Process Systems Engineering MSc - 2024/5

Awarding body

University of Surrey

Teaching institute

University of Surrey


FHEQ Level 7

Final award and programme/pathway title

MSc Process Systems Engineering

Subsidiary award(s)

Award Title
PGDip Process Systems Engineering
PGCert Process Systems Engineering

Modes of study

Route code Credits and ECTS Credits
Full-time PFZ61005 180 credits and 90 ECTS credits
Part-time PFZ61006 180 credits and 90 ECTS credits

QAA Subject benchmark statement (if applicable)

Other internal and / or external reference points


Faculty and Department / School

Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences - Chemistry and Chemical Engineering

Programme Leader

CECELJA Franjo (Chst Chm Eng)

Date of production/revision of spec


Educational aims of the programme

  • An integrated approach is taken so as to provide a coherent view that explores the interrelationships between the various components of the programme. The programme draws on the stimulus of the Faculty's research activities.
  • It aims to provide the students with the necessary skills required for a successful career in the process industries. This is achieved through a balanced curriculum with a core of process systems engineering modules supplemented by a flexible element by way of elective modules that permit students to pursue an element of specialisation relevant to their backgrounds, interests and/or career aspirations.
  • The programme aims to provide a highly vocational education which is intellectually rigorous and up-to-date.
  • The programme provides the students with the basis for developing their own approach to learning and personal development.

Programme learning outcomes

Attributes Developed Awards Ref.
State-of-the-art knowledge in process systems engineering methods, in the areas, including Modelling and simulation of process systems; Mathematical optimisation and decision making; Process systems design; Supply chain management; Process and energy integration; and Advanced process control technologies K PGCert, PGDip, MSc
Advanced level of understanding in technical topics of preference in one or more of the following aspects: renewable energy technologies; refinery and petrochemical processes; biomass processing technologies; knowledge-based systems. KC PGDip, MSc
The programme primarily aims to strengthen the cognitive skills of the students, particularly in the aspects of problem definition, knowledge and information acquiring, synthesis, and creativity, as collectively demonstrable through the successful completion of the research dissertation. C PGCert, PGDip, MSc
The programme aims to improve further the students' cognitive abilities to select, define and focus upon an issue at an appropriate level; To collect and digest knowledge and information selectively and independently to support a particular scientific or engineering enquiry; and To develop and apply relevant and sound methodologies for analysing the issue, developing solutions, recommendations and logical conclusions, and for evaluating the results of own or other's work C MSc
The programme primarily aims to develop skills for applying appropriate methods to analyse, develop, and assess process systems and technologies P PGCert, PGDip, MSc
The programme aims to develop further the students' abilities To assess the available systems in the process industries; To design and/or select appropriate system components and optimise and evaluate system design; and To apply generic systems engineerings methods such as modelling, simulation, and optimisation to facilitate the assessment and development of advanced process technologies and systems P MSc
The programme aims to strengthen a range of transferable skills which are relevant to the needs of existing and future professionals in knowledge-intensive industries, irrespective of their sector of operation. T PGDip, MSc
The programme aims to strengthen further the students' capabilities in the development of skills in the following aspect: preparation and delivery of communication and presentation, reporting and essay writing; the use of general and professional computing tools; collaborative working with team members; organising and planning of work; and researching new areas, particularly in the aspect of literature review and skills acquisition. T MSc

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Programme structure


This Master's Degree programme is studied full-time over one academic year, consisting of 180 credits at FHEQ level 7. All modules are semester based and worth 15 credits with the exception of project, practice based and dissertation modules.
Possible exit awards include:
- Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits)
- Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits)


This Master's Degree programme is studied part-time over two academic years, consisting of 180 credits at FHEQ level 7. All modules are semester based and worth 15 credits with the exception of project, practice based and dissertation modules.
Possible exit awards include:
- Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits)
- Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits)

Programme Adjustments (if applicable)



Opportunities for placements / work related learning / collaborative activity

Associate Tutor(s) / Guest Speakers / Visiting Academics Y
Professional Training Year (PTY) N
Placement(s) (study or work that are not part of PTY) N
Clinical Placement(s) (that are not part of the PTY scheme) N
Study exchange (Level 5) N
Dual degree N

Other information

Digital Capabilities:
Throughout the programme, students learn to navigate and utilise the Virtual Learning Environment @ Surrey (SurreyLearn) and other digital resources and online databases to aid their learning and undertake research. Students are also introduced to and gain proficiency in specific digital tools, such as general modelling software MatLab, process and process systems modelling software Aspen+, and optimisation modelling software GAMS, which are all assisting in building their skills to deal with engineering problems, generate, analyse, and present data mainly by means of a computer. Students are also encouraged to use current media such as WhatsApp, Teams, and Zoom and utilise cloud/file sharing for communication and team working. Appropriate use of digital media and communication platforms is increasingly important for engineering practitioners, and through the use and discussion of these, students gain an awareness of their roles, plus their limitations and misuse, which can have a wider impact (e.g., on digital well-being).

The programme is designed to equip students with all the core competencies required for an engineering professional in general and a professional in the process industry in particular. Throughout the course, students will encounter real-life examples and problems to be prepared, solve and hence competitive in the job market. They will also be taught by and exposed to a variety of internal and external speakers exposing students to the variety of specific roles and real-life cases engineers have in the workplace. The tasks and assessments undertaken across the modules are specifically chosen to equip students with knowledge and skills that are key to the role of modern and forward-looking engineers. Key to this, and underpinning everything through this programme, students develop the ability to appraise evidence critically and the appropriate application of this knowledge to specific individuals, groups, or populations, all in the course of development of new products or advancing research in a commercial world.

Global and Cultural Capabilities:
The programme is taught in an interactive and collaborative way in a cohort that commonly represents a wealth of nationalities and backgrounds. Students are encouraged to engage with and learn from diverse perspectives through interaction and teamwork. It is evident that main advances in engineering originate from cross-cultural studies, and differences between ethnic groups are explored and appreciated as key to understanding the interrelationship between various aspects of engineering: research, design, and operation. Students also develop an understanding of inequalities in the commercial world and the underlying causes of differences with an exploration of how the diversity of lived experience and culture can impact processes. Invited speakers contribute to diverse global perspectives on cutting-edge advancement in engineering as well as global effects.

Resourcefulness and Resilience
This programme requires practical problem-solving skills that teach a student how to reason about and solve new unseen problems starting with a problem scenario and designing and developing a complex and practical solution to the problem. As such, students will have experience in taking an idea from concept through to implementation and evaluation both as an individual and within a group.

From the very beginning of the programme students begin to consider the foundations of engineering and technology related knowledge in the context of the UN Sustainable Goals. Sustainability is directly involved in most of the modules on the programme. Broader aspects relevant to sustainability, including manufacturing processes, general processing, distribution, retail and impact on global resources and the environment, are topics that are addressed across the programme. Seminars and tutorials give students the opportunity to explore specific topical aspects of sustainability. In particular, students can choose optional modules dealing with current sustainability problems to further master and advance sustainability in the technology sector of their interest.

Quality assurance

The Regulations and Codes of Practice for taught programmes can be found at:

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2024/5 academic year.