Medical Engineering BEng (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years, 4 years with placement)




Interested in both engineering and medicine? Want to help healthcare providers offer better care and treatment to patients? On this Chelmsford-based Medical Engineering BEng (Hons) degree you’ll apply engineering principles to the design of innovative medical devices that meet patients’ needs. You’ll develop practical skills in our specialist labs and be taught by lecturers with research backgrounds in joint replacement technology. The option of a placement year will give you real-life experience and prepare you for a varied and rewarding career.

Full description


We work with employers to make sure you graduate with the knowledge, skills and abilities they need. They help us review what we teach and how we teach it – and they offer hands-on, practical opportunities to learn through work-based projects, internships or placements.

The medical device industry is worth billions to economies across the world, and it's growing year on year. You will be in a unique position to work in a variety of professional careers, in engineering companies or hospitals, due to your highly transferable technical, interpersonal and numeracy skills.

With your professional expertise in competitive commercial and industrial environments, possibilities include:

We recognise that employers place significant emphasis on having a capable workforce, which is why we provide opportunities for you to work closely with our Medical Engineering Research Group. The group collaborates closely with hospitals and medical companies.

Graduation doesn’t need to be the end of your time with us. If you’d like to continue your studies we offer a wide range of full-time and part-time postgraduate courses including MSc Engineering Management, MSc Medical Technology, MSc Mechanical Engineering and MSc Additive Manufacturing.

Modules & assessment

Year 1 (level 4) modules

  • Introduction to Medical Engineering
    Start your journey in engineering. This module will introduce you to a variety of skills and areas you will need throughout your course and future career. To begin with you will look at engineering in general, and see how medical rngineering fits with the other engineering disciplines. You will learn about the role of engineering within society and start to look at your possible career paths, helping you to create a personal development plan (PDP) to tailor your study. You will explore teamwork, the various roles you can play within a team, effective management and leadership, as well as legal responsibilities and risks which might be encountered within medical engineering. Most of your teaching sessions will begin with a lecture, followed by group-led discussions or workshops.
  • Engineering Skills
    Develop the underpinning engineering skills needed to solve technical problems and communicate technical ideas and concepts. These skills are essential for the successful completion of your project and knowledge based modules. The module will be divided into two main areas; Mathematics and technical report writing. Mathematics will focus on the basic mathematical skills needed to understand the language of mathematics and to interpret engineering mathematical expressions. Algebraic skills will also be extensively developed to carry out mathematical analysis and solve engineering problems. The module will also introduce the mathematics of trigonometry and geometry and their application to solve practical engineering problems. Technical report writing is a fundamental communication skill for engineers and will be developed throughout the course. This part of the module aims to provide the tools to enable you to structure and present technical reports and also reference correctly. You will make use of appropriate IT skills to communicate technical ideas through the written word and by graphical means.
  • Human Anatomy and Physiology
    The human body is a complex collection of systems interacting in a way that allows it to meet the demands of a daily routine. It has the ability to adapt to changing environments to maintain the internal environment within the physiological range for its survival. In the first trimester, you will focus on the basics of human anatomy and physiology and provide an underpinning basis for future modules. Links with ill health, well-being and disruption to homeostatic mechanisms will be put into context of normal anatomy and physiology. This will be followed by cell structure, function and histology, the nervous system and endocrine system, and the musculoskeletal - and respiratory systems. In trimester two, the organ systems that will be studied including the cardiovascular system, urinary system, the lymphatic system, digestive system and the reproductive system. Where appropriate, relevant pathophysiology will be introduced in parallel with the normal structure and functioning of the above systems. This module involves anatomy and physiology-based practical sessions that develop practical skills and assessed in the laboratory.
  • Biomaterials Project
    Designed to help develop a variety of laboratory skills, you will be using equipment, documenting experiments, considering potential health and safety concerns/risks and developing your research skills whilst working in teams, writing research reports, creating computer codes, giving oral presentations, creating research posters. You will start by being looking at common types of biomaterials, instances where biomaterials have failed, as well as discuss the ethics behind biomaterials, and medical engineering in general, before being introduced to the Medical Engineering laboratories. Much of this module is devoted to experiments, with is one major project, and several smaller projects. In the major project, you will conduct mechanical and material tests on both traditional engineering materials (metals, ceramics, polymers) and biological materials (bone, ligaments, tendons). You will then use Matlab to create stress-strain plots of the experimental data and to calculate standard engineering material properties such as Young’s modulus, learning the relevant coding skills alongside the project. You will also undertake a series of smaller projects, allowing you to investigate how corrosion affects common biomaterials, understand how much force is required to break bone, and experiment with various methods of stabilizing bone fractures. At the end of your projects you will look at topics like hysteresis, biocompatibility, biomimicry and fatigue wear in traditional and/or biological materials.
  • Materials and Mechanical Structures
    Here you will focus on two key aspects of engineering. To start with you will look at vectors and use this knowledge to understand the Newton's law in basic mechanical problems. You will relate this to the static analysis of a system and equilibrium leading to calculation of various stresses in a mechanical structure. The second part is designed to introduce the structure and properties of a range of engineering materials, with an insight in the atomic structure of metals and non-metals to understand factors that influence the physical properties of materials. It provides a review of mechanical behaviour of metals such as load extension curves and their interpretations. You will carry out hands-on tensile tests on engineering materials, allowing you to apply your knowledge from the classroom. You will also explore the alloying of metals through equilibrium diagrams, using this information to determine structure. You will develop your skills in gathering and interpreting scientific information through a series of laboratory experiments. This will help you to become familiar with definition and applications of mechanical structures and, with further studies in nature of stress distribution and transformation in mechanical parts and structures, you will be able to evaluate basic failure criteria and apply safety factors in engineering design.

Year 2 (level 5) modules

  • Ruskin Module
    Ruskin Modules are designed to prepare our students for a complex, challenging and changing future. These interdisciplinary modules provide the opportunity to further broaden your perspectives, develop your intellectual flexibility and creativity. You will work with others from different disciplines to enable you to reflect critically on the limitations of a single discipline to solve wider societal concerns. You will be supported to create meaningful connections across disciplines to apply new knowledge to tackle complex problems and key challenges. Ruskin Modules are designed to grow your confidence, seek and maximise opportunities to realise your potential to give you a distinctive edge and enhance your success in the workplace.
  • Electrical Circuits
    Here you will be introduced to electrical engineering, exploring a wide variety of topics such as Ohm’s Law, Kirchhoff’s Theorem, Thevenin’s Theorem, and Norton’s Theorem, all needed to be able to apply your theory to engineering solutions. You’ll be introduced to both DC and AC circuits, learning the theory alongside laboratory practical sessions, giving you hands-on experience with the various types of circuits and theories being covered in the module.
  • Bioinstrumentation Project
    Split into two projects, here you will firstly learn about and work through the design process, working in groups to design a particular electric device which can solve a medically-related problem. Within this first project, you will go through project planning, conduct market research, develop a product definition specification, brainstorm multiple conceptual designs, and use value analysis to decide on a final design to develop in more detail. You will also look at project management, risk assessment and management, as well as designing for the entire product’s lifespan (production, use, maintenance, and disposal). The use of statistics and control charts to monitor quality and Deming’s idea of continual improvement are also introduced. In the second project, you will work with your group to create, test, and improve a piece of bioinstrumentation equipment. You will physically create various pieces of electrical circuits (for example, amplifiers and filters) which link together to create the bioinstrumentation equipment. This module is mainly led by you, the student: your group must organise their time and plan when to complete the various tasks, working together to overcome obstacles, iteratively testing and improving the final piece of equipment, which is a core objective in this project.
  • Signals and Signal Processing
    A sound understanding of the nature, characteristics and sources of signals is an essential part when studying any aspect of electronic technology. Here you will gain a broad understand of signals, their sources and how they are processed using analogue and digital techniques. You will also gain an insight into how signals are characterised, analysed and filtered, looking particularly at frequency analysis and its application to audio signals in particular.
  • Advanced Engineering Skills
    Building on previous modules here you will continue applying mathematics to express and solve engineering problems, moving on to include more complex mathematical concepts. You’ll be introduced to calculus, complex numbers, and Laplace transforms, helping you to develop an appreciation of the overwhelming influence that these concepts have had on engineering analysis and design, particularly with their application to specialist software. You’ll learn to apply differentiation and integration technics to solve engineering problems in dynamics, control, structural analysis, engineering optimisations, and computational engineering. You’ll also learn to analyse engineering concepts through solving complex equations and differential equations using analytical and numerical techniques. Coding is also used to develop your problem-solving skills and create solutions to complex mathematical problems, you’ll apply this to engineering problems to create a logical sequence of steps or solutions after which you’ll develop tests to check the solution is correct.

Year 3 compulsory modules

  • Statics and Dynamics
    Develop the static and dynamic skills most relevant to medical engineering. You will start with a review of rectangular, polar, and cylindrical coordinate systems as well as transforming a resultant force into its components and vice versa, and practice creating free body diagrams that model real-world examples. Within the statics portion of this module, you’ll use equilibrium of forces and moments to solve unknown forces in 2D determinate systems. Method of sections and method of joints are then used to solve for unknown forces within truss members before being introduced to statics situations involving cables and pulleys. With dynamics you’ll explore the kinematics of various types of motion and typical kinetics problems encountered within engineering. Different types of energy are introduced and used to solve problems involving collisions/impacts of multiple bodies. Most sessions will begin with a lecture followed by a tutorial, working through example problems. There are also practical laboratory experiments, a week at the end of each section allowing you to immediately use your newly-learned theory to enhance your understanding of the material.
  • Individual Major Project and Research Methods
    This module is your opportunity to carry out an individual piece of research in an engineering topic of your choosing, leading to a substantial outcome using a single or combination of experimental, numerical, or analytical methods related to your branch of engineering. You’ll develop your critical thinking skills and ability to independently manage and conduct research. You’ll attend workshops to help you develop a proposal, identifying a problem, undertake a literature review, create a research strategy and methods, research ethics and impacts, and develop a project plan. You’ll work under the guidance of an academic staff member, specialised in your area of research. You’ll receive a minimum of four supervision tutorials, spread throughout the duration of the module.
  • Biomechanics Project
    In your final project-based module you’ll focus on experimental biomechanics (motion analysis) and geometry creation in semester one, and computational biomechanics (finite element modelling) in the semester two. Motion Analysis: Here you’re introduced to the motion analysis laboratory, learning about calibration, marker placement, and intra- and inter-reliability marker placement tests. You’ll collect data while classmates perform level walking, a sports activity, and another activity of daily living. You’ll analyse this kinetic and kinematic data in Vicon, Visual3D, and Matlab. Geometry Creation: You’ll create 2D sketches and 3D parts and assemblies of various geometries, creating/segmenting irregular 3D geometries from MRI scans by using specialist medical software. Finite Element Modelling: You’re then introduced to finite element (FE) modelling, and its uses within Medical Engineering. You’ll gain an understanding of vital aspects (such as mesh convergence tests and setting appropriate boundary conditions, loads, and material properties) of FE models through creating, trouble-shooting, and solving various simplified FE models. You’ll create and solve an FE model of the data collected/created previously in this project, using geometry created during the Geometry Creation section, as well as loads and boundary conditions from the Motion Analysis testing. Finally, you’ll use the knowledge you have learnt throughout the year to create and solve an FE model related to a Sports Biomechanics topic of your own choosing.
  • Mechatronics
    Here you’ll explore the different aspects of a mechatronics system, covering sensing, programming, data acquisition, signal conditioning, control and actuation (electrical/mechanical/hydraulic/pneumatic) through a mixture of lectures and lab sessions. This will give you the change to apply your knowledge to real systems, giving you hands-on experience. In sensing, you’ll cover the basic types of sensors, their working mechanisms and applications. Programming deals with the different modes currently available eg, manual and automatic programming, allowing you to explore Arduino Uno. You’ll be introduced to Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs) to help you understand their applicability in industrial applications. In data acquisition you’ll look at analogue-to digital and digital-to-analogue conversion, digital data representation and circuit analysis of useful conversion stages. You’ll also be introduced to the fundamentals of control theory: block diagrams and feedback, proportional control, proportional-integral-derivative (PID) control, detailed analysis of DC motors, and finally speed and position control. Mechanical actuation systems will also be introduced, giving you a complete understanding of how different components of a mechatronic system work together, including concepts related to gear trains, hydraulic pumps, valves, pneumatic systems, kinematic chains, etc.


We will use a range of assessment methods to check your academic and practical progress throughout the course. These include exams, essays and reports, work relating to practical classes and demonstrations, log books, presentations and posters.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Science & Engineering is one of the largest of the four faculties at Anglia Ruskin University. Whether you choose to study with us full-time or part-time, on campus or at a distance, there’s an option whatever your level – from a foundation degree, BSc, MSc, PhD or professional doctorate.

Whichever course you pick, you’ll gain the theory and practical skills needed to progress with confidence. Join us and you could find yourself learning in the very latest laboratories or on field trips or work placements with well-known and respected companies. You may even have the opportunity to study abroad.

Everything we do in the faculty has a singular purpose: to provide a world-class environment to create, share and advance knowledge in science, technology and engineering fields. This is key to all of our futures.

Where can I study?

Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

This course gives you the opportunity to take a work placement year between years 2 and 3 of your studies. You’ll get experience of seeking and securing a job and working in an industry relating to your course. You’ll also get the practical experience and industry contacts to benefit your studies and enhance your long-term career prospects.

Although they can’t be guaranteed, we can work with you to find a placement using our contacts with a large number of employers. You’ll have regular contact with one of our course tutors and be supported by a supervisor from your placement company. Together they’ll monitor your performance and give you feedback.

To find out more about placement opportunities, email us at

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students starting 2019/20 or 2020/21 (per year)


International students starting 2020/21 (per year)


Placement year (UK, EU, international students)


How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

You can take out a tuition fee loan, which you won’t need to start repaying until after your graduate. Or alternatively, there's the option to pay your fees upfront.

Loans and fee payments


We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Some of these cover all or part of your tuition fees.

Explore ARU scholarships

International students

You must pay your fees upfront, in full or in instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit or sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for UK & EU students

Most new undergraduate students can apply for government funding to support their studies and university life. This includes Tuition Fee Loans and Maintenance Loans. There are additional grants available for specific groups of students, such as those with disabilities or dependants.

We also offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you’re at university. Find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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