Undergraduate study
Engineering

HNC Mechanical Engineering by Flexible Open Learning

This distance learning mechanical engineering HNC course is for learners who wish to work as technicians/technician engineers in mechanical engineering design, manufacture, maintenance and testing. Developed in consultation with local industry, it combines theory and practical work with the focus being on industrial applications.

Course information

Full-time

  • Not available full-time

Part-time

  • 2-4 years

More part-time details

  • Distance learning
  • Enrolment date: Monthly
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 342740

Contact details

Further information

  • Facilities

    Reporting on engineering at Teesside University

    A tour of Teesside University engineering facilities and employer partnerships, enabling us to produce graduates ready for the world of work.

 

The Higher National Certificate (HNC) Mechanical Engineering by Flexible Open Learning provides you with a programme of study over a range of disciplines to help you develop skills to progress your career through employment or further education at degree level. This is a Teesside University award delivered under licence from Pearson by Teesside University Open Learning (Engineering).

Application dates

  • Ongoing

Professional accreditation

The HNC programme is a nationally recognised qualification awarded under licence from Pearson.

You study eight units chosen to cover the range of needs of local and national industries and business.

The HNC provides a sound understanding of all key principles including core modules in Mechanical Principles, Analytical Methods, Engineering Science and a project. Further specialist subjects may include Materials Engineering.

Course structure

Core modules

Analytical Methods for Engineers

You gain fundamental analytical knowledge and techniques to complete the core modules of higher national engineering programmes. It is a base for further study of analytical methods and mathematics, needed for the more advanced option modules. You use fundamental algebra, trigonometry, calculus, statistics and probability, for the analysis, modelling and solution of realistic engineering problems at higher national level.

Engineering Science

You investigate a number of mechanical and electrical scientific principles which underpin the design and operation of engineering systems. This is a broad-based module, covering both mechanical and electrical principles. You gain an overview which provides the basis for further study in specialist areas of engineering.

Mechanical Principles

This module covers a range of mechanical principles which underpin the design and operation of mechanical engineering systems. It includes aspects related to strengths of materials and mechanics of machines. You develop a firm foundation for work in engineering design and as a basis for more advanced study.

Project

This module extends the development of independent learning skills by allowing you to investigate an area of engineering or technology for an extended period.

You receive training in writing technical reports for knowledgeable readers and you produce a report or dissertation of the work covered. In addition, you give an oral presentation, a poster presentation or both. The topic can be in the form of a research project or a design project.

You develop key skills in research, knowledge application and creation through keynote lectures where appropriate and self-managed independent study. Support is provided through regular tutorial sessions.

 

Optional modules

Application of Pneumatics and Hydraulics

You gain knowledge and understanding of fluid power systems in modern industry by investigating pneumatic and hydraulic diagrams, examining the characteristics of components and equipment, and evaluating the applications of pneumatics and hydraulics.

Business Management Techniques

This module develops your knowledge and understanding of the functions, structures and inter-relationships of an engineering business. It enables you to develop and apply the skills of costing, financial planning and control associated with engineered products or services.

The module also teaches you to appreciate the development of the fundamental concepts of project planning and scheduling that can be applied within an engineering organisation.

Engineering Applications

In this module, you identify individual tasks, activities, or programmes of work, whether administrative, theoretical, practical or supervisory, that you have undertaken as part of your daily working life and show how those activities have contributed to your professional engineering development. You need to document key aspects of your development to date and to critically appraise your career journey, identifying areas that may benefit from additional growth and produce an action plan for yourr ongoing professional development. You are given a learning pack with guidance to help identify and document aspects of your professional life that have contributed to your development as professional practitioner in your engineering discipline.

Engineering Design

The aim of this module is to give you an opportunity to experience the process of carrying out a design project. It will enable you to appreciate that design involves synthesising parameters which will affect the design solution.

Engineering Thermodynamics

The aim of this module is to introduce you to the principles and laws of thermodynamics and their application to engineering thermodynamic systems. It covers system definition, the first and second laws of thermodynamics, heat engine cycles, the measurement of engine performance and the layout and performance of steam plant.

Fluid Mechanics

You are introduced to the basic principles of fluid mechanics. You explore properties of fluids and different types of flow, and the underlying principles and theory of fluid mechanics in lectures. You look at worked examples in tutorials and laboratory work to enable practical investigation.

Heat Transfer and Combustion

This module is intended to develop students’ knowledge of principles and empirical relationships to enable them to solve practical problems involving heat transfer, combustion and the specification of practical engineering equipment.

Materials Engineering

The aim of this module is to provide you with basic background knowledge and understanding of the properties, selection, processing and use of materials.

Mechatronic Systems Principles

You are introduced to the necessary skills and principles which underpin a range of mechatronic systems. You examine small single component systems as well as larger systems integrating components from different engineering disciplines. You also look at the control concepts used in mechatronic systems and focus on system design and maintenance. The approach is broad-based, to reflect the fact that mechatronics is multidisciplinary and not confined to a single specialised discipline. You are encouraged to recognise a system, not as an interconnection of different parts but as an integrated whole. 

Plant Services

This module introduces the relevant physical and chemical principles for use in the evaluation of the production, distribution and use of each of the common plant services such as steam, air and refrigeration services.

Programmable Logic Controllers

This module investigates programmable logic controller (PLC) concepts and their applications in engineering. It focuses on the design characteristics and internal architecture of PLC systems, the signals which are used and the programming techniques. You produce and demonstrate a programme for a programmable logic device.

Safety Engineering

This module covers the fundamentals of contemporary Safety Engineering as applied to industrial processes. It consists of an introduction to the terminology, the nature and treatment of hazards, hazard analysis, risk assessment, emergency procedures and the application of protective measures associated with various hazards.

The main aims of the module are to provide a firm foundation for work in Safety Engineering and to act a basis for more advanced studies of safety practices.

Students will be provided with a learning pack where core subjects are presented in sequenced lessons that include self assessment questions with solutions to aid developmental learning. Module assessment comprises a formative element and a summative element. The formative assessment comprises a series of self assessment questions and answers at the end of each lesson. Feedback is also given to the students through email or by telephone. The summative assessment involves a single in course assessment comprising several elements.

Statistical Process Control

This module provides you with an insight into commonly occurring statistical process control techniques, the use of control charts, and inspection and sampling methods.

 

Modules offered may vary.

How you learn

You are provided with a self-contained comprehensive study pack for each of the modules. Each module consists of a folder or folders containing a series of lessons grouped into topics. Each lesson has an introduction, your aims, study advice, self-assessment questions and a summary.

It is important that you realise that open learning study requires a considerable degree of self-discipline. You must be prepared to devote both time and effort to studying alongside other commitments you may have.

Each module is supported through e-learning @tees.ac.uk

How you are assessed

The module leaning outcomes are assessed through tutor marked assignments (TMAs). Some of the units also require practical work - we provide additional software and/or practical kit for this. After you have completed the assessment for a module, your tutor will arrange an exit interview which enables them to authenticate your work and confirm the grade. These interviews can be done in person, by phone or Skype.

TMAs are a means of continuous assessment. They contain a series of questions which can be used to satisfy the learning outcomes of the module. The TMAs for the module are available to download from the module online elearning site.

All completed answers for the TMAs should be submitted through the online site, elearning@tees. Your module tutor will grade your answers and provide feedback through elearning@tees.


Our Disability Services team helps students with additional needs resulting from disabilities such as sensory impairment or learning difficulties such as dyslexia
Find out more about our disability services

Find out more about financial support
Find out more about our course related costs

Career opportunities

Students who complete this course can progress to a Higher National Diploma or directly into the second year of an appropriate degree at the University. Please note the degree is not offered by distance learning but most are available on day release attending the University on a weekly basis.

A higher national certificate award opens up the possibility of a career over a wide range of engineering disciplines, for example design, manufacturing and project management.

The qualification provides you with the opportunity to seek career development into senior positions in national and international companies.

Fees

Course costs
For a Higher National Certificate (HNC) you study eight modules at £495 for each module. For the Higher National Diploma (HND) you study a maximum of 16 modules, again at £495 each. You usually pay for one module at a time. Some modules are subject to availability.

If you join the course having completed no appropriate HNC modules previously, the total cost of an HNC is currently £3,960 for the eight modules required and an HND is another £3,960 on top of this for the additional eight modules you will need to study. All payments for modules must be made through the Online Shop. The link will be provided in your offer letter.

Supplementary materials
Practical kits - several of the electronic modules require practical work to be done. Teesside University open learning in engineering has developed practical kits to enable you to complete this work at home. If you are studying directly with us you are loaned these kits as required for no extra charge (except for the return postal costs).

Software - some HNC modules require you to use specific software. Wherever possible we use free software that can be downloaded once the module is paid for. For example Business Management Techniques requires Microsoft Project and Engineering Design requires AutoCAD.

Student loans
Home students may be eligible to apply for a student loan using the student finance website - click on ‘apply online for student finance’.

Search for Teesside University and the course title for the month you wish to start your studies and apply for a loan of £990 only to cover the cost of the first two modules. You must not select the maximum allowance option. If you study more than two modules within your year, the University will issue the Student Loans Company with an electronic change of circumstances request for an increase in your tuition fee loan. Please note you must apply each year for your next student loan - for example, if your loan starts in May 2017 you will need to apply again in May 2018 for that year.

When you receive your letter of confirmation from the Student Loans Company, please email it to us at tuole@tees.ac.uk before the start of your course. Please note that the foundation modules (if applicable) are not covered by this loan.

We are an ELCAS provider, provider number 1691.

Entry requirements

You should have three GCSEs at grade C or above (or equivalent) including maths, plus one of the following:

  • at least one A level in an appropriate subject
  • BTEC National Certificate in an appropriate engineering discipline
  • BTEC National Diploma in an appropriate engineering discipline
  • Access to HE in Engineering
  • any other Level 3 equivalent UK or international qualification in an appropriate subject


If you already have qualifications at Level 4 (or above) and you wish to apply for Recognition of Prior Certified Learning (RPCL) then use the link here.

The maximum registration period to complete a HNC by open learning is five years. You are required by the award regulations to successfully complete at least two modules (30 credits) in each year but it is possible to complete a HNC in a shorter period by successfully completing more than two modules a year.

Bridging module
There are bridging modules available. A Level 3 maths bridging module Foundation Mathematics for Engineers.

References
We don't require references if you are applying to study through open learning.

Certificates
You must include your qualification certificates when applying. We look for a Level 3 maths qualification such as an AS level, BTEC, NC or equivalent for direct entry to the HNC.

English language requirements
If English is not your first language and you haven't undertaken your final two years of schooling in English, you must demonstrate capability in English at a standard equivalent to the levels below:

  • Common European Framework of Reference for Languages level B2
  • GCSE English language grade C
  • PTE 51
  • IELTS 5.5 - reading and writing must be at 5.5 (or equivalent).

For additional information please see the entry requirements in our admissions section


You can gain considerable knowledge from work, volunteering and life. Under recognition of prior learning (RPL) you may be awarded credit for this which can be credited towards the course you want to study.
Find out more about RPL

Course information

Full-time

  • Not available full-time

Part-time

  • 2-4 years

More part-time details

  • Distance learning
  • Enrolment date: Monthly
  • Admission enquiries: 01642 342740

Contact details

Further information