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Robotics and Automation
Undergraduate course
BEng (Hons)

Robotics and Automation

International Scholarships available

Overview

Learn to design and implement robotic products and systems that have the potential to revolutionise our everyday lives and working practices.

You will study the theoretical principles behind robotics and automation and, thanks to its strong practical focus, you will also have opportunities to put these principles into practice. Working with basic robots to begin with, you will spend time in the lab learning simple programming and systems and developing the knowledge to understand the more complex and sophisticated systems used in industry.

You will get to build your own robots in two separate engineering design projects during the first and second years of your course, giving you the chance to apply your knowledge and refine your skills in the designing, building and testing of electronic and electrical systems. During the Electrical & Electronic Principles modules, you will focus on theory and spend time in the lab building circuits to establish how they work.

Industry visits and case studies will develop your understanding of how robotics and automation work in the real world, from their application in the production of food and drinks, to the development of autonomous vehicles. You will also have the option to take a sandwich year, which will provide a great opportunity to put your learning into action in the workplace.

This course offers the opportunity to take a ‘sandwich’ year – a year of paid employment in industry which will build your skills and experience. This is usually taken between the second and third year of your degree, typically making your course four years in total. Students who choose the sandwich route find it helps with both their studies and getting a job after graduation. It can build your confidence, contacts, and of course your CV. Leeds Beckett advertise lots of placement opportunities and provide support in helping you find the right placement for you.

 

In a world where automated systems have become a part of everyday life, this course has never been more relevant, something that will be demonstrated on visits to companies where the systems are an integral part of the manufacturing process. Previous students have visited a Coca-Cola bottling plant and Yorkshire Tea to discover how robotics play a part in the modern food industry.

We also have close links with Premier Farnell, a global technology leader and an engineering solutions provider. The company's labs are based close to our Headingley Campus, and in your first and second years you will work on your engineering design projects at the company. The automation and embedded systems laboratories here at the University will also give you space and equipment to put theory into practice.

You will learn from an expert teaching team that includes Senior Lecturer Dr Mark Judge. With a PhD in artificial intelligence, Mark is an expert in electronics, robotics and automation and works in collaboration with international companies such as National Instruments, a global leader in test, measurement and control solutions. These industry connections have provided placement opportunities for his students. The team also includes Principal Lecturer Duncan Folley, who has professional experience of working on harpoon missiles and RB211 engines and whose research interests centre on automation, manufacturing and robotics in the aerospace and food industries.

We understand that full-time study does not suit everyone. That’s why we offer courses which give you the opportunity to decide where, when and how you can get involved in learning. Studying a distance learning course offers the convenience and flexibility to make education work for you. Whether you’d like to fit your studies around childcare, develop your skills while working or, quite simply, want to learn from the comfort of your own home, we can help you gain a qualification at a time and pace that suits your lifestyle.

Like our students on campus, you will have the same excellent teaching and learning resources, however you’ll find these online instead of in a lecture theatre. Not only are all the modules taught online, but you will also have access to an online community and more than 140,000 books and journals in our online library.

Visit our Distance Learning Website

This course offers the opportunity to take a ‘sandwich’ year – a year of paid employment in industry which will build your skills and experience. This is usually taken between the second and third year of your degree, typically making your course four years in total.

Students who choose the sandwich route find it helps with both their studies and getting a job after graduation. It can build your confidence, contacts, and of course your CV. Leeds Beckett advertise lots of placement opportunities and provide support in helping you find the right placement for you.

Course Features

  • Placements
  • Part-time study available
  • Sandwich year
  • Specialist facilities
  • Expert careers service
  • 24/7 Library
  • University accommodation
  • TEF Silver Award
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Entry Requirements

72
POINTS REQUIRED
If you're applying via UCAS, find out more about how your qualifications fit into the UCAS tariff.

Additional Requirements

GCSEs:
GCSE English Language and Maths at Grade C or above (Grade 4 for those sitting their GCSE from 2017 onwards) or equivalent. Key Skills Level 2, Functional Skills Level 2 and the Certificate in Adult Literacy/Numeracy are accepted in place of GCSEs.
IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification. The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Mature Applicants
Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website.

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.

Additional Requirements

GCSEs:
GCSE English Language and Maths at Grade C or above (Grade 4 for those sitting their GCSE from 2017 onwards) or equivalent. Key Skills Level 2, Functional Skills Level 2 and the Certificate in Adult Literacy/Numeracy are accepted in place of GCSEs.
IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification. The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Verify your qualifications
If you are an international student, we can help you to compare and verify your qualifications. Please contact our International Office on +44 (0)113 812 1111 09.00 to 17.00 Mon-Thurs / 09.00 to 16.30 Fri GMT or email internationaloffice@leedsbeckett.ac.uk.
Need to improve your English Language skills?
Don't worry if you don't have the level of English required for your chosen course. We offer a wide range of courses which have been designed to help you to improve your qualifications and English language ability, most of which are accredited by the British Council. Check your English and find out more about our English courses.


More questions?
No matter what your questions, we are here to answer them, visit our International website to get more information and find out about our online open days.

Careers

James Rawlings

Careers

James Rawlings
Product Design Engineer GR Electricals

MSc Advanced Engineering Management

“Working and studying at the same time has worked really well for me - I've been able to apply each of my modules to what I do on a day-to-day basis. My course has strengthened my knowledge of the electrical industry and allowed me to start formulating ideas for my own website.

Teaching and learning

Understand the principles and methods necessary for robotics and control in the context of electronic and electrical engineering. You will develop the skills to undertake projects to a professional standard and you will be able to manage, evaluate and apply methods and techniques. The tabs below detail what and how you will study in each year of your course. The balance of assessments and overall workload will be informed by your core modules and the option modules you choose to study – the information provided is an indication of what you can expect and may be subject to change. The option modules listed are also an indication of what will be available to you. Their availability is subject to demand and you will be advised which option modules you can choose at the beginning of each year of study.
Through six core modules you will explore theory while you build the necessary practical skills to design, build and test electronic and electrical systems. You will learn predominantly through projects including laboratory and workshop based activities.
Overall workload
Clock icon
320 hours Teaching and learning Typically, this will include lectures, seminars, tutorials, supervised studio time or laboratory time and one-to-one meetings with your personal tutor.
Clock icon
880 hours Independent study This is the time outside your timetabled hours when you will be expected to continue learning independently. Typically, this will involve reading, research, completing assignments, preparing presentations and exam revision.
Indicative assessment proportions (based on 2018/19)
Examination This could include a timed examination, take-away paper, formal presentation or viva-voce examination or a set exercise, quiz or multiple choice test.
31%
Coursework This could include essays, reports or other written assignments, a dissertation or project, or a portfolio of your work. Assessed work will normally be returned with feedback within four weeks of your submission. When you begin your course, you will be provided with a module handbook for your chosen modules which will provide specific guidelines on how and when you will receive that feedback.
69%
Core Modules

Gain the skills and knowledge needed to develop and test digital electronics circuits and systems.

Study fundamental engineering principles, using a top-down approach to analyse a range of engineering systems and sub-systems. You will become familiar with engineering terminology and literature, develop your scientific understanding of the technologies involved and learn to appreciate the ingenuity of design of widely-used sensors and typical system components.

Learn to analyse and develop simple analogue electronic circuits.

Computer Systems Architecture

Develop your understanding of manufacturing and production engineering and the software and computer tools available to engineers.

Combining a series of lectures with a large number of practical workshop sessions, you will be introduced to the basic engineering design process and use electronics / robotics kits as a starting point to design, build and test a working prototype with a range of functionalities.

Designed to support your learning throughout your first year, this module will build your understanding of the core mathematical and physical concepts used in your year one core modules.

You will complete six core modules that will broaden and deepen your practical skills and theoretical knowledge. You will study additional topics in microprocessor based programming, robotics, computing and control, and then apply your knowledge through the study of digital devices in the field of robotics.
Overall workload
Clock icon
222 hours Teaching and learning Typically, this will include lectures, seminars, tutorials, supervised studio time or laboratory time and one-to-one meetings with your personal tutor.
Clock icon
978 hours Independent study This is the time outside your timetabled hours when you will be expected to continue learning independently. Typically, this will involve reading, research, completing assignments, preparing presentations and exam revision.
Indicative assessment proportions (based on 2018/19)
Examination This could include a timed examination, take-away paper, formal presentation or viva-voce examination or a set exercise, quiz or multiple choice test.
3%
Practical This is an invigilated assessment of your practical skills and competencies, such as delivering a coaching session, or a school experience if you are training to be a teacher.
30%
Coursework This could include essays, reports or other written assignments, a dissertation or project, or a portfolio of your work. Assessed work will normally be returned with feedback within four weeks of your submission. When you begin your course, you will be provided with a module handbook for your chosen modules which will provide specific guidelines on how and when you will receive that feedback.
67%
Core Modules

Apply the theory of robotics within the field of an automation/industrial setting and develop strategies for the implementation of a robotic/automation system within a given scenario.

Learn to program and interface embedded systems to adapt them for a variety of purposes, such as medical systems, food monitoring systems, vision systems and automotive systems.

Building on the knowledge gained in your first year, you will enhance your ability to analyse and develop electronic and electrical systems.

Operating Systems for Robotics

Apply the theory of device control in a variety of systems. You will investigate the theory, properties and fundamentals of control systems, research the variety of sensors and actuators that are used within control systems, and program devices using control strategies and selected sensors and actuators.

Build on your first year modules and use your understanding of the engineering design and development processes to design, build and test a working prototype with a range of functionalities. You will be expected to use your own designs to augment any standard components and to provide enhanced functionality for your project.

Designed to support your learning throughout your second year, through a series of lectures and tutorials, you will be guided through the mathematical and physical concepts used in your year two core modules.

This course offers the opportunity to take a ‘sandwich’ year – a year of paid employment in industry which will build your skills and experience. This is usually taken between the second and third year of your degree, typically making your course four years in total.

Students who choose the sandwich route find it helps with both their studies and getting a job after graduation. It can build your confidence, contacts, and of course your CV. Leeds Beckett advertise lots of placement opportunities and provide support in helping you find the right placement for you.

Your third year modules will enable you to understand how you can apply your knowledge to devices used within industry. You will also further develop skills in project management and accounts. You will study two core modules in addition to your year-long Production Project and two option modules.
Overall workload
Clock icon
193 hours Teaching and learning Typically, this will include lectures, seminars, tutorials, supervised studio time or laboratory time and one-to-one meetings with your personal tutor.
Clock icon
1007 hours Independent study This is the time outside your timetabled hours when you will be expected to continue learning independently. Typically, this will involve reading, research, completing assignments, preparing presentations and exam revision.
Indicative assessment proportions (based on 2018/19)
Examination This could include a timed examination, take-away paper, formal presentation or viva-voce examination or a set exercise, quiz or multiple choice test.
32%
Practical This is an invigilated assessment of your practical skills and competencies, such as delivering a coaching session, or a school experience if you are training to be a teacher.
20%
Coursework This could include essays, reports or other written assignments, a dissertation or project, or a portfolio of your work. Assessed work will normally be returned with feedback within four weeks of your submission. When you begin your course, you will be provided with a module handbook for your chosen modules which will provide specific guidelines on how and when you will receive that feedback.
48%
Core Modules

Develop your understanding of manufacturing and production engineering, discovering where and how computer simulation can benefit an organisation and examining its role in the design, planning and control of production systems.

An introduction to management accounting and information systems theory and techniques, you will examine the support systems for information management and the contribution of the accountant in providing information for decision-making.

An opportunity to develop a product, ideally for an external client. You will research, generate ideas, design, create, implement and evaluate your product, reflecting on your own performance throughout the process.

Option modules may include:

An introduction to the key processes, tools, techniques, methodologies and issues associated with project management.

Develop your understanding of the simulation tools available to an engineer to take a design from concept idea to market.

Study an overview of digital signal processing and its applications, looking at practical examples from a range of areas, including communications, data compressing and audio processing.

Investigate the theory, design and implementation of computer controlled industrial systems.

Power Electronics

Industrial Networks

David Love
Dr David Love
Course Director
David's background is in high-integrity systems, first in the minerals handling industry then in aerospace. He was drawn into software engineering during his PhD, and he is committed to enhancing our understanding of how to treat software-based systems as ‘proper’ engineered systems.
Engineering is the often invisible glue that binds our world together - it forms the foundation on which we live, work, play and care for each other. So what I love about engineering is that even if you pick a small field in which to specialise, you can hop around a whole variety of different projects, industries and subjects. You are always learning, and there is always a new challenge that no one else has quite figured out yet.
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Fees & funding

The tuition fee for the year for students entering in 2018/19 is £9250. The amount you will pay may increase each year to take into account the effects of inflation.
See further information on financing your studies or information about whether you may qualify for one of our Bursaries and Scholarships.

Tuition fees
Your tuition fees cover the cost of registration, tuition, academic supervision, assessments and examinations.
The following are also included in the cost of your course:

  • 24/7 Library and student IT support
  • Free wifi via eduroam
  • Skills workshops and resources
  • Library membership, giving access to more than 500,000 printed, multimedia and digital resources
  • Access to software, including five free copies of Microsoft Office 365 to install on your PC, laptop and MAC, and access to free high-end software via the Leeds Beckett remote app
  • Loan of high-end media equipment to support your studies
  • Student placements with ITS

Course specific

  • All software used on the course if a student version is available.
  • A minimum of one field trip per year. Coach / travel and entry costs are included in your tuition fee.
  • A three day away trip in year one. All fees, food, accommodation and travel will be paid for.
  • Placements which are usually paid.

Additional costs
In many cases, costs associated with your course will be included in your course fee. However, in some cases there are ‘essential’ additional costs (those that you will be required to meet in addition to your course fee), and/or ‘optional’ additional costs (costs that are not required, but that you might choose to pay). We have included those essential or optional additional costs that relate to your course, below.

Course-specific essentials

  • Additional costs incurred during field trips e.g. lunch.
  • Accommodation / travel / commuting costs incurred during any placements
    (Payments for these costs should be negotiated as part of the placement itself, or considered as any other normal outgoing while working would be. Placements are usually paid)

Course-specific optional costs

  • A laptop running Windows 10
    (Laptops can be borrowed from the university for free should you choose not to purchase your own and all computer labs at the university run Windows 10)

Other study-related expenses to consider: books (the library stocks books from your module reading list but you may wish to purchase copies for yourself); placement costs (these may include travel expenses and living costs); student visas (international students only); printing, photocopying and stationery; field trips; study abroad opportunities (travel costs and accommodation, visas and immunisations); PC/laptop (provided on campus in social learning spaces and in the library. However, you may prefer to have your own); mobile phone/tablet (to access University online services); academic conferences (travel costs); professional-body membership (where applicable); and graduation (gown hire and guest tickets).

This list is not exhaustive and costs will vary depending on the choices you make during your course. Any rental or living costs are also in addition to your course fees.

The tuition fee for the year for students entering in 2018/19 is £12000. The amount you will pay is fixed at this level for each year of your course.
See further information on fees and finance on our Financing Your Studies webpage.

Tuition fees
Your tuition fees cover the cost of registration, tuition, academic supervision, assessments and examinations.
The following are also included in the cost of your course:

  • 24/7 Library and student IT support
  • Free wifi via eduroam
  • Skills workshops and resources
  • Library membership, giving access to more than 500,000 printed, multimedia and digital resources
  • Access to software, including five free copies of Microsoft Office 365 to install on your PC, laptop and MAC, and access to free high-end software via the Leeds Beckett remote app
  • Loan of high-end media equipment to support your studies
  • Student placements with ITS

Course specific

  • All software used on the course if a student version is available.
  • A minimum of one field trip per year. Coach / travel and entry costs are included in your tuition fee.
  • A three day away trip in year one. All fees, food, accommodation and travel will be paid for.
  • Placements which are usually paid.

Additional costs
In many cases, costs associated with your course will be included in your course fee. However, in some cases there are ‘essential’ additional costs (those that you will be required to meet in addition to your course fee), and/or ‘optional’ additional costs (costs that are not required, but that you might choose to pay). We have included those essential or optional additional costs that relate to your course, below.

Course-specific essentials

  • Additional costs incurred during field trips e.g. lunch.
  • Accommodation / travel / commuting costs incurred during any placements
    (Payments for these costs should be negotiated as part of the placement itself, or considered as any other normal outgoing while working would be. Placements are usually paid)

Course-specific optional costs

  • A laptop running Windows 10
    (Laptops can be borrowed from the university for free should you choose not to purchase your own and all computer labs at the university run Windows 10)

Other study-related expenses to consider: books (the library stocks books from your module reading list but you may wish to purchase copies for yourself); placement costs (these may include travel expenses and living costs); student visas (international students only); printing, photocopying and stationery; field trips; study abroad opportunities (travel costs and accommodation, visas and immunisations); PC/laptop (provided on campus in social learning spaces and in the library. However, you may prefer to have your own); mobile phone/tablet (to access University online services); academic conferences (travel costs); professional-body membership (where applicable); and graduation (gown hire and guest tickets).

This list is not exhaustive and costs will vary depending on the choices you make during your course. Any rental or living costs are also in addition to your course fees.

Facilities

  • Automation and embedded systems laboratories
    Automation and embedded systems laboratories

    The laboratories provide equipment to support electrical and electronic engineering and include industry proven technologies such as Siemens Programmable Logic controllers, NI ELVIS and myRIO systems.

  • Farnell element14 laboratory
    Farnell element14 laboratory

    You will work on robotics projects in the electronics laboratory at Farnell element14 (part of Premier Farnell). Here you will be able to build your core skills in processes such as soldering and circuit board assembly, and your project-based activities will include the testing of circuits and sections of boards.

  • 24 hour Library and computer labs
    24 hour Library and computer labs

    Our Library and computer labs are open 24 hours a day, providing you with space to work and access to specialist books and journals, multimedia facilities and media equipment hire. Tens of thousands of our Library's digital resources, including ebooks, ejournals and databases, can be accessed online at a time and place to suit you.

Location

Headingley Campus

Headingley Campus

Home to our first-rate sporting facilities – Headingley Campus has a rich and diverse history having played to visitors such as Winston Churchill and Oscar Wilde. Set in 100 acres of parkland, with easy access to Leeds city centre, many of our buildings look out onto our grassy acre – a perfect place for hanging out, playing games and catching up with friends on long summer days. Headingley Campus has modern sport science laboratories, animation and music studios and the latest computing labs, as well as one of our libraries, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

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