Earn an accredited Masters in Safety and Reliability Engineering without taking a career break.

Join an accredited online degree that delivers the specialist safety training many undergraduate engineering degrees lack.

  • Enhance your engineering CV with expertise in the safety and reliability of complex engineering systems.
  • Learn from the best in the business, with a university at the forefront of teaching and professional training for ambitious engineers.
  • Master the concepts and tools of safety and risk management applicable to all industries, including oil and gas, chemical, transport and construction.

You’ll train in safety engineering, reliability engineering and loss prevention. You’ll learn to assess and control industrial risks and to create high-integrity engineering systems. And you’ll cover crucial human factors and legislative frameworks too.

Study online, part-time with our team of engineers, industry professionals, and practising safety and reliability specialists.

You can also study this degree full-time on campus.

Fits around full-time work

This degree fits around full-time work, with flexible hours and 24/7 study access.

You’re in expert hands

We’ve been delivering online and distance learning for decades.

20% alumni discount

University of Aberdeen alumni receive 20% off fees for this online degree.

Accredited online degree

This online MSc is accredited by the:

Industry links

You’ll be joining a university with close industry links. We deliver industry-supportive and responsive safety research in a number of sectors.

Our working partnerships mean you’ll:

  • enjoy lectures taught by industry professionals
  • connect with the latest career opportunities.

Your degree content is also developed and reviewed by an Industry Advisory Board. This group of experienced professionals, drawn from a range of sectors, ensures your training is kept up-to-date and industry-ready.

What you’ll study

You can choose to study for a:

  • Masters (180 credits)
  • exit early with a Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits)
  • exit early with a Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits), or
  • start with one of the short courses that make up this degree (15 credits).

You can build your way to a qualification one short course at a time.

How you’ll study

Online learning

Our distance learning MSc in Safety and Reliability Engineering is delivered flexibly online.

You can learn with us anywhere, with no study visa, and set your study hours to suit you.

Your teaching

Your teaching is delivered through MyAberdeen, our online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It holds all the materials, tools and support you’ll need in your studies. Take a look around MyAberdeen.

You can access your learning materials on computer, smartphone and laptop, 24 hours a day. You’ll find a range of resources at your fingertips, including online access to our award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library.

Your tutors

You’ll learn from a team of internationally experienced engineers and industry professionals who have worked on major projects around the world. You’ll benefit from their expertise and enjoy lectures from practising safety and reliability specialists.

This degree is delivered by our School of Engineering.

Your colleagues

You’ll be joining students from all over the globe, all sharing your passion for engineering. Through group projects, you’ll develop your creativity, leadership and team-building skills. We’ll encourage your initiative and personal responsibility in implementing projects safely and successfully.

This degree usually combines online assessment with written exams that you attend in person.

However, as a result of Covid-19, in-person exams will not take place until the September 2023 term at the earliest.

Until then, we’ll use alternative online assessments. These can include:

  • coursework
  • online quizzes
  • timed online open-book assessments.

From September 2023 – return of in-person exams

From the September 2023 academic term onward, we may reintroduce in-person exams for some of the online courses that feature in this degree.

For these courses, you’ll be assessed via a mix of online assessment and in-person exams at the end of term.

We’ll keep you updated as to assessment method changes for these courses well in advance.

When in-person exams are reintroduced

You can take your exams:

  • on campus at the University of Aberdeen
  • at another university or exam centre that is closer to you
  • at your local British Council Office.

We can help you find a convenient location for your exams. You then make the arrangements and book them yourself.

We contact you six to eight weeks before your exam date to confirm your chosen location. We recommend exploring your options well before then. If you need any help with this, get in touch with our friendly enquiry team.

Exam schedules

Exams usually take place at the end of each term, during our official exam periods:

  • For the January term, exams usually run in early May.
  • For the May term, exams usually run in early September.
  • For the September term, exams usually run in early December.

Your precise exam dates will be made available nearer the time.

If you fail or miss an exam, you can resit it in the next exam period or during our summer resit period. This is usually at the end of June/start of July.

Exam support

If you have any disabled access or support needs for your exams, let us know as part of your online application. We will make sure the right support is in place for you. Find out about the wide range of exam support available.

You can contact a disability adviser anytime by emailing student.disability@abdn.ac.uk to discuss how we can help.

Exam costs

Sitting exams on campus at the University of Aberdeen is free.

Other universities, exam centres and British Council Offices may charge you for this service. This is an additional cost on top of your degree or course fee. You pay this fee to your chosen exam centre, not to us.

Hours for taught courses

If you plan to study part-time, we recommend you take no more than 30 credits per term. Students typically take one or two 15-credit short courses per term.

15 credits

  • Around 150 hours of study and assessment time to complete.
  • You’ll study 8 – 10 hours per week per term, plus more at assessment times.

30 credits

  • Around 300 hours of study and assessment time to complete.
  • You’ll study 15 – 20 hours per week per term, plus more at assessment times.

This is an indicative guide to the time required for a typical student at this level to achieve the learning outcomes.

You can largely set your own study hours each week to cover the materials. MyAberdeen is available 24/7, so you can log in and study when it suits you.

Activities at fixed times

There will be some activities scheduled at a fixed time, such as online meetings with your tutor or assessments with deadlines. But otherwise, you can access and work through each course at your convenience.

Hours for 60-credit projects and dissertations

A 60-credit project or dissertation is around 600 hours of study time.

This is around one term of full-time study.

You can dedicate a full term to your project or dissertation and work on it full-time. Or you can complete it part-time, spreading the hours you dedicate to it over two terms.

When you study with us, you can expect a first-class support structure so that you’re never alone in your studies.

But learning online does mean you have to motivate yourself and manage your own time.

Your most important commitment will be time – the time to work through, reflect on and understand your teaching materials.

Before you start a course that involves a high degree of independent study, we recommend looking at the time you will be able to devote to your studies each week:

  • Be realistic
  • Create a weekly schedule as a guide

If you have any questions about studying online, get in touch with our friendly team. We’re here to help.

Our first-class support structure will ensure that you aren’t alone in your studies. You’ll have contact with your tutors via MyAberdeen and email. You can use social media and discussion boards to chat with your fellow students too.

We provide a wide range of services to support you in your studies and beyond:

Wherever you are in the world, you’ll feel part of our very special Aberdeen learning community.

We’re a member of the Access scheme run by the Society of College, National and University Libraries (SCONUL).

Access study spaces, books and journals in your area

The SCONUL Access scheme allows you, as a University of Aberdeen student, to access books and resources at university libraries across the UK and Ireland, or visit them for a quiet place to study.

You’ll be able to use study spaces, books and journals at over 150 university libraries which belong to the scheme.

Find out about the SCONUL Access scheme for libraries.

Your support team

Our friendly team are here to answer any queries you have before, during and after your studies.

Dr Srinivas Sriramula

Srinivas is the degree coordinator. He’ll be on hand to answer any questions about degree content before you start and to help you throughout your studies.

Lyn Magee

Lyn is part of the School’s administration team. She’ll be there throughout your studies to answer any of your non-academic queries.

Get in touch

The online education team is here to answer any questions you have right now about this qualification, or about studying online.

Ask us a question

Where this will take you

Careers

This MSc will prepare you to find work in a range of sectors, including oil and gas, chemicals, transport and construction.

You’ll graduate with an accredited MSc in Safety and Reliability Engineering from the University of Aberdeen, one of the most respected degrees of its kind in the UK. Your qualification will be recognised by industry employers around the globe.

You’ll receive exactly the same degree qualification as you would on campus.

You’ll be qualified to take up roles including:

  • Health and Safety Engineer
  • Project Technical Safety Engineer
  • Safety and Reliability Engineer
  • Technical Safety Engineer
  • Technical Safety Operator.

There’s a continuing demand for engineers with specialist knowledge in safety engineering, reliability engineering and loss prevention across industries.

Lifelong career support

Our career support doesn’t stop when you graduate.

You have access to our free careers service while you study, and beyond.

  • 1:1 appointments
  • CV checks
  • Interview prep
  • Job opportunities

Fees and funding

The fee quoted above is based on you starting your studies with us in the 2024/25 academic year.

We have confirmed that our fees will rise by 5% for the 2025/26 academic year. Our indicative cost includes a 5% fee rise each year.

Pay as you go

This is a pay-as-you-go degree.

You do not have to pay the full tuition fee upfront.

You can spread the cost and pay as you go, term by term.

How it works

  • You decide how many credits to study for each term.
  • At the start of term, you pay only for the credits you’re taking that term.
  • This gives you control over your costs and workload for each term of your degree.

Your personalised cost breakdown

Use the degree scheduler to plan your studies and see your cost breakdown, term by term.

Exam fees

If your degree includes in-person exams, you may have to pay exam fees depending on where you sit your exams.

It’s free to sit exams on campus at the University of Aberdeen.

If you sit an exam at another university, exam centre or a British Council Office, they may charge you for this service. This is a fee that you pay directly to the service provider when booking your exam with them. It is not a fee you pay to us.

Learning resources

All essential lecture notes and resources are included in your tuition fee. They will be available online and you do not have to buy your own copies.

We also provide optional recommended reading lists. Many of these resources are available electronically through our library, although optional purchases may be required if you wish to read the full list.

Printing

You may want to set aside a small budget for printing, depending on how you like to work.

There are several ways you may be able to get help funding your studies:

Find out more about funding options.

Student card

All our students are entitled to a University of Aberdeen student card. This gives you access to a range of student discounts around the city and online.

20% Alumni discount

You’re entitled to 20% off our postgraduate taught degrees and short courses if you have a degree from the University of Aberdeen. View Alumni discount details.

How discounts work

Discounts are applied during your application process. You can only use one discount per application.

Entry requirements

MSc

A 2:1 (upper-second) UK honours degree (or equivalent) in any branch of Engineering, Mathematics or Physics.

You can also apply if you have:

  • a 2:2 UK honours degree (or equivalent) in Engineering and at least two years’ relevant oil and gas industry experience.

Key subjects you must have covered: Mathematics and Mechanical subjects, such as stress analysis, strength of materials and thermodynamics.

These are our minimum entry requirements. They are given as a guide and do not guarantee entry.

Entry requirements

We welcome students from all over the world.

See the minimum entry requirements above. If you do not have qualifications from the UK, check equivalent qualifications from your country.

Visa requirements

You do not need a student visa to study online with us.

English language requirements

Teaching is delivered in English.

If English is not your first language, use our English requirements checklist to see if you need to provide evidence of your English language skills when you apply.

English language tests and scores

If you do need to provide English language test scores, these are the tests and minimum scores we accept for this course or degree.

These are our Postgraduate Standard requirements.

IELTS Academic and IELTS Online (not IELTS Indicator or IELTS General Training)

  • 6.5 overall
  • 5.5 for listening, reading and speaking
  • 6.0 for writing

TOEFL iBT and TOEFL iBT Home Edition

  • 90 overall
  • 17 for listening
  • 18 for reading
  • 20 for speaking
  • 21 for writing
  • TOEFL DI code is 0818

Cambridge English: B2 First, C1 Advanced, or C2 Proficiency

  • 176 overall
  • 162 for listening, reading and speaking
  • 169 for writing

LanguageCert International ESOL B2 Communicator (Written and Spoken)

  • Overall High Pass
  • 33 for listening, reading and speaking
  • 38 for writing

PTE Academic (online test not accepted)

  • 62 overall
  • 59 for listening, reading, speaking and writing

For full information about language requirements, see our English Language Requirements page.

You apply through our online Applicant Portal. It allows you to upload relevant qualifications and documents.

Applying to the University of Aberdeen is always free.

What you need to apply for this degree

  • Degree transcript
  • Personal statement
  • Degree certificate
  • CV / Resume

Apply now

Start with our step-by-step guide. It explains degree transcripts, what to write in your personal statement and how to use our Applicant Portal.

You can apply to start in either September or January.

Apply as early as you can. This is so we have time to review your application and get a decision to you. We also want to ensure you have time to enrol before teaching starts.

September 2024 intake

For our September 2024 intake, the application deadline is 8 September 2024.

You will need to accept your offer and provide any outstanding documents to meet the conditions of your offer by 15 September 2024.

Teaching starts on 23 September 2024.

January 2025 intake

Teaching starts on 27 January 2025.

Application deadlines will be announced in due course.

You will need access to:

A computer (PC, laptop or Mac) operating on either:

  • Windows 10 or later
  • macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or later.

Most teaching materials are smartphone- and tablet-friendly. But we recommend a proper laptop or desktop for completing assignments comfortably.

Reliable internet access

We recommend:

  • a wired connection
  • a minimum download speed of 2 Mbps so you can take part fully in live sessions.

Speakers or headphones

  • We recommend a headset with built-in microphone and earphones if you’re likely to study in an environment with background noise.
  • A webcam is optional, but you may like to use one for some interactive sessions.

Software

We’ll give you access to Office365 applications. This means you can use online versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and install these programs on up to five personal devices.

If your course requires specialist software, we’ll provide you with access to this and a licence that lasts throughout your studies.

See our detailed IT requirements for more information.

NEW: Try our degree scheduler

Choose your courses

Choose your courses

See all the courses that are part of this degree and choose what you want to study.

Manage your study schedule

Manage your study schedule

Control the pace and cost of your degree. Decide how much you want to study each term.

Save to your wishlist

Save to your wishlist

Save your schedule to your wishlist so you can view and edit anytime.

Customise your degree

Master of Science

180 credits

£14,100

This indicative cost is based on 180 credits of study over three years, starting in September 2024.

Apply for this programme

Start month
September or January
INDICATIVE COST
£14,100

This indicative cost is based on 180 credits of study over three years, starting in September 2024.

Apply via our Applicant Portal
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