International College

Study mechanical engineering

Help to build societies by designing and refining the systems and engines that surround us. As a mechanical engineering graduate, you can improve lives and contribute to history by helping to create safer, more effective infrastructure.

Mechanical engineering at the University of Sheffield

The University of Sheffield’s Department of Mechanical Engineering conducts vital research. Its innovative teaching and excellent facilities make it one of the best departments in the country. The Diamond, home to over 5000 students, is a multi-million pound engineering hub, comprising a huge range of labs and study spaces.

Mechanical engineering degree options at the University of Sheffield

The University of Sheffield offers the following related degrees:

Department of Mechanical Engineering rankings

Top 5 for research excellence
in the UK
Research Excellence Framework, 2014

UK Top 10
for Mechanical Engineering
The Guardian University Guide 2022 / The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022

World Top 100
for Mechanical Engineering
QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021

Degree preparation at the International College

The University of Sheffield International College offers specialist university preparation for international students. On our pathway programmes, you will study key subject modules to prepare you for your degree, while also building confidence in your English language and study skills. Whether you are aiming for undergraduate or postgraduate study, you will have the confidence to succeed once you progress to the University of Sheffield.

Your pathways to studying at the University of Sheffield:

Undergraduate pathways

International student from Vietnam

The International Foundation Year in Science and Engineering prepares you for a degree at the University of Sheffield Department of Automatic Control and Systems Engineering. Choose the Physics and Physical Engineering pathway and progress to a mechanical engineering degree at Sheffield.

Postgraduate pathways

International postgraduate students having a discussion.

The Pre-Masters in Science and Engineering at the International College prepares you to succeed in a postgraduate degree at the University of Sheffield. Study related modules and then progress to your chosen Department of Mechanical Engineering masters programme at the University of Sheffield.

Entry requirements

International Foundation Year 

  • 2 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.0 with minimum 5.0 in writing (minimum of 4.0 in other skills)
  • 1.5 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 6.0 (minimum 5.0 in all skills)


  • 2 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 5.5 (minimum 5.5 in all skills)
  • 1.5 semester programme: Academic IELTS for UKVI 6.0 (minimum 5.5 in all skills)

Why study mechanical engineering?

Mechanical engineering is a rewarding subject with excellent prospects for the future. You will learn a range of transferrable skills and there are many benefits, including:

As an engineer, you will have the opportunity to design and build infrastructure that improves people’s lives. You will have a lasting impact, as the things you build will be around for years to come.

Engineers are always in demand, and there is a shortage of skilled engineers in the UK and beyond. UK companies are projected to need a further 182,000 skilled engineers annually until 2022. As an engineering graduate, you can look forward to steady employment and a good salary.

Every country in the world needs engineers. This means you will be able to find opportunities to work abroad if travelling appeals to you. With the possibility of working in another country, you will be able to find new challenges and expand your knowledge of mechanical engineering.

What can I do with a mechanical engineering degree?

When you graduate from the University of Sheffield, you will be able to choose from a range of challenging and rewarding careers.

Mechanical engineering careers include:

  • Aerospace engineer
  • Automotive engineer
  • CAD technician
  • Contracting civil engineer.

Related careers include:

  • Mining engineer
  • Production manager
  • Water engineer.

Mechanical engineering FAQs

Mechanical engineering is using the laws of fundamental maths and physics to create and build mechanical devices. Mechanical engineers design everything from aeroplanes to renewable energy sources.

To study mechanical engineering you will need to meet certain entry requirements set out by the university you want to study at. High grades are often required to study a mechanical engineering degree. If you’re an international student wanting to study mechanical engineering in the UK, you could study the International Foundation Year in Science and Engineering, which will help you meet the requirements and prepare you to study at the University of Sheffield.

As a mechanical engineer, you could be looking to earn between £20,000 to £28,000 after graduation. With more experience, your salary can increase up to £35,000. Once you reach senior level, you can earn anything from £45,000 to in excess of £65,000.

An undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering typically lasts three years. However, most universities offer the course including a masters degree, with a duration of four years. You could also have the opportunity to spend a year completing a work placement.

To study an undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering you will typically need to have studied maths and physics. Other subjects that can be beneficial to anyone applying to study mechanical engineering include Further Maths, Design Technology, Chemistry, Computer Science and Product Design. Universities can have different subject requirements, so always check the university you’re applying to.

A maths qualification is often required to study mechanical engineering at university. Mechanical engineering uses a variety of mathematical methods such as algebra, geometry, trigonometry, calculus I and II and statistics.

Key skills for mechanical engineering include:

  • Creativity
  • Problem-solving
  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Commercial awareness
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Analytical thinking
  • Attention to detail
  • Numeracy

Born in Morocco. Made in Sheffield.

Student Hamza in an engineering lab

The teachers are fabulous. They’re very nice and helpful, and they answer any question at any time of the day, by email. They try to include everyone because they know we are from different countries and it’s harder to socialise with each other. For five minutes before each class we just talk to each other and try to find out some things about ourselves. And that’s nice, to see people interested in our mental wellbeing.

Hamza from Morocco

Studied International Foundation Year in Science and Engineering

Progressed to BEng (Hons) Mechanical Engineering

Find out more about starting your studies or check the latest COVID-19 information.