Materials Research

MRes ( 1 year Full-time )


The Research Masters (MRes) programme in Materials Research is designed following guidelines provided by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). It provides graduates with the foundations for a research career in industry, the service sector, the public sector or academia. It serves both as a qualification in its own right for an immediate entry into a research career or as an enhanced route to a PhD through further research. The taught modules within this programme are designed to provide high quality training in the methods and practice of research, as well as providing complementary transferable skills through the optional modules which focus on business and management related topics. A substantial component of the MRes Materials Research programme is the research project. This is undertaken alongside taught modules throughout the academic year, and will be based within one of the materials-based research groups of the School of Engineering and Materials Science. The MRes Materials Research may be focused in the fields of ceramics, polymers, composites, elastomers, functional materials or manufacturing technologies.

This programme will:

  • Build on your engineering background to gain an advanced, yet broad knowledge in materials science, with the freedom to specialise through a research project.
  • Provide an insight into areas of manufacturing, planning and control systems, knowledge based systems and measurements and manufacturing systems. The course is interdisciplinary in nature and involves a combination of theoretical and practical approaches.

Why study your MRes in Materials Research at Queen Mary?

Queen Mary’s School of Engineering and Materials Science (SEMS) was formed in January 2007, bringing together two prestigious departments, Engineering and Materials. The School continues to push the boundaries of engineering and materials science, and is committed to internationally competitive research.

Our Materials Department was the first of its kind established in the UK, and was placed at number one in the UK in the 2011 National Student Survey.

Following the RAE 2008, the Materials Department at Queen Mary was judged to be among the top five materials departments in the UK, in terms of research power (quality x volume). The RAE also showed that 90 per cent of our research activity is internationally recognised, and that 55 per cent is internationally excellent.

  • We were the first materials department in the UK and have continued to operate at the forefront of international materials research.
  • A new NanoVision Centre enhances the experimental nanomechanics and high resolution imaging capabilities of the School.
  • Other materials-specific facilities include a state of the art Spectroscopy Lab, and a Thermal Material Analysis Lab.


Our postgraduate students enjoy a range of excellent resources, including:

  • Comprehensive computing facilities: several high-performance PC clusters and parallel SGI computer clusters, and an extensive network of Linux and UNIX workstations
  • Queen Mary’s comprehensive libraries, including the Postgraduate Reading Room, and The British Library can also be accessed as a research resource.

You will have access to state-of-the-art laboratories and equipment, including:

  • Cell and Tissue Engineering Laboratories; five dedicated cell culture laboratories, a molecular biology facility and general purpose laboratories
  • Confocal microscopy unit incorporating two confocal microscopes, enabling advanced 3D imaging of living cells
  • Mechanical Testing Facilities
  • NanoVision Centre; our state-of-the-art microscopy unit bringing together the latest microscope techniques for structural, chemical and mechanical analysis at the nanometer scale
  • Spectroscopy Lab
  • Thermal Analysis Lab.


The MRes in Materials Research includes 3 compulsory, and 2 optional taught modules (15 credits each), as shown on the structure below. You can follow the links for details for each module, and also visit the SEMS website for information on projects and facilities.

Starting in Semester A the programme also includes a research project (60 credits), which is completed under close supervision throughout the year, and submitted in September.

Please note the modules are correct at the time of reading; however we constantly review and update our modules, meaning that they may be subject to change in the future.

Core modules

  • Research methods
  • Materials selection and design
  • Operational and financial management
  • Research project

Optional modules may include

  • Manufacturing processes
  • Advanced ceramics
  • Advanced topics in biomaterials
  • Thermodynamics and kinetics of phase transformations
  • Composites
  • Environmental properties of materials
  • Nanotechnology and advanced functional materials


For more information


Visit the School of Engineering and Material Science website.


Postgraduate Admissions Coordinator
School of Engineering and Materials Science
Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8735

Entry requirements

This programme requires ATAS clearance. Students who are not EEA or Swiss nationals may require ATAS clearance to undertake this course. The CAH3 code for this course is CAH10-02-02. Further information on ATAS can be found on our Advice and Counselling webpages.

An undergraduate degree (minimum good second class honours or equivalent) in Materials, Engineering, or equivalent. Each application is individually assessed; you are recommended to contact us for guidance in specific cases. IELTS 6.5 is required.

International applicants: Students from outside of the UK help form a global community here at Queen Mary. For detailed country specific entry requirements please visit the International section of our website. If your first language is not English, you must provide evidence of your English language proficiency. You can find details on our English language entry requirements page.

If you do not meet language or scholarly requirements it might be possible for you to undertake foundation or pre-sessional programmes that will prepare you for the masters programme. For more information, please contact the Admissions Office.

If you are unable to find the information you require, please contact the School of Engineering and Materials Science for assistance.

Learning and teaching

As a student in the School of Engineering and Materials Science (SEMS) you will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, laboratory practicals, and a variety of coursework.
The methods of assessment are coursework and formal examinations, which take place in May. Many courses will include continuous assessment so that some or all of the work you do during the course counts towards the final mark.
Research Project
A major part of the MSc is your research project: an individual research project based around the in the current internationally-recognised research taking place in SEMS. This project will be based in the labs and gives you the opportunity to apply the theory you will have learnt in the taught modules while taking advantage of the state-of-the-art facilities within SEMS.

Students are currently researching a range of topics for their projects including:

  • Synthesis of degradable polymers with controlled degradation profiles
  • Interactions of nanomaterials with electromagnetic wave
  • Nanomaterials as secondary energy carriers.


Tuition fees for Home and EU students

2020/21 Academic Year

Full time £10,900
Part-time study is not available for this course

Tuition fees for International students

2020/21 Academic Year

Full time £22,750
Part-time study is not available for this course


There are a number of sources of funding available for Masters students.

These include a significant package of competitive Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas, as well as external sources of funding.

Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships

We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.

Find out more about QMUL bursaries and scholarships.

Alternative sources of funding

Home/EU students can apply for a range of other funding, such as Professional and Career Development Loans, and Employer Sponsorship, depending on their circumstances and the specific programme of study.

Overseas students may be eligible to apply for a range of external scholarships and we also provide information about relevant funding providers in your home country on our country web pages.

Download our Postgraduate Funding Guide for detailed information about postgraduate funding options for Home/EU students.

Read more about alternative sources of funding for Home/EU students and for Overseas students.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 5079

Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary

We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:

Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8717

Graduate employment

Queen Mary’s Materials Science postgraduates go on to work in a variety of careers. Some apply their degree knowledge directly, entering careers as materials scientists, while others transfer skills gained during study into areas such as education and management or sales roles in industry.

The national 2011 destination survey confirmed that 75 % of the School’s graduates were in employment and/or study six months after graduation and 78 % were already working/studying at graduate level. Queen Mary postgraduates have an average earning power of £35,410 six months after graduation.

The broad range of skills gained through courses in this School coupled with multiple opportunities for extra-curricular activities and work experience, has enabled students to move into careers such as:

  • Scientist / Engineer – MERL
  • Sales Representative – 3M, Greece
  • Technologist – National Metals Technology Centre
  • Production Management – Food Company
  • Operations Executive – Worldwide Energy Logistics
  • Graduate Trainee – Technical Production Corus
  • Chemistry Teacher – School Sixth Form, UK

Throughout the programme, postgraduates have access to careers support to prepare them for applying for work after graduation. This includes workshops on job hunting, job applications and interview skills as well as employer events to facilitate networks and help students to explore their options.

Annual career events open to the School’s postgraduates include the IT and Technology Fair, with thirty organisations including Accenture Technology Solutions and EADS Astrium, as well as an Engineering Industrial Liaison Forum featuring small and medium sized employers.

Queen Mary’s location between Canary Wharf, the City and the Olympic Village redevelopment means that there are substantial opportunities for on campus and local part time work and work experience. On campus there are 1200 job and volunteer opportunities ranging from Research Assistant to Project Officer and from Society President to Student Mentor. QTemps job agency offers work suitable for current students and recent graduates, QMSU Volunteering facilitates volunteering and QM JobOnline hosts over 800 part time and full time job vacancies.

Read more about our careers programmes and range of work experience opportunities on the QM Careers pages.



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