Civil Engineering and Construction Management

Study mode:Online Study type:Part-time Languages: English
Local:$ 15.6 k Foreign:$ 15.6 k  
351–400 place StudyQA ranking:4857 Duration:3 semestrs

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Modern civil engineering professionals often require an extensive understanding of construction management due to the strategic benefits it can bring to both individuals and project teams.

As the industry becomes more competitive, organisations and their clients are increasingly demanding the combined time, cost and quality assurances that good project management practice provides. Furthermore, the industry now recognises that there is a need for engineers to gain specialist technical knowledge which compliments their academic and professional background.

These observations form the basis of the MSc/Postgraduate Diploma in Civil Engineering and Construction Management; an essential core of construction management material augmented by a broad range of specialist civil engineering options.

Our students and graduates

Our students are recruited mainly from the civil engineering profession and are typically looking to broaden their knowledge base, extend their technical expertise or gain further learning to meet the needs of the professional institutions. Applicants from other backgrounds planning to develop a career in civil engineering and construction management will also be considered. Graduates of this programme are much sought after by employers, working in areas such as transport, water and wastewater engineering and the energy sector.

Part-time and Distance Learning study options

This programme can be studied on a part-time basis or via Independent Distance Learning (IDL), ideal for those in employment or with other commitments, providing flexible study options that fit around work or family. As an IDL student you will not be required to attend any lectures, tutorials or other events at any of Heriot-Watt Universitys campuses.

The Institute for Infrastructure and Environment (IIE)

This programme is delivered by Heriot Watt Universitys Institute for Infrastructure and Environment. As a Civil Engineering and Construction Management postgraduate student you will be part of the Institutes Graduate School, connecting you with staff, research associates and fellow students engaging in cutting-edge research in areas such as water management, ultra-speed railways, construction materials, geomechanics and more.

Industry links

This programme is supported by the Civil Engineering Industry Advisory Committee, which includes representatives from major multi-national employers AECOM, ARUP, Balfour Beatty,Halcrow, Jacobs and WSP Group. This committee convenes regularly and advises on the programme content and structure, ensuring quality, up-to-date content and relevance to industry needs.

Teaching and research excellence

Our teaching staff is engaged in a wide range of research within the field of civil engineering and construction management, with 50% of that research recognised as being internationally excellent by the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE 2008). Our track record in teaching civil engineering is strong, with our undergraduate programme ranked 1st in Scotland in the 2013 National Student Survey. Over half of our teaching staff are chartered engineers.

With a history dating back to 1821, Heriot-Watt is one of the UKs leading universities, and Scotlands most international. Find out more about Heriot-Watt Universitys reputation, rankings and international profile.

The MSc / Postgraduate Diploma in Civil Engineering and Construction Management, led by Dr. Alan Cuthbertson, provides students with a combination of courses designed to improve their knowledge and understanding of advanced civil engineering and modern construction management theory and practice. The programme structure consists of four mandatory construction management courses (CM) which all students must complete. Students must also choose four civil engineering courses (CE) from a list of specialist topics as detailed below:

Course Choice Semester 1

Core courses:

* · Project Management: Theory & Practice (CM) - mandatory
* · Value & Risk Management (CM) mandatory

Optional courses:

* · Indeterminate Structures (CE)
* · Sustainability in Civil Engineering (CE)
* · Ground Engineering (CE)
* · Environmental Geotechnics (CE)

Course Choice Semester 2

Core courses:

* · Project Management: Strategic Issues (CM) mandatory
* · Construction Financial Management (CM) - mandatory

Optional courses:

* · Safety, Risk & Reliability (CE)
* · Foundation Engineering (CE)
* · Water and Waste Water Treatment (CE)
* · Urban Drainage and Water Supply (CE)
* · Earthquake Engineering (CE)

Course descriptions

Please find below the course descriptions. For more information on courses, please contact the Programme Leader.

Project Management Theory and Practice

Semester 1 (mandatory)

This course aims to provide the student with an understanding of the concepts and practices of construction project management used to provide value added services to clients. The course develops understanding of the issues related to the management of construction clients and other project stakeholders and how their needs can be co-ordinated, managed and delivered from the projects design stage through production to occupation and maintenance within the context of client satisfaction and the overarching construction project constraints of time, cost, quality sustainability, health and safety management. Subjects covered in the course syllabus include:

Construction project management concepts; standards and services; organisational structures for delivery of project management services; management strategies for clients and stakeholder briefing; issues related to management of construction project design process, and budget setting; tools/techniques for construction project planning and control of costs, time, risk and quality; issues relating to TQM and health and safety; teamwork and leadership roles.

Value & Risk Management (M)

Semester 1 (mandatory)

The course aims to introduce the concepts of value & risk management, apply them to strategic and tactical problems and illustrate their tools and techniques through case studies. Subjects included in the course syllabus include:

VRM and the construction procurement process; introduction to value management; value engineering (function analysis and other VE tools); risk & uncertainty in the construction industry; Risk and procurement of PPP projects; risk management framework; sources, events and effects of project risk; tools and techniques of risk management; risk response and mitigation; client briefing.

Indeterminate Structures

Semester 1 (optional)

This course aims to provide students with a variety of techniques to analyse forces and displacements in linear, statically determinate and statically indeterminate skeletal structures. In this context, the course enables learners to strengthen their ability to model such structures and to understand the relationship between the mathematical models used in analysis and the behaviour of the real-world structures. It also introduces the safe and efficient use of commercial software packages for the static analysis of linear elastic beam and the plastic analysis of frames structures, as well as the modelling of structural behaviour in a laboratory environment, providing an awareness of health and safety issues in the latter. Subjects covered in the syllabus include:

Statically indeterminate structures; moment distribution; plastic analysis of frames.

Sustainability in Civil Engineering

Semester 1 (optional)

This course aims to equip students with the interdisciplinary attitudes, skills and knowledge necessary to allow them to contribute to the delivery of sustainable development within the civil engineering industry. This will include a broad introduction to the concepts, drivers and definitions associated with sustainability, as well as an overview of the history of sustainable development. More specific topics covered in the course syllabus include:

Urban design qualities and sustainable cities; the planning & leglislative framework; strategic environmental & environmental impact assessments; project design and planning; national and international sustainability indicators; audits and certification for sustainability and available assessment tools and methodologies.

Ground Engineering

Semester 1 (optional)

The overall aim of this course is to provide the students with detailed knowledge and understanding in ground engineering for geotechnical engineers, extending the knowledge gained in undergraduate geotechnical courses to allow the learners to apply theoretical design and analysis to practical problems. Subject that are covered in this course include:

Site investigation and soil sampling techniques; analysis of slope stability problems and failure modes; earth pressure analysis and retaining walls; application of geotextiles in geotechnical, highway & railway engineering; methods of ground improvement through compaction, grouting, consolidation and drainage.

Environmental Geotechnics

Semester 1 (optional)

This course aims to give students an appreciation of the role of contaminated land within geotechnical engineering, developing understanding of current UK legislation and government policy relating to methodologies for dealing with contaminated land. In this regard, the course enables learners to understand the practical relevance of the remediation technologies within the context of site contamination and to gain knowledge of the engineering measures adopted at landfill sites for the safe disposal of waste. Subjects and topics covered include:

Historical pollution sources and extent; qualitative and quantitative risk assessment; site investigation; remediation methods; legislative background; characteristics of landfill sites and wastes.

Project Management: Strategic Issues

Semester 2 (mandatory)

This course aims to further develop the learners theoretical and practical knowledge in the implementation of Project Management Principles in the construction industry. The course is designed to raise student awareness as to why the construction industry under-performs when compared to other industries. This enables learners to appraise and critically analyse the performance of the project management discipline in order to explore what is needed to improve this performance, with emphasis on the UK construction industry. The following units are included in the course syllabus:

The construction industry; the manufacturing industry; lean construction and process mapping; lean planning; performance measurement and benchmarking; project management evaluation; power, politics and influence; supply chain management.

Construction Financial Management

Semester 2 (mandatory)

The aim of the course is to enable students to appreciate and make an intelligent contribution towards the managerial and financial aspects of construction companies in general and construction projects in particular. This includes developing awareness and understanding of the need for financial planning and monitoring and the cost control process. The following subjects are covered within the course syllabus:

Financial management and control in contracting; corporate strategies in construction; financial management at company level; cash flow forecasting; costing; cost/value reconciliation at project level; production of financial accounts for construction companies; corporate analysis and ratio analysis; economic comparison; profitability measurement; construction plant financial appraisal; development appraisal techniques.

Safety, Risk and Reliability

Semester 2 (optional)

This course aims to provide the students with an appreciation and understanding of the basic principles of structural reliability theory. It provides an introduction to concepts of structural safety and risk, as well as probability theory and probability distributions. Specific topics covered in the course syllabus include:

Probabilistic modelling of strength and loads; first order second moment and first order reliability methods; reliability-based code calibration; Monte-Carlo simulation and variance reduction techniques; Introduction to causes of structural deterioration (corrosion, fatigue and fracture); risk based inspection strategies using Bayesian methods.

Foundation Engineering

Semester 2 (optional)

The overall aim of this course is to provide the student with knowledge and understanding of the geotechnical design process, equipping learners with appropriate methods of analysis for settlement and bearing capacity calculations, as well as in examining appropriate national codes and Eurocodes and their implications in geotechnical design. The course syllabus includes the following topics:

Introduction to foundation types (e.g. shallow footings; piled foundation types); deformation due to surface loading (e.g. stress distributions; elastic displacement; settlement theory; bearing capacity; consolidation); bearing capacity of foundations (e.g. shallow footings; active/passive pressures; general bearing capacity methods); Piles (e.g. forces and load transfer; capacity; soil types; pile group behaviour)

Water and Wastewater Treatment

Semester 2 (optional)

The aim of this course is to enable learners to understand the processes and technologies for water treatment including conventional and advanced wastewater treatment and the sizing of various treatment units. The course also provides awareness for the learner of the importance of effective wastewater treatment for river pollution control. Specific topics covered in the course syllabus include:

Introduction to water & wastewater characteristics; fresh water treatment (e.g. coagulation and sedimentation, filtration, disinfection); desalination technologies for sea water treatment; wastewater treatment (e.g. preliminary treatment design, primary tank design/secondary treatment, advanced wastewater treatment); land-based, low-energy and sustainable wastewater treatment systems; sludge handling, treatment & disposal; effluent disposal (including re-use).

Urban Drainage and Water Supply

Semester 2 (optional)

This course introduces the learner to the broad theme of Urban Drainage and Water Supply, with the aim of providing understanding of the following topics: runoff estimation, rainfall estimation, system layout/design, pump system design, sediment transport, Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems, the role of computer simulations, service reservoirs, water distribution practice and groundwater supply. The course includes instruction on the use of Infoworks CS. Subjects covered in the course syllabus include:

Performance requirements (e.g. technical, public safety, whole-life operational, amenity and sustainability); combined and separate sewerage systems; rainwater quantification/climate change; overview of sewer sediments; storm Sewer Design; hydrodynamic flow models; SuDS; service reservoirs; water distribution practice; groundwater supply; leakage.

Earthquake Engineering

Semester 2 (optional)

This course aims to provide students with an understanding of the nature of seismic forces and the response of structures subjected to such loading, as well as to provide learners with an introduction to earthquake-resistant design and the seismic assessment of structures. The main subjects covered in the course syllabus include:

Introduction to engineering seismology; waves in elastic media; introduction to Eurocode 8; simplified and multi-modal response spectrum analyses; elastic & inelastic systems; time history and frequency domain analyses; soil-structure interaction transmitting boundaries; methods of seismic structural assessment; structural repair and strengthening techniques.

Additional information

The MSc programme consists of 8 taught courses followed by two research projects you meet the MSc progression standards in the taught courses. The progression standards are an average mark of 50% or higher and no course marks below 40%.

The Postgraduate Diploma programme consists of the same taught courses but does not continue to the research project phase. PG Diploma students must achieve an average mark of 40% or more and have no marks below 35%. PG Diploma students may choose to transfer to the MSc cohort if they meet the MSc progression standards stated above.

For MSc level entry applicants must have: * Minimum of 2:2 honours degree or equivalent academic qualification in cognate and semi-cognate subject area. For PG conversion programmes, non-cognate degrees will be considered. Corporate (or chartered) membership of relevant professional institutions will also be considered.For PG Diploma level entry applicants must have: * Third class honours degree in a cognate or semi-cognate subject area PLUS 2 years of relevant experience at an appropriate level completed post qualification. * Cognate or semi-cognate ordinary degree PLUS 3-4 years of relevant experience at an appropriate level following graduation. * Candidates who do not meet the above entry requirements or have no formal academic qualifications will be considered individually based on their CV and interview. Admission via this route will be at the discretion of the Director of Admissions and the number of successful applicants will be restricted.There is no entry at PG Certificate level except through exceptional agreement with approved learning partners.Non-graduating study at masters level: * Entry is based on CV or on formal academic qualifications or graduate (or incorporated) membership of a relevant professional institution.Distance Learning January entryDistance learning students can choose to start their studies in January or September. The January intake is not available to students studying on-campus.English language requirementsApplicants who have previously successfully completed programmes delivered in the medium of English language will be required to provide documentary evidence of this. Examples would be secondary school education or undergraduate degree programme. A minimum of one year of full time study (or equivalent) in the medium of English language will be required. English Language Requirements IELTS band: 6.5 IMPORTANT NOTE: Since April 2014 the ETS tests (including TOEFL and TOEIC) are no longer accepted for Tier 4 visa applications to the United Kingdom. The university might still accept these tests to admit you to the university, but if you require a Tier 4 visa to enter the UK and begin your degree programme, these tests will not be sufficient to obtain your Visa. The IELTS test is most widely accepted by universities and is also accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK- learn more. Technological Requirements Please note that independent distance learning students who access their studies online will be expected to have access to a PC/laptop and internet.

Scholarships & bursaries
* Alumni Scholarship Scheme
Heriot-Watt Alumni
* Carnegie-Cameron Taught Postgraduate Bursaries
Applicants must be Scottish by birth, have at least one parent born in Scotland or have been continuously resident in Scotland for a period of three years for the purpose of secondary or tertiary education.
* Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan
International (Commonwealth citizens)
* Department for International Development (DFID) Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme(SBE)
International (Commonwealth citizens)
* Department for International Development (DFID) Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme
Commonwealth citizens
* East Lothian Educational Trust
Applicants must be a resident of the old county of East Lothian (ie excluding Musselburgh, Wallyford and Whitecraig.)
* India Scholarship (SBE)
Students who have applied via the Heriot-Watt India office. Please note that this award is available for study at our Edinburgh campus only.
* Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust
Restricted to residents of the UK who are a son, daughter, spouse, widow or widower of a commercial traveller, chemist or grocer.
* Local Education Authority Awards
* Mexican Scholarships
Mexican applicants
* Music Scholarships
All students
* Part-time Fee Grant (SAAS)
See SAAS residence conditions.
* Postgraduate Student Allowance Scheme (SAAS)
EU and UK applicants who meet the SAAS criteria on eligible courses
* Remission of Fees (families of staff)
Spouses/civil partners and children of members of staff, also retired members of staff of the University
* Royal Caledonian Schools Trust
Applicants must be of Scots parentage (conditions apply - see below)
* Scotland's Saltire Scholarships
Citizens of Canada, the People's Republic of China, India or USA (2 awards for each country)
* Sports Scholarships
All students
* Staff Scholarships
Employees of Heriot-Watt University
* The Consumer Affairs UK Scholarship Programme
All currently enrolled students
* West Lothian Educational Trust
Individuals must have originated in West Lothian or have lived there for the last 3 years.


Professional recognition

This MSc degree is accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired an Accredited CEng (Partial) BEng(Hons) or an Accredited IEng (Full) BEng/BSc (Hons) undergraduate first degree. See for further information.

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