Module code: ENG1067

Module provider

Mechanical Engineering Sciences

Module Leader

WHITING MJ Dr (Mech Eng Sci)

Number of Credits


ECT Credits



FHEQ Level 4

JACs code


Module cap (Maximum number of students)


Module Availability

Semester 2

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 112

Lecture Hours: 9

Tutorial Hours: 15

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework LABORATORY REPORTS (2) 30%

Alternative Assessment

Laboratory reports (2):two full laboratory write-ups. Laboratory preparation and participation : i) written answers requiring background research for two different experiments and (ii) a report on the performance of one laboratory accounting for the nature and minimisation of experimental error. Online test: Identical style to the original UoA Presentation sessions: (i) a research exercise that is similar to the normal assessment, (ii) a PowerPoint submission and (iii) a 10-minute audio narrative of the delivery of the talk.

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module overview

Engineers need to develop a variety of experimental, transferable and programming skills as part of their education and on-going professional development. This module introduces the concepts of experimental and transferable skills. In particular (i) laboratory skills, (ii) basic data handling skills, (iii) basic programming skills and (iv) presentation skills, are included.

The laboratory part of this module is designed both to support learning in other parts of the FHEQ level 4 curriculum, through practical experiments, and also to further develop generic and transferable skills, including practical laboratory skills, data handling, a basic understanding of experimental uncertainty and scientific writing. Working as part of a group is an integral part of the laboratories.

Some basic data handling and programming skills are covered, including: Using mathematical formulae and functions in Excel, creating academically appropriate graphs using MS Excel; An introduction to Matlab including: variables, assignments, operators,  built-in functions and plotting, Matlab scripts, m-files, indentation, commenting, for- and while- loops and if-conditions + Boolean variables, arrays and matrices, user-defined functions.

Presentation skills are introduced by participation in small group seminars where each participant (i) delivers a pre-prepared 10-minute presentation, (ii) chairs a presentation and (iii) provides real-time oral feedback on a presentation. These presentations introduce basic aspects of the economic, legal, social, ethical and environmental contexts in which professional engineers operate.

Note: This module is taught in common with Chem Eng module ENG1083 except for the Laboratory elements.

Module aims

A basic introduction to economic, legal, social, ethical and environmental contexts in which professional engineers operate.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Module content

Indicative content includes:

1. Laboratory Experiments

6 laboratory experiments will be conducted in small groups. These experiments are complementary to the wider FHEQ level 4 curriculum.

2. Lectures 9 lectures: An Introduction to Laboratory Skills (2 hours), An Introduction to Matlab (6 hours) PowerPoint and Oral Presentations (1 hour).

3. Skills Tutorials

There are 5 tutorials (class size c. 50 students) in which data handling and basic programming skills are developed during formative exercises. The exercises use Excel (with additional on-line support) and Matlab to explore data presentation, data handling and manipulation and basic programming skills.

4. Presentation Tutorials

6 hours of student-led oral presentations. These presentations introduce basic aspects of the economic, legal, social, ethical and environmental contexts in which professional engineers operate.

Students should typically spend c. 18 hours of time in preparation for laboratories, completing the formative assessments and in personally directed skill development. (including attendance of 5h of optional drop in tutorials).

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to

Give students a basic grounding in experimental procedure and scientific/technical report writing.
Reinforce engineering science concepts taught in other modules though practical experimentation and demonstration.
Give students a basic grounding in the use of MS Excel, MS PowerPoint and Matlab to produce (i) appropriately formatted academic writing, (ii) appropriately presented engineering data, (iii) simple formal presentations, (iv) implement simple programmes
Give students the experience of participating in all aspects of formal oral presentations.
Introduce wider aspects of the context in which professional engineers operate.

The learning and teaching methods include:

Lectures, 7 hrs total, 2/wk for 3 weeks and 1 in week 5
Introductory briefing lectures on lab work, 2 hrs total,
6 x 2 hrs/wk laboratory sessions in groups of 6; in addition to a supervisor-led introduction to experiment and apparatus, and group work on experiment itself to obtain results and conclusions, there will be supervisor-led and assessed discussions of preparatory work and session and results. All lab work will be recorded in standard lab notebooks
Production of 2 full laboratory reports, following written and oral guidance given on report production
IT-lab based tutorials using Excel and Matlab, 5 hrs total, 1 hr/wk (plus optiona drop-in help session 1 hr/wk)
Preparation and delivery (1 hr/wk, for 6 wks) of an oral presentation as part of series of student lead seminars.



Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to

Undertake basic research and preparation prior to a practical investigation
Carry out laboratory experiments and analyse and discuss results, including identification of sources of experimental uncertainty
Produce written technical reports to a prescribed formal style
Use MS Excel and Matlab to address problems that require data manipulation and handling and repetitive use of mathematical functions.
Present engineering data in a formal academic manner using MS Word, MS Excel, MS PowerPoint and Matlab as appropriate for a specific context.
Produce a short formal oral presentation and learn from the experience of taking part in a series of presentations 

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

Pre-lab preparation and research demonstrated by lab log book content and discussion with lab supervisor (for each experiment, approximately weekly)

Conduct of experiment and responses in closing discussion (for each experiment, approximately weekly)

Preparation and session marks are combined in one UoA Laboratory Participation 

Learning outcomes 1, 2 , 3.                              20%

Production of two lab reports

Learning outcomes 1, 2, 3 ,4.                           30%

A 1 hr test which requires the use of Matlab to perform basic calculations and data handling.

Learning outcomes 1, 4.                                   20%

Prepare and deliver a short (10 min) formal oral presentation. Participate in 6 weeks of presentation sessions to experience the broader context of academic presentations, including experience of chairing a meeting and providing real-time oral feedback.

Learning outcomes 3, 5, 6.                       30%  

Formative assessment and feedback

In every laboratory session, students have face-to face discussions with the experiment supervisor and receive their preparation and session marks at this time.
Written feedback on the lab reports is returned within about 2 weeks, to enable feed-forward to the writing of the next report, and is formative as well as summative.
Staff and PGs give formative feedback in the tutorials as the students undertake a diverse range of tasks involving basic academic presentation skills, basic programming, data presentation and data handling.
The feedback given after each presentation provides an on-going formative experience on oral presentation skills.

Reading list

Reading list for EXPERIMENTAL & TRANSFERABLE SKILLS : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/eng1067

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2017/8 academic year.