DezertUK
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Ok so currently im in the process of finishing my Extended Diploma in Engineering, even though I haven't finished the course, there is a bunch of companies banging on my door to work for them, over summer and part time afterwards. I basically do a mix of mechanical and electrical and companies seem to really need that for a technician.

However from what I read on job postings and from some discussions is that its getting quite hard to get a job as an engineer and they want people that are quite specialised.

Now... I want to work on robots and robotic systems (Programming but also do hands on) but Im worried that choosing one over the other will restrict me and that doing a combined course (Mechatronic and Robotic Engineering) will make me useless because Im not specialised enough.
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Doones
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(Original post by DezertUK)
Ok so currently im in the process of finishing my Extended Diploma in Engineering, even though I haven't finished the course, there is a bunch of companies banging on my door to work for them, over summer and part time afterwards. I basically do a mix of mechanical and electrical and companies seem to really need that for a technician.

However from what I read on job postings and from some discussions is that its getting quite hard to get a job as an engineer and they want people that are quite specialised.

Now... I want to work on robots and robotic systems (Programming but also do hands on) but Im worried that choosing one over the other will restrict me and that doing a combined course (Mechatronic and Robotic Engineering) will make me useless because Im not specialised enough.
Are you asking about which degree course to do?

Do any of these potential employers offer Degree Apprenticeships? If so that would be the ideal solution.

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DezertUK
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
Are you asking about which degree course to do?

Do any of these potential employers offer Degree Apprenticeships? If so that would be the ideal solution.
I suppose in a sence I am, Im just trying to figure out which one is going to put me in a competitive position to get a job that is relevant to the field. In regards to the the Degree Apprenticeships, unfortunately I only found ones that offer a foundation degree in Electrical engineering as they are not necessarily specialising in robotics or mechatronics.
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Vdkkdv
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Robotics and mechatronics is in itself more of a specialism. Most universities do not offer courses in robotics with a few exceptions. Are you planning to apply for a university or do a degree apprenticeship?
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Helloworld_95
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I would say that degree-wise, Robotics is a very high level topic, like get an introduction in 3rd year then do most of the stuff in 4th year/MSc. Anything before that is going to be prep, mechatronics, or "you can do this, but you won't understand how it works" kind of things.

Do you have an idea of which courses at which unis you would be interested in? Then I can have a look over and give you an opinion on them.
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Vdkkdv
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(Original post by Helloworld_95)
I would say that degree-wise, Robotics is a very high level topic, like get an introduction in 3rd year then do most of the stuff in 4th year/MSc. Anything before that is going to be prep, mechatronics, or "you can do this, but you won't understand how it works" kind of things.

Do you have an idea of which courses at which unis you would be interested in? Then I can have a look over and give you an opinion on them.
Aye. The amount of control and programming and mechanics and signal processing and CAD and electromechanics and whatnot is not friendly. It probably does take the whole of a degree to get to grips with it all.
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Doones
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(Original post by DezertUK)
I suppose in a sence I am, Im just trying to figure out which one is going to put me in a competitive position to get a job that is relevant to the field. In regards to the the Degree Apprenticeships, unfortunately I only found ones that offer a foundation degree in Electrical engineering as they are not necessarily specialising in robotics or mechatronics.
That's the way it works: you start with a broader course and then build on the basics by specialising as you proceed through the course. An EE Degree Apprenticeship would be a good idea if you want to work alongside studying.

You can then do a very specialist MSc when you finish the BEng
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DezertUK
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(Original post by Helloworld_95)
I would say that degree-wise, Robotics is a very high level topic, like get an introduction in 3rd year then do most of the stuff in 4th year/MSc. Anything before that is going to be prep, mechatronics, or "you can do this, but you won't understand how it works" kind of things.

Do you have an idea of which courses at which unis you would be interested in? Then I can have a look over and give you an opinion on them.
I found these to be the main courses I consider.

I was thinking about these:
Mechatronic and robotic engineering
Robotics Engineering

This as a possible backup(Do robotics after):
Software and Electronic systems engineering
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Doones
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(Original post by DezertUK)
I found these to be the main courses I consider.

I was thinking about these:
Mechatronic and robotic engineering
Robotics Engineering

This as a possible backup(Do robotics after):
Software and Electronic systems engineering
Also Leeds has Mechatronics and Robotics
https://engineering.leeds.ac.uk/cour...s-and-robotics

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artful_lounger
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In general, as above, it's more of an advanced specialism so you're more likely to cover stuff relating to it towards the latter half of the course. I would note, in general, that the core subject for the area is control/systems engineering, which is normally covered in both mechanical and electronic engineering courses. However I'd suggest that an electronic background alongside the relevant control engineering options would be the stronger option in terms of industry - the mechanical side is somewhat more "pedestrian" and it's the electronic and electrical side which creates more challenges generally.

Regarding the degree courses available, various names are used but there are quite a number of courses that cover both the electronic and mechanical sides - electromechanical, mechatronic, robotics engineering and similar. Additionally some general engineering courses may cover both, either throughout the course or in the earlier stages. Per my above comments on the electronic side of things, a general engineering course which includes some core mechanics content in the earlier stages of the course, and then more advanced electronic and control systems theory in the latter stages would probably be the best option outside of a joint/combined course described above (which would likely allow you to tailor it towards one side or the other if you wished, or balance it between both throughout).

I would however highlight that the core area (control/systems engineering/theory) is very mathematical - it is an active area of research in mathematics departments as well as engineering departments. Bear this in mind in terms of your future plans and current background/preferences; robotics involves much more programming moderately complex mathematics than anything else. Styles of teaching this vary (my experience was it was done quite "un-rigorously", to my annoyance) however in terms of working in industry a stronger understanding of the underlying mathematics would be better than the alternative. Depending on your background you may want to consider an engineering foundation year, if you haven't had the chance to develop your maths to A-level or equivalent (this would also apply in general to engineering courses anywhere, but especially given your subject of interest and the fact that trying to develop more sophisticated mathematics on a looser foundation tends to be very challenging).

In terms of specific courses, I believe Southampton, Queen Mary (UL), Portsmouth, and UWE all have courses in the area I believe, which may be worth considering (and represent a fair range of entry criteria). Southampton also has an engineering foundation year, which may be appropriate depending on your mathematical background. I'm sure if you search any of the degree names mentioned above on UCAS you'll find many more options - do look at individual course content and what optional modules they offer in latter years of the course, as well as whether the course is accredited or not.
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Helloworld_95
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(Original post by DezertUK)
I found these to be the main courses I consider.

I was thinking about these:
Mechatronic and robotic engineering
Robotics Engineering

This as a possible backup(Do robotics after):
Software and Electronic systems engineering
So yeah, those two courses are basically the same structure, it's not going to make much difference if you go into robotics generally. Sheffield's course does give you a bit more option to explore outside of mechatronics and robotics though, and it has the AMRC which does work on manufacturing robotics so that would be a massive advantage if you went into that side of robotics.
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