skip to primary navigationskip to content

Course structure

Reading journalsFirst year: In this year, chemical engineers study Part IA Engineering or Part IA Natural Sciences.

Second year: In this year, students study Part I Chemical Engineering. It introduces the discipline and covers many of the fundamental principles of chemical engineering.

Third year: In this year, students study Part IIA Chemical Engineering. It completes the study of "core" chemical engineering and is a preparation for immediate professional practice. Students who pass this course are entitled to leave the University with the BA degree. (Cambridge offers Bachelor of Arts degrees, even to scientists and engineers, for historical reasons).

Fourth year: Almost all students stay on to study the course in the fourth year at University, termed Part IIB Chemical Engineering. This is an advanced course in chemical engineering that is intended as preparation for a long-term career in the discipline. The course provides the opportunity to study the subject in greater depth, to consider recent advances, and to undertake some original research work. Students who pass this course are entitled to both the BA and MEng degrees. The MEng degree satisfies the academic requirements for full membership of the IChemE leading to Chartered Engineer status.

The diagram below shows the course structure while the following pages give more detailed information on the actual topics that are studied.

    Part I
Second year
  Part IIA
Third year
  Part IIB
Fourth year
    Design project
Coursework projects
  Design project
Coursework projects
  Research project
Part IA
> Fluid mechanics
Heat and mass transfer
Process calculations
Further fluid mechanics
  Advanced Chemical Engineering (options)    
    Intro to Chem. Eng.
> Process dynamics & control
Heat integration
Safety & environment
> > BA, MEng
Part IA
Natural Sciences
> Reactors
Equilibrium separations
Transort processes
  Heterogeneous reactors
Advanced separations
    Engineering mathematics
General engineering
  Corrosion & materials
  Computational fluid dynamics (option)
Product design (option)
Entrepreneurship (option)
Foreign language (option)

A more detailed description of the courses can be found through the following links:

First year

Second year

Third year

Fourth year