Postgraduate studies in the Faculty of Engineering

Introduction

It is generally accepted that a bachelor’s degree is only the first step in the learning process that a professional person should continue throughout his/her career.

A first degree is an indication of a basic ability to understand and apply the concepts underlying that discipline. It does not indicate competence as a practitioner of the associated profession. That can only come with experience and training within the profession itself.

About Postgraduate Study

The Faculty of Engineering at The University of the West Indies offers:

  • 10 diploma programmes
  • 27 MSc programmes
  • 15 MPhil programmes and
  • 15 PhD programmes.

Our diploma and taught masters programmes (e.g. MSc.) are particularly well suited to those who have already embarked upon their professional career, and are looking to gain deeper insight into a specialised area in their field.
Our research programmes (MPhil and PhD) allow students to follow their passion and provide the opportunity, resources and support for them to develop their own innovative products or processes.

Definitions and Admission Requirements

Below are brief descriptions of the different types of programmes offered by the Faculty and the general admission requirements. Please consult the Postgraduate Information Guide for more detailed information.


Postgraduate Diplomas

These programmes involve a mix of taught classes, examinations, coursework and a written paper. The duration is generally one year for full-time study and two years for part-time study.

General Admission Requirements:

  • A bachelor’s degree (at least Second Class Honours) in the specific subject area or in a related area with a record of experience in the subject area.
  • Students with pass degrees in the relevant field of study shall only be accepted for admission provided they have obtained at least two years experience in the field, and have a satisfactory confidential reference from their employer.
  • Applicants holding non-engineering bachelor’s degrees may be required to pass a qualifying examination.


Masters Degrees

All master's programmes offered by the Faculty are generally one year in duration for full-time study and two years for part-time study. MSc, MASc, MfgE and the MRP programmes involve courses of instruction, examination by written papers, supervised design/research work, which may be industry based, and oral and written presentations. Master of Philosophy (MPhil) degrees are research degrees, and are awarded on the basis of an examination by thesis.

General Admission Requirements:

  • MSc, MfgE and MRP candidates should normally possess at least a Second Class Honours degree in the specific subject area or a degree in a related area with a record of experience in the subject area. Students with Pass degrees in the relevant field of study shall only be accepted for admission provided they have obtained at least two years experience in the field and have a satisfactory confidential reference from their employer.
  • MPhil candidates should normally possess at least a Second Class Honours degree or equivalent in the area in which he/she is working or in a related area. Holders of a pass degree or a general bachelor’s degree must normally pass qualifying examinations.
  • A candidate may be required to satisfy such prerequisites as are deemed necessary before proceeding to the masters degree programme.


Doctor of Philosophy

PhD degrees are research degrees and are awarded on the basis of an examination by thesis.

Admission Requirements

  • Applicants who do not already have a master’s degree by research will be required to register for the MPhil first, and may be allowed to upgrade their registration to the PhD, upon satisfying the appropriate regulations.
  • Candidates who have obtained a Master of Science (MSc) degree with distinction maybe allowed to register for the PhD provided a substantial part of the MSc project has been carried out in the relevant area.

Note: Research degrees are not normally considered to be qualifications for professional practice in the broader sense, as they may not necessarily allow for registration as a professional engineer.

Research Seminars

All students registered for research degrees are required to present a seminar on their research topic within the first two (2) years, if registered full-time, and within three (3) years if, registered part-time.

This seminar is assessed normally by the supervisor of the student’s studies, and is reported as being satisfactory or unsatisfactory on the student’s annual Progress Report. It is intended to:

  1. provide a forum for the critical appraisal of the objectives, methodology, direction and
    progress of the research being undertaken.
  2. create a wider awareness in the University community of the research activities within the Faculty.
  3. provide additional means of monitoring the progress of postgraduate students doing
    research theses.
  4. create and foster an appropriate research culture within the Faculty.

Theses and Project Reports

The form of presentation of theses and project reports must conform to the University’s General Regulations governing higher degrees. Students should consult the University Library on this matter as well as the University’s publication “Theses and Research Papers”.

The maximum length of theses/project reports shall be as follows: -

    • PhD - 500 pages including appendices.
    • MPhil - 250 pages including appendices.
    • MSc /Diploma Project Reports 125 pages including Appendices
    • PG Diploma Project Reports 100 pages including Appendices

Essential elements/components/constituents of the proposed MSc project report should include the following:

    • Introduction
    • Background
    • Motivation
    • Scope and limitations
    • Underlying principles/literature review/ theory and fundamentals
    • Methods/approach adopted/used and why
    • Results
    • Discussion of results/review of methodology
    • Conclusions and recommendations
    • Closure/comment on the significance of the findings from work, its contribution to knowledge in the area, and the lessons that should be learned from the project experience

The above items are listed in typical sequence. The sequence itself is not fixed, and may be adjusted to some extent as appropriate to each particular case.