Petroleum Engineering MEng, BEng

(Full time) 2019 start

Course information for 2018 start


Petroleum Engineering at the University of Leeds provides a comprehensive learning journey to up-skill graduates for a career in the oil and gas industry. Our program is delivered by the Schools of Chemical and Process Engineering, and Earth and Environment, and through this partnership we can ensure that our graduates are taught by academics who are experienced in the three strands of production: upstream, midstream and downstream.

You will learn fundamental engineering and geology concepts before progressing to advanced topics such as reservoir simulation, drilling and production, separation processes, flow assurance and unconventional oil and gas reservoirs.

The course is taught by academics who have extensive collaborative experience working with the oil and gas sector to improve resource utilisation and minimise environmental impact. Teaching is supported by industry figures who provide real-world perspectives on this global industry and the day-to-day activities of a petroleum engineer.

You can choose to take either the four-year Integrated Masters (MEng, BEng) or the three-year Bachelor’s (BEng) degree on this course.

Find out more about the MEng, BEng and BEng.

You can choose to take either the four-year Integrated Masters (MEng, BEng) or the three-year Bachelor’s (BEng) degree on this course.

Find out more about the MEng, BEng and BEng

Specialist facilities

You will be educated in the world-class teaching environment at the University of Leeds. Our program incorporates a range of teaching methods and provides access to some of the latest teaching tools including virtual reality. Our aim is to deliver a diverse learning environment such that our graduates can confidently apply their knowledge. Other teaching facilities include: pilot-scale unit operations, world-leading research facilities, drilling and well control simulators, engineering and computational modelling software.


This course is accredited by the Energy Institute (EI) under licence from the UK regulator, the Engineering Council.

The MEng, BEng course is accredited as fully satisfying the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng). Once you have graduated with your MEng degree, you will be required to have a number of years industrial experience before you can apply for your chartered status.

The BEng is accredited as partially satisfying the educational base for CEng status. A programme of accredited further learning will be required to complete the educational base for CEng.

Course content

The first two years of the course will give you a good grounding in the fundamental science and mathematics behind key engineering and geological concepts. You will learn the basics of geophysics, the mechanisms that create sedimentary basins and reservoir simulation techniques, as well as core engineering topics such as fluid flow, process modelling and thermodynamics.

Year 3 gives you the chance to build on this knowledge with a set of specialised modules on topics such as drilling and production technology and seismic interpretation. You will also explore wider strategic issues in the energy industries, such as climate change, environmental policy and the debate around shale gas extraction. The petroleum engineering design project gives you the chance to work with your colleagues to submit a field development plan for an oil or gas reservoir.

If you continue to Year 4 for the MEng qualification, you will study Masters-level modules informed by the research of staff within both Schools. The topics you will study include flow assurance, unconventional oil and gas reservoirs and advanced drilling and production technology. You will also apply what you have learned to an individual research project on a topic relevant to the petroleum industry.


Every year of the course gives you hands-on experience of project work. This gives you the opportunity to explore your subject further as well as developing valuable skills in problem solving, communication and teamwork.

Find out more about our Projects

Engineering ethics

You’ll study engineering ethics as part of your course, with lectures and/or seminars in each year of your study. Visit our engineering ethics webpage to find out more.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.


Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Technical Skills and Applications 20 credits
  • Engineering Science 1 30 credits
  • Introduction to Petroleum Engineering 10 credits
  • Mathematical Techniques 1 10 credits
  • Fundamentals of Geophysics 10 credits
  • Geology for Petroleum Engineers 30 credits

Optional modules

  • Foundation Mathematics 10 credits
  • Fundamentals of Process Chemistry 10 credits
  • Foundation Engineering Physics 10 credits
  • Topics in Nanotechnology 10 credits
  • Introduction to Management 10 credits
Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Mathematical Techniques 2 20 credits
  • Process Systems and Applications 20 credits
  • Engineering Science 2 30 credits
  • Chemical Thermodynamics 10 credits
  • Formation Evaluation 10 credits
  • Petroleum Reservoir Engineering 10 credits
  • Basin Evolution and Hydrocarbon Resources 10 credits
  • Reservoir Simulation 1 10 credits
Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Petroleum Engineering Design Project (BEng) 40 credits
  • Separation Processes 20 credits
  • Drilling and Production Technology 20 credits
  • Field Class: Petroleum Reservoir Architectures 10 credits
  • Strategic Energy Issues 10 credits
  • Reservoir Simulation 2 10 credits
  • Seismic Interpretation 10 credits
Year 4

Compulsory modules

  • Research Project (MEng) 45 credits
  • Advanced Drilling and Production Technology 15 credits
  • Unconventional Oil and Gas Reservoirs 15 credits
  • Flow Assurance and Oilfield Chemistry 15 credits
  • Rock Mechanics 15 credits
  • Petroleum Systems Case Studies 15 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Petroleum Engineering MEng, BEng in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read Petroleum Engineering BEng in the course catalogue

Broadening your academic horizons

At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. On this course you broaden your learning through core and/or optional modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.

Learning and teaching

You’ll benefit from our integrated style of learning and teaching. Laboratory classes, project work, filed trips and industrial visits allow you to gain first-hand experience investigating and applying material from your lectures and tutorials to real life work situations. Together they will equip you with in-depth knowledge and key practical skills that will put you in a good position to compete in science and technology-related careers. Our close links with industry also mean that you have direct contact with industry and potential employers from an early stage in your course.

Our personal tutorial system will provide academic and pastoral support. You will have a designated personal tutor throughout your studies at Leeds. He or she will be an academic member of staff: you will have weekly academic tutorials with your tutor throughout your first year, in your tutor group (of typically 5 students), as well as one-to-one meetings twice per semester.

In addition, our excellent student support team is based close to where you’ll work and study to help with anything from academic advice to timetabling and project submission enquiries.


Most modules are assessed by more than one component. These components can include written examinations held at the end of each year, in-class and online tests, example sheets, assignments, and coursework in the form of reports, projects, presentations and posters.

Entry requirements, fees and applying

Entry requirements

A-level: AAA including Mathematics and Physics or Chemistry.

Where an A-Level Science subject is taken, we require a pass in the practical science element, alongside the achievement of the A-Level at the stated grade.

Excludes A-Level General Studies or Critical Thinking.

Extended Project Qualification - Whilst we recognise the value, effort and enthusiasm applicants make in the Extended Project, we do not currently include this as part of our offer making. We do however encourage you to provide further information on your project in your personal statement and if invited, at interview.

GCSE: English Language at grade C (4) or above, or an appropriate English language qualification.

  • Access to HE Diploma

    Pass 60 credits overall with 45 credits at Level 3, with Distinction - to include Mathematics, Calculus and Further Calculus and specific subjects e.g. Physics or Chemistry.

  • BTEC

    D*DD with Distinctions in relevant Mathematics and Chemistry or Physics units. Some Mathematics and Chemistry or Physics units may be optional on your BTEC but are required by the Faculty. Please contact us for further information.

  • Cambridge Pre-U

    D3, D3, D3 including Mathematics and either Physics or Chemistry.

  • International Baccalaureate

    35 points overall, with 18 points at higher level to include 5 points in Mathematics and either Physics or Chemistry.

  • Irish Highers (Leaving Certificate)

    H1 H2 H2 H2 H2 H2 including Mathematics and either Physics or Chemistry.

  • Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers

    AA at Advanced Higher level, including Mathematics and either Physics or Chemistry, and AABBB at Higher level.

  • Other Qualifications

    Advanced Diploma: A, with an appropriate amount of Mathematics and either Chemistry or Physics.

Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the School’s Undergraduate Admissions Team.

Alternative entry

We’re committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.

Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.

Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.

If you do not have the formal qualifications for immediate entry to one of our degrees, you may be able to progress through a foundation year. We offer a BSc Studies in Science for students without a science background at A-level and an Interdisciplinary Science Foundation Year for applicants who meet specific widening participation criteria.


We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications.

Foundation year

If you have the ability to study for a degree but don’t have the qualifications to enter directly to level one, you might consider studying a foundation year. We have formal links with the following foundation year programmes:

- University of Leeds International Foundation Year (IFY)

- Northern Consortium of UK Universities (NCUK)

- Study Group Leeds International Study Centre (LISC)

If you are applying from an alternative foundation year provider, please contact our admissions team to find out if your qualification is suitable for entry to our courses.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall, with no less than 5.5 in each section.. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

How to apply

Apply to this course through UCAS. The institution code for the University of Leeds is L23. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.

International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK/EU students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.

ATAS requirements

If you’re an international student and you want to apply for the four-year MEng, BEng programme, you’ll need an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) certificate before you can apply for your student visa.

Find out more about ATAS requirements

Next steps

Suitable applicants will be invited to an applicant day, for which we strongly encourage attendance, as this gives you the opportunity to meet our students, academic and admissions staff, and find out more about your course. You’ll take part in a practical engineering activity, followed by a School and campus tour. The tour of the School’s facilities includes interactive demonstrations of student activities.

During the day you’ll have a discussion with an academic member of staff, to check that it’s the right course for you and your career plans, have your questions answered and find out more about studying at Leeds.

After you apply we will send you a link to book your place on the applicant day, but please let us know as soon as possible if you cannot attend, so your place can be allocated to another applicant.

Admissions policy

Faculty of Engineering Undergraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: To be confirmed

International: To be confirmed

For UK and non-UK EU full-time students starting in 2018, the fee for 2018/19 will be £9,250. 

The fee for undergraduate students starting in 2019 will be confirmed in September 2018.

The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation, and as permitted by law. For example, the increase of 2.8% in 2017/18 was based on the government’s forecast for the RPI-X measure of inflation.

The UK government has confirmed that non-UK EU students in 2018-19 will have home fee status and be eligible for UK government student loans. The UK government has not confirmed the situation for future years, so keep checking our website for updates.

If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.

Read more about paying fees and charges.

Financial support

The School of Chemical and Process Engineering offer a range of scholarships for Home, EU and International students.

Scholarships for 2019 entry are to be confirmed.

Career opportunities

Demand for hydrocarbon production is growing as the global economy grows, and the oil and gas sector is truly international. As a result, you can look forward to a variety of exciting career prospects.

Typical areas include petroleum geology, oil and gas exploration, reservoir modelling, drilling and production, refinery operations, product marketing, operational management, equipment manufacture and supply, consultancy and regulatory authorities.

Recent graduates have gone on to find roles as thermal reservoir engineers, production, drilling and process engineers and oil and gas production technologists at companies including Shell, Total, Schlumberger, Saudi Aramco, Baker Hughes and Kuwait Gulf Oil Company.

Read our alumni profiles to find out more about where our students are working

Careers Support

You’ll have access to our dedicated Employability team, located centrally in our Employability Suite, who will provide you with specialist face-to-face support and advice to help you find relevant work experience, internships and year-in-industry placements, as well as graduate positions.

You’ll benefit from timetabled employability sessions, ongoing support during internships and placements, and presentations and workshops delivered by employers. The team also works closely with the University’s Careers Centre, which is one of the largest in the country.

Find out more about careers support and employability

Study abroad and work placements

Study abroad

On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America. 

Find out more at the Study Abroad website.

Work placements

With the help and support of our faculty Employability Team, you can choose to undertake a placement at one of the 100+ companies that we work with. If you decide to undertake a placement year, this will extend your degree by 12 months and on successful completion, you will be awarded the ‘industrial’ variant in your degree title to demonstrate your unique expertise to future employers.

Find out more about work placements

Course terms and conditions