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What is Engineering?

Every aspect of your life is made more comfortable and enjoyable because of advances in engineering.  Anything that is made will have engineering processes at its heart; engineers test, design, build and understand the artificial word around you.  The last twenty years have witnessed a sea-change in the engineering landscape: from the Internet revolution, to how we manage and maintain our standard of living with ever-diminishing resources.  The world is looking to engineers for solutions to these challenges. Engineering recycles scientific principles for the creation of new devices and artifacts: it is applied mathematics focused on the real world.  Engineers are good at mathematics and formulating applied problems.

What is the Engineering Tripos?

In Cambridge, the Engineering Tripos covers classical topics, such as Mechanics, Electronics, Applied Mathematics in the first two years, and they are extended in the third and fourth years to more specialized advanced topics such as engineering for aircraft, automobile, life science, silicon chips, artificial intelligence, and largest buildings. The Engineering Tripos is accredited by all of the major engineering institutions, which allows you to practice as an engineer immediately after your degree, en route to becoming a Chartered Engineer.  You cannot do this with any other degree.

Why study Engineering at Corpus?

Engineers at Corpus benefit from a strong collegiate tradition at one of Cambridge’s finest city-centre Colleges, a five-minute walk away from the Department of Engineering. Corpus students in their senior year often choose to live in our Trumpington Street hostel, directly across the road from the Department. Between six and eight students are admitted each year, having achieved A*A*A at A-Level, or equivalent grades from elsewhere.  We often specify that one of these A*'s must be Mathematics, or Further Mathematics (if taken), and require candidates to have A-level Physics (or the equivalent). All applicants are required to register for the pre-interview Engineering Entrance Assessment (ENGAA). The advantages of studying in a smaller college are numerous, as this gives many opportunities to interact with Fellows, graduate students and undergraduates in senior years through subject dinners, social events and discussions. There is a close-knit and supportive Engineering community at Corpus.

Corpus has excellent provision for teaching in Engineering, with five Fellows with a diverse range of expertise, including signal processing, geotechnics, foldable structures and robotics. Two of our Fellows, Dr Keith Seffen and Dr John Biggins - have won 'Best Lecturer' awards in the Department of Engineering.

After Corpus

Recent Corpus Engineering graduates now design, amongst other things, Formula One cars, nuclear submarines, and wind farms. Others work for major financial institutions; others teach science and lecture Engineering; others run major world-leading engineering companies that generate millions in turnover. Other have donated millions back to the College following successful careers built on studying Engineering at Corpus. Fundamentally, you will secure gainful employment in any discipline, not just Engineering, where there is a need to solve real-world problems.


Engineering masterclass

Fellow and Director of Studies in Engineering Professor Giulia Viggiani describes what it's like to study Engineering at Corpus and the challenges and her research on building underground systems in ancient cities such as Rome.