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What is Engineering?

Engineering is about being creative in technical problem solving. Engineers make things possible by using mathematical and scientific principles together with analytical and design skills. They tackle existing problems by developing new solutions through innovative technologies. They also expand the frontiers of society by developing advanced materials, sustainable energy systems, construction technologies, transport systems, biomedical devices and telecommunications infrastructure. Ian Test

Is this the right course for you?

Engineering is a constantly evolving profession. As an engineer, you will need to be adaptable both to the rapid development of new ideas and technology and to the shifting requirements of industry and society. You will need to be a good communicator and be capable of working as part of a team. Above all, you must be a problem solver. You must be creative and able to synthesise and analyse information from different sources to arrive at efficient and practical solutions.

Why study Engineering at Trinity?

The School of Engineering at Trinity is ranked in the top 200 Engineering Schools in the world and offers outstanding teaching by engineers who are at the forefront of their field worldwide. It has a strong philosophy of research-led teaching and continuously benchmarks itself against the top international engineering schools. The Engineering course offers the opportunity to carry out research as part of your course with the aim of producing graduates capable of participating at the highest national and international levels. There are opportunities for work placements In Ireland and abroad as well as study abroad opportunities as part of the degree programme. The Engineering programme is fully accredited by Engineers Ireland up to Masters level (M.A.I.) and offers excellent career prospects in Ireland and abroad.

What will you study?

The B.A.I./M.A.I. (Engineering) degree programme is based on two years of general engineering, providing students with a firm grounding in the principles common to all disciplines, followed by two/three years of specialisation. Graduates are professionally accredited engineers with both a broad-based understanding of the whole discipline and a detailed knowledge of their chosen specialist area. The aim is that graduates will be able to continuously train themselves, to adapt and move into related or newly emerging areas as their careers develop after graduation.


All students follow a common programme for the first two years. The first year comprises introductory courses in engineering science, mathematics, computer science, physics, chemistry, mechanics, electricity and magnetism, graphics and computer-aided engineering, and a group design and build project.

In the second year, students take further engineering science modules and complete two more group design and build projects. This allows you to explore all the possibilities open to you in advance of making your final decision about which specialism to concentrate on.

While every effort is made to allow students to study the course they choose, in some departments the number of places for students of any one year may be limited (this has never been necessary so far).


At the end of second year you choose one of the six specialist areas:

  • Biomedical engineering
  • Civil, structural and environmental engineering
  • Computer engineering
  • Electronic engineering
  • Electronic and computer engineering (joint programme)
  • Mechanical and manufacturing engineering


Courses in the third and fourth (Sophister) years aim to broaden and deepen your knowledge and understanding of the specialism you have chosen.

Subjects are studied in much greater detail and students undertake real-life, practical projects. For example, if you choose Civil, structural and environmental engineering you could end up testing the pre-cast concrete used to build the Paddington to Heathrow railway; if you choose Computer engineering, you might find yourself building a microprocessor system.


Engineering students require a Masters degree to be directly eligible for Chartered Engineer status with Engineers Ireland. Therefore the School offers several options for a fifth year leading to a Masters degree (M.A.I.).

  • M.A.I. (Domestic)
Students can spend the fourth and fifth year in Trinity, undertaking additional modules in their specialisation as well as a group project in fourth year and a significant individual project in fifth year.

Students also have the option of spending the second semester of their fourth year undertaking a supervised internship placement. The remainder of their fourth year and the fifth year are spent in Trinity undertaking additional modules in the specialisation. Students complete a significant individual project in 5th year.

  • M.A.I. (International)
Students have the option to spend their fourth year abroad as part of the Erasmus/International exchange, CLUSTER or UNITECH programmes. As part of the Erasmus/International exchange or CLUSTER programmes, students spend their fourth year abroad at a partner university and return to complete their fifth year at Trinity. Some of our Erasmus/International exchange partner Universities include Institut National de Sciences Appliquées de Lyon – INSA, Universidad Politecnica de Madrid (UPM), Politecnico di Torino and University of Melbourne. The CLUSTER programme is a consortium of 12 universities including Technical University of Catalonia, Barcelona; Technische Universität Darmstadt; Technische Universiteit Eindhoven; Institut polytechnique de Grenoble; Instituto Superior Técnico Lisbon; Katholieke Universiteit Leuven/Université Catholique de Louvain; Helsinki University of Technology; Karlsruhe Institute of Technology; Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne; Politecnico di Torino; KTH Royal Institute of Technology Stockholm.

The UNITECH programme is a collaboration of 8 partner Universities and 16 multinational corporate partners. Students will spend one semester of their 4th year in a partner university followed by a six month internship with one of the corporate partners and return to complete their 5th year at Trinity. The partner universities are Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg; ETH Zurich; Institut National de Sciences Appliquées de Lyon – INSA; Loughborough University; Politecnico di Milano; RWTH Aachen University; TU Delft, The Netherlands.

Engineering at a glance

All students follow common first and second years. At the end of the second year you will select one of six specialist streams as outlined below.

First (Junior Freshman) year

Lectures – 16 hours per week

Tutorials – 5 hours per week

Laboratory work – 6 hours per week

Junior Freshman modules

  • Engineering Mathematics I and II
  • Computer Engineering I
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Mechanics
  • Introduction to Professional Engineering
  • Engineering Design I: Graphics and Computer-Aided Engineering
  • Engineering Design II: Project
  • Experimental Methods

Second (Senior Freshman) year

Lectures – 16 hours per week

Tutorials – 5 hours per week

Laboratory work – 4 hours per week

Senior Freshman modules

  • Engineering Mathematics III and IV
  • Numerical Methods
  • Computer Engineering II
  • Solids and Structures
  • Thermo-Fluids
  • Electronics
  • Engineering and the Environment
  • Materials
  • Engineering Design III: Project
  • Engineering Design IV: Project

Third and fourth (Sophister) years and M.A.I. Year

For contact hours, please see the individual stream pages (see below).

Sophister modules

  • Engineering Mathematics V
  • Management for Engineers
  • Probability Statistics

Select one of the six specialisations below:

Biomedical engineering

Civil, structural and environmental engineering

Mechanical and manufacturing engineering

Electronic engineering

Computer engineering

Electronic and computer engineering (joint programme)


Assessment in each of the first two years is mostly by means of written examination, primarily at the end of the last term, combined with continuous assessment of coursework during the year. Typically, end-of-year examinations contribute at least 50% towards your grade in each subject. The design projects are assessed entirely by continuous assessment.


The B.A.I. and M.A.I. degrees are recognised by Engineers Ireland and by a large number of engineering institutions outside Ireland. These degrees will be your gateway to a wide and varying career path. Graduates pursue a wide variety of careers, for example: medical device and pharmaceuticals industry; construction; design and transport; management; banking; law; financial services; management consultancy; energy, water, environmental sector; teaching; software and systems design; computer, electronics and telecommunications industry; specialist research and development; local authorities; mechanical, manufacturing and aerospace sector.

Further information Tel: + 353 1 896 1142 E-mail: Twitter @tcdengineering

Specific Entry Requirements

Leaving CertificateHC3 Mathematics
Advanced GCE (A-Level)Grade C Mathematics
Other EU examination systems See

Student Profile

Conor Young

I’ve had a really great experience studying engineering here at Trinity. My first two years gave me a flavour for the different paths in engineering I could go down. The different labs and projects throughout the years encourage you to learn, as well as the enthusiasm and dedication of the lecturers. As part of my degree I was given the opportunity to be involved in an internship where it was rewarding to able to apply the skills I have learned.

Graduate profile

Simon Dobbyn B.A., B.A.I, Ph.D.

Simon Dobbyn B.A., B.A.I, Ph.D., took a fulltime undergraduate degree here and continued his studies as a post graduate in the computer graphics group where he received his Ph.D. He recently received funding from Enterprise Ireland with the aim of forming a games middleware company.

The reason why I did Engineering was because I was interested in mathematics in school and I wanted to work in the computer games industry. However, since I was not sure whether computer science was for me, I felt that Engineering was a good choice since it allows you to specialise in different streams at the end of the course.

I think Engineering is a really good course to take, as it provides a good foundation to the core subjects related to the different fields such as maths, physics, and programming in the first two years. This means that by the third year, you have a comprehensive understanding of many different subjects, and you can then specialise in the field you are most interested in."

Simon graduated with a B.A. and B.A.I. in 2001 and finished his Ph.D. in 2006, entitled Hybrid Representations and Perceptual Metrics for Scalable Human Simulation".