Aerospace Engineering with a Foundation Year BEng MEng2024-25 entry
Study the research, design, development, construction and flight of aircraft. There are a range of courses available after the Foundation Year, including Aerospsace Engineering with a Year in Industry and Aerospace Engineering with Private Pilot Instruction.
Explore this course:
Launch your career with this exploration of aerospace engineering theory, and hands-on practice of building and flying aircraft.
If you don't have the usual scientific or mathematical background for an engineering degree, a foundation year is for you. After successfully completing the foundation year, which has modules in mathematics, physics and chemistry, you can start a BEng or MEng degree.
From a solid base of essential theories, you’ll explore propulsion, instrumentation, the computation and design of aerodynamics and aircraft control.
As you progress, you’ll tailor the degree to match your career path – choosing to focus on either avionic systems or aeromechanics, and completing an investigative project of your choice.
We’ll teach you how to manage a project from start to finish, and how to communicate with people from a wide range of engineering disciplines. In your final year, you'll work on a research project led by one of our world leading academics.
Along the way, you’ll have the opportunity to fly and build aircraft, take part in national and international competitions, and ultimately graduate with the hands-on experience you need to progress in the aerospace industry.
Why study this course?
- Top 5 for aeronautical and manufacturing engineering - as rated by The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024. We're also the top Russell Group university in the National Student Survey (NSS) 2023.
- Learn to fly - gain flying experience either through our private pilot instruction courses, or through our links with the Yorkshire Universities Air Squadron.
- State-of-the-art facility - access a high quality laboratory education in a unique and state-of-the-art facility, including the opportunity to operate and examine jet engine technologies.
- Real industry experience - we’ll help you find opportunities to study abroad, get industry experience and take part in a full portfolio of activities in air and space systems. Extracurricular activities also include entering national and international competitions.
- Global Engineering Challenge - join teams of students to solve engineering problems in developing countries – pushing you to develop you as a professional engineer and enhancing your career prospects.
UCAS code: H407
Years: 2022, 2023
- Core Foundation Mathematics
The syllabus for MAS003 covers the common core A Level curriculum. The unit is tailored for students who have been away from mathematics for a period of time, but who will have gained some A-Level or similar qualifications. The unit covers the basic principles of algebra, geometry and calculus. Following the introduction of new material in the lectures, students have the opportunity of extensive problem solving, both in the tutorial sessions with the lecturers and in their own time.40 credits
- Introduction to Engineering
This module will introduce the application of engineering principles to foundation year students and give the student an appreciation of the breadth of engineering activities across the faculty and identify to students what knowledge areas and skills are needed in order to contribute to their development and be successful. It will also help create links with departments and draw on the other modules that students will take in the foundation year especially maths and physics.40 credits
- Foundations of Physics
PHY009 provides students with the foundations of Physics required to enter the first year of a regular Physics or other scientific degree course, or an engineering course where detailed knowledge of Physics is needed.30 credits
Understanding will be developed in 3 lectures per week over a full academic year. Problem solving and example classes are integrated into lectures. The following topics will be covered: Dynamics/Mechanics; Electricity and Magnetism; Thermal Physics; Oscillations, Waves, and Optics; Properties of Matter; Atomic and Nuclear Physics.
As PHY009 teaches no practical Physics, this module is complemented by the 10 credit laboratory module FCE002 for most science foundation year students (except for foundation year students leading to a Mathematics undergraduate programme) or FCE001 for engineering foundation year students.
The greatest advances in technology have taken place in the last hundred years. In 1897 few would have imagined that the probing of materials at the atomic level would reveal so much. These early discoveries of atomic constituents and their structure would pave the way for semi-conductor electronics, develop key concepts in physical laws, and offer a replacement energy source for fossil fuels in the form of nuclear power. This course summarises key discoveries in early particle physics and combines historical background with the detailed physics understanding needed to fully appreciate the subject.
These full modules aim to provide a sound foundation in Physics in preparation for Level 1 Physics modules. It introduces (i) Properties of Matter, (ii) Oscillations, waves & optics and (iii) Atomic and Nuclear Physics. (i) Properties of Matter discusses structural, mechanical and electrical properties in terms of simple models. (ii) treats vibration and waves introducing the concepts of wavelength, frequency and wave speed. (iii) discusses the physics of the atom, including historical aspects, the electron, the photo-electric effect, Bohr¿s atomic model, nuclear structure and radioactivity.
- Further Foundation Mathematics
The syllabus for MAS004 covers important material which appears on the A level maths and further mathematics A Level curriculum. The module is for students who are taking MAS003 and need a deeper background in mathematics for their degree course. The module covers advanced principles of algebra, geometry and calculus. Following the introduction of new material, students have the opportunity of extensive problem solving, both in the problem classes with tutors and in their own time.10 credits
- Foundation Core and Enhanced Mathematics
This module builds on the common core curriculum from A level maths (which is a prerequisite). This unit covers enhanced comprehension of topics in pure maths, statistics, probability, and numerical methods. These topics are chosen to further prepare students for their undergraduate studies in the science and engineering faculties.40 credits
After successfully completing the foundation year, you can start your BEng or MEng degree.
The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers. In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption.
Learning and assessment
The following are the main learning and teaching methods implemented within the programme:
- practical activities
- coursework assignments (including oral, video and poster presentations)
- online resources
Students are assessed via a mix of the following:
- coursework assignments
- lab work
- online tests
- group projects
This tells you the aims and learning outcomes of this course and how these will be achieved and assessed.
The A Level entry requirements for this course are:
BBB (any A Level); BBC, including Maths and at least one of Physics, Chemistry or Biology
- International Baccalaureate
- 32 (any subjects); 31, with Maths and at least one of Physics, Chemistry or Biology at Higher Level 5 or Standard Level 7
- BTEC Extended Diploma
- DDD in Engineering or Applied Science + GCSE Science grade 6/B and Maths grade 7/A
- BTEC Diploma
- DD in Engineering or Applied Science + A at A Level (no STEM at A Level) + GCSE Science grade 6/B and Maths grade 7/A; DD in Engineering or Applied Science + B in an A Level science subject (Physics, Chemistry, or Biology) + GCSE Maths grade 7/A; DD in Engineering or Applied Science + C in A Level Maths + GCSE Science grade 6/B
- Scottish Highers
- AABBB (any subjects); ABBBB, including Maths and at least one of Physics, Chemistry or Biology
- Welsh Baccalaureate + 2 A Levels
- B + BB (any A Level subjects); B + BC in Maths and either Physics, Chemistry or Biology
- Access to HE Diploma
- Award of Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject, with 45 credits at Level 3, including 24 at Distinction (to include 12 Maths units), and 21 at Merit + GCSE Maths grade 7/A
If you are studying both Maths and a science (Physics, Chemistry or Biology) at A Level or equivalent, there are no additional GCSE requirements. If you are studying any other subject combination, we require GCSE science grade 6/B and Maths grade 7/A
You must demonstrate that your English is good enough for you to successfully complete your course. For this course we require: GCSE English Language at grade 4/C; IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component; or an alternative acceptable English language qualification
If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the department.
Our graduates are in demand internationally and go onto success in some of the world's leading engineering companies. They work in aerospace design, aviation, transport, manufacturing, finance, energy and power, and the armed forces. Employers include Airbus, BAE Systems, BP, Ernst & Young, Jaguar Land Rover, Ministry of Defence, Nissan, Rolls-Royce, PwC, Royal Air Force and Shell. Some students continue onto further study or research.
There's a focus on employability throughout your studies and you'll get all the support you need to help you achieve your career aspirations.
We work with the biggest names in industry to shape the future of aerospace engineering. We have strong partnerships with the likes of Airbus UK, BAE Systems, Boeing, EADS, Qinetiq and Rolls-Royce. Our work with them will introduce you to developments and techniques that are still new to industry. You'll gain both breadth and depth of engineering knowledge, as well as the transferable skills employers demand.
Like the industry, Aerospace Engineering at Sheffield is interdisciplinary. You'll be taught by experts in aerospace materials, aerodynamics, flight control systems, avionics, aircraft design, aero propulsion, management and applied mathematics. Our unique approach will give you the competitive advantage when you graduate.
Our courses will give you both academic knowledge and practical experience. Analyse flight performance and stability on our unique flying day, solve real-world engineering problems on the Global Engineering Challenge, or design, build and fly your own unmanned air vehicle as part of the MEng group design project.
The Diamond features some of the best engineering teaching spaces in the UK. You'll be taught in state-of-the art teaching and lab facilities, using cutting edge, industry standard equipment.
The Diamond features some of the best engineering teaching spaces in the UK. You’ll be taught in state-of-the-art teaching and lab facilities, using industry standard equipment. We have four Merlin static flight simulators for aircraft design and six X-Plane based flight simulators for flight control and navigation purposes. There are seven commercial drones with a netted area for flight testing and to learn basic flying skills. We also have a Turbine Solutions jet engine test bench, along with 20 associated jet engines to take apart and analyse. You’ll get to use these facilities throughout your course.
Why choose Sheffield?
The University of Sheffield
Number one in the Russell Group
National Student Survey 2023 (based on aggregate responses)
92 per cent of our research is rated as world-leading or internationally excellent
Research Excellence Framework 2021
Top 50 in the most international universities rankings
Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2023
Number one Students' Union in the UK
Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023, 2022, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017
Number one for teaching quality, Students' Union and clubs/societies
StudentCrowd 2023 University Awards
A top 20 university targeted by employers
The Graduate Market in 2023, High Fliers report
National Student Survey 2022
National Student Survey 2022
Fees and funding
The annual fee for your course includes a number of items in addition to your tuition. If an item or activity is classed as a compulsory element for your course, it will normally be included in your tuition fee. There are also other costs which you may need to consider.
University open days
We host five open days each year, usually in June, July, September, October and November. You can talk to staff and students, tour the campus and see inside the accommodation.
If you’re considering your post-16 options, our interactive subject tasters are for you. There are a wide range of subjects to choose from and you can attend sessions online or on campus.
Offer holder days
If you've received an offer to study with us, we'll invite you to one of our offer holder days, which take place between February and April. These open days have a strong department focus and give you the chance to really explore student life here, even if you've visited us before.
Our weekly guided tours show you what Sheffield has to offer - both on campus and beyond. You can extend your visit with tours of our city, accommodation or sport facilities.
Apply for this courseThis course is no longer taking applications for 2024-2025 entry. View 2025-2026 entry or find another undergraduate course.
The awarding body for this course is the University of Sheffield.
Recognition of professional qualifications: from 1 January 2021, in order to have any UK professional qualifications recognised for work in an EU country across a number of regulated and other professions you need to apply to the host country for recognition. Read information from the UK government and the EU Regulated Professions Database.
Any supervisors and research areas listed are indicative and may change before the start of the course.