UCC Undergraduate courses

Energy Engineering

Course Fact File
Duration4 Years
Teaching ModeFull-time
QualificationsBE (Hons)
NFQ LevelLevel 8
FeesStudent Contribution + Capitation: €3,138 See Fees and Costs for full details.
CAO Points2022: 510

Course Outline

The first year of the BE is a broad education in engineering fundamentals.  At the end of the first year, you can choose to enter Energy Engineering.  Your chosen area of specialization in the second year will also offer routes to further branches of engineering at the Masters level.  At the end of a successful 3rd year, students enter the 4th year, which is a pathway to either the 5th Year Integrated ME for eligible students or exiting with a BE(Hons). The ME pathway finishes with a Professional Work Placement that takes place during the 2nd semester and the summer break (8 months).

In an era of unprecedented pressure on resources, energy engineering is crucial to address some of the world's greatest challenges, namely how to meet the electricity, heating and transport energy needs of the world's growing population while reducing human impact on the climate with innovative, sustainable engineering solutions.

A highly respected engineering qualification and knowledge of real-world climate issues and their prospective solutions. If I was to travel back in time, I have no hesitation in saying I would once again choose Energy Engineering!” Rory Geary (2008-2012)

Through a combination of solid engineering fundamentals covered in the first two years of the course (e.g. thermodynamics, fluids, and electrical systems) and advanced energy engineering topics covered in the final two years (including power electronics, control systems, wind, solar photovoltaic and ocean energy, energy demand management and energy policy), graduates of the Energy Engineering course will be well-equipped to source, design, convert, transmit and supply useful energy to meet the world's present and long-term needs.


Year 1 Modules:

Refer to CK600

Year 2 Modules:

Numerical Methods and Programming; Solid and Structural Mechanics; Fluids; Linear Circuit Analysis; Non-Linear Circuit Analysis; Signals and Systems; Power Engineering; Heat Transfer; Engineering Statistics.

Years 3 Modules:

Construction Project Management; Hydraulics; Introduction to Electrical Power Systems; Introduction to Electric Drives; Control Engineering; Mechanical Systems; Applied Thermodynamics and Work Transfer; Primary Energy Engineering; Energy in Buildings; Energy Systems Modelling; Sustainable Energy; Transportation and Energy

BE Year 4 Modules:


Electrical Power Systems; Entrepreneurial Business Start-Ups; Biomass Energy; Energy Systems in Buildings; Computer Aided Design (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning); Energy Engineering  Project


Energy Systems, Power Electronics and Drives; Wind Energy; Ocean Energy; Photovoltaic Systems; Control Engineering; Industrial Automation and Control; Energy Systems Modelling; Work Placement

ME Year 4 Modules:

The first part of Year 4 consists of six core technical modules, to develop your technical skills and allow access to the more advanced Masters modules in Year 5. From January to August you will have a work placement in Industry or Research Institute to further develop your skills in a practical environment.

Professional lectures are held in the first semester to help support the skills needed to work effectively at an advanced level within a corporate environment.


Energy Systems, Power Electronics and Drives; Control Engineering II; Electrical Power Systems; Industrial Automation and Control; Wind Energy; Photovoltaic Systems; ME (Energy) Work Placement (30 credits)

ME 5 Year Modules Entry to master’s degree programmes, subject to entry requirements.


Ocean Energy; Advanced Energy Systems Modelling; Energy Innovation; Data Analytics for Engineering; ME Energy Research Project


Entrepreneurial Business Start-Ups; Biomass Energy; Energy Systems in Buildings; Computer-Aided Design VII (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning); Carbon Geocycles and Capture Utilisation & Storage; Smart Grids

Academic Programme Catalogue

See the Academic Programme Catalogue for the complete and up-to-date content for this course. Note that the modules for all courses are subject to change from year-to-year. For complete descriptions of individual modules, see the Book of Modules.

Course Practicalities

  • Expected lecture hours: Lectures usually take place from 9am to 1pm, Monday to Friday, with a small number of lectures taking place in the afternoon.
  • Expected lab/practical hours: Laboratory classes and individual study are normally scheduled for the afternoon.
  • Field trips: Fieldwork and site visits are organised as necessary.
  • Assessment: Written exams will take place before Christmas and in May. Not all modules will have formal examinations. Many modules use other types of assessment.

Yearly course grades are based on a balanced combination of continuous assessment and written examinations, organised at an individual module level.  The final BE(Hons) degree grade is based on a weighted combination of the marks from Year 3 and Year 4, while the ME is based on a weighted combination of the marks from Year 4 and Year 5.

Why Choose This Course

“This is a modern degree for a modern world that urgently needs higher quality design, more ethical engineering decisions and stronger environmental leadership.” Vera O’Riordan (2015-2019)

part of your fundamental engineering education, you will develop mathematical and problem-solving abilities and apply these to open-ended and challenging energy systems design problems, both as an individual and as part of a team.

“The BE Energy Engineering degree has equipped me with the broad range of technical expertise required for my role, namely electrical, mechanical and civil engineering knowledge.” Alan Donovan (2009-2013)

On completion of the degree course, you will have excellent IT skills, effective communication skills and will be prepared for a working environment where there is a strong emphasis on problem-solving. You will also have the 1st BE Energy programme in Ireland that was fully accredited by the professional body Engineers Ireland.

Placement or Study Abroad Information

The five-year integrated ME programme includes an eight-month salaried work placement in an industry based in Ireland or abroad (the four-year BE programme has a corresponding three-month optional work placement). During this placement, you will gain excellent hands-on experience as a chemical/process engineer, as well as make valuable industry contacts. Opportunities also exist for academically strong students to spend a period in an institution abroad, receiving full credits for the work done there towards your degree.

“There are few other undergraduate engineering courses out there that can offer such a comprehensive education” Paul Crowley (2009-2013) Grid Controller, Gas Networks Ireland

Opportunities also exist for a small number of academically strong students to study abroad in Year 3 with full credit. Past students have spent a year at the University of California at Berkeley and Notre Dame University, USA.  

“The highlight for me was studying abroad during 3rd year in UC Davis, Los Angeles, California. UCC has great links overseas” Rory Geary (2008-2012) Business Analyst, State Street International, Kilkenny

Skills and Careers Information

“When I was choosing my CAO preferences it was clear Energy would be a hot topic for my generation. This has held true with the security of job opportunities.” Sean Hayes (2008-2012)

Many graduates progress directly to the Energy Engineering profession, working in renewable energy engineering with e.g. Airtricity, Eirgrid, Bord Gais, ESB and ESBI. A significant number of graduates also work in energy management and intelligent efficiency in energy consultancy firms and the pharmaceutical sector. Other graduates make use of the valuable acquired skills to embark on careers outside of engineering, in areas including software design and development, management consulting, accountancy and industrial management.

“The wide spectrum of jobs that Energy Engineering graduates can carry out is something that I find particularly appealing. The only downfall is choosing your favourite!” Colm Gallagher (2011-2015)

Postgraduate degrees, including MEngSc (e.g. in Electrical Engineering; Mechanical Engineering;) and PhD, can be pursued by research in any one of a number of UCC’s active research groups. UCC hosts the world-leading MaREI Centre, a research and innovation hub focussing on the energy and marine sectors www.marei.ie. Areas of particular strength include marine renewable energy, biogas, energy systems modelling, wind, power electronics, renewable power systems, intelligent energy use in buildings and industry.

Since 2013, engineering graduates with a BE require an additional one-year Masters-level qualification (or equivalent) as well as relevant professional experience to be eligible to apply for Chartered membership of Engineers Ireland. The integrated ME facilitates this. 


Leaving Certificate entry requirements:

At Least six subjects must be presented. Minimum grade H4 in one subject, minimum grade H5 in one subject and minimum grade O6/H7 in four other subjects. English and Irish are requirements for all programmes unless the applicant is exempt from Irish.

The following are considered Lab Science subjects: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Physics with Chemistry (Joint) and Agricultural Science. Technology can be substituted for a Lab Science subject. 

Applicants will need to meet the following minimum entry requirements:




Lab Science or Technology





*If the H4 is in Applied Mathematics, a H6 in Mathematics is also required.

Students presenting with a 2016 (or previous) Leaving Certificate must present with a HC2 in Mathematics or Applied Mathematics;  if the HC2 is in Applied Mathematics, a HD3 in Mathematics is also required.

Mature applicants: Mature applicants should apply directly through the CAO (www.cao.ie) for CK600.

Non-EU Applicants

Non-EU applicants are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to the Irish Leaving Certificate. In addition, where such applicants are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language.

To verify if you meet the minimum academic and language requirements visit our qualification comparison page and refer to our International Office page for more information.

Fees and Costs

  • Whether you are an EU or Non-EU student will affect the course fees applicable to you. See more information on EU Fees, Non-EU Fees, or Free Fees Status.
  • The State will pay the tuition fees for EU students who are eligible under the Free Fees Scheme. The annual student contribution and capitation fees are payable by the student.
  • See the Fee Schedule to find out the course fee.
  • Check out scholarships that may be available to you.
  • Explore our Nurturing Bright Futures free online course (Module 5) to learn about managing your money as a student and budgeting for university life.

How To Apply

Irish and European (EU/EFTA/UK) Applicants

Apply via the CAO. See the CAO Handbook for useful information on applying through the CAO. 

Mature Applicants 

Apply via the CAO by 1 February. To apply for a place as a mature student, you must be 23 years of age on or before 1 January of the year of entry.

QQI/FET Applicants 

Apply via the CAOSee our QQI/FET Applicants page for information on the Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) Further Education and Training (FET) application process. 

Non-EU Applicants 

If you are from outside the EU/EFTA/UK, apply online via the UCC Apply portal. See our International Office page for more information. 

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact