Topic outline

  • Welcome to Mechanical Engineering in Society!



    Reach out to Floris van der Marel ( if you have any urgent questions. 

    Most sessions take place Friday morning 9 - 11am in Stage of Design Factory, Betonimiehenkuja 5C. The exceptions are

    • the Orientation week, which takes place Wednesday 31 August 9am - 16, starting in Stage of Design Factory, Betonimiehenkuja 5C.
    • the Language Center workshops, of which the location is communicated in the scheduler and small-group sessions will be offered at multiple slots (weeks 39, 40, and 44).
    • the prototyping lab sessions at the Design Factory facilities, where additional small-group sessions are bookable during the week (weeks 46-48) in addition to the weekly in-class session on Friday
    • there's no class during examination weeks

    Why this course?

    This course is about what engineers can do: to explore how you wish to contribute to challenging, reimagining and shaping society. This does not mean you already need to know what you want to do as a professional engineer. This course is a chance to explore potential avenues. We will discuss examples and aspects of engineering careers to see what resonates with you, who you wish to be as a professional, and then how to get there, how your time at Aalto can prepare you for this. 

    The course is compulsory for all Mechanical Engineering master's program students!

    Learning outcomes
    1. be aware of the breadth and impact of the mechanical engineering field, both in academia and in industry
    2. know how your field connects to a variety of economic, environmental, and societal issues
    3. be able to articulate how your own unique professional profile equips you to contribute productively
    4. value the importance of collaborating effectively and of communicating your ideas clearly

    How to pass this course?

    The course provides 5 credits upon completion. The Language Centre's course 'LC-0400 Communication skills: integrated speech communication course L' is integrated into MEC-E1001 (LC-0400 is also a mandatory course in the master program). No need to enroll for LC-0400, participating in their three workshops awards 1 more credit upon completion. Thus, in total, you can get 6 credits.

    The course is divided into 100 points. Points are given based on:

    • Attendances - full attendance in the weekly classes gives 20 points (2 per session)
    • Videos and Quizzes - completing all of the weekly quizzes successfully gives 17 points (1 per quiz in weeks 35 - 44, 2 per quiz in weeks 45 - 48)
    • Homework assignments - there are three graded homework assignments that together give a total of 63 points

    Update 24 October 2022: You can now get 4 points for the final quiz in week 48 (up from 2), and 24 points for assignment 3 (up from 21). Thus, you can get a total of 105 points for the course. The conversion of points into the final grade remains the same.

    Points are converted to a final grade at the end of the course:

    Points         Final grade
    <50 Fail
    50 - 59 1
    60 - 69 2
    70 - 79 3
    80 - 89 4
    90 - 105 5

    Attending the three Language Center sessions is counted as the separate 1 credit LC-0400 course, where attending is mandatory to complete the course.


    If you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact the teaching team:

    • MSc Floris van der Marel (
    • DA Vikki Eriksson (
    • MA Senni Kirjavainen (
    • Prof. Tua Björklund (