Postgraduate Engineer Degree Apprenticeship (Engineering Competence) PgDip
Postgraduate Engineer Degree Apprenticeship (PgDip Engineering Competence)
Do you want to study for a career-boosting Postgraduate qualification while you earn a salary?
On this postgraduate engineer degree apprenticeship course, which lasts just over 2 years, you'll learn core skills in areas such as project management, risk management and safety. After completing your diploma you work towards achieving Chartered Engineer status (CEng).
You’ll cover topics such as sustainable engineering and safe working practices, and work on projects that contribute to your success at work. You'll tailor what you learn to suit your professional goals and the type of role that you have, as well as your employer's objectives.
The course is work-based, and combines a mixture of lectures and online learning. You'll spend 20% of your work time on your apprenticeship via lectures, distance learning, writing assignments and other related study. The government or your employer will pay your tuition fees – so it won't cost you anything.
After the course, you'll have the skills, knowledge and experience to take responsibility for complex engineering projects and move into more senior roles. You could also top your diploma up to a Master's degree through our Learning at Work department.
This Apprenticeship Standard aligns with the current edition of the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC) at Chartered Engineer (CEng) level. The experience gained and responsibility held by the apprentice on completion of the apprenticeship will either wholly or partially satisfy the requirements for CEng and reaches the agreed level of professional competence as defined in the Assessment Plan.
PgDip Engineering Competence entry requirements
- An honours degree in a Science, Technology, Engineering or Mathematics subject.
- All applicants to the Degree Apprenticeship courses must have an acceptable Level 2 qualification in English and Mathematics. Acceptable qualifications include GCSE with grade C/4 or above and Functional Skills with Pass - please note that we are not able to accept all kinds of Level 2 qualifications, so if you an unsure whether you have a suitable qualification please get in touch. If you do not have an acceptable qualification you may be required to take an additional assessment during the application process.
What you'll experience
On this course, you'll:
- Achieve a postgraduate diploma (PgDip) while earning a salary
- Gain eligibility to register as a Chartered Engineer
- Enjoy flexible study and a 'blended' approach to learn that minimises time away from the workplace.
- Have the opportunity to specialise in your chosen engineering discipline, for example, research and development, engineering management or product support.
- Become a more capable, confident engineer with the ability to: effectively manage the different phases of engineering projects; reflect on your own actions and decisions; become an independent lifelong learner
- Gain the skills, knowledge and behaviours required for career advancement
- Develop business and analytical skills alongside practical engineering knowledge
- Learn from staff who have professional experience in various engineering disciplines and links with employers and professional engineering institutions
- Get a learning manager from the University and a workplace mentor
- Tap in to our Library’s electronic resources, which you can access from anywhere with a Web connection
- Have access to the University's student support services and community including study support and the Students’ Union
- Work at your own pace, in your own time, in any location, with interactive online learning materials
- Take part in live Web-based chat forums to discuss your work with lecturers and other students
Careers and opportunities
Roles you can go into with an Engineering Competence qualification
There's currently a shortage of talented engineers in the UK, so there will be many job opportunities open to you when you graduate, in your current organisation and beyond.
You can use the course to progress to senior or managerial engineering roles and top up to a Master's degree. You will also work towards Chartered Engineer Status.
After you leave the University, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years from our Careers and Employability service as you advance in your career.
What you'll study on this Postgraduate Engineer Degree Apprenticeship (PgDip Engineering Competence) course
Each module on this course is worth a certain number of credits.
You need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits.
Modules currently being studied
In the foundation phase (year 1), you’ll develop your learning contract with your employer. This outlines what you’ll learn and why. You'll study four taught modules, delivered online through distance learning and in tutorials and workshops.
- Management of Risk
- Organisations and Managing the Workforce
- Project Management for Engineers
On these modules, you’ll develop the key business and analytical skills you'll need for postgraduate study.
In the development phase (year 2) you’ll complete work-based projects which allow you to tailor your learning to the specialist skills, knowledge and behaviours that you need in your particular engineering role (for example, test engineer or engineering business manager). If you commence the course in January, one of your work-based projects will begin in Year 1.
Changes to course content
We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.
Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional modules may not run every year. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.
As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).
ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:
academicwriting notetaking timemanagement criticalthinking presentationskills referencing workingin groups revision, memory and exam techniques
Maths and stats support
The Maths Cafe offers advice and assistance with mathematical skills. You can contact us by phone and email and use our online resources.
Teaching on this course includes:
This course is primarily delivered via our interactive virtual learning environment. With access to all the study material you’ll need, discussion forums and the chance to connect with peers and lecturers via chat sessions, you’ll have plenty of academic support and heaps of resources.
Teaching methods include:
- work-based projects
How you'll spend your time
Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks:
- September/October to December/January – teaching block 1
- January/February to May – teaching block 2
How you're assessed
You’ll be assessed through:
- scenario-based assessment
- case studies
- work-based projects
- problem-based coursework and professional-style reports
- computer-based portfolios
- reflective reports
You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.
You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.
Course costs and funding
The payment of the course fee is shared between the Government and some employers, meaning no cost to you as the degree apprentice. Total tuition fees are £24,000 paid over 2 years.
Please see our degree apprenticeships page for further information.
Additional course costs
These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.
You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.
You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.
We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.
If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.
You may need to pay for travel, accommodation and subsistence if you study or attend events at the University. This may be in the region of £50–£500.
If you take taught modules that are assessed by examination elsewhere, you’ll need to cover the costs of attending the exam at an agreed, approved location. This could include costs such as travel, invigilation and a courier and will be in the region of £50–£1,000.
If you take any taught modules, please contact us to determine whether there are any extra study costs associated with the modules you choose.
There's a fee of £1,000 before you start the course if we need to assess a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) portfolio.
How you apply depends on whether you’re currently employed or not.
How to apply with your current employer
If you’re in full-time employment and would like to do a degree apprenticeship with your current employer, ask them to contact us so we can discuss with them how we can work together.
You might find it useful to share our information for employers page with them.
How to apply with a new employer
If you’re not employed full-time or not working for a company that can fund and support your degree apprenticeship, you'll need to apply for a degree apprenticeship with a company that offers them.
You'll follow their standard recruitment process and we'll assess your academic suitability for the course once you've applied.
We can let you know when there are degree apprenticeship vacancies available with companies we work with – contact us to give us your details.
You can also browse degree apprenticeship vacancies with employers with whom we already have relationships.
If you have questions about degree apprenticeships, please get in touch with us.
Admissions terms and conditions
When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.