The individual project aims to develop independent research and project management skills and to improve technical writing and critical analysis ability. Students conduct an individual piece of research over an extended period of time and produce a coherent body of work to a deadline.
Guidance is provided by an academic supervisor but it is expected that the work and effort is driven and managed by the student. The practical and experimental skills learnt are dependent upon the type of project chosen.
The individual project may cover any subject so long as it contains sufficient academic content and is relevant to mechanical engineering. Projects may be practical or theoretical. The project topic is usually selected by the student from a list of projects suggested by members of academic staff. Students may suggest their own project topic subject to the approval of the MSc Programme Director and provided a member of staff is willing to adopt and supervise that project.
This module involves a major research project: planning, monitoring progress and adapting the plan to the changing situation are necessary skills.
The individual project forms a significant personal work load requiring well developed self-study and independent learning skills. Students are required to produce a work plan and this is reviewed at monthly intervals with the project supervisor.
Students are expected to exercise initiative and take ownership of the project.
Students are expected to actively learn new theories, concepts and methods as part of their research project as this typically involves an in depth investigation of an engineering topic. The purpose of the individual project is to achieve this knowledge in the specialist area of the project. Critical analysis is seen as a key component of the thesis. Research projects frequently take the student beyond just their own discipline.
Method of Instruction
Self study under the supervision of a member of academic staff.
This module is assessed through a written project report and accompanying oral examination.
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