Below you can find a list of all fourth year modules. Some modules in this year are optional.


Robotics 2

Robotics 2 will fuse elements of embedded programming, control, and mechanical fabrication to provide an overview of the latest research in the field as well as a hands-on approach. The course will draw from the foundational skills established earlier in the curriculum (in particular Computing 1, Robotics 1, and Gizmo) to bring critical skills together in a project oriented course where students will design mechanical, electrical, and software subsystems of an overall functioning robot. It will offer a practical point of view into how to design systems that close the perception-action loop in both simulation and real mobile robots, as well as critical insights into the design of integrated electro-mechanical systems. Faculty members involved in the design and delivery of the course have been at the forefront of the fabrication of mobile micro-robotic platforms; this experience will be leveraged to design student projects based on the current trends in microelectronics, simple embedded systems, and rapid fabrication (e.g. 3D printing).

The aim of the module is to develop critical insight into, as well as practical skills in, the creation of intelligent robotic systems. This involves understanding and critically analysing the behaviour of natural and artificial systems, and using the resulting insights to build smart technologies.

Enterprise Management

This unit will address innovation, entrepreneurship and enterprise skills from the viewpoint of setting up a technology-based entrepreneurial venture. It will cover key aspects of creativity and design required to develop a successful idea in a particular market. Fundamental concepts for planning and running a venture will also be addressed, including market analysis and marketing, competitor analysis, pricing, profitability forecasting, risk management, legal issues and intellectual property. The characteristics and skills required by entrepreneurs in various types of organisation will also be explored together with multidisciplinary team working in an entrepreneurial context.

Students will be challenged to create a suitable technology-based product, process or system in response to a chosen market to give students the appropriate understanding, abilities and skills necessary for them to set up a successful entrepreneurial venture.

This will be achieved by placing students in a semi-realistic entrepreneurial situation, where they work in teams, with mentor advice, to create a business plan to address a defined market need and present this to potential investors.

Solo Project

This is a major design engineering individual project in which students will be expected to work with minimal supervision to design a product, service, system or experience of their choice, subject to the satisfaction of the module leader and their supervisor. Students will be expected to select and implement projects 'at the edge' of design know how, perhaps using new or emergent technology, or exploiting recently developed scientific knowledge.

Optimisation 2 (optional)

The purpose of the unit is to apply, through advanced project work, the concept of mathematical optimization as applied to system design. Design, in this context, is viewed in the broad sense capturing problems ranging from engineering (technical) design, to plant operations, to complex processes such as civil planning and infrastructure, to financial modelling. The course extends on the concepts and tools introduced in Optimization I and II to complete a rational integration of design methodologies with concepts and techniques of modern optimization theory and practice.

The goal is to enable modelling of constraints and processes in system design project such that single and multivariate optimization may be performed to focus on critical measures of performance. It will stress rigorous, quantitative multidisciplinary design methodology that works with the non-quantitative and creative side of the design process. The objective of the course is to implement the tools and methodologies for performing system optimization in a multidisciplinary design context. Focus will be on all the multidisciplinary character of engineering systems, the creation of reasonable models of such systems, and tools for optimization, with emphasis on software and numerical analysis. Students will complete the course conversant with techniques in practice to create appropriate mathematical optimization models and to use analytical and computational techniques to solve them.

Industrial Design (optional)

This module is an intensive exploration of industrial design principles and practice.

Students will consider narrative, visual perception, ergonomics, human factors, user experience, aesthetics, form, symbolism, function with the use of insights from users in the design process.

The module will also explore the following in relation to Industrial Design:

  • Explorations of the design space
  • Consideration of human behaviour
  • Technology selection
  • Colour
  • Metaphor
  • Organic form
  • Inorganic form
  • Form follows function
  • Visual identity/branding
  • Material selection

Engineering Design Analysis (optional)

This module explores a range of advanced engineering design approaches to enable the quantification of parameters in the design process. Students will learn to use computer aided engineering tools. At the end of the course, students will be able to understand assessments of uncertainty in parameters including advanced assessment of tolerance stack up on parameters, modelling of ergonomic function, six sigma engineering design, people flows, interface design modelling and assessment, extreme user modelling and system design principles and modelling.

Enterprise Roll Out

Students will learn key skills to develop a value proposition for a practical enterprise. They will explore the linkages between innovation and selling.

Students will learn about selection of an enterprise scheme for launch, preparation of the enterprise elements for launch and preparation and production of marketing materials.

Other skills which will be learnt are production of prototype products or limited production run of products, deployment of marketing materials and business launch. The value proposition selected is likely to be based on a prior project.