This Postgraduate Certificate has been designed for engineering professionals who are interested in developing their careers into systems engineering or project management roles in the defence and security domains
Students will develop a powerful set of skills and knowledge about defence and security systems and gain awareness and understanding of the economic and organisational context within which defence and security systems are developed, including the limitations these can impose. Depending on the modules chosen, students may focus more on business, project management, reliability or design aspects.
Students undertake modules to the value of 60 credits.
The programme consists of four taught modules of 15 credits each.
Students must take Defence and Security Systems (15 credits) and either three from the list below or two from the list below and one optional module.
Teaching and learning
The programme consists of four taught modules, each of which is delivered as a five-day block week consisting of a blend of interactive lectures, small-group exercises and presentations, case studies and workshop activity. Formative feedback is given to students throughout the modules. Modules are formally assessed through coursework to be completed a few weeks after the module, and for some modules there is also a short test or a 1.5 hour written examination.
Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Defence Systems Engineering PG Cert
Students who have studied this subject have found employment in defence, aerospace, rail, construction, cybersecurity, engineering, IT, management consultancy and many other areas.
Systems engineering is a highly sought-after expertise, particularly in engineering and technology-based organisations.
The programme's industrial advisory board ensures that the subjects students learn about cover the key issues faced by industry.
The programme combines interactive lectures, group exercises and case studies to reinforce key points. Lecturers are experts in the field, many of whom have engaged in the practice of systems engineering in industry, and all of whom oversee research across a broad range of subjects relating to systems engineering, project management and technology management.
Students with this degree will gain the skills, knowledge and confidence to further their careers. They will be able to build their professional contacts with like-minded individuals from different organisations.
On successful completion of the 60-credit programme, students may choose to apply to transfer their credit towards a 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma or a 180-credit MSc in Systems Engineering Management.
The MSc in Systems Engineering Management (which students may choose to go on to study on successful completion of this Postgraduate Certificate) is accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) on behalf of the Engineering Council for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer.
The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.
The following REF score was awarded to the department: Space & Climate Physics
90% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)
Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.
With conflicts becoming either increasingly drawn-out, asymmetric wars of attrition or normalise into states of no peace – no war, our understanding of conflict and conflict intervention is shifting. Conflicts are rarely determined by military victory, diplomacy or long-term development, but require to securing populations through a comprehensive approach that sees to their political, and economic, as well as their security-related needs. Their outcome will be determined by how well the different arms of government and civil society, both locally and internationally, can work together and how well they understand each others' perspectives.
This inter-disciplinary and custom designed MSc offers the unique opportunity to look at conflict, conflict intervention and post-conflict reconstruction through the lenses of defence, development and diplomacy.
The MSc is designed for graduates with a career in government, the armed forces, inter-governmental organisations, NGOs or academia in mind, and for practitioners looking to enhance their practical skills while placing these within a broader theoretical perspective.
Five core modules worth 75 credits plus a Dissertation worth 60 credits plus three optional modules to the value of 45 credits.
Optional module in previous years have included:
At the beginning of the academic year, students go through two-day induction events in which they are informed about the University, the School, the MSc programmes and the facilities available for their learning.
The 180 credits one-year MSc degree programme is divided into five core and three optional modules of 15 credits each. Furthermore, students have to submit a dissertation of 60 credits of not more than15,000 words. Most of the modules are delivered during the first two terms and students spend the remaining time to write the dissertation.
Although all modules have 18/19 contact hours, the core modules are spread over 9/10 weeks and 132 hours of self-directed learning. The modules are mainly delivered through weekly 2-hour sessions which take the form of a one hour lecture and a one hour tutorial. The form in which seminars are conducted can differ from one module to another. Typically modules would have elements of lectures, discussions, and presentations from students—the extent of each of these components would differ from one module to another. The optional modules of the programme are delivered over two full days, through a mixture of lectures, Q&A sessions, seminar discussions, and role plays.
Formative assessment is given on seminar contributions, role plays, and formative essays. Students have the opportunity to meet their lecturers to discuss their marks and other issues arising from their course performance. Students also have the opportunity to attend ‘essay surgeries’ in which they can discuss the structure and content of their essays early in the course.
Students can also meet their module coordinators or programme coordinator during their weekly contact hours or by making an appointment. When students are working on their dissertations during the latter half of the year, they are required to attend two 4-hour workshops. In addition, they have the opportunity to meet their assigned supervisors for an average of 6 meetings. Students also have access to the MSc Programme Director and the School’s Director of Taught Post Graduate Studies whenever there is a need.
SGIA conducts weekly seminars and organises lectures and conferences which all postgraduate students can attend. Students are also fully integrated into the Durham Global Security Institute, which delivers this MSc programme and hosts guest lectures and seminars throughout the year. These events provide students with the opportunity to engage with, and debate, the most important issues in current political and international studies, and in conflict, peace and security studies.
Throughout the programme students can contact the Careers Office of the University to get advice on available job prospects and get assistance on applying for these.
Our students go on to a wide range of successful careers including civil service and other government agencies, UN/INGOs/CSOs, journalism, media, teaching, law, banking and finance, diplomatic services and risk analysis.