly through both semesters to enable you to reflect on your performance throughout the programme
  • Our assessment philosophy – Assessment for Learning – fosters your development by giving you responsibility for evaluating and improving your own performance.
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Upon successful completion of the Pre-masters in Engineering with 50%, you will be eligible to progress on to our suite of Northumbria University Engineering conversion full-time postgraduate degrees.

For students wishing to progress to Electrical Power Engineering MSc, you will need a minimum of third-class pass with Hons in Electrical Engineering with  focus on Electrical Power.

Scholarships, bursaries and payment plans are available for postgraduate study. Speak to one of our team to discuss your eligibility.

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Academic requirements

  • Minimum of a third-class pass or ordinary degree from a UK university, or equivalent

For country-specific entry requirements, please check our Entry Requirements. Alternatively, please contact our team who will be able to help you.

English language requirements

There are two entry levels to the Pre-Masters in Engineering, depending on your IELTS level:

  • 5.5 with no single element below 5.5, or equivalent, will study the 2-semester Graduate Diploma
  • 6.0 with no single element below 5.5, or equivalent, will study the 1-semester Graduate Certificate

Please note that if your qualifications are not in English, we might need certified translations in order to proceed with your application.

Age requirements

You must be over 21 years old.

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All modules are core and 20 credits unless otherwise stated.

2 semester students only

This module will help you develop core subject knowledge while developing your academic skills in speaking and listening. The aim is to help you access academic lectures, find appropriate methods to organise the academic content and respond critically to arguments put forward.

You will learn how to discuss ideas critically in seminar discussions and how to maximise your learning from interaction with others – a key skill at the postgraduate level. You will also learn how to prepare and give presentations.

On this module, you will learn to develop core knowledge of topics that will be covered in your postgraduate study while developing a range of academic skills in reading and writing to prepare you to access texts, develop coherent and suitable academic arguments and produce writing suitable for postgraduate level study.

The module will use authentic texts such as journal article papers and it will help you to develop strategies for reading and understanding arguments from complex language and ideas. You will learn how to use these texts to form part of an academic argument by producing suitable written responses.

In this module, you will work on developing your use of language focusing on both vocabulary and grammar and on your ability to reflect and build on this. You will develop an awareness of your vocabulary range and develop your use of language in both general and academic vocabulary from the Academic Word List (AWL).

The aim of the module is to better equip you to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your current language abilities and to better understand how you can develop your use of language.

1 semester. All students will study the following modules:

In this module, you will explore, develop and use a range of academic skills that will support you on this and other modules. This module will provide essential preparation for your postgraduate degree including academic research writing skills, referencing and research management skills.

By the end of this module, you will have obtained the skills of writing a research proposal and reflecting on your personal and professional development.

This module has been designed to develop engineering problem-solving skills to prepare you for your future studies at the postgraduate level at Northumbria University. You will engage in interactive learning, drawing upon the directed learning and your own experiences.

Learning of using professional engineering hardware and software and attending an engineering laboratory will give you hands-on engineering experience. It will also enable you to generate innovative and sustainable solutions to defined problems.

This module is designed to use state-of-the-art mathematical software and will equip you with the skills and confidence to solve challenging engineering problems.

In this module, you will engage with practical and real-life problems from a wide range of engineering applications to demonstrate the relevance of the various mathematical tools taught in the course.

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The course information displayed on this page is correct for the academic year 2023/24. We aim to run the course as advertised however, changes may be necessary due to updates to the curriculum (due to academic or industry developments), student demand or UK compliance reasons.

Tuition fee 2023/24

  • 1 semester (Graduate Certificate): £6,750
  • 2 semesters (Graduate Diploma): £10,000

Tuition fee 2024/25

  • 1 semester (Graduate Certificate): £6,750
  • 2 semesters (Graduate Diploma): £10,000

Please note that your tuition fees do not include the cost of course books that you may choose to purchase, stationery, printing and photocopying, accommodation, living expenses, travel or any other extracurricular activities. As a Northumbria University Pathway student, you will have full access to our online digital library with over 400,000 e-books and 50,000 electronic journals.

The modules you will study do not require you to purchase additional textbooks.

Scholarships and bursaries for international students

If you choose to progress on to one of our Masters programmes upon successful completion of your Graduate Certificate, you may be eligible for one of our scholarships, bursaries, or payment plans. Please speak to one of our team for more information.

How to find out more

Enquire now to find out more information about this course, studying with us, the application process, and ask any other questions you have.

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How to apply

Our apply online links are currently unavailable, in the mean time please use our enquiry form above.

Information for disabled applicants

At Northumbria, we welcome applications from disabled students and are committed to ensuring an equal and accessible application journey. Your application will be considered on an equal basis to all other applications. Please contact us if you require any assistance. This website is continually optimised to adhere to accessibility best practice guidelines; tools to assist users with specific accessibility requirements have also been provided. More information is available in our accessibility statement.

If you are accepted you will receive one offer letter for the Pre-Masters followed by the appropriate degree programme. Once you have successfully completed the Pre-Masters programme and achieved the required grades, you can gain direct admission onto your chosen postgraduate degree at Northumbria.

We strongly recommend that you submit your application as early as possible to allow you to complete all of the preparations needed to study your programme. After receiving your offer it can take time to arrange your finances and apply for your visa (if required) and it is important that you arrive in a good time to enrol on your course. Please refer to the Dates and Fees page.

If you are unable to apply online, then you can download a PDF application form and email it to

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Supporting documents

For us to assess your application in a timely manner, it is important that you provide us with the following documents:

  • Fully completed application form
  • A personal email address must be included on the application form
  • Transcripts and/or certificates (including a certified translation if not in English)
  • Passport – a copy of personal details page
  • Proof of financial sponsorship if applicable
  • Reference
  • Confirmation of immigration history including copies of previous and current visas if applicable

You can check more information on how to apply here, including guidelines for the application forms.

Course information

Level of study:
Pre-Masters - NQF Level 6
International Fee:
£10,000 (2 semester)
£6,750 (1 semester)
Leads to:
Postgraduate degrees in Engineering
Entry requirements:
Third class, pass or ordinary degree from a UK university, or equivalent
IELTS requirements:
From IELTS 5.5 with no single element below 5.5, or equivalent
Graduate Certificate or Diploma
Class hours per week:
Average class size:
Assessment methods:
Coursework and exams
Scholarship or bursaries:
Payment plan:
Not available
January, May, September
Next application deadline:

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