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Robotics MSc/PGDip/PGCert

Learn about the course below
October 2021
1 year full-time
2 years part-time
£10,000 (UK) *
£14,500 (EU/INT) *
Course leader
Eris Chinellato
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In the near future robotic and other autonomous systems will be present in virtually every industry, with their global impact estimated to reach $6.5 trillion per year by 2025 (McKinsey). As new markets turn to robotics for the next step in their evolution, the need for qualified robotic engineers has never been greater.

Why study MSc/PGDip/PGCert Robotics at Middlesex University?

Our hands-on master's degree in robotics blends practice with theory to equip students with the skills, knowledge and experience they need for a career as a robotics engineer. The postgraduate degree includes significant time working under the supervision of our expert teaching staff, many of whom have worked in robotics since the early days of the technology.

Over the duration of the course you will gain experience about industry-standard equipment. You will also benefit from our close to links to leading industry organisations, be encouraged to enter national robotics competitions and supported to undertake industry work placements during the masters.

If you do not wish to study the full MSc, you can apply to the PGDip where you study only four modules or a PGCert where you study only two modules.

Course highlights

  • Undertake a major study project in the area you wish to specialise in
  • Contribute to the wide range of robotics research being carried out in the school

Find out more

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What will you study on the MSc/PGDip/PGCert Robotics?

You will study the key hardware and software skills demanding by the robotics industry, enabling progression into more specialised areas of robotics, depending on your interests.

You will learn how to use open systems and the appropriate programming environments to work on various types of robots.

The workshops will take place using a variety of industry standard and domestic robots in our specialist labs, providing you with a breadth of experience using technologies such as industrial manipulators, multiple-arm collaborative robots and mobile platforms.

What will you gain?

In addition to an in-depth understanding of the subject, you will also gain experience in using industry standard equipment, on current technologies, and the skills needed to progress into careers in robotics as well as a wide range of other disciplines. Depending on the modules selected, you will be able to specialise in different sectors such as mobile solutions or sectors requiring image processing such as medical or space applications. You will also develop key skills such as advanced programming, interfacing and system integration


  • Modules

    • Software Engineering and Simulation of Robotic Systems (30 credits) - Compulsory

      This module, together with the Robotic Systems and Control module, lays the foundation for the remainder of the course. The part of a robot system that gives the system a degree of intelligence is the software and you will learn to the software designed for controlling robotic systems.

    • Robotic Systems and Control (30 credits) - Compulsory

      This module is designed to provide the necessary knowledge of the various types of robotic systems and their key features to enable you to design your own systems later on in the course. Controlling robotic systems requires a knowledge of control methods and techniques which can be implemented in software. For this reason this module is run in parallel with the module above.

    • Group Project (15 credits) - Compulsory

      This module, with the aid of fellow students, will allow you to establish and develop the skills needed to jointly design, build and test a practical robotic system using the knowledge gained in the previous two modules. You will be required to demonstrate team-working skills and to show how you used a formal project management approach to budget, time manage and prioritise effectively.

    • Robot Systems Integration (15 credits) - Compulsory

      This module is designed to enable you to bring together various parts and sub-systems to create a coordinated working whole. New designs often depend on sub-systems not designed to work together and interfacing such systems is often a major challenge to be overcome.

    • Industrial Manipulators (15 credits) - Optional

      This module will enable you to design and implement systems based on robot arms and manipulators such as those in car production lines, CNC machines and medical research. Such machines are generally mounted in fixed positions and can move with speed or with load carrying capability and precision.

    • Artificial Intelligence in Robotics (15 credits) - Optional

      This module is designed to provide state of the art knowledge of Artificial Intelligence techniques that are widely used in robotics to enable you to design your own intelligent robotic systems. You will be able to evaluate AI techniques used for robotics, and strategically apply and combine them for a successful robotics project.

    • Mobile Robotics (15 credits) - Optional

      Mobile robots are being used widely in defence and in dangerous locations such as nuclear reactors and disaster sites. Machines, such as driverless cars, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or drones) and submarines, are required to operate in continuously changing, unfamiliar, complex environments. This module will enable you to design such intelligent sensor-guided systems.

    • Individual Major Project (60 credits) - Compulsory

      This module is designed to give you the opportunity to integrate the knowledge and skills gained in the previous modules. You will be required to demonstrate that you have taken a systematic formal project management approach to designing and building a robotic device. You will also be required to demonstrate your presentation and communication skills at the end of the project.

More information about this course

See the course specification for more information:

Optional modules are usually available at levels 5 and 6, although optional modules are not offered on every course. Where optional modules are available, you will be asked to make your choice during the previous academic year. If we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, or there are staffing changes which affect the teaching, it may not be offered. If an optional module will not run, we will advise you after the module selection period when numbers are confirmed, or at the earliest time that the programme team make the decision not to run the module, and help you choose an alternative module.

How is the MSc/PGDip/PGCert Robotics taught?

The course is taught through a series of practical workshops as well as self-directed study and project-based learning. There will be no formal lectures as all course content will be embedded within workshop sessions.

You will be taught how to use state of the art robots by a number of experienced staff. In addition, there are technical tutors and Graduate Academic Assistants to support the individual student during and after formal class situations.



The course is entirely assessed through coursework and projects.

Teaching and learning

Changes for students in 2020

If you’re starting university in 2020, we’ll be teaching you in different ways to make sure you get the best learning experience possible. You’ll learn through live sessions with teaching staff and have the chance to study independently too, with access to all the online resources you need through our globally available student portal.

We’re planning different scenarios for teaching so that we can be flexible. While we’re social distancing, we’re aiming to teach you through some small group sessions on campus, with larger lectures delivered online and available to you on-demand. If you’re unable to make it to campus at first, or we need to limit access to campus in the future, your course can be delivered fully online.

The table below shows current plans for your learning across a typical week, including scheduled live online teaching and an indication of what we hope to teach face to face, where you can make it to campus. While some weeks might look different to this, due to how we schedule classes, the table gives you an idea of what to expect based on the overall number of teaching hours on your course.

You’ll receive final arrangements for your teaching and a full course timetable before you start.

Course delivered fully online


Live learning

Contact time per week per level:

12 hours


Self-paced learning time

Average hours per week per level:

28 hours


On demand resources

Average hours per week per level:


Term 2 onwards (from January): Blended learning

Course delivered with a mix of online and face to face learning with social distancing in place 


Live learning

Contact time per week per level:

6 hours


Self-paced learning time

Average hours per week per level:

28 hours


On demand resources

Average hours per week per level:



Face-to-face sessions

Contact time per week per level:

6 hours (students only travel to campus one day per week)

Read more about our scenarios for returning to campus and what they might mean for your teaching and learning experience, and how you’ll be able to access student support.

Future plans for teaching

We’re developing our timetable for face to face teaching  with current government advice on social distancing to keep you safe. If social distancing requirements are lifted, we’ll start to safely move back towards our usual teaching arrangements with more opportunities for face to face learning. Some learning and support might stay online in this scenario. If more restrictions are put in place, or there is another lockdown, we’ll be prepared to deliver your learning and support fully online, with alternative arrangements made for any required placements. We’ll always give you notice of any changes that we make.

Definitions of terms

  • Live learning – Live learning will cover everything you’ll do with teaching staff like lectures, seminars, workshops and other classes, and we’ll schedule all of this for you. This might include some study outside your regular timetable, like taking part in discussion forums or online blogs where you’re supported by academic staff.
  • Independent learning – Independent learning is all the studying you’ll do outside your live learning sessions with teaching staff. This self-paced study will give you the chance to learn, prepare, revise and reflect in your own time as you need to, and you’ll have access to on-demand resources and materials to help you do your best.
    • Self-paced study – Self-paced study will give you the chance to learn wherever and whenever you want to and at your own pace, outside your live learning sessions. This independent learning could include reading and reflection, preparation for classes, revision or homework along with access to other online activities such as quizzes.
    • On-demand resources – You'll have access to on-demand resources like pre-recorded video lectures and workshops as part of your independent study. You’ll be able to review and revisit whenever you need to at your own pace.
  • Face to face sessions – Wherever it’s possible to do so, and we can make the necessary arrangements to ensure your safety, you’ll be able to attend scheduled sessions, workshops or appointments on campus as part of your live learning. The number of hours given in this scenario provides an indication of the number of hours of face to face learning you could expect, and a full timetable will be provided to you before the start of your course.


You’ll have a strong support network available to you to make sure you develop all the necessary academic skills you need to do well on your course.

Our support services will mainly be delivered online and you’ll have access to a range of different resources so you can get the help you need, whether you’re studying at home or have the opportunity to come to campus.

You’ll have access to one to one and group sessions for personal learning and academic support from our library and IT teams, and our network of learning experts. Our teams will also be here to offer financial advice, and personal wellbeing, mental health and disability support.

More on teaching for your subject in 2020/21

Read our guide to what’s been happening in your subject area recently and more about what to expect this autumn.

  1. Standard entry requirements
  2. International (inc. EU)
  3. How to apply
  1. UK
  2. EU/International
  3. Additional costs
  4. Scholarships and bursaries

How can the MSc/PGDip/PGCert Robotics support your career?

Well-qualified graduates with a Masters in Robotics are in high demand and as a result, the career options available are extensive. Robotics knowledge and skills are central to the design and production of a wide range of products including cash dispensers, cars, televisions and mobile phones.

The development of intelligent systems has become vital to many major UK and international companies and emerging industries. You could be working in a variety of sectors from advanced manufacturing to agriculture, transport healthcare and defence. Space exploration also relies heavily on robots, and there is an increasing number of applications in dirty and dangerous situations which could be possible opportunities for you.

We’ll carefully manage any future changes to courses, or the support and other services available to you, if these are necessary because of things like changes to government health and safety advice, or any changes to the law.

Any decisions will be taken in line with both external advice and the University’s Regulations which include information on this.

Our priority will always be to maintain academic standards and quality so that your learning outcomes are not affected by any adjustments that we may have to make.

At all times we’ll aim to keep you well informed of how we may need to respond to changing circumstances, and about support that we’ll provide to you.

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