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Quantity Surveying and Commercial Management

PGDip or PGCert or MSc

Key facts


Start dates

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 Quantity Surveying and Commercial Management (QSCM) is designed to meet the challenging demands of the modern learner and the rapidly evolving needs of the construction industry.

This is a coursework only course which brings together both distance and full-time learners. You will work on real life problems as experienced by the construction industry. And in doing so, develop a broad range of quantity surveying and management skills and knowledge including:

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

We consult with companies in the industry to ensure our course is tailored to the employment skills needed by the construction industry. Our longstanding links include prominent and local companies in the sector, such as:

  • Mace
  • Willmott Dixon
  • BAM Construction
  • Beards
  • Kingerlee
  • Bidwells.
Students on building site with hi vis jackets and hard hats

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 any discipline. 

We will actively consider applications from candidates with lower degrees - who can evidence relevant experience, or a sustained managerial role in another profession.

Industry professionals with relevant 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 built environment 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
£6,390

Home/EU distance learning
£3,460

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
£6,390

Home/EU distance learning
£3,460

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

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.

Students pay £100 towards the costs of the field trip.

Fees for the study periods are inclusive, but distance learners would need to budget for travel to the University, accommodation and food.

Learning and assessment


There are two modes of delivery:

  • full time on campus
  • distance learning.

There are two entry points - September or January.

The course may be studied either full time over one year. Or as a distance learner over two years.

You may choose to exit at the PGCert or PGDip stage, but please note that these exit awards are not accredited by RICS or CIOB.

Student in class

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.

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.

Managing Technology for Sustainable Environments

Technological innovations and how they are managed are key elements in the development of our built environment. This module introduces these as considerations that should be made at the inception and briefing stages of a project, not as afterthoughts. It also recognises that construction is not devoid of the human dimension - the contexts within which a construction project is situated, including influences of climate, culture, and surrounding and supporting infrastructures are also important. Thus you don’t study developments of technology in isolation, but as part of a continuously innovating industry. In this respect, managing Building Information Modelling (BIM), developments in off-site construction and Low Carbon Construction are covered as part of the module.

Quantity Surveying Practice

The financial management of project design and construction, whether for client or contractor, is an essential skill in the construction industry. This module helps you to develop this skill. It is designed to initially develop your understanding of the fundamental principles for building and civil engineering measurement. You will gain a good understanding of the standard methods of measurement such as NRM2 and CESMM4, develop quantity take-off skills and understand the key roles and responsibilities of a professional quantity surveyor with particular reference to the construction tendering process and use of BIM.

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.

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

We use an 'applied' approach to learning, sometimes called 'problem based learning' or PBL. You will work in groups and learn by actively puzzling through problems. These are adapted from complex real situations and case studies. PBL leads to a more challenging and industrially relevant course than the traditional lecture approach.

Full time students usually receive new material weekly. With intermediate tutorial or seminar sessions.

There are also intensive study periods and a European field trip, when students in both modes of study come together.

For the distance or open learner, the virtual learning environment (VLE) is the primary mode of delivery. Open-learning students are supported by email, Skype, on-line lectures and telephone.

Field trips

There are a number of field trips and site visits which take place mainly during the intensive study periods.
The European field trip is compulsory and organised by the School. This carries an additional cost. 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.

Our virtual learning environment (VLE), Moodle allows you to:

  • download course material
  • take quizzes taken remotely
  • take part in closed discussions
  • keep in contact with other distance and on-campus students.

Research


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

A recent HEFCE report into sustainable development in higher education in England suggests that the OISD is one of the key players in sustainable development research.

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.

After you graduate


Career prospects

Graduates of our postgraduate construction programmes have an outstanding employment record. Our graduates are recognised as having excellent levels of communication, presentation and problem-solving skills. Consequently, our students go on to be employed across the broad spectrum of the construction industries both locally and internationally.

Many of these companies visit the department annually to meet students for graduate positions whilst all of our distance learning students are employed full time by prominent companies in the sector.

As our programmes are accredited by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the Chartered Institute of Builders (CIOB), our graduates are firmly on the path to become professionally chartered opening up excellent recognition for future career progression.

Graduates from the course will normally go on to become Quantity Surveyors within the construction industries, for which currently there are excellent job opportunities.

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.