Overview top

This programme is a three year sandwich course that has been designed to enable marine cadets to achieve the academic standard necessary for the qualification of Foundation Degree in Marine Electrical Engineering and the STCW approved certificate as Electro-technical Officer (Operational).

More about this programme

The main deliverable objective of this award is to provide the academic or underpinning knowledge required by practicing marine engineer officers within today’s maritime industries. The programme strategy mirrors the established and accepted practice of integrating the practical and theoretical elements to provide a programme that corresponds with existing engineering training programmes.

The initial knowledge and skills delivered within level 4 will enable the range of knowledge anticipated at entry to be developed to allow application of skills on-board ship. This knowledge will be developed within the level 5 modules delivered in the final two semesters. The college based programmes are fully integrated with industrial or sea based training that meet the industry’s requirements for a structured and phased training scheme. During the sea phases students will undertake work based learning that is supported during the college based phases, as well as completing a sea phase record book of practical training undertaken on-board.

Modular structure

Marine Control Applications; Engineering Mathematics; Marine Operations; Engineering Science; Work Based Learning and Operational Management; Electrical Principles and Power; Ship Construction and Stability; Mechanical Principles; Electrical and Electronic Principles; Engineering Thermodynamics; Marine Plant Operations; Engineering Project.


Entry Requirements top

Either: A UCAS tariff of 48, including 12 UCAS points from a Maths and/or Science subject;​

plus GCSE (or equivalent as approved by the College) grade 4 / Grade ‘C’ or above in all the following subjects:​

  • Mathematics​
  • Science​
  • English language​

Or: Successful completion of our engineering pre-cadetship programme - https://www.stc.ac.uk/marine-school/course/pre-cadetship-engineering

Candidates will also be required to secure sponsorship from a shipping company who will provide the industrial placements on-board ship.

Assessment top

ST40 – marine control applications

Automation and control of systems continues to increase in all areas. The broad range of systems found in the enclosed environments of a ship provides a challenge to its engineers. In this unit we will look at the instrumentation used to measure system performance and how that signal is them transmitted and used to ensure correct operation of the system. The basic control loop.

Many systems are powered by hydraulics or pneumatics and the controlled operation and control of these systems is considered in detail.

ST41 – engineering mathematics

This module provides learners with most of the mathematics content required for other modules of their programme. It will review previous learning from school or college and give new input of topics within the field of Engineering Mathematics. Students will learn about various concepts in algebra, including manipulating partial fractions and solving equations. They will study the properties of the trigonometric and hyperbolic functions and their graphs. There will be an introduction to calculus and the main applications of differentiation and integration. Learners will learn about arithmetic of complex numbers in both rectangular and polar form. There will be a general introduction to matrices and their properties, and also to the Laplace transform.

ST42 – marine operations

The module introduces shipboard operations with emphasis on health and safety, and pollution prevention. This will include applications of risk management techniques in the context of risks to life, property and marine engineering activities.

ST44 – engineering science

The module introduces scientific mechanical and heat principles. This module will serve as a foundation for further principles modules that follow.

The module will be delivered via a combination of lectures, seminars, laboratories, and directed and independent learning. Assessment consists of coursework and an examination.

Assignments related to information and/or energy control systems, and a formal examination, which provide the learner with the opportunities to produce evidence of analytical and problem solving ability for assessment purposes.

ST45 – work-based learning and operational management

This module will:

· Introduce candidates to the management of shipboard operations, personnel and resources associated with the management of a vessel.

· Allow learners to investigate a number of topics during their sea phase training. Learners will be directed to ship specific investigations directly pertaining to their intended experiences and knowledge requirements.

ST47 – electrical principles and power

The module introduces the electrical principles which are fundamental to the design, operation and fault analysis of electrical engineering systems. AC and DC theory, instrumentation and control and three phase systems will be explored. Power electronics, an important area of marine engineering. This module develops the understanding of modern motor control devices and methods, motor controllers and the safe techniques for measuring electrical quantities. The focus is on practical aspects of power control rather than the details of electronic control and firing circuits. This module develops the understanding of Ship propulsion system.

ST50 – ship construction and stability

This module is designed to enable candidates to develop their knowledge and understanding of essential concepts of Ship Construction and Stability. The module will allow candidates to apply the principles of ship stability in ship construction and management of vessel operations.

The module is targeted at merchant navy engineer officer cadet trainees and those who wish to achieve STCW engineer certification at management level.

ST52 – mechanical principles

Students will be introduced to the underpinning mechanical principles which are fundamental to the design, manufacture, and servicing of mechanical engineering systems. Student will analyse the mechanical loading of a range of mechanism and both mechanical and hydraulic transmission systems. They will then be able to determine the induced stress levels due to loading and make reasoned judgements as to their suitability to perform the required task.

ST53 – electrical and electronic principles

The module further develops and deepens learners’ understanding of electrical and electronic principles. This module investigates the effects of harmonics and the use of harmonic filters.

Upon successful completion of this module, students will have demonstrated the ability to:

· calculate the changes in current, voltage and power levels at components level within the system;

· apply engineering principles to the solution of problems relating to a marine electrical/electronic engineering environment.

ST54 – engineering thermodynamics

The aim of this module is to introduce the Principles and Laws of Thermodynamics and their application in the analysis of engineering thermodynamic systems.

The module will focus on the application of principles to the systems and machines likely to be encountered in a marine engineering environment. Aspects to be covered will include:

· open and closed systems,

· heat engines,

· reciprocating gas compressors,

· steam/gas turbine power plant and

· vapour compression refrigeration systems.

ST55 – marine plant operations

The module introduces the technical understanding of the components within a modern marine engineering plant. The module will cover a varied range of differing plant types, both main propulsion and auxiliary plant. Emphasis on watch keeping and on-board safety systems.

Upon successful completion of this module, students will:

· Appreciate the design and construction of marine engineering plant.

· Understand the safe and efficient operation of the range of marine engineering plant contained within this module.

ST59 – engineering project

The module develops the learners’ ability to use the knowledge and skills they develop at work and on the academic programme to complete a realistic work-based project. It provides an opportunity for the learner to integrate and apply the skills and knowledge developed in the other modules of the programme within a major piece of work that reflects the type of performance expected of an Incorporated Engineer.

The module will be delivered via a combination of lectures and directed and independent learning. Assessment consists of coursework and a presentation. The coursework will be an individual written project. The student will receive formative feedback in the lectures on problem solving tasks.


Professional Opportunities top

On successful completion of cadetship candidates progression to certification and to the senior ranks of Second and Chief Engineering Officer will follow further training. B.Eng/B.Eng (Hons) Marine Engineering Successful completion of this programme gives entry into B.Eng or B.Eng (Hons) programme if this option is required.

Further Information top

Cost varies per year and per stage of the course. Fees will be paid by sponsoring company.

The awarding body is University of Sunderland. 

Covid-19 has challenged the delivery of professional programmes, but here at South Shields Marine School we have developed our professional standards for academic delivery with an effective approach to your programme of study which includes safe face-to-face teaching. This involves careful timetabling to dedicate each group (bubble) to a single classroom to prevent excessive movement and contact with others. Hand sanitiser and face coverings (masks) will be provided. Start times, coffee breaks, lunch and end times will be staggered as far as possible. Classroom windows will be open to increase fresh air flow.

Should there be a re-introduction of restrictions by the Government then we are also prepared to continue to deliver your programmes remotely.

The Curriculum Leaders remain active and will be meeting you during the first week to say hello, along with all of the lecturing team who will guide your learning and help with your assessments.  

In the coming months before commencing your studies please contact the marine administration office if we can offer any further guidance before joining us:

Sam Morgan or Lucy Howlett for engineer / eto cadet enquiries:

e: Samantha.Morgan@stc.ac.uk

t: 0191 427 3930


e: lucy.howlett@stc.ac.uk

t: 0191 427 3695


Dates & Fees

Contact us for current course dates and fees.