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Postgraduate Admissions


Teaching is delivered through a variety of media. During Cambridge term times, there will be traditional academic lectures and interactive seminars; the dissertation will be based in one of the Institute for Manufacturing's research groups and will involve normal graduate-level supervision.

Much of the learning during the course takes place during the industrial visits, and on the projects themselves. During the projects, students can expect to receive substantial "supervisory" feedback from their line managers and colleagues.  (Colleague engagement may be more limited if projects need to take place online). Academic assessment of the course is split into two components: the first comprises five project reports and the assessments of the six taught modules; the second comprises examination of the research dissertation. To pass the course overall, students are required to pass each of these components separately.

One to one supervision

100 hours per year: the bulk of this figure includes meetings with industrial supervisors during the industrial projects, but it also encompasses individuals meetings with ISMM core staff, and one-to-one sessions with the student's dissertation supervisor during the dissertation-writing period.

Seminars & classes

40 hours per year.


160 hours per year.


600 hours per year.

Literature Reviews

Students undertake a literature review as a substantial component of the dissertation-writing period. This will consume approximately 200 hours of working time.

Posters and Presentations

At the end of each of four projects, students are required to deliver a 30-minute presentation to the senior management of the company in which the project was based. Some of these presentations may take place virtually, reflecting current industrial practice in multinational companies and during the pandemic.


In addition to the series of industrial visits, students will undertake four industrial projects over the course of the programme. During this time they will be working on live business and technical issues relevant to the company and will be treated as an employee. These placements will conclude in a presentation to the senior management of the company, and in the writing of a handover document that will be examined as part of the course assessment. Some of these projects may take place online either in cases where that is desirable and accurately reflects the industrial experience, or where required by regulations pertaining to the pandemic response.


Students can expect to receive termly reports from the course director. They will have access to a University supervisor for their dissertation and can expect to receive input from their line managers during project placements. Students will also receive feedback on the written assignments and project activities from supervisors and staff.


Thesis / Dissertation

All students will be required to write a dissertation of no greater than 15,000 words.


All students are required to submit assessed assignments for each of the six modules, typically between 2,000 and 4,000 words. Students also submit a "handover" document (report) to the company following the industrial projects for discussion and assessment by supervisors.


At the discretion of the examiners, candidates may be required to take an oral examination on the work submitted during the course, and on the general field of knowledge within which it falls.

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Key Information

11 months full-time

Master of Philosophy

Department of Engineering This course is advertised in multiple departments. Please see the Overview tab for more details.

Course - related enquiries

Application - related enquiries

Course on Department Website

Dates and deadlines:

Michaelmas 2022

Applications open
Sept. 1, 2021
Application deadline
May 16, 2022
Course Starts
Oct. 1, 2022

Some courses can close early. See the Deadlines page for guidance on when to apply.

Graduate Funding Competition
Dec. 2, 2021
Gates Cambridge US round only
Oct. 13, 2021

These deadlines apply to applications for courses starting in Michaelmas 2022, Lent 2023 and Easter 2023.

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