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First Year

The first two years of the Engineering course at Cambridge are basically the same for all students and aim to give a broad overview of the subject, covering mechanical and structural engineering as well as materials, electrical and information engineering.

Part 1A Lego TeamIn addition to the formal lecture courses, a number of external and internal speakers are invited during the year to give 'Engineering Applications' lectures which will keep you in touch with industrial and research aspects of the subject.

Engineering mathematics is also taught in these two years, but at two different levels to accommodate both those who started the course having done single Maths at A Level as well as those who have had the opportunity to take Further Maths. In engineering, mathematics is used as a tool for describing physical phenomena and behaviour, so the teaching approach is very different from that used for mathematicians studying the subject as a purely intellectual discipline.

All students take the same four examinations at the end of their first year:

  1. Mechanical Engineering covering Mechanics, Mechanical Vibrations and Thermofluid Mechanics
  2. Structures and Materials 
  3. Electrical and Information Engineering covering Physical Principles of Electronics & Electromagnetics, Linear Analysis of Circuits & Devices and Digital Circuits & Information Processing
  4. Mathematical Methods covering Mathematics and Computing

At the end of the first year, students wishing to study Chemical Engineering as their specialisation transfer to the Department of Chemical Engineering for the remainder of their degree course.