School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics

  • MPhil/ MSc/ PhD in Engineering

    The School has an excellent national and international reputation in Mechanical, Automotive and Motorsports Engineering providing a lively and dynamic research environment. Experienced research staff carry out work collaboratively with industry.

    We offer five research degree routes: MSc by research, MPhil; MPhil transferring to PhD; PhD direct (only for students who have recently completed a master’s or MPhil degree in an area closely related to the proposed research topic); PhD by published work (only for students who have prior association with Oxford Brookes University).

    Students also benefit from being members of the Faculty’s Doctoral Training Programme which provides both general and subject specific research training and support.

    Masters by research

    The MSc by research degrees run for one year full time or two years part time and allow students to critically investigate and evaluate an approved topic and combine the equivalent of up to one semester’s taught programme (focusing on research training) with a major research project. This degree is intended to allow candidates to perform a significant piece of research, in line with current research interests. As with other research degrees, they are examined by thesis and viva.

    There are two entry points for a Masters by Research (January and September). Which one is applicable to you depends on the modules you will need to follow, so this is something you will need to discuss with a potential supervisor.

    Thesis: 15,000 words for MSc by Research in engineering and computing
    Length of study: 1 year full time or 2 years part time
    Entry requirements: a first-class or upper second class honours degree or equivalent qualification

    A candidate initially registered for the degree of MSc by Research may apply to continue as a student on the MPhil/PhD research degree programme. Applications should be submitted in the same way as for all candidates applying for a place on the MPhil or PhD programmes.

  • Completing a research degree with us means that you will have regular interaction with internationally recognised industrial researchers. You will immerse yourself in a dynamic research environment and find various opportunities to contribute to wider research, teaching and funding proposals.

    We offer an outstanding experience for research students with the following benefits:

    • You will carry out research alongside talented academics working in similar fields
    • While you engage in your own research, you have opportunities to interact with a dynamic research environment that is actively engaged in consultancy projects, teaching and writing funding proposals
    • Students benefit from links with the wider faculty
    • 24-hour access to research rooms, laboratories and computer suites providing access to specialist software such as CATIA, SolidWorks, GT Power, ANSYS, MATLAB, Mathcad, Star CCM+, Star CCM ICE, Adams, LS Dyna, Gabi 5, SAS and SPP
    • Opportunity to participate in design and build of Formula Student cars for competition at Silverstone, and other circuits in Germany, Austria, Italy, and elsewhere
    • A taught research training course that caters for both full and part-time study
    • A wide variety of optional training courses, student events, lectures and other opportunities delivered in-house
    • All students are allocated a Director of Studies and generally two other supervisors who they meet with regularly
    • A range of personal support that includes access to a wide range of staff who are available for consultation
    • Students benefit from automatic membership of the Faculty's Doctoral Training Programme

    We welcome research proposals related to any of the subjects covered by our research groups

    For enquiries about research projects in these groups, please contact the group leaders and the postgraduate tutor Professor John Durodola.

    Our MPhil, MPhil/PhD and PhD Direct programmes are three term programmes and have a choice of start dates throughout the year in September, January and June.

    The application process is broken down into 5 steps:

    1. Check essential requirements

      Before you apply, please check you meet entry requirements as well as the financial requirements of the programme.

    2. Explore our research groups and supervisory staff pages

      Explore the research groups and their associated staff member to see how your chosen field of study aligns with the research portfolio within the school.

    3. Agree your research

      Contact postgraduate research tutor Professor John Durodola to discuss your proposed research. You're welcome to contact academics to help you develop your ideas.

    4. Formulate your proposal

      When you have agreed you research project with John, he will ask you to prepare and submit a proposal. If the proposal is acceptable John will ask you to make a formal application, or give you advice on how the proposal may be improved. For guidance on writing a PhD research proposal, download our research degree proposal guidelines.

    5. Gather required documents and submit:

      Our MPhil/ PhD programme requires additional supporting documentation to be submitted as part of the application process. Before applying through the Oxford Brookes online application system please make sure you gather the following supporting documentation:

      • Research proposal
      • Scan of your passport - to confirm your name and date of birth. We will then ensure that any offer letters issued to you correspond with your passport name, this will help when applying for a student visa.
      • IELTS Certificate or equivalent (if required) – no older than two years from the proposed start date of your programme.
      • Scan of your final degree certificates already awarded
      • Scan of transcripts
      • Two references (at least one academic) - your references must be on institutional headed paper and be dated and signed by referee(s). They can be sent directly to the Research Administrator in the Faculty of Technology, Design and Environment in a sealed envelope, or emailed. Please note that it is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure their referees supply these documents.
      • Evidence of funding (if sponsored by an employer or government, you must provide evidence in the form of a recently dated sponsorship letter on official headed paper. If supporting your studies from private funds, you must provide a recently dated bank statement).

      After your Oxford Brookes online application has been submitted, these documents can be e-mailed directly to

      Submit your application through the Oxford Brookes online application system
      You can apply for any of our MPhil/ PhD programmes through the Oxford Brookes online application system.

    If you need advice at any point, please contact us.

    Faculty Research Team

    Professor John Durodola