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2023/24 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

CAPE5700M Interdisciplinary Design Project

15 creditsClass Size: 30

Module manager: Professor G Jose

Taught: Semester 2 (Jan to Jun) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

This module is not approved as an Elective


This module is designed to provide the skills and practical experience necessary to enable professional engineers to create their own designs and contribute to industrial multi-disciplinary design team projects. A main objective is that, on completion of this module, they are able to generate and evaluate options and make decisions based on multiple criteria: technological, societal, logistical, economic, environmental, etc and to communicate their recommendations both orally, to the general public and in the form of a written report. It is expected that new methods of analysis, either computational or experimental, would also be practiced during the second, more technical phase of the project.

Learning outcomes
On completion of this module, candidates should:
- have acquired an understanding of the optimal way to implement a current, new or emerging material or technology to solve a practical problem specified in a design brief;
- have an appreciation of the significance of engineering disciplines other than the students own, required to solve complex, multidisciplinary, technological and logistical problems;
- have acquired the necessary skills to enable them to contribute to major industrial multi-disciplinary design team projects;
- have identified and analysed the key issues in materials science and engineering that were important for the design project to be successful;
- be able to generate and evaluate options and make decisions based on multiple criteria: technological, societal, logistical, economic, environmental, etc;
- be able to communicate the recommendations both orally, to a public audience and in the form of written reports;
- be able to work as a member of a team to plan and execute a project.

Skills outcomes
This module will significantly develop: team-working ability, interpersonal relationship skills, planning, oral and written communication skills, organisational and time-management skills, research skills, analytical and critical skills and information literacy.


Initially, students will carry out a substantial feasibility study as members of a team to a design brief suggested by industry or recent technical literature. They will be expected to draw upon their knowledge and experience from other modules on their programme. Emphasis will be placed upon team working, project planning, marketing and financial aspects and interpersonal and communication skills. Guidance will be given by academic staff as well as other professionals working in relevant industries or with industrial experience.

The teams will be responsible for their own project planning and for arranging their own meetings between formal review meetings/presentations. Teams will have access to group working tools in Minerva as will the project supervisor for the purposes of reviewing student progress. A report of this phase of the project will be produced by the team by the middle of the semester.

During the latter half of the semester, students will identify the key technical issues involved in their particular team design project, and choose one or more of these, under the guidance of a member of academic staff, to subject to a more detailed in-depth analysis which will form the basis of the second report. In addition, each team will produce a video aimed at the general public.

This analysis might involve critical literature searching, modelling and/or simulation, laboratory-based experimental work or interaction with an outside industrial company relevant to the chosen issue(s). This should better enable them to appreciate the relevance of the materials discipline to the overall design objectives and how in an industrial context they might bring their discipline-specific expertise to bear on the project.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Group learning103.0030.00
Independent online learning hours10.00
Private study hours110.00
Total Contact hours30.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Private study

Independent on-line learning covering tools necessary for successful design project management and presentation. Private study is in the form of group interaction and targeted research directed towards achieving the objectives set out in the briefing document. The tasks involved may include, for example, off campus visits by way of a fact finding mission for assessing solutions to a particular design problem. In the second phase the work involved in assessing the technical issues of the design study and the outcomes are of a more individual and independent nature.

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Progress and performance in tutorials. Monitoring of project development via blog and group working tools in Minerva.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
ReportFeasibility study30.00
ReportTechnical report50.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Resit only available for technical report.

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 28/04/2023 14:55:30


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