Course Overview

This foundation degree has been designed to provide you with the skills and knowledge to succeed in Naval Architecture, advanced Marine Engineering and utilises our unique facilities and vessels at South Devon Marine Academy, based on the banks of the River Dart in Kingswear. This includes a fleet of 24 vessels, enabling you to work on a variety of craft.

The course focuses on developing a broad range of skills that are necessary for employment. You will study practical design and construction, work with composite and hi-tech materials and consider how varying materials perform under different conditions. Our strong links with local, national and international businesses also means that you will be able to contribute to live briefs set by employers. Our partner programme provides in-course work experience, projects, mentoring and the option of paid internships. You will also be guaranteed an interview for paid summer work experience with Sailing Holidays in Greece.

You will gain practical experience working with computer-aided design (CAD) programmes, working on high-end designs. You will have the opportunity to design, test, build and refine projects, as you become confident using research and development techniques to improve efficiencies and performance on live builds. This will form an excellent foundation for further study and employment, and addresses the need for relevant practical experience that employers are demanding.

Level 4 (Year 1 for full-time students) develops the underpinning knowledge and principles associated with the principles of Naval Architecture and Marine Propulsion systems.

Level 5 (Year 2 for full-time students) develops the foundations of high level marine engineering systems and hones the learner ability to work autonomously while handling research and design projects.

The full-time and part-time course has one start point in September.

You will be able to study Royal Yachting Association (RYA) qualifications such as the Powerboat Level 2 course. The Academy runs various other RYA qualifications, which you can attend on a full-cost basis.

Course Details

Key Information

Course Code
Mode of Study
Full-time, part-time and modular study available
Foundation Degree, Higher National Certificate
Awarded by
University of Plymouth
2 years (full-time) 3 years (part-time)
Academic Year
September 2022 - June 2024 (full-time) September 2022 - June 2025 (part-time)

The full time fees for the academic year 2022-23 are:

BA and BSc (Hons) – £8400 (per year)

Foundation Degree (FdA and FdSc) – £8400 (per year)

Higher National Certificate (HNC)- £8400 (per year)

For tuition fees for part-time courses commencing in September 2022, please contact the team on [email protected]

(Please note, some fees may differ depending on programme)

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One of the main reasons I applied to study at University Centre South Devon was because of the marine facilities, which are second to none; you’d really struggle to find anywhere that can match them. Working on such a variety of craft is beneficial, and helps you develop experience across a broad range of vessels. It’s also been good experience studying in the engineering workshops, learning from experienced tutors on topics such as boat maintenance. The support I’ve received has been fantastic; I’ve had assistance with study skills and I’ve seen a significant improvement in my grades because of this. It’s been a really positive experience and I’m pleased I decided to study here. I’m planning to complete a top-up year when I finish the foundation degree, before entering industry working on large vessels.

Richard Smith
Richard Smith