Communication Systems BEng (Hons) or MEng – 2018 entry

Why choose this course

Surrey is one of the UK's leading universities for Electrical and Electronic Engineering, with our programmes ranked top five in the Guardian University Guide 2018 and top ten in the Complete University Guide 2018 and The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018.

The University of Surrey leads European research activity in the rapidly evolving field of mobile communications via its 5G Innovation Centre. Drawing on this unique position, our Communication Systems degree programmes will expose you to the latest advances in mobile and wireless communications and give you practical experience of using advanced communications technologies.

What you will study

With our electronic engineering programmes ranked number two by The Guardian University Guide 2016, you can look forward to high quality teaching and learning during your time as a student with us.

On our Communication Systems programmes you’ll learn how to apply theory to real engineering problems and technologies, combining professional engineering skills with scientific research methods. The course includes professional development modules – preparing you to work as a professional engineer – along with individual and group projects which enable you to work with academics from our research centres and help you to develop your specialist skills.

Course facts

Qualification Course length Professional Training UCAS KIS code
BEng (Hons) 36 months H647 View KIS data set
BEng (Hons) 48 months H646 View KIS data set
MEng 48 months H641 View KIS data set
MEng 60 months H636 View KIS data set

Professional Training placements

As part of this course you have the option to complete a Professional Training placement. These will give you the opportunity to develop your professional, academic and personal potential, equipping you to be adaptable, resilient, globally minded, confident, entrepreneurial and digitally savvy in the workplace. These qualities are widely recognised by employers and a significant proportion of placement students at Surrey are offered graduate-level jobs or go onto postgraduate study.

Find out more about Professional Training placements and discover how these have transformed our students’ lives and career choices.

Communication Systems placements

We are very proud of our track record for graduate employability. One of the main reasons for our graduate employability success is our Professional Training placement programme which is one of the largest in the World, with over 2,300 partner organisations in the UK and overseas. To find out more visit our Careers and Professional Training pages.

While a university degree in itself opens the door to many careers, the Professional Training that is offered as part of our degree programmes provides a significant extra dimension to the qualification and can dramatically enhance your employability.

The industry experience that Professional Training affords gives our students insights into both their subject and their career potential that cannot be gained by academic study alone.

We believe that Professional Training is a key element in ensuring that Surrey graduates are consistently at the top in terms of graduate employability.

Professional Training can be used in partial fulfilment of the training component for Chartered Engineer status.

You will be assisted during the second year to find appropriate placements in industry, and we endeavour to ensure that the placement matches your interests and aspirations. Over many years, we have established strong relationships with industry and hence there is a great demand for our students.

This ensures that there are many interesting and challenging opportunities on offer. In recent years, we have had students in placements with 85 different companies.

During the Professional Training year, you remain a member of the University but are also a paid, full­time company employee. You will be visited by an academic member of staff who monitors your progress and, in discussion with the company, decides on a programme of work that will develop your expertise.

The Professional Training placement starts at the end of the second academic year.

Well-­known companies that have participated in the Professional Training programme include:

  • BAE Systems
  • Mitsubishi
  • Intel
  • Logica
  • Nokia
  • Samsung
  • Microsoft
  • Sharp
  • BBC
  • Surrey Satellite Technology

In addition, we have contacts with many smaller companies which provide excellent placement opportunities.

Many of our students return from their placement with offers of employment and often with financial sponsorship from their placement company. 

Applying for placements

Professional Training placements are usually applied for and secured via an open and free-to-all process, within which students can select and apply for numerous opportunities. Placement providers use their own recruitment and selection procedures and the majority of students will secure their placement in this way. However, support is also provided to students wishing to source their own placement, subject to university requirements being met.

Students are generally not placed by the University, however they are given thorough support and guidance alongside access to a vacancy portal representing thousands of placement opportunities each year. Please be aware there may be travel costs incurred when attending interviews and assessment centres at the placement provider’s premises.

Professional recognition

Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)
Accredited by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) on behalf of the Engineering Council for the purposes of fully meeting the academic requirement for registration as an Incorporated Engineer and partially meeting the academic requirement for registration as a Chartered Engineer.

Chartered Engineer (CEng)
Our MEng programmes fully satisfy the educational requirements for professional registration as a Chartered Engineer (CEng).

Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET)
The Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Surrey is an enhanced academic partner of the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET). This partnership with IET is designed to help enhance students’ learning and professional development while at Surrey.

The benefits of this partnership include heavily discounted memberships for students who want to join, opportunities to attend events run by IET on the University campus both for the wider community but also specifically for students.

There is also access to professional development courses on campus and much more. Students also have the opportunity to get involved in IET supporting activities on the campus during their studies and raise their own profile.

Careers and graduate prospects

We offer careers information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University.

A career in electronic engineering offers variety, challenges and stimulation. Studying for a degree in communication systems is not just the pathway to a rewarding career, but also offers an intellectually demanding and exciting opportunity to break through boundaries in research.

Many of the most remarkable advancements in the past 60 years have only been possible through the curiosity and ingenuity of engineers.

Graduate electronic engineers are in demand not only in research and development but also in technical sales, management, and government and public services.

Our graduates have a consistently strong record of gaining employment with leading companies. Employers value the skills and experience that enable our graduates to make a positive contribution in their jobs from day one. Our graduates are employed by companies across the electronics, information technology and communications industries.

Recent graduates have entered employment in roles such as:

  • Electronic Engineer, Paradigm Communication Ltd
  • Electronic Engineer, Stanhope-Seta
  • Graduate Engineer, Jaguar Land Rover
  • Embedded Engineer, Tactiq Ltd
  • Trainee Patent Attorney, Page White & Farrer
  • Leadership Engineering Associate, BAE Systems
  • R&D Engineer (Software), Keysight Technologies UK Ltd.

Study and work abroad

We give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities or by completing a Professional Training placement abroad. In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV. Visit our global exchanges pages to check where you can go.

You have the option of spending one or two semesters abroad in your second year at one of our partner universities, including:

  • Cincinnati University (US)
  • University of North Texas (US)
  • University of Sydney (Australia)
  • University of Victoria, Wellington (New Zealand).

International experiences expose you to a new cultural environment that develops your adaptation and communication skills and your ability to deal with unfamiliar situations, thus strengthening your academic and professional profile.

In addition, or alternatively, you may wish to consider spending your Professional Training year working in another country. If you work in another part of Europe you may be eligible for an Erasmus+ grant.

This is an excellent opportunity not only to acquire valuable work experience but also to improve in or learn another language.


Extensive teaching laboratories with modern equipment, and networked computer suites with 24-hour access, are available to all undergraduate students in the Department.

Access to state-of-the-art research facilities is available in Year 3 for students undertaking a project linked to one of our research centres in electronics, nanotechnology, communications, audio-visual media and space engineering.

We actively encourage you to do project work outside of timetabled hours, as long as you follow safe working practices.

Academic year structure

The academic year is divided into two semesters of 15 weeks each. Each semester consists of a period of teaching, revision/directed learning and assessment.

The University operates a credit framework for all taught programmes based on a 15-credit tariff. All taught modules are 15 credits. Project modules and dissertation modules can be either 15, 30, 45 or 60 credits.

The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes.


Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.


Timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday–Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the course administrators.


Teaching styles vary, from large group lectures to small group tutorials in your personal tutor’s office and practical laboratory sessions. The tutorial system within the Department underpins all our teaching activities and ensures individual attention when needed.

Although the Department is large, our staff are approachable and friendly, and we pride ourselves on the rapport we have with our students.

There may be occasions when the delivery of your teaching is supported by postgraduate research students. The University has a set of procedures that govern the use of postgraduate research students in this way.


This course is taught by academic staff from the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences.

Programme leader

BARNAGHI P Dr (Elec Elec En)

Personal tutor

All taught students are assigned a personal tutor before beginning a programme of study. Personal tutors offer support and advice to students in the areas of:

  • Academic progress
  • Pastoral/welfare issues
  • Personal/professional development and employability.


Modules are assessed individually and credits are awarded for the successful completion of each one. Assessment takes place through a combination of examination and/or coursework, practical examinations and reports. Check individual module information to see full details at a module level.

Contact hours

Contact hours can vary across our modules. Full details of the contact hours for each module are available from the University of Surrey's module catalogue. See the modules section for more information.

Policies and regulations

Please refer to our academic regulations and student policies and regulations. These may be amended from time to time.

Learning and disability support

We have two services, the Student Personal Learning and Study Hub (SPLASH) and Additional Learning Support (ALS) which can help develop your learning.

Student Personal Learning and Study Hub

SPLASH is a learning space in the Library where our learning development team is based. It comprises dedicated Student Learning Advisers and Information Skills Librarians who can help you develop your academic and research skills, including writing, presenting, revision and critical thinking.

Find out more about the study support available.

Additional Learning Support

ALS is the University’s disability and neurodiversity service which supports students with disabilities, long-term health conditions, specific learning differences (for example: dyslexia and dyspraxia) and other neurodiverse conditions (for example: autism spectrum and attention deficit disorder).

If you have a disability, we encourage you to disclose your condition and register with the service so you can be appropriately supported during your studies.

The ALS team can arrange exam and learning support adjustments, give advice on applications for the Disabled Students' Allowance and screen students for dyslexia and dyspraxia. Regular study skills and mentoring support is also available.

See the Additional Learning Support website for more information.

What qualifications do you need?



BEng (Hons): 

  • AAB (including Maths and one required subject from the list below).


  • ABB (including Maths and two required subjects from the list below). 

Applicants taking the Science Practical Endorsement are required to pass.

MEng (Hons): 

  • AAA (including Maths and one required subject from the list below). 


  • AAB (including Maths and two required subjects from the list below). 

Applicants taking the Science Practical Endorsement are required to pass.

Required subjects:

BEng (Hons): 

  • AAB - Maths and one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science, Further Mathematics, Design and Technology: Systems and Control Technology
  • ABB - Maths and two of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science, Further Mathematics, Design and Technology: Systems and Control Technology

MEng (Hons):

  • AAA - Maths and one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science, Further Mathematics, Design and Technology: Systems and Control Technology
  • AAB - Maths and two of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science, Further Mathematics, Design and Technology: Systems and Control Technology

Please note: A-level General Studies and A-level Critical Thinking are not accepted.

GCSE or equivalent: English Language at Grade C(4) and Mathematics at Grade C(4) (or equivalent).

BTEC (QCF Level 3) Extended Diploma


BEng (Hons): DDD. BTEC Extended Diploma and A-level Mathematics at Grade A.

MEng (Hons): D*DD. BTEC Extended Diploma and A-level Mathematics at Grade A.

Required subjects: BTEC must be in a relevant subject.

GCSE or equivalent: English Language at Grade C(4) and Mathematics at Grade C(4) (or equivalent).

International Baccalaureate


BEng (Hons): 34.

MEng (Hons): 34.

Required subjects:

BEng (Hons): HL6/SL7 and HL5/SL6 in Mathematics and at least one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science.

MEng (Hons): HL6/SL7 in Mathematics and at least one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science.

GCSE or equivalent: English HL4/SL4 and Mathematics or Mathematics studies HL4/SL4.

European Baccalaureate


BEng (Hons): 82%.

MEng (Hons): 85%.

Required subjects:

BEng (Hons): Grades 8.5 and 7.5 in Mathematics and and at least one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science.

MEng (Hons): Grade 8.5 in Mathematics and and at least one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science.

GCSE or equivalent: English Language (1/2) - 6 English Language (3) - 7 Mathematics 6.

Access to HE Diploma


BEng (Hons): QAA-recognised Access to Higher Education Diploma with 39 Level 3 Credits at Distinction and 6 Level 3 Credits at Merit.

MEng (Hons): QAA-recognised Access to Higher Education Diploma with 45 Level 3 Credits at Distinction.

Required subjects: Modules must be in relevant subjects.

GCSE or equivalent: English Language at Grade C(4) and Mathematics at Grade C(4) (or equivalent).

Scottish Highers


BEng (Hons): AAABB.

MEng (Hons): AAAAB.

Required subjects: Mathematics and at least one of: Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science.

GCSE or equivalent: English Language - Scottish National 5 - C Mathematics - Scottish National 5 - C.

Welsh Baccalaureate


BEng (Hons): AAB from a combination of the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and two A-levels. Applicants taking the Science Practical Endorsement are required to pass.

MEng (Hons): AAA from a combination of the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and two A-levels. Applicants taking the Science Practical Endorsement are required to pass.

Required subjects: A-level Mathematics and one of: Further Mathematics, Physics, Electronics, Computing, Computer Science.

GCSE or equivalent: Completion of GCSE English and Mathematics equivalents within the Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate.

Science Practical Certificate

Applicants taking the Science Practical Endorsement are required to pass.

Other international qualifications

If you are an international student and you don’t meet the entry requirements to this degree, we offer the International Foundation Year, run by the Surrey International Study Centre.

Select your country

English language requirements

IELTS Academic: 6.5 overall with 6.0 in each element.

View the other English language qualifications that we accept.

If you do not currently meet the level required for your programme, we offer intensive pre-sessional English language courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here. The University of Surrey is also an IELTS test centre.

Selection process

Offers are normally made in terms of grades.

Suitable candidates will be invited to an Applicant Day. During the visit to the University the candidate can find out more about the programme and meet staff and students.

Recognition of prior learning

The University of Surrey recognises that many students enter their higher education course with valuable knowledge and skills developed through a range of professional, vocational and community contexts. If this applies to you, a process called recognition of prior learning (RPL) may allow you to enter your course at a point appropriate to your previous learning and experience, or to join the start of a course without the formal entry requirements. This means that you may be exempt from certain elements of study in the course for which you have applied and be awarded credit based on your previous qualifications/experience. There are restrictions on RPL for some courses and fees may be payable for certain claims. 

Please see the Code of practice for recognition of prior learning and prior credit: taught programmes (PDF) for further information. Please email Admissions with any queries.


Qualification Course length Professional Training UK/EU fees Overseas fees Professional Training fees
BEng (Hons) 36 months £9,250 £20,500 Not applicable
BEng (Hons) 48 months £9,250 £20,500 £1,800
MEng 48 months £9,250 £20,500 Not applicable
MEng 60 months £9,250 £20,500 £1,800

View a complete listing of all ongoing fees for our undergraduate courses.

The University will assess your fee status. If you are unsure whether you are likely to be considered a home, EU or overseas student for fees purposes, the UKCISA website offers more information.

Professional Training placement fees

Programmes marked with a tick in the table above include a Professional Training placement.

A reduced fee is charged for Professional Training placements.

Fees will not have to be paid up front for those eligible students who decide to take up the Government's loan for higher education fees. The Professional Training placement is a key factor in the high employability rates achieved by students with Surrey degrees.

How to apply

Learn how to apply for an undergraduate course, see details about the UCAS application process and determine the steps you need to take if you receive an offer to study.

Admissions information

Our undergraduate admissions policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students.

Open Days

June 2018


Join a webinar and speak to our current students

Our students

Our graduates


Find us

01SE01, Senate House
University of Surrey
Surrey GU2 7XH