Engineering Reading List

Please read the Engineering Induction Pack and work through the various tasks and questions inside.

The list of books below are ones that will be useful to you at Oxford, and provide an introduction to the materials you will study. Many are available secondhand if you choose to buy them, and there is certainly no need to buy all those listed here. In Oxford, all these are available in the College.


Prior to arrival, those who have not done double maths will benefit from reading:

  • Engineering Mathematics: K.A. Stroud and Dexter J. Booth (Palgrave MacMillan).
  • Exploring can be fun.

For the first year of study:

  • Advanced Engineering mathematics: K.A. Stroud and Dexter J. Booth (Palgrave MacMillan) OR
  • Mathematical Methods for Science Students: G Stephenson (Longman)


  • The New Science of Strong MaterialsJ.E. Gordon (Princeton Science Library), is recommended by our current first years
  • Engineering Materials I: M.F. Ashby and D.R.H. Jones (4th Edition, Butterworth Heinemann, 2011)


  • Basic Engineering Thermodynamics: P B Whalley (OUP); this is recommended reading for the Christmas Vacation

Also: Introduction to Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer: Y.A. Cengel (McGraw-Hill) (There are many editions, and all will be OK).

4. Electricity

  • Electrical Circuits and Systems: an Introduction for Engineers and Physical Scientists: A.M. Howatson (OUP), chapters 1-3. (This is written by a former Balliol Tutor and follows the pattern of teaching used in the course. The book was out of print as of June 2014, but secondhand copies may be available online.)
  • Electrical and Electronic Technology: Hughes E. (Pearson). A comprehensive text that covers practically the whole of the P2 course.
  • Circuits, Devices and Systems: Smith, R.J. & Dorf, R.C. (Wiley). An alternative text that covers practically the whole of the P2 course.

5. Mechanics

  • Engineering Mechanics: Statics - J.L. Meriam and L.G. Kraige (SI units) (Wiley)
  • Engineering Mechanics: Dynamics - J.L. Meriam and L.G. Kraige (SI units) (Wiley)

General questions about the Engineering Courses should be addressed to Professor Jin-Chong Tan.

June 2020