Aerospace systems focuses on the design and use of onboard systems found on most aircraft and spacecraft, and how these systems may be used to improve the operation and performance of aerospace vehicles.
Why study Aerospace Systems?
- Aerospace Systems group design projects are undertaken in collaboration with Scottish police, developing unmanned drones for Search and Rescue applications
- Students have access to state of the art experimental facilities in the MAST lab for autonomous vehicles.
- Final year students will undertake a six month placement in industry, an overseas university or within University of Glasgow research facilities
- Accredited by the Royal Aeronautical Society and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers
- We have several Engineering student societies, which include JetX, Design-Build-Fly and University of Glasgow Racing (UGR)
- You’ll take part in practical laboratories, including running a jet engine test, and a flight-testing course in a Jetstream aircraft during year five of the MEng
Engineering at Glasgow
James Watt School of Engineering
We have been delivering world-class engineering education and research for more than 150 years and are the oldest School of Engineering in the UK.
We offer an exciting range of undergraduate degree programmes that include not only the core engineering disciplines (Aeronautics, Civil, Electronics & Electrical and Mechanical Engineering) but also unique specialist degree programmes, such as Biomedical Engineering, Product Design Engineering, Electronics with Music and Civil Engineering with Architecture.
Our engineering societies
The James Watt School of Engineering is home to a number of lively societies.
Glasgow University Engineering Society
Throughout the year this society hosts a variety of events from social meetups to industry and career building events. All students are encouraged to attend these as they provide unique opportunities: whether it be a fun night out with fellow engineers of all disciplines, or a chance to talk to practicing engineers in a familiar and comfortable environment. The society provides a chance for our students to relax during the busy semesters alongside fellow students.
The Female Engineering Society (FemEng)
FemEng is a network formed within the Glasgow University Engineering Society, with the sole aim of bringing the women in the James Watt School of Engineering together. In connection with pre-existing organisations such as Interconnect (Equate), WES and Athena Swan, FemEng has established strong links with industry and academics alike. The society holds events which are tailored to suit the women that attend them, FemEng helps to encourage the minority. Cocktail nights, bake-offs, talks from inspirational women and the opportunity to engage in overseas projects are just some examples of what to expect from being a part of this rapidly growing society.
Engineers without Borders (EWB)
EWB UK is an international development organisation that removes barriers to development through engineering. EWB programmes provide opportunities for young people to learn about engineering’s role in poverty alleviation. By taking part in our activities, our members are making a difference to people’s lives around the world. GUEWB is one of the charity’s branches in universities throughout the UK.
Each year the James Watt School of Engineering participates in the highly renowned, ten-month long “Formula Student” programme. Run by the Institute of Mechanical Engineering (IMechE), this is an exciting and unique chance for students from across our engineering disciplines to join forces to construct a single-seat racing car.
The design and build culminates in a race at the world-famous Silverstone track, against more than 300 teams from across the globe. The competition nurtures students’ management, marketing and technical skills as well as offering specialised engineering and motorsport industry experience. The school recognises the substantial value of this activity and provides considerable technical and financial support for it.
The School of Engineering’s Industrial Scholarship Scheme
Taking advantage of our strong links with industry, the James Watt School of Engineering has launched an exclusive new scholarship scheme.
The University of Glasgow Engineering Scholarship Scheme offers top performing students the opportunity to gain significant paid work experience and an annual bursary of £1,600 whilst undertaking their degree. This gives our students a fantastic start to a future career before graduating. Amey, Leonardo and Mott Macdonald are some of the big industry names currently signed up to this rapidly expanding scheme.
The scholarship is open to University of Glasgow James Watt School of Engineering undergraduates who attain a GPA of 15 or more at the end of their second year. For more information:
You will study the same courses in the first three years whether you are on the BEng or MEng degree programme. Both embed creativity to develop world changing engineers.
- AEROSPACE ENGINEERING 1
- ANALOGUE ELECTRONICS 1
- ENGINEERING SKILLS 1
- MATERIALS 1
- DYNAMICS 1
- ENGINEERING MATHEMATICS 1
- MICROELECTRONIC SYSTEMS 1
- STATICS 1
- THERMODYNAMICS 1
In your first year, you will take a wide-ranging curriculum which includes courses in aerospace engineering, mathematics, dynamics, electronics, materials, statics, thermodynamics and engineering skills. These courses are supported by individual and group project work and laboratory work. This interdisciplinary approach, favoured by industry, also makes it possible to switch to most other engineering disciplines at the end of year 1 should you wish to do so.
- AEROSPACE DESIGN PROJECT 2
- EMBEDDED PROCESSORS 2
- ENGINEERING ELECTROMAGNETICS 2
- INTRODUCTION TO AERODYNAMICS 2
- MATHEMATICS AE2X
- THERMODYNAMICS 2
- ENGINEERING SKILLS 2
- INTRODUCTORY PROGRAMMING 2
- DYNAMICS 2
- FLUID MECHANICS 2
- ENGINEERING MATHEMATICS 2
- SOFTWARE ENGINEERING M3
- AEROSPACE TEAM DESIGN PROJECT 3
- COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS 3
- CONTROL 3
- ELECTROMAGNETIC COMPATIBLITY 3
- INSTRUMENTATION AND DATA SYSTEMS 3
- SIMULATION OF ENGINEERING SYSTEMS 3
- DYNAMICS 3
- PROPULSION & TURBOMACHINERY 3
- REAL TIME COMPUTER SYSTEMS 3
- AIRCRAFT PERFORMANCE 3
- FLIGHT MECHANICS 3
In years 2 and 3 you will concentrate on aerospace dynamics, aeronautical engineering, electronics and systems, electrical circuits and mathematics. There will be a focus on developing key software programming skills.
Years 4 and 5
In year 4 you will study topics including flight simulation, aerospace vehicle guidance and control, radio and radar, dynamics, aircraft handling qualities and aircraft operations.
BEng students undertake an individual project to solve a problem in aerospace systems. MEng students undertake an interdisciplinary team project.
MEng students in year 5 learn about aircraft handling qualities, aircraft operations, and advanced control concepts. Half of this year is devoted to project work, which can be carried out in industry, within the University or via a placement abroad. A range of optional courses is available in years 4 and 5 to allow you to develop and follow your interests.
Programme alteration or discontinuation
The University of Glasgow endeavours to run all programmes as advertised. In exceptional circumstances, however, the University may withdraw or alter a programme. For more information, please see: Student contract.
Partnership and industry links
As well as in our industry-sponsored UAV lab, many MEng projects are carried out in industry, and the school also arranges, whenever possible, visits to industrial sites. The school also sponsors student teams for national (IMechE) and international (AIAA) competitions.
Our international links
The MEng degree programme allows you to take your fifth-year project in Europe. We also have partner universities in the USA and Australia, where some students take their third year of study.
for entry in 2021
Summary of entry requirements for Aerospace Systems
SQA Higher Entry Requirements
- BEng: AABB at S5 will be considered. Typically S6 entrants will have AAAAA at Higher (B at Advanced Higher is equivalent to A at Higher).
- MEng: AAAB at S5 will be considered. Typically S6 entrants will have AAAAAA at Higher (B at Advanced Higher is equivalent to A at Higher).
- Additional requirements: Higher Mathematics and Physics or Engineering Science.
SQA Higher Adjusted Entry Requirements* (by end of S6)
- BEng: AABB
- Additional requirements: Higher Mathematics and Physics or Engineering Science. Successful completion of Top-Up or one of our Summer Schools.
A-level Standard Entry Requirements
- BEng: AAB – BBB
- MEng: AAA – ABB
- Additional requirements: A-level Mathematics and Physics or Technology and Design.
IB Standard Entry Requirements
- BEng: 36 (6, 6, 5 HL) – 32 (6, 5, 5 HL)
- MEng: 38 (6, 6, 6 HL) – 34 (6, 5, 5 HL)
- Additional requirements: HL Mathematics and Physics or Design Technology (SL can be accepted for either Mathematics or Physics/Design Technology).
Glasgow International College
International students with academic qualifications below those required should contact our partner institution, Glasgow International College, who offer a range of foundation certificates.
For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.
English language requirements
International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training):
- overall score 6.5
- no sub-test less than 6.0
- or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)
Common equivalent English language qualifications:
- ibTOEFL*: 90; no sub-test less than: Reading: 20; Listening: 19; Speaking: 19; Writing: 23
- CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
- CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
- PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
- IGCSE: English as a First Language (0500/0522): C in Reading and Writing, plus 1 in Listening, 2 in Speaking, where applicable. All four components (listening, writing, speaking, reading) must be examined and detailed on results slip
- IGCSE: English as a Second Language (0510/0511): A in Reading and Writing, plus A in Listening, 2/B in Speaking, where applicable. All four components (listening, writing, speaking, reading) must be examined and detailed on results slip
- Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests
* Please note that TOEFL is still acceptable for admission to this programme for both home/EU and international students.
For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use TOEFL to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level courses. We therefore still accept TOEFL tests taken in the last two years for admission to this programme.
The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:
What do I do if...
my language qualifications are below the requirements?
The University's School of Modern Languages and Cultures offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.
my language qualifications are not listed here?
Please contact External Relations
If you require a Tier 4 student visa, your qualification must be one of the secure English language tests accepted by UK Border Agency:
- UK Border Agency Tier 4 English Language requirements
- UKBA list of approved English language tests [pdf]
Visa requirements and proof of English language level
It is a visa requirement to provide information on your level of English based on an internationally recognised and secure English language test. All test reports must be no more than 2 years old. A list of these can be found on the UK Border Agency website. If you have never taken one of these tests before, you can get an initial idea of your level by using the Common European Framework self-assessment grid which gives you a level for each skill (e.g. listening B1/writing B2 etc.) However, please note that this is not a secure English language test and it is not sufficient evidence of your level of English for visa requirements.
For further information about English language, please see School of Modern Languages and Cultures: English for Academic Study.
The development of new aircraft and the increase in the complexity of aircraft systems fuel the demand for aerospace systems engineers, with opportunities in the fields of software and hardware design, simulation and expert systems. Past graduates have gained employment with companies such as QinetiQ, Logica, BAE Systems, Thales and Unisys.
Accredited by the Royal Aeronautical Society and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.
Degrees and UCAS codes
When applying you will need to know the UCAS code for the subject or subject-combination that you wish to apply to:
BEng students who perform well may transfer to the MEng programme on completion of years 1, 2 and 3.
Fees and funding
How and when you pay tuition fees depends on where you’re from: see Tuition fees for details.
The University is committed to supporting students and rewarding academic excellence. That's why we've invested more than £1m in additional scholarship funding in recent years.
College of Science and Engineering Deans' Award
The College of Science and Engineering is offering ten scholarships worth £10,000 each towards tuition fees for academically excellent students wishing to study an Undergraduate or Postgraduate Taught programme within the College’s programme portfolio.
RUK Access Bursary 2020 Entry
The bursary supports talented students who might not be able to take a place at University for reasons of financial hardship. It is available to new entrant full-time, undergraduate students of the University of Glasgow who are fully registered for Session 2020/21, as being domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and paying annual tuition fees of £9,250 per annum.
RUK Excellence Scholarship 2020
The RUK Excellence Scholarship of £1,000 for each year of study will be awarded to first degree entrants who have attained AAA or better in one sitting at A Level (or equivalent).
The University of Glasgow offer a 15% discount on the first year of tuition fee to students from Beaconhouse Schools and who enrol on an undergraduate programme at the University of Glasgow. The discount does not apply to Veterinary Medicine, Medicine and Dentistry programmes.
The University of Glasgow is offering four scholarships (one per college) for applicants to the University who are staying in the UK on humanitarian grounds and are facing challenges in progressing onto Higher Education. The scholarship is open to prospective undergraduate and postgraduate taught students of the University of Glasgow applying for entry in 2021/22. The scholarship meets the full cost of tuition fees for the duration of your programme as well providing an additional £5,000 per year stipend, if the eligibility criteria for university accommodation is met this will also be provided for the duration of your degree. For more information on the accommodation criteria, please see the Accommodation Services section on the website.
We are also offering eight scholarships to students who hold refugee status. This scholarship is awarded as a £2,500 stipend towards study costs, per year of study.
The scholarships above are specific to this programme. For more funding opportunities search the scholarships database
How to apply
Full-time students must apply through the Universities & Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).
International students to Arts, Engineering, Law, Nursing, Science, and Social Sciences can also apply using The Common Application: however, if applying to more than one UK university, we recommend using UCAS. Applications to Dentistry, Education, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine must be made through UCAS.
- 15 October: if including Dentistry, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine or also applying to Oxford or Cambridge
- 15 January: all other UK/EU applicants (unless otherwise stated on the UCAS website)
- 30 June: international (non-EU) students
We do not usually accept any applications after these deadlines.
It's your responsibility to ensure the accuracy of your application before submission. Requests to correct application content, change degree programme or change college of entry, will not be accepted after these deadlines. This policy is in place to ensure fairness and consistency to all applicants, and no exceptions will be made.
- Apply at www.ucas.com or through your school or college
- Contact UCAS on 0871 468 0468
- Apply at commonapp.org (international students to certain areas only)
How to apply for Advanced Entry
Apply for year 2 (Y2) on your UCAS application. If the specific subject is unavailable for Advanced Entry or your application for year 2 entry is unsuccessful, you will be automatically considered for year 1 entry. You do not have to submit a separate UCAS application.
More information about this programme
Aeronautical & Aerospace Engineering students in work were in professional / managerial jobs