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Study information

Renewable Energy (2023)

1. Programme Title:

Renewable Energy

NQF Level:


2. Description of the Programme (as in the Business Approval Form)

3. Educational Aims of the Programme

The BSc degree programme is designed to deliver all of the required learning outcomes as set out in UK-SPEC for a bachelors degree, and hence contributes towards graduates becoming professionally qualified engineers in the UK, with international recognition.  This programme is accredited as: 1. fully satisfying the educational base for an Incorporated Engineer (IEng) and 2. partially satisfying the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng). A programme of accredited further learning will be required to complete the educational base for CEng. Graduates may apply for IEng or CEng registration through membership of an appropriate Professional Engineering Institution following an assessment of their subsequent professional development and experience.

The UK SPEC output standards statement also serves as Subject Benchmark Statement for Engineering (QAA Subject Benchmark Statement for Engineering 2006).

The programme aims to produce graduates who can practice professionally in energy engineering and energy management, with a renewable energy focus. This is dependent upon an appropriate training in: applied and environmental sciences, the engineering paradigm, project management and energy policy; and exposure to the renewable energy industry. The programme aims to provide core knowledge and understanding across all these areas, but also, through their selections in options, aims to allow candidates the opportunity to acquire in-depth knowledge and understanding in specific areas of the discipline. Whilst many students enrolling upon the programme regard it as a vocational degree, the scientific, engineering and socio-economic training received facilitate careers in many fields outside the energy sector. In addition, the programme aims to develop the transferable skills frequently sought by potential employers, such as those associated with verbal and written communication and teamwork.

In its students and in its graduates, the programme aims to develop

• a pragmatic and rational outlook to design and problem solving,

• one that encourages and capitalises on the use of creativity and innovation, properly founded on engineering & scientific principles,

• an ability to formulate the practical steps required for a concept to become a reality,

• levels of numeracy and computer literacy commensurate with full command of state-of-the-art design & analysis tools,

• cost, value and quality consciousness and understanding of business,

• full commitment to social, cultural environmental issues and a responsibility to deal with these both ethically and professionally.

Through this programme, the College will provide students with: learning opportunities to match their abilities and aspirations, personal academic support and pastoral support through their university career, appropriate methods of teaching and assessment and a programme of study that they find demanding, interesting and intellectually stimulating, while allowing them to enjoy other aspects of university life. The College will also seek to promote the role of industry and engineering institutions and the benefits that they can provide to undergraduates by promoting student membership of and active participation within said engineering institutions, and particularly the Energy Institute.

Through this, the programme aims to enable students to become:

a) flexible and autonomous renewable energy specialist graduates equipped to adopt key roles within multi-disciplinary industrial teams, research and development groups, legislating and financing organisations.

b) sought after for their leadership contributions, their capacity for analytical and original thought and discipline specific expertise; their holistic understanding of the context within which they work, their ability and innate desire to support the work of others and take full responsibility and demonstrate self-motivation for their own personal and professional development.

c) reflective, socially and personally responsible and accurate decision makers and problem solvers, whether working individually or as part of a group.

d) academically qualified to become chartered engineers within the appropriate engineering industry at the earliest opportunity.

e) aware of the environmental, economic, social and sustainability issues that are an integral part of the professional engineer’s role in society.

Graduates will have also benefited from employability skills acquired through participation in industrial visits, field trips and the work placement between Stage 2 and Stage 3.

4. Programme Structure

This programme comprises three stages of 120 credits per stage. Each stage normally occupies an academic year so that it requires three years to accumulate 360 credits for the BSc. Part-time study over a longer period is possible by negotiation with the College. Each stage is made up of modules, and each module studied successfully contributes 10, 15 or 30 credits towards the degree. The credit rating of a module is proportional to the workload and one credit is normally equivalent to 10 hours of work. The level of a module (designated by the first number in the module code) indicates its position in the progressive development of academic abilities and/or practical skills. The degree programme contains compulsory and optional modules.

Modules and other study components can be taken only with the approval of the College (normally given by the programme director). Modules are not all available every year; options are offered each year at the discretion of the College. A module may be taken only if the necessary prerequisites have been satisfied, if the timetable allows, and if the module or an equivalent module has not been taken previously. The first and second stages of this programme are modular and are taught over two semesters with examinations at the end of each semester.

In stage 3, all bar two of the taught modules are delivered and assessed back-to-back over a 2 week period. For each of these modules, the first week comprises a lecturer led programme of lectures, tutorials, seminars, laboratories, etc. The second week comprise a consolidation programme with integrated assessment using coursework devices. Students will be issued the module materials in advance of delivery of the module such that any examination-like assessment method, such as an end of module test, will be based on these materials. The two other modules are taught over the whole term with any exam component in the end of semester 1 exam period.

Field trips are associated with all stages of the programme - with a compulsory assessed field trip in Stage 3. These have been designed as an essential component of the programme to provide exposure to practical case studies. The compulsory Stage 3 field trip typically runs in May but may be run over the Easter vacation.

During the Summer vacation between Stage 2 and 3 candidates may undertake a work placement.  To comply with the assessment requirements of the 10 credit work placement module the placement should be of a duration no less than 6 weeks. Candidates are primarily responsible for securing and organising the placement, with assistance from the College. Wherever possible, candidates should take advantage of the additional support and kudos offered by operating the placements as part of the STEP programme, Unlocking Cornish Potential or the Graduate Placement scheme. A report of the work placement is prepared, submitted and assessed as part of the Stage 3 curriculum.

Assessment at Stage 1 is formative and does not contribute towards the overall mark for the degree programme, although an overall pass is necessary for progression to Stage 2.

The overall mark for the BSc degree is calculated from the credit weighted average marks for Stages 2 and 3 in turn weighted in the ratio of 1:2 (~33%, ~67%) respectively.

All the modules listed in this section are designated non-condonable modules. All modules must be passed in order to progress through the stages and failure in these cannot be condoned under the Undergraduate Assessment Procedures that came into force in 2005/06. .

The following tables describe the programme as planned for delivery at the time of this specification. Constituent modules may be updated, deleted or replaced in future years as a consequence of normal programme development. Details at any time may be obtained from the Department web site (see Options at any stage may be taken only if the necessary prerequisites have been satisfied, if the timetable allows and if the module or an equivalent module has not been previously taken. Descriptions of the individual modules are given in full on the Departmental web site (see

5. Programme Modules

Stage 1

Code Title Credits Compulsory NonCondonable
ENE1010Mathematics 1A15YesYes
ENE1001Renewable Energy Systems 115YesYes
ENE1002Mathematics 1B15YesYes
ENE1003Science for Energy Engineering15YesYes
ENE1004Applied Computing for Energy Studies15YesYes
ENE1005Energy Policy, Markets and Law 15YesYes
ENE1007Engineering Mechanics15YesYes
ENE1009Electrical and Electronic Principles15YesYes

Standard progression to Stage 2: Candidates will have passed all 120 credits of Stage 1 modules each with an overall mark of 40% or higher.

Stage 2

Code Title Credits Compulsory NonCondonable
ENE2001Energy Management15YesYes
ENE2002Engineering for Energy Professionals 30YesYes
ENE2003Electrical Energy Conversion and Transport15YesYes
ENE2004Renewable Energy Systems 215YesYes
ENE2008Project Management and Accounting15YesYes
BEP2010Sustainable Enterprise Economy15YesYes
GEO2442The Politics of Climate Change and Energy15YesYes

Standard progression to Stage 3: Candidates must have passed all 120 credits of Stage 2 modules each with an overall mark of 40% or higher.

Stage 3

Code Title Credits Compulsory NonCondonable
ENE3001Third Year Field Course (Group Project)15YesYes
ENE3011Renewable Energy Dissertation 30YesYes
Select 75 credits
ENE3002Network Engineering, Modelling and Management15NoYes
ENE3003Marine Renewable Energy 15NoYes
ENE3004Life Cycle Analysis15NoYes
ENE3005Wind Energy15NoYes
ENE3006Low Carbon Heat15NoYes
ENE3007Energy Storage Technology15NoYes
ENE3008Work Placement Report15NoYes
ENE3009Solar Power15NoYes
ENE3010Sustainable Architecture15NoYes
ENE3013Computational Engineering for Renewable Energy Systems15NoYes
BEP3010Social and Technological Innovation15NoYes
GEO3409BEnergy Policies for a Low Carbon Economy15NoNo

6. Programme Outcomes Linked to Teaching, Learning & Assessment Methods

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to: Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be accommodated & facilitated by the following learning & teaching and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

A Specialised Subject Skills & Knowledge

A Specialised Subject Skills & Knowledge
On successfully completing the programme, a graduate will be able to demonstrate:

A. Subject Specific Skills:

Subject knowledge and understanding of:

1. engineering science subject matter with an ability to apply this to general renewable energy issues, but in particular to the autonomous design and development of renewable energy projects.

2. energy policy frameworks and their evolution or development as a result of socio-economic, environmental and legislative drivers.

3. prior developments and research in renewable energy technologies.

4. total renewable energy resources, and the issues leading to limitations on these resources for natural, technical, practical, accessible, financial and socially acceptable reasons.

5. management and business practices including project appraisal, financing, law, marketing and personnel.

6. ethical and social issues related to the energy sector and professional responsibilities


Learning & Teaching Activities

Learning & Teaching Activities
Material is introduced by lectures and directed reading/research and students are given very clear guidance in how to manage their learning. Understanding is developed and consolidated in tutorials and by laboratory and private study exercises, carried out individually and in groups, both self-assessed and tutor marked to provide rapid feedback. Project work is used extensively to integrate material and make knowledge functional.

Skill 1 is supported explicitly by dedicated modules in the first two stages for all candidates and then developed by use in other modules in later stages of the programme. Autonomous design & development is also explicitly supported by the undergraduate dissertation / research paper in stage 3, and implicitly supported by several other modules. Skill 2 is supported explicitly by specialist modules in stage 3 for all candidates. Skill 3 is explicitly supported by the Renewable Energy Systems modules in stages 1 and 2, and developed through use in specialist stage 3 modules of the programme, drawing upon knowledge and understanding developed in other stage 1 and stage 2 modules. Skills 4 and 5 are supported explicitly by specialist modules in stage 2 and 3 of the programme. Different elements of skill 6 are supported by modules in stage 3, including CSM3054 and CSM3199.

Assessment Methods

Assessment Methods
Direct assessment is through a range of formal written examinations, and marked coursework in the form of problem sheets, laboratory reports, computer exercises, group or individual feasibility study reports, other reports or essays based on directed reading, research or field activities, posters and oral presentations including the preparation and use of visual aids. Project work is assessed through a combination of supervisor's report, self and peer assessment and formal assessment of final reports and presentations.

B Academic Discipline Core Skills & Knowledge

B Academic Discipline Core Skills & Knowledge
B. Core Skills:

Intellectual (thinking) skills and able to:

1 demonstrate a systematic and creative approach to problem solving.

2. apply appropriate mathematical methods, scientific principles and computer based methods to the modelling, analysis and solution of practical energy engineering or energy management or development problems.

3. create a complete design, product or service to meet a customer need, starting from negotiation of specifications, showing creativity and justifying all decisions.

4. take a holistic approach to design.

5. assess and manage risks (e.g.: commercial, safety, environmental etc.).

6. take personal responsibility for acting in a professional and ethical manner.

Learning & Teaching Activities

Learning & Teaching Activities
Teaching/learning methods and strategies

Skills 1 and 2 are integrated into most modules and developed steadily throughout the 3 stages. Methods focussing on instruction obviously feature in the early stages of the programme, with candidates being afforded greater autonomy in selection of their approaches and methods as they progress through the programme. Concepts of skill 3 are introduced in several modules during stage 1 and is achieved in several modules in stage 2 including CSM2045 and CSM2187. Skill 4 is introduced in stage 2 and developed systematically in stage 3 modules. Skills 5 and 6 are introduced through industrial visits during stage 1, discussed in stage 2 modules CSM2187 and CSM2319, and developed during the Summer vacation placement between stage 2 and 3. Mechanisms of engineering analysis, peer-review and reflective self-assessment within stage 3 modules represent the strategy for extending 5 and 6.

Assessment Methods

Assessment Methods

Analytical skills are assessed within many modules through a range of formal written examinations and marked coursework in the form of problem sheets etc. Attainment in all the intellectual skills listed, but particularly 1-4, is more readily identified in project work and assignments of a more open-ended nature, which feature strongly in stage 3 assessment. Reflective essays supporting work placements identified above, explicitly permit assessment of attainment against listed skills 5 and 6, and guided self-assessment opportunities exist elsewhere within stage 3, for example the field trip CSM3034. The Work Placement Report and Stage 3 Dissertation are assessed on the basis of practical work/results and final report by a supervisor and second examiner against clearly set out assessment criteria.

C Personal / Transferable / Employment Skills & Knowledge

C Personal / Transferable / Employment Skills & Knowledge
C. Practical skills and able to:

1. select and use appropriate ICT based tools for analysis, design and communication of designs.

2. select and use laboratory instrumentation appropriately and correctly

3. construct prototype services, products, systems, experimental apparatus etc.

4. work safely in laboratory, workshop and other workplace environments, and promote safe practice

Learning & Teaching Activities

Learning & Teaching Activities
Teaching/learning methods and strategies

Skill 1 is central to many modules, specifically introduced in CSM1287, it is developed in several modules at stages 1 and 2 with general, multi-purpose software tools (e.g. Office, AutoCAD and MathCAD in stage 1) or packages designed to promote learning (e.g. The Expert System for Thermodynamics in stage 2) and becomes increasingly directed toward bespoke, industry-standard software linked to module themes in stage 3 (e.g. MapInfo, IES Virtual Environment, IPSA+ in Stage 3). Skills 2 and 4 are introduced in Stage 1 modules that have a practical element such as Renewable Energy Systems 1, CSM1032. These practical skills are then developed in laboratory work carried out as an integral part of modules across all stages of the programme, but particularly project work. There is an opportunity to develop Skill 3 in our stage 2 group practical challenge. 

Assessment Methods

Assessment Methods

These practical skills are assessed in part through laboratory reports throughout the 1st and 2nd stages. And assessment of proficiency of use of IT products is primarily outcome based (e.g. quality of map produced in CSM3363), rather than classroom observation; this time is used to provide tutorial style support in use of IT.

7. Programme Regulations



The programme consists of 360 credits with 120 credits taken at each stage. Normally not more than 75 credits would be allowed in any one term. In total, students normally take no more than 150 credits at level 4, and must take at least 90 credits at level 6.

The pass mark for award of credit in an individual module is 40%.


There are no condonable modules. All modules must achieve the pass mark to contribute credits, and to permit progression to the next stage or to classification of the award.

Assessment and Awards

Assessment at stage one does not contribute to the summative classification of the award. The award will normally be based on the degree mark formed from the credit-weighted average marks for stages 2 and 3 combined in the ratio 1:2 respectively.

The marking of modules and the classification of awards broadly corresponds to the following percentage marks:

Undergraduate Degrees                                        

Class I    70% +                                                       

Class II   Division I 60-69%                                      

Class II   Division II 50-59%                                    

Class III  40-49%

Full details of assessment regulations for UG programmes can be found in the Teaching Quality Assurance Manual (TQA) on the University of Exeter website.  Generic marking criteria are also published here.

Please see the Teaching and Quality Assurance Manual for further guidance.


8. College Support for Students and Students' Learning

Academic and personal tutors. It is University policy that all Colleges should have in place a system of academic and personal tutors. The role of academic tutors is to support you on individual modules; the role of personal tutors is to provide you with academic advice and support for the duration of the programme and extends to providing you with details of how to obtain support and guidance on personal difficulties such as accommodation, financial difficulties and sickness. You can also make an appointment to see individual teaching staff.

Computing and library facilities. Students have access to good computing and library facilities on the Penryn campus. Computer-based exercises and web-based learning materials are a feature of the programme, which can be accessed via the internet. IT Services provide a range of central services, including open and training clusters of PCs (available on a 24/7 basis) within the Centre. Wireless network access is available from all rooms in the hall of residence on site. On the Penryn campus in Cornwall, the Learning Resource Centre contains a library of 70,000 volumes and some specialist collections. In addition, students have full access to the central University of Exeter library, including the electronic library resources.

Online study resources available through the University’s virtual learning environment, ELE, provide materials for modules that you are registered for, in addition to useful subject and IT resources. Generic study support resources, library and research skills, past exam papers, and the 'Academic Honesty and Plagiarism' module are also available through ELE (

Engineering Teaching Laboratory (ETL). The ETL supports teaching in Energy Engineering is located on the top floor of the Du Maurier building at the Penryn campus. This has been designed to provide experimental rigs and demonstration space dedicated to support modules for the Engineering programmes at the Penryn campus including the Energy Engineering programmes. Undergraduate experiments on working fluids, power hydraulics, digital electronics, instrumentation, control, and electrical machines will be supported from this laboratory. Access to these facilities will be available to Energy Engineering undergraduates, particularly for projects.

Renewable Energy Field Station. The department has recently won funding for the provision of a subject specific field station for the RE programmes.  It is intended that larger scale pilot or prototype equipment that cannot be accommodated within the ETL will be located at the field station. The new facility will be located on the Penryn Campus and will provide a opportunity for students to get hands on experience studying the performance of Renewable Energy equipment in the real environment as well as energy efficiency analysis of the building itself. The aspiration is for the building to complete during the second quarter of 2016 and the Field Station would be fully integrated into the 2017 teaching activities.

Personal Development Planning The tutor assists their tutees by making use of the University’s computerised system of Personal Development Planning (e-PDP). PDP is a facility aiming to support students through their studies, to record their personal development with the aim of acting both as a record and as a tool to emphasise personal achievements. It is intended to provide added value to students alongside the tutorial system. All candidates are encouraged to participate in specially provided personal skills training provision (e.g. the group and team skills training offered during induction week to registering students).

Student/Staff Liaison Committee enables students & staff to jointly participate in the management and review of the teaching and learning provision.


10. Admission Criteria

All applications are considered individually on merit. The University is committed to an equal opportunities policy with respect to gender, age, race, sexual orientation and/or disability when dealing with applications. It is also committed to widening access to higher education to students from a diverse range of backgrounds and experience.

Candidates must satisfy the general admissions requirements of the University of Exeter and the entrance requirements for this programme. These are published in full in the University of Exeter Undergraduate Prospectus (see ). In addition to candidates offering GCE AS and A2, those offering International Baccalaureate, and appropriate VCE A-levels will also be considered.

BSc Programme Requirements:(i) One GCE A2 Science subject and GCE A2 Mathematics or AS Mathematics (B) recommended. Typical offer: AAB-BBB (340-300); IB: 34-30.

Eligible GCE AL/AS Science subjects include: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Environmental Science, Geology, Physics or Science. All applicants must have a Grade C pass in GCSE English.

The UCAS tariff accommodates many qualifications that are not ALs, please contact the Penryn campus admissions team for advice as to the eligibility of SQA, BTEC N&H, GNVQ Adv., Int. Bacc. and Irish Leaving qualifications.

Applicants from a wide variety of backgrounds (including those from mature candidates with evidence of appropriate alternative qualifications or employment experience) are welcomed and admission onto the programme is as flexible as the maintenance of high academic standards permits. Further information about widening participation and mature entry can be found at .

Non-standard applicants are dealt with on an individual basis, and are almost invariably interviewed. Mature applicants (over the age of 21) will normally be expected to have undertaken some recognised systematic course of study within the last three years (e.g. validated Access course, Open University, BTEC).

Direct entry to Stage 2 of the programmes will also be considered for candidates who have successfully completed study equivalent to the core material in the first stage of the programmes. This includes favourable arrangements for candidates opting for the recognised articulation route from the FdSc Renewable Energy Technology foundation degree run at Cornwall College.

Overseas students without English as a first language must show proficiency in English and have an appropriate qualification (e.g. IELTS, TOEFL, or equivalent).

11. Regulation of Assessment and Academic Standards

Each academic programme in the University is subject to an agreed College assessment and marking strategy, underpinned by institution-wide assessment procedures.

The security of assessment and academic standards is further supported through the appointment of External Examiners for each programme. External Examiners have access to draft papers, course work and examination scripts. They are required to attend the Board of Examiners and to provide an annual report. Annual External Examiner reports are monitored at both College and University level. Their responsibilities are described in the University's code of practice.  See the University's TQA Manual for details.

12. Indicators of Quality and Standards

Certain programmes are subject to accreditation and/ or review by professional and statutory regulatory bodies (PSRBs).

The BSc Renewable Energy is accredited by the Energy Institute as: 1. fully satisfying the academic requirement for an Incorporated Engineer (IEng). 2. partially satisfying the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer (CEng).  A programme of accredited further learning will be required to complete the educational base for CEng. See for further information.

Accreditation is a mark of assurance that the degree meets the standards set by the Engineering Council in the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC).

Accreditation is awarded for a maximum of 5 years under each assessment exercise. The dates applicable to the current accreditation of this degree programme can be viewed on the Engineering Council list of accredited degrees: .

14 Awarding Institution University of Exeter
15 Lead College / Teaching Institution College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences - Camborne School of Mines
16 Partner College / Institution
17 Programme accredited/validated by Energy Institute
18 Final Award(s) BSc (Hons)
19 UCAS Code (UG programmes) F802
20 NQF Level of Final Awards(s): 6
21 Credit (CATS and ECTS) 360 credits (180 ECTS)
22 QAA Subject Benchmarking Group (UG and PGT programmes) Engineering
23 Origin Date February 8th 2023 Last Date of Revision: February 28th 2023