UCL Centre for Systems Engineering


Programme Details

The Masters programme in Systems Engineering Management may lead to one of three qualifications: an MSc (Masters of Science), a PGDip (Postgraduate Diploma), or a PGCert (Postgraduate Certificate).

  • The MSc Systems Engineering Management is 180 credits and consists of a taught component and a research component.
  • The PGDip is 120 credits and is achieved by passing all elements of the MSc programme with the exception of the Systems Engineering Research Project.
  • The PGCert is 60 credits and is obtained through the taught component alone and does not include any project work

Options MSc Systems Engineering Management

In addition to the 60-credit PGCert in Systems Engineering Management, we offer three domain-focused PGCerts (all 60 credits):

  • Space Systems Engineering
  • Rail Systems Engineering
  • Defence Systems Engineering

These have the same diet as the PGCert in Systems Engineering Management, but have the additional requirement that students must take the relevant domain module.

The MSc can be completed in 2-5 years part time, 1 year full time, 2 years part time. The PGDip requires 2 years part time or 9 months full time. The PGCert can be completed in 9 months full time or part time.

Taught component

The required taught modules are selected from the full list of core and optional modules available. MSc and PGDip qualifications require 6 taught modules, which must include all 4 core modules. The PGCert requires 4 taught modules of which 2 must be any of the 4 core.  

All modules are usually delivered as intensive one-week blocks. Taught elements are assessed through a written assignment, with some modules also having an examination.

For the 2020-21 academic year teaching patterns are likely to be different.


Research component

Systems Engineering in Practice

For MSc and PGDip students the Systems Engineering in Practice element is a structured research activity, with the purpose of increasing understanding of how systems engineering concepts and techniques may be pragmatically applied in modern industry.

Industry sponsored students will use their home company for a relevant project focus. Those that are not sponsored will be asked to nominate a sector of industry of which they have knowledge and/or interest.

The student is supported through this element by a series of tutorials and is required to deliver a report demonstrating the understanding of the application of the taught material.

Systems Engineering Research Project Concept

MSc and PGDip students will be required to develop a Research Project Concept.

In many cases, students will come up with an idea for a project based on issues they face in their working environments. In other cases, UCLse tutors will help students to choose a research area where there is a common interest.

The Research Project Concept is assessed through the project plan which must be delivered by the student. This document is expected to set clear objectives for the research and detailed planning for the work activities that will deliver these objectives. 

Systems Engineering Research Project

Only MSc students are required to complete a research project. Typically industry-sponsored students will perform a study that is of direct relevance and advantage to their employer. Self-funded students may take up an appropriate research problem of interest to them, or one proposed by UCLse tutors. In each case, a personal supervisor is allocated to support the research activity.

The project culminates in the preparation of a final report, the dissertation. This document, of up to 12,000 words, is used to assess the capability of the student to organise and carry out an extended, independent study at postgraduate level. The student will also be required to make a presentation of the project's final results, which is assessed. This presentation will normally be the final step of the programme for MSc students.