Mechatronics is the field behind the "Smart Products and Systems" that increasingly dominate many aspects of our lives. It sits at the intersection of mechanical, electrical, and computer engineering, and combines sensors, software, and motors to create innovative and amazing new devices.
These mechatronic systems can be found manipulating the smallest bits of matter, in spacecraft, as well as throughout your home and town. From smart phones and TVs, to smart energy grids to smart cars and smart medical care and devices. They are everywhere, making life better, greener, healthier, more productive, and more interesting.
During the coming decades, we will see an explosion of these automated systems further aiding our lives. Robots are widely used to automate manufacturing processes for productivity benefits, quality consistency, and reduction/elimination of physically hard and/or hazardous labour. Mobile machines, such as Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV), Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV), and Autonomous Ground Vehicle (AGV), are deployed to operate in such environments.
The vast discipline of Mechatronics Engineering does not stop at the visible world. Micro and nano electro-mechanical systems (MEMS/NEMS) are an ever increasing branch of mechatronics research and technology for applications such as atom-scale microscopy and spectroscopy, micro and nano fabrication, big data storage, sensor technology, medical drug delivery, and many more.
Intermediate Year courses (first year)
The first year of the Bachelor of Engineering with Honours is called the Engineering Intermediate Year. For Mechatronics students, this is made up of:
Five compulsory courses taken by all Engineering students:
- ENGR 100 Engineering Academic Skills (0 points, no fees)
- ENGR 101 Foundations of Engineering
- EMTH 118 Engineering Mathematics 1A
- EMTH 119 Engineering Mathematics 1B
- PHYS 101 Engineering Physics A: Mechanics, Waves and Thermal Physics
Plus courses specific to Mechatronics Engineering:
- COSC 121 Introduction to Computer Programming
- EMTH 171 Mathematical Modelling and Computation
- ENGR 102 Engineering Mechanics
In addition you must study at least 15 points of elective courses
To ensure a total workload of 120 points in the first year. It is advisable to check with the College of Engineering | Te Rāngai Pūkaha Student Advisor for suggested electives.
- To see how this qualification is structured, see the degree diagram on the Bachelor of Engineering with Honours page.
- See the Regulations for the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) Intermediate Year.
- For guidance on how to structure your Intermediate Year, visit the Intermediate Year webpage.
The Professional Years
Once you have completed the Engineering Intermediate Year and successfully applied for entry into Mechatronics Engineering, you will study that discipline within the three professional years.
The First, Second, and Third Professional Years consist of compulsory and elective courses from Mechanical Engineering, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, and dedicated Mechatronics Engineering. At UC, special emphasis is placed on project-based learning.
The First Professional Year introduces the topics of mechatronics design, computer systems, electronics and devices, dynamics and vibrations, machine elements, and engineering mathematics.
The Second Professional Year focuses on mechatronics system design, control engineering, embedded systems, computational mechanical analysis, and power electronics.
The Third Professional Year allows students to take courses that suit their specific interest, and includes courses on electronics, aerodynamics, robotics, and computer vision. All students also take a course on modern control theory and complete a design and research project, which typically are real-life engineering projects offered by industry partners. This unique project approach gives our students an employability advantage at graduation.
At UC, special emphasis is placed on project-based learning that integrates mechanical, electronic, and computer engineering skills in each professional year.
Graduates with a Mechatronics Engineering degree can take up careers in a wide spectrum of industries, including the robotics, aerospace, chemical, gaming, internet/cloud/software, defence, automotive, and manufacturing industries. Mechatronics graduates also work in businesses that require extensive computer infrastructure and algorithms, such as banking and commerce.
Within these industries, Mechatronics Engineering graduates could be design engineers, software engineers, project planners, product designers, or project managers.
Find out more about what you can do with a degree in Mechatronics Engineering.
See the Department's website for up-to-date location details.
College of Engineering | Te Rāngai Pūkaha
University of Canterbury | Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha
Private Bag 4800
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