MSci Mathematical Sciences (Energy Systems and Control)

UCAS code GF16
Duration 4 Years
Typical offer AAB-ABB; IB: 34-32
Discipline Mathematics
Location Cornwall (Penryn Campus)


The modern application of mathematics operates at the interface of multiple disciplines, and integrates data analysis, computer science, and statistics. The explosion of ‘big data’, in sectors including genome sequencing, ‘eco-informatics’, and on-line consumer behaviour, means there is an urgent need for mathematicians who can handle complex datasets, communicate effectively, and fully understand the techniques, pitfalls, and potential of advanced mathematical methods.

Mathematical Sciences combines traditional mathematics subjects with advanced courses in statistics, programming, and data science, that will prepare students for the array of numerate and analytical professions that are found at the core of both modern research and the digital economy. There is an outward facing approach to mathematics with options available in ecology, business, engineering, social science, and environmental science. On completion of the programme students will have a deep understanding of the techniques and methods of modern mathematical sciences, and a clear insight into the industrial and scientific areas in which they are applied.

The four-year MSci degrees allow you to explore your mathematical interests to a greater depth and to obtain a higher level qualification than the standard three-year BSc degree.

MSci Mathematical Sciences (Energy Systems and Control)

Dwindling fossil fuel resources and international commitments to CO2 reduction are creating an increasing need for renewable energy such as wind, solar, tidal and wave power. The MSci Mathematical Sciences (Energy Systems and Control) provides you with an opportunity to apply mathematics, statistics and computational modelling to tackle problems in energy engineering, management and policy, such as resource assessment, system optimisation and reliability. Integral to the fourth year is a combined industrial placement and research project that gives you important hands-on experience and an opportunity to put your mathematical expertise into practice.

Programme structure

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Year 1

The first year modules introduce you to the main areas of university-level mathematics, consolidating and building on the material you will have learned at A level. Alongside traditional core mathematical expertise, the Fundamentals of Interdisciplinary Mathematics module will give you problem-based learning skills around a number of important scientific themes. As a further key element of the programme you will develop skills for analysing and interpreting complex data, for which the Information Systems module provides the foundation.

Compulsory modules

Advanced Calculus
Calculus and Geometry
Fundamentals of Interdisciplinary Mathematics I
Information Systems
Probability and Statistics
Scientific Programming
Vectors and Matrices

Year 2

Core modules further develop fundamental concepts in mathematics and statistics whilst optional modules open up areas of applications of mathematics in science and technology. Problem-based learnings are strengthened in Fundamentals of Interdisciplinary Mathematics II. Data analysis skills are further enhanced in the Data, Signals and Systems and Statistical Modelling modules. Progression to the third year of the MSci programmes, or transfer from BSc to MSci Mathematical Sciences, is conditional on satisfactory performance in the second year.

Compulsory modules

Data, Signals and Systems
Differential Equations
Fundamentals of Interdisciplinary Mathematics II
Linear Algebra
Stochastic Processes

Optional modules

Atmosphere and Ocean Systems
Electrical Energy Conversion and Transport
Evolution of Human Societies
Fundamentals of Interdisciplinary Mathematics II
Geographical Information Science and Systems
Introduction to Ecological Consultancy
Landscape Evolution
Natural Hazards and Risk
Population and Community Ecology
Remote Sensing for Environmental Management
Statistical Modelling
The Politics of Climate Change and Energy
Vector Calculus and Applications

Year 3

In the third year, a wide range of modules are available in both mathematics and in numerous important areas of science and technology. These give you the option to specialize in a specific area of mathematical sciences or to continue with a generalist mathematics programme. MSci students also have the option of studying in the USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand for half of the third year.

Compulsory modules

Data Analytics
Mathematical Sciences Project
Work Placement

Optional modules

Animal Life History
Bayesian Inference
Coevolutionary Interactions
Evolution and Ecology of Disease
Graphs and Networks
Human Behavioural Ecology
Issues in Climate Change
Marine Renewable Energy and Hydropower
Mathematical Biology and Ecology
Nonlinear Systems and Control
Partial Differential Equations
Smart Energy and Energy Storage Technologies
Solar Power
Symbiosis in Marine Systems
The Behavioural Ecology of Information Use
Trends in Ecology and Evolution
Wind Power

Year 4 (MSci Energy Systems and Control)

You will study modules in Optimisation and Control, Computational Modelling and Simulation and further options in Advanced Wind Energy, Solar Energy Research, and Innovation and Advanced Marine Renewable Energy. The combined Industrial Placement and Research Project allows you to specialize in an area of interest and develop hands-on practical skills.

Compulsory modules

Computational Modelling and Simulation
Control and Optimisation
Industrial Placement Project
Research Project

Optional modules

Advanced Marine Renewable Energy
Advanced Statistical Methods
Advanced Wind Energy
Solar Energy Research and Innovation

Entry requirements 2018

Typical offer

AAB-ABB; IB: 34-32

Required subjects

GCE AL Maths grade A; IB Maths HL6. 

Candidates may offer GCE AL Maths, Pure Maths or Further Maths.

International students

International students should check details of our English language requirements and may be interested in our Foundation programmes.

Further information

Please read the important information about our Typical offer.

For full and up-to-date information on applying to Exeter and entry requirements, including requirements for other types of qualification, please see the Applying section.

Learning and teaching

By choosing to study mathematics in Cornwall you will have the opportunity to develop your core and advanced mathematical skills in an inspirational setting, and apply these skills to important global challenges including biodiversity, energy security, environmental change, human health and wildlife disease.

Your studies will benefit from

  • Research led teaching: all academic staff are research active and draw on close links to the Environment and Sustainability Institute or the European Centre for Environment and Human Health;
  • Flexibility and choice: many options in mathematics and across applied disciplines allow you to tailor your studies to your personal interests, eg, in mathematics, biology, geography and energy engineering;
  • Interactive learning and innovative assessment: many modules draw on research led activities that inspire inquiry and investigation. These activities include field trips, panel debates and expert-led discussions. Assessments are tailored to learning outcomes and include poster and oral presentations, computer code, technical reports and log books aimed at demonstrating your knowledge, skills and expertise;
  • Inspirational location: Cornwall is a perfect natural environment offering numerous opportunities for you to develop skills via hands-on experiences and to understand the challenges facing our planet.


A degree from Exeter is highly valued by employers. Management and personal skills are built into our programmes and our students take advantage of the wide range of extracurricular and personal development opportunities offered by the University, from study abroad (for certain programmes) to volunteering and playing an active role in student societies.

We have excellent links with employers and support students to consider their careers from an early stage. Our Employability Officer is active in developing aspects of our programmes and services that improve the employability of our students. We also have a dedicated Careers Consultant who provides specific services such as careers workshops tailored to careers in mathematics and support in matters such as applications and job interview skills. The Career Zone runs several careers fairs throughout the year and these have been particularly successful in putting major UK employers in touch with Exeter students. Relevant employers visit the department from the first year to meet with students, with the aim of helping them to develop their career ideas at an early enough stage to help with module choices and placement decisions.

Each year a number of our graduating students choose to undertake further study and there is a fast track application process for Exeter students to our postgraduate programmes. Of those choosing the postgraduate route, around half choose to remain at Exeter, which reflects well on their satisfaction with the University and the range of courses available.

A wide range of employers from industries as diverse as banking, insurance, medical, transport, power generation, software, and the armed forces, know the department as a provider of excellent graduates who are able to apply their problem solving and analytical skills in the real world.

For further information about what the Employability Service offers, please see

Here are just a few examples of the destinations of our recent graduates:

  • Occupations
  • Software Engineer
  • Sport Analyst
  • Audit Assistant
  • Trainee Health Economist
  • Pricing Analyst
  • Corporate Tax Assistant
  • Junior Consultant
  • Maths Teacher
  • Market Risk Analyst


  • Renishaw
  • Centrica
  • Siemens
  • KPMG
  • Allianz
  • BP
  • HSBC
  • Towers Watson
  • 3M
  • Ford
  • The Met Office

Examples of further study followed by our graduates are:

  • MSc Environmental Economics, University College London
  • MSc Modern Applications of Mathematics, University of Bath
  • PGCE Primary Mathematics, University of Exeter
  • PhD Mathematics and Plant Science, University of Nottingham
  • PGCE Secondary Mathematics, Oxford Brookes University
  • MSc Economics, University of Exeter

Contact us

Penryn Campus, Cornwall

Phone: +44 (0)1326 371801

Website: Visit the Mathematics website

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