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Aerospace draws students with 21% surge in university places: lower growth for electrical and civil engineering in rush to join 'more exciting' studies.

UNIVERSITIES have seen a massive 21% surge in students choosing aerospace engineering over other engineering subjects.

According to the latest figures from the University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), the increased admittance rate for aerospace engineering is almost double other disciplines such as electrical (3.7%) and civil engineering (3.2%).

The University of Bristol reported a 15% increase in the number of undergraduates taking aerospace engineering courses last year and anticipated a further rise this year.

Tom Richardson, a lecturer in flight mechanics and control at the University of Bristol, said the rise was because exciting technological developments were in the aerospace sector.

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"Recent high-profile industry examples, such as the Airbus A380, keep the industry in the media," he said. "This goes along with future challenges such as addressing the environmental impact of aviation and the development of unmanned air vehicles."

The industry was a "leading-edge" technology field which continued to provide exciting challenges, he added.

John Fielding, head of the department of aerospace engineering at Cranfield University, said he had seen an increase in postgraduate students. "Job prospects are good and a lot of people stay in their career for a long time in the aerospace industry," he said.

More than 2,015 students have been accepted on undergraduate aerospace engineering degree courses this year.

The number of students taking the main disciplines remains higher.

Nearly 5,760 students are taking mechanical engineering this year, while 4,655 are taking electronic and electrical, and just over 4,430 students are studying civil engineering.

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Title Annotation:NEWS; increase in aerospace engineering course admissions
Publication:Professional Engineering Magazine
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Nov 4, 2009
Words:257
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