BlogUniversityWhat It’s Like Studying a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at QUT

What It’s Like Studying a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at QUT

QUT Engineering - Fact Sheet

Keen on continuing your engineering journey at uni? Tossing up the different majors you could take? We hear you and we’ve got some info for you about QUT Engineering!

With the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at QUT, you’ll be blazing through the engineering industry in no time at all. 

If you’re wanting to learn more, keep scrolling! 

What is a Bachelor of Engineering at QUT?
Core Units and Majors
How to Get into a Bachelor of Engineering at QUT
What’s the Teaching Format?
What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

What is a Bachelor Engineering (Honours) at QUT? 

A Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at QUT is a program that covers all the nuts and bolts of engineering. You’ll gain valuable industry-level experience, have access to state of the art facilities and you can stand out from the crowd by choosing a major that personalises your degree.

It’s a very practical, hands-on course and is going to provide you with all the knowledge and skills necessary for a full-time gig in the field once you graduate. 

As an Engineering student, you’ll be working between two worlds. One will be inside the classroom where you’ll get to develop all the required theoretical knowledge. Your other world will be in the lab where you can put those theories to the test by applying them to hypotheses and ideas. 

Honours

A great feature about the course at QUT is the in-built Honours program. Meaning you won’t have to give postgrad plans a second thought when you graduate.

You’ll be flying through both undergrad and post grad within the same degree! In your Honours year, you’ll be working on a major project and some more advanced subject units. It’ll be a great time!

Can this degree be studied in conjunction with another?

Sure can! Some of the courses that you can study simultaneously with the Bachelor of Engineering include:

  • Bachelor of Business 
  • Bachelor of Design 
  • Bachelor of Information Technology 
  • Bachelor of Mathematics
  • Bachelor of Science 

So, you’ve got a lot of options. A double degree is a great idea for students wanting to personalise their course, graduate with a broader skill set, fast track their studies or enhance career flexibility.

It’s also an option for students who can’t choose just one discipline! Although keep in mind, it’s a lot more work and, of course, it’s not required. 

You can find out more about QUT’s Double Degree options right here!

Career Paths

With the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at QUT, you can be certain that you’ll graduate with some top notch skills that almost any potential employer will be looking for. You’ll be working on those communication skills, your collaboration abilities, upping those critical thinking skills and your eye will basically be attuned to finding the best innovative solutions in almost any project.

When it comes to the specific career paths you could go down, they’re going to be relatively dependent on the majors that you choose. The major that you select will generally dictate the area of engineering that you’ll focus on and therefore feel confident enough to pursue.

Still, some of those groovy potential jobs might include:

  • Civil Engineer
  • Mechanical Engineer 
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Engineering Consultancy 
  • Quality Manager
  • Biomedical Engineer
  • Logistician 
  • Teaching and academia 
  • Technical Sales 
  • Transit Analyst 

And the list goes on! As we said, your chosen career path will generally depend on the major that you choose, but we’ll get into that in more depth a little later on. 

You can also check out other careers for the Bachelor of Engineering here!

Core Units and Majors 

Core Units (Engineering)

No matter what you major in, you’ll be required to complete 384 credit points throughout your 4-year degree. It sounds like a lot! But credit points are just used by the university to measure the workload of particular subjects.

At QUT, most of your subjects comprise 12 credit points each. This means that you’ll be taking approximately 32 subjects throughout your degree — 8 each year and 4 each semester. 

Your course will be broken up into the following areas:

  • Core and foundation subjects worth 96 credit points 
  • Subjects in your Major which are worth 192 credit points
  • Complementary studies worth 96 credit points — you could use these credit points to either take some electives or begin a minor (which is a smaller version of a major) 
First Year

Your first year will basically cover all of the core and foundational units that you’ll be needing to complete. This means that you’ll be thrown straight into the content! It’ll basically be like a taster for the rest of the program. You’ll take subjects like:

Foundation of Engineering Design 

This is a subject all about the core elements of engineering; analysis, design, building and testing. This is going to be your holy grail foundational unit to set you up for all sorts of engineering endeavours. 

Engineering Sustainability and Professional Practice

This unit is going to get you set for whatever major you decide to focus on. It’s a subject that will introduce you to sustainability as a concept and how it can impact current and future engineering. 

Energy in Engineering Systems

This unit will introduce you to the interaction and transfer of energy between all sorts of engineering components. You’ll get to concentrate on electrical, mechanical, process, and civil engineering, and how energy transformation occurs across them! 

Introductory Engineering Mathematics

This subject will be all about the foundational mathematics concepts involved in engineering problem solving. You’ll be introduced to elementary functions, their derivatives and integrals, the algebra of complex numbers, vectors and matrices, and the basics of programming. Fun! 

Majors

Once you’ve completed the core units in your first year, you’ll get straight onto studying more focussed subjects depending on the major you choose. Your options include:

You’ll have the option to study almost any area of the multifaceted discipline that is engineering! 

What’s a Chemical Process Major Like?

QUT Engineering - Quote

By majoring in Chemical Process, you’ll get to know everything that a process engineer is required to do in the real world. You’ll be focussing on oil and gas, water, pharmaceuticals, food and beverages, paper and sure, all while applying your knowledge of chemistry and physics to integrate individual practices.

Chemical engineers generally work in big consulting firms where the designing of equipment takes place. Here’s a glimpse at what your years will look like once you move past first year:

Second Year as a Chemical Process Major

Since this will be your first year studying the subjects required for your major, you can expect it to take quite an introductory approach. You’ll get to know the foundations of the different chemical processes and you’ll learn to apply them in real life situations. You’ll be completing subjects like:

General Chemistry

In this unit, you’ll be covering the core concepts and laboratory formulas to investigate the nature of atoms and the varying forms of matter, quantifying chemical reactions and getting to know practices like thermochemistry, kinetics and chemical equilibria. It’s a subject that involves a lot of practical work and one that you’ll spend in your lab coat and protective goggles. 

Process Principles

This subject will prepare you to transition from investigating chemical reactions in the lab to implementing them in full-scale industry.

You’ll be learning about the different safety concerns, environmental issues, quality control, product design, process constraints, economics and many more. This class will involve a lot of group work to get you prepared for the most advanced subjects in process modelling. 

Fluid Mechanics

Fluid mechanics are utilised by engineers to understand the motion within and the environment of various systems. You’ll be learning about concepts like hydrostatics, how fluid mechanics function, hydraulic structures and fluid systems. 

Third Year as a Chemical Process Major

Here are some of the subjects that you’ll likely complete during your third year as an Engineering student majoring in Chemical Process at QUT:

Process Modelling

This subject’s content will follow along from last year’s Process Principles class. It’s good to remember that the majority of your classes are directly correlated, so staying on top of your classes isn’t only going to help current-you, but future-you will thank you too.

This subject will prepare you to understand more complex balances involving chemical thermodynamics and process simulation software. 

Industrial Chemistry

In this class, you’ll be learning to transfer your theoretical knowledge into industry practice. You’ll focus on green chemistry, industrial biotechnology and catalysis, all of which underpin the majority of chemicals that are made today. 

Thermodynamics

As the title suggests, this unit will focus on the application of thermodynamic laws and theories to inform practical engineering solutions by analysing and designing different energy systems. You’ll be working on a range of issues from analysing the compression of gas to the analysis of a power plant or refrigeration system. 

In third year, you’ll also get to choose a second major or minor unit to complement your Chemical Process Major. The list of possible majors options are above. 

Fourth Year as a Chemical Process Major 
Minerals and Minerals Processing

In this subject, you’ll be focussing on the science and engineering involved in the transformation process of ores to value-added projects. So, you’ll develop the fundamental knowledge of the stages in a mineral processing plant, and use this information to apply in a lab and through virtual simulations. 

Research in Engineering Practice

This core unit will be all about the methods and processes involved in undergoing effective and professional engineering practice. You’ll learn how to critically analyse projects, pitch ideas, visualise data and create reports. 

Your fourth and final year is also going to be all about completing a final, large research project. You might design an engineering project, write a report or critically analyse a particular engineering topic, the world is your oyster. 

Is there an in-built internship program?

Sure is! QUT’s Work Integrated Learning (WIL) program is embedded in almost every QUT course.

For Engineering students, it’s a core component which will look great on a resume! You’ll have to undertake 60 days of approved work experience in a local, national or international engineering firm. 

You can take a deeper look at QUT’s WIL initiatives right here

How to Get into a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) at QUT

To get into any of the Bachelor of Engineering programs at QUT, you’ll need to receive a minimum ATAR of 75.

If you didn’t quite score that high, don’t worry, QUT offers plenty of adjustment schemes to potential students. QUT is aware that a single mark is in no way a fair indicator of your interests, aspirations and abilities. If you want to study Engineering at QUT, there’ll be a way! 

QUT offers an extensive list of the different avenues for application which you can check out here

The main adjustment scheme offered at QUT enables you to apply for an ATAR adjustment of up to 10 marks. So, if you got an ATAR above 65, here’s your chance. The different schemes are awarded to:

  • Students who excelled in particular Year 12 subjects 
  • Students in difficult circumstances like a tricky home environment, financial difficulty, illness, disability or if your education has been disrupted 
  • Elite athletes 

If you’re an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander student, you should check out QUT’s Centralised Assessment Selection Process to see if you’re eligible for this particular alternative entry scheme. 

QUT also offers short intensive bridging courses for programs like Physics, Chemistry and Maths, so if you’re applying for an Engineering course, it may be worth checking out! 

Early Entry 

QUT also has early offer schemes for students who are already set on what they want to study or just for Year 12 students looking to ease a bit of stress on results day. If you performed well in Year 11 and 12, are an elite athlete or have gotten engaged in community service, you’ve got a chance! Check ‘em out right here

Any assumed knowledge?

For most of the Engineering majors at QUT, you’re recommended to have graduated Year 12 with some form of English and a Maths class. While these are recommended, maths knowledge isn’t absolutely essential. You can still apply and then take a look at the short maths courses that we mentioned above. 

If you’re currently choosing your Year 11 and 12 units, it may be a good idea to look into taking a science subject like Physics or Engineering. As long as you’ve got a form of Maths and English, you’re good to go. 

Scholarships

If you’re a current or potential student at QUT, definitely check out the scholarships that you may be eligible for. They’re a huge help if you’re looking for some support financially or just want the street cred of getting a scholarship (which will decorate your resume for years to come). 

You may be eligible for a scholarship if you’re an Indigenous Australian, migrant or refugee, have exceeded academically, are struggling financially and/or come from a non-English speaking background. No matter your circumstances, QUT wants you. 

You could check out the BMD Civil Engineering Scholarship, the QIC Indigenous Tertiary Scholarship, the ARC Discovery Project Scholarship or the Morey Learning Potential Fund Scholarship

Have a squiz at QUT’s scholarships right here

What’s the Teaching Format?

All students in the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) program at QUT will have their degree split into 2 main sessions, also known as the semester system. So, you’ve got around 14 weeks at the beginning of the year, a long break, and then another 12 or 14 weeks at the end of the year.

For each of your subjects, you’ll always have one lecture and tutorial a week. In your more practical classes, on top of a lecture and tutorial, you’ll get a lab class.

Since these classes are all 1 to 2 hours each, you can expect to be on campus for at least 15 hours a week, though you’ll likely spend a couple of hours working on assessments and going over some independent study in the library.

Class Structure

QUT Engineering - Class Structure

Lectures 

A lecture is like your foundational class which will provide you with the key information about the particular topic that you’re working on that week. So, it’s like a weekly introduction session where you’ll get a taste of the topics that you’ll be focusing on that week. 

These will take place in a lecture theatre with around 100 students in the room with you. You’ll spend about 1 to 2 hours listening to the lecturer (usually a tutor or guest speaker) present content from a Powerpoint presentation. It’s a time to take notes and prepare questions for future tutorials.  

Tutorials 

Like lectures, your tutorial classes will last approximately 1 to 2 hours. These will typically emulate a high school class where you’re in a smaller classroom with around 25 other students.

It’s your main chance to ask questions, facilitate discussions and get to know your peers. You’ll have tutorials for your core classes and your major classes, so you’ll likely be surrounded by the same cohort throughout your degree. 

Labs 

Your final class for more practical subjects are known as labs. These take place in a laboratory and will be all about applying the theoretical knowledge that you’ve developed in lectures and tutorials to practical situations. You may be conducting different experiments, dissecting different engineering systems or testing all those hypotheses floating around your head. 

These classes will have around 20 other students in them at a time and will again, last around 1 to 2 hours depending on the class and your efficiency.  

Assessments 

Like any university course, the assessments that you’ll be graded on throughout will differ immensely. Still, they’ll also test your theoretical knowledge, practical skills, oral communication, and teamwork skills.

QUT wants you to graduate with the skills highly sought after in the industry, so you can be confident that these assessments will reflect that. 

You can expect your assessments to involve designing and building, group presentations, reports and exams.  

Skills That You Refine and Learn

QUT Engineering - Skills

You can be sure that you’ll leave the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) having developed a bunch of essential skills to help you secure that dream job in the engineering world. As you learn the best ways to analyse, construct and understand engineering and the way it impacts society, your critical thinking skills will undoubtedly be enhanced.

Eventually, your innovation and problem solving skills are going to come naturally. Since Engineering is a primarily group-based industry, your collaboration and teamwork skills will also be improved, you’ll get to know the best ways to manage, delegate and liaison with potential clients. Like a muscle, these skills will develop and grow the more you use them. 

What’s the Faculty and Culture Like?

“It’s a really good community I would say. In our faculty, there’s a lot of groups regarding different majors.

“So, there’s Electrical, there’s Civil, there’s Mechanical, and these societies encourage us to be a part of them, and also partake in the events so that we’re able to grow connections with the people from the industry. Our faculty is welcoming but they also provide you with opportunities to branch out to other organisations or people.” Shlok Srivastava

As a student in the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) program at QUT, you’ll be served by the Faculty of Engineering. You’ll have access to experienced staff and valuable voices of the industry who are more than willing to help you out and support you throughout your own engineering journey. 

A great feature about Engineering at QUT is that you’ll be engaging with the number of initiatives and partnerships that QUT is involved in. For example, QUT is a partner of DINGO, a global leader in predictive maintenance.

QUT also works closely with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab and works on aerospace aviation with companies like Boeing. So, no matter what you major in, be prepared for plenty of opportunities in the industry and beyond. 

Engineering students are a group of friendly, clever and innovative characters who will be more than willing to foster relationships. You’ll find some great long term friends in the Engineering program at QUT. 

Clubs and Societies 

If you’re someone who values a good club and society, QUT has got you covered. With a world of options, you’re guaranteed to find a group that suits you and your interests.

You could stay close to home and join the Civil Engineering Student Society, the Mechanical Engineering Student Society, or the Electrical Engineering Student Society! When it comes to engineering societies, QUT has got the lot. 

If you’re wanting to broaden your horizons and try something new, there’s also something for you. You could join the Japanese Association, the QUT Anime and Manga club or the Dance Society! The list goes on! Check it out for yourself right here

Resources

QUT’s student wellbeing and support services are a great resource for any current or potential student struggling emotionally, academically, financially or socially. If you’re looking for counselling services, medical assistance, disability support, financial assistance or LGBTQIA+ support, take a look at QUT’s Students Page


Gemma Billington is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and an undergraduate student at the University of Technology Sydney. While studying Journalism and Social and Political Sciences, Gemma enjoys spending her time at the gym or reading about Britain’s medieval monarchy – ideally not at the same time. She currently creates and administers social media posts for Central News and writes for the student publication, The Comma. After completing her undergraduate degree, she hopes to study a Masters of Medieval History and is very excited about the prospect!

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