Downing normally takes between 10 and 12 students in Engineering each year, consistent with the University’s total entry in the subject and the size of the College.

Some students reading Engineering have industrial sponsorship, of whom a majority spend a year between school and university in industry and related work.

It is a requirement of the course that four weeks’ industrial experience be completed before the Part IB examination and a further four weeks for Part IIA. If the opportunity exists, all of this may be completed prior to coming to University.

Fellows in Engineering at Downing undertake much of the teaching for Downing undergraduates, in particular over the first two years. The specialisation in Part II of the Tripos means that a large part of this later supervision is done by arrangement with other teaching and research staff within the University.

In every case, emphasis is placed on securing the services of the best teachers available in each field. The Directors of Studies for Engineering at Downing are Dr Liping Xu, Dr Jie Li and Professor Bill O'Neill.

Entry requirements

The standard conditional offer for candidates in Engineering at Downing is A*A*A at A2 Level, in scientific or mathematical subjects. Maths and Physics are essential.

It is highly desirable, but not essential, for the subjects offered to include Further Maths. We specify an A* in Further Maths when this subject is being taken. If Maths A2 has been taken a year early and A* or A achieved, this may count as one of the offer grades (the applicant would receive a two grade offer).

Interview process

Entry requirements and interviews

The standard conditional offer for candidates in Engineering at Downing is A*A*A at A2 Level, in scientific or mathematical subjects. Maths and Physics are essential. It is highly desirable, but not essential, for the subjects offered to include Further Maths. We will specify an A* in Further Maths when this subject is being taken. If Maths A2 has been taken a year early and A* or A achieved, this will count as one of the offer grades (i.e. the applicant would receive a two grade offer).

Over the previous three years, the ratio of the average number of applicants to offers made in Engineering has been 111:11.

Applicants for Engineering will be required to take a pre-interview assessment. Further information about this can be found here: http://www.undergraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying/admissions-assessments.  Applicants invited to interview will also be asked to take a 30 minute written mathematical skills assessment when they attend for interview. These tests are intended to test core mathematical understanding and fluency rather than reasoning and are at a level that should not require specific revision.

At present, Engineering applicants receive two 30 minute interviews on the same day, each with one or two interviewers. Both interviews are largely subject-based, although more general questions may also be asked. Background scientific knowledge, particularly from Mathematics and Physics, will be useful, but questions may range over a broad spectrum of topics relevant to engineering, some of which are not commonly covered at school or college. Candidates indicating that they intend to change to the Chemical Engineering Tripos after one year of Engineering will be treated no differently from other candidates in terms of the type of question asked.

Further advice about entry requirements and interviews for all subjects can be found in the Applying to Downing section of this site.

Introductory reading for students

A list of introductory reading can be found on the Faculty site.

Further details about the Engineering course can be found at the University of Cambridge site.