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What is engineering?

Engineering is the designing, testing and building of machines, structures and processes using maths and science. Studying it can lead to a rewarding career.

Engineering is a discipline dedicated to problem solving. Our built environment and infrastructure, the devices we use to communicate, the processes that manufacture our medicines, have all been designed, assembled or managed by an engineer.

You will find engineers working on advanced prosthetics, creating new materials, investigating engine efficiency and alternative fuels, constructing bridges or developing clean water systems. From satellites to cell membranes engineers use maths and science to achieve extraordinary things and find solutions to some of the world's most complex challenges.

What is Engineering?

Our student-made film gives you an overview.

The different engineering disciplines

Our two-minute introductory videos explain what careers and study in civil, mechanical, electronic and chemical engineering involve.

Watch the series

Studying engineering

At Bath, our students study BEng and MEng engineering courses across civil, mechanical, electrical and chemical disciplines.

A student in protective googles looks down at a bandsaw.

During their degrees our students combine creativity in design with scientific analysis to develop new products, processes and structures. Working individually and in groups they solve problems and develop concepts to improve the world around them.

'Engineers need good mathematical ability, but much more than that. They have to be imaginative, responsible, creative, and they must be very good at working with all sorts of other people. Geography, economics, art, history, modern languages, psychology, as well as the traditional maths and physics, can all help you to become an excellent engineer.' — Dr Antony Darby, Reader in Structural Engineering

Engineering graduates are in great demand across a variety of fields from industry to academia. They are trained in a range of hard and soft skills that make them highly employable including:

  • effective communication and presentation
  • team-working and leadership
  • project and time management
  • research, numeracy and design
‘What I really love about engineering is that you apply everything you learn. You get to put it towards something and then see something take shape.’
Nicole Meyer MEng (Hons) Electrical and Electronic Engineering with placement year

My day in 60 seconds

Our architecture and engineering students talk us through their typical day studying at Bath. The challenge? They only have 60 seconds to do it in.

Watch the series

Engineering as a career

You will find engineers working across many sectors and often commanding high salaries.

A student on placement smiles at the camera in an office environment.

After studying engineering you may choose to go into sectors as varied as management consultancy, broadcasting or the financial sector, as well as the more direct career paths listed below.

Architecture: Architect, Architectural Technologist, Town Planner, Production Designer, Building Surveyor.

Chemical Engineering: Chemical Engineer, Energy Engineer, Product Development Scientist, Production Manager, Quality Manager.

Civil Engineering: Structural Engineer, Site Engineer, Geotechnical Engineer, Building Physicist, Water Engineer, Quantity Surveyor.

Electronic & Electrical Engineering: Broadcast Engineer, IT Consultant, Network Engineer, Systems Developer.

Mechanical Engineering: Aeronautical Engineer, Automotive Engineer, Production Manager, Patent Attorney, Mechanical Engineer.

Creating meaningful and purposeful products

Mechanical engineering graduate, Nia Simpson, founded her own business and is taking her product (a digital white cane for the visually impaired) to the commercial market.

Discover Nia's story
Nia looks over her designs for the Compact Cane in our arts building cafe.

Bringing sustainable sanitation to refugee camps

Chemical engineering graduate, Jack Jones, developed an innovative toilet design and waste recycling process to improve living conditions at Kakuma refugee camp.

Discover Jack's story
Jack stands in front of a sign for Sanivation painted on a green shipping container.

Start your journey to becoming an engineer

Browse our undergraduate courses

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For more on engineering study and life in higher education.