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Construction Project Management

PGDip or PGCert or MSc

Key facts


Start dates

September 2019 / January 2020 / September 2020

Course length

Full time: 13 months (Sept start), 17 months (Jan start)

Part time: Distance learning only - 25 months (Sept start), 29 months (Jan start)

Department

School of the Built Environment

Accreditation(s)

Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors; Chartered Institute of Building

  • Chartered Institute of Building
  • Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors

Overview


Our MSc in Construction Project Management (CPM) meets the challenging demands of the modern learner and the evolving needs of built environment professionals.

We have strong links with prominent companies in the sector, such as:

  • Mace
  • Willmott Dixon
  • BAM Construction.

We consult with these companies to ensure course content remains relevant for the modern construction manager. The also provide advice on existing and proposed courses of study, research activities and consultancy work.

You will work on problems that the construction industry, clients and consultants experience. In doing so you will develop a broad range of management skills and knowledge including:

  • Building Information Modelling (BIM)
  • project finance
  • technology
  • procurement.

The course is ideal if you have a background in the construction industries and want to develop your career as a Construction Manager. Our graduates go on to further their careers locally, nationally and globally.

Please note: the PGCert or PGDip exit awards are not accredited by RICS or CIOB.

Students using construction software on a computer

How to apply


Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements

The course is open to applicants who hold a 2.1 undergraduate honours degree (or international equivalent) in a construction-related discipline. 

We will actively consider applications from candidates with lower degrees, who can evidence substantiated & relevant experience in construction.

Industry professionals with suitable practice qualifications (e.g MRICS, MCIOB) - demonstrating ability to study at master's level, are also encouraged to apply.

For Distance-Learning study, it is recommended that applicants have at least six months work experience in the construction sector.

 

Please also see the University's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

If your first language is not English you will require a minimum academic IELTS score of 6.5 overall with 6.0 in all components.

OR

An equivalent English language qualification acceptable to the University.

Please also see the University's standard English language requirements.

International qualifications and equivalences

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English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the University's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

Pathways courses for international and EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you meet the entry requirements for your postgraduate course and also familiarise you with university life in the UK.

Take a Pre-Master's course to develop your subject knowledge, study skills and academic language level in preparation for your master's course.

If you need to improve your English language, we offer pre-sessional English language courses to help you meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s course.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

Application process

We advise applying in advance to secure places, and allow sufficient time for applications to be reviewed.

There is no formal application deadline (recruitment closes when teaching capacity is reached). 

Applicants should also factor any time needed to meet offer conditions, arrange accommodation, and obtain a UK Tier 4 visa (if applicable).

Apply now

Tuition fees


Please see the fees note
Home/EU full time
£7,270

Home/EU distance learning
£3,710

International full time
£14,000

International distance learning
£6,080

Home/EU full time
£9,000

Home/EU distance learning
£4,500

International full time
£14,700

International distance learning
£7,350

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees


2019/20
Home/EU full time
£7,270

Home/EU distance learning
£3,710

International full time
£14,000

International distance learning
£6,080

2020/21
Home/EU full time
£9,000

Home/EU distance learning
£4,500

International full time
£14,700

International distance learning
£7,350

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088

Fees quoted are for the first year only. If you are studying a course that lasts longer than one year your fees will increase each year.

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed below.

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

This course includes a compulsory field trip. The majority of the costs are subsidised by the School. A coach is also provided to transport students and staff from Oxford Brookes to the field trip destination. You will need to pay for the following expenses:

  • a contribution towards accommodation (around £100)
  • travel expenses if you choose to fly direct to the destination or to join the coach at Oxford Brookes
  • lunches and evening meals
  • any other personal expenditures.

Learning and assessment


You can take this course full time on campus or by distance learning. The two entry points are September or January.

Intensive Study Periods

All students attend four intensive study periods, these are usually 3 days long. You can share experiences and knowledge as well as renew friendships and make connections within the industry. If you are an open-learning student, you'll get the opportunity to meet staff and students face-to-face.

Construction software on a computer

Study modules

The modules listed below are for the master's award. For the PGDip and PGCert awards your module choices may be different. Please contact us for more details.

Taught modules

Compulsory modules

People, Leadership and Organisations

This module aims to develop your knowledge and understanding of how behavioural and organisational issues influence project performance and how they can be harnessed to effectively deliver projects. 

It includes an overview of management approaches, an exploration of the issues around understanding self and understanding others, team theory and leadership, communication, conflict theory and resolution, conflict resolution strategies and learning from experience in project environments and also conflict and negotiation in the context of personal and cultural differences.

To a large extent the module adopts a problem-based learning (PBL) approach. Here, PBL is facilitated through problem-solving exercises that are based on prominent case studies and game play exercises.

Project Planning, Control and Risk

This module prepares you to manage projects within the built environment through the use of advanced planning and control techniques. You will learn and apply a range of skills in project planning, scheduling, monitoring and control that includes cash flow and capital expenditure analysis, value management, risk and opportunity management and the use of software-based decision support tools as used in industry.  

Process Management

This module develops the necessary skills for managing procurement effectively and efficiently; the key processes which ultimately dictate project success. Starting with critical evaluation of the project life cycle, the module explores a number of alternative procurement methods whilst placing significant emphasis on supply chain collaboration and integration. Moreover, an examination of the contractual arrangements between the parties of the supply chain as well as sources of disputes and conflict management is also made. 

The module also investigates further key aspects of construction project management such as Health and Safety, Quality and Environmental Management. Project success and team performance criteria are also considered while a more efficient project delivery system is suggested by exploring supply chain development and lean thinking.

Advanced Technology and BIM

This module recognises that the current challenge of The UK construction industry is to find innovative solutions to meet the demands of a rapidly changing world. Sustainable Construction, Off-Site Construction and Smart Technologies are some of the methods being developed to deliver a high quality, productive and more sustainable built environment for our future generations. 

Though yet to be fully incorporated into standard practice, Building Information Modelling (BIM) is the emergent technology that is becoming the fundamental vehicle in driving and delivering these innovations. This module therefore explores both advanced construction technologies and innovations and the use of BIM in managing and organising construction project information

Applied Research Methods

This module provides you with the fundamentals of research design highlighting the difference between qualitative and quantitative research paradigms and demonstrates how data can be both gathered and analysed and how deductive arguments can be used to produce valid generalisations from data. It also provides you with an overview of particular research techniques such that they can choose and develop those tools most appropriate to their particular research project. 

Intensive study periods

Compulsory modules

Intensive Study Periods

You will attend four intensive study periods during your programme. These are normally around 3 days long. Students (and staff) enjoy these intensive sessions as they are able to share experiences and knowledge as well as renew friendships and make connections within the industry and the open-learning students get the opportunity to meet face-to-face with staff. 

The organisation and the collaborative nature of these intensive study periods is always praised by our students who particularly like the site visits, workshops and guest lectures from industry experts that are some of the major features.

Final project

Compulsory modules

Dissertation

Your dissertation follows on from Applied Research Methods and aims not only to generate new knowledge or insights but also to develop your capacity to undertake rigorous research, to plan and execute an extended project and to communicate complex ideas effectively in words and graphically. You will work with a supervisor from within the department to produce an original piece of work of publishable quality through conducting their own primary research and presenting their findings in a professional manner.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from that shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Learning and teaching

In response to industry feedback we have made our courses more practical by using an 'applied' approach to learning. This is sometimes called 'problem based learning' or PBL. With this approach you learn by working through problems that are adapted from complex, real situations. We use our links with industrial practitioners to help devise the problems we use in class. This leads to a more exciting and relevant student experience.

Full time mode

You will receive new material weekly with intermediate tutorial or seminar sessions. There are also intensive study weeks and a European field trip where you will learn with students from both modes of study.

Distance learning mode

The virtual learning environment (VLE) is the primary mode of delivery. You will also have contact by email and telephone during the periods off campus.

Field trips

A compulsory European field trip is part of the course and typically takes place over a five-day period towards the end of January.

The field trip exposes you to European project management practices, allowing you to:

  • consolidate the knowledge gained in the early part of the course
  • develop team and other relationships
  • assess your ability to observe and report on the different approaches to project management in the UK and in a European country.

The trip normally consists of visits to prominent construction/engineering projects and sites. Plus architectural attractions, both en route and at the destination. You will be introduced to the development and planning practices at the destination. And you will have the opportunity to visit major complex projects.

The majority of the costs are subsidised by the School but there are some additional costs. Please see the Additional costs section of this page for details.

Assessment

Assessment methods used on this course

Assessment is 100% coursework, and includes a variety of types of work, including quizzes taken remotely on Moodle (our virtual learning environment). Moodle also allows you to:

  • download course material
  • take part in closed discussions
  • remain in contact with other students whether you are on campus or distance learning students.

Research


Many members of staff are part of the Oxford Institute of Sustainable Development (OISD). OISD is noted for its work on sustainable technology in buildings and sustainable urban form among many on-going projects.

Areas of interest include:

  • sustainability, adaptation and resilience to climate change
  • Building Information Modelling (BIM)    
  • collaborative supply networks for procurement and delivery of project
  • building economics
  • forecasting techniques
  • risk management
  • social networks in project environments
  • managing complex projects
  • management of knowledge and innovation as a source of competitive advantage
  • adaptive re-use of existing buildings
  • facilities management
  • health and safety.

In the recent Research Excellence Framework (REF 2014), our Unit of Assessment (UoA 16) ranked 4th within the University in terms of its Grade Point Average (GPA). We hold the 11th position in terms of Research Impact and Power Rating among the 45 institutions that submitted to our unit of assessment.

After you graduate


Career prospects

All of our distance learning students are employed full time by prominent companies in the sector. 

Full time students find similar employment shortly after graduation. They typically hold (Assistant) Project Manager positions. However, the breadth of knowledge that our students gain gives them the flexibility to function effectively in a number of different roles.

Local and national construction companies, developers, project managers, house-builders, surveyors and housing associations regularly recruit our graduates.

Many graduates are employed globally - including in:

  • India
  • Pakistan
  • South Africa
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • Peru
  • The Middle East
  • China.

Our Staff


Dr George Blumberg

Read more about George

Programme Changes: On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website.

For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.