Skip to main content

Postgraduate taught

PgCert Mining Lifecycle (Professional)

Please note: The below is for 2022 entries. Click here for 2021 entries.
UCAS code 1234
Duration 1 year part time (January start)
Entry year 2022
Campus Penryn Campus
Discipline Mining Engineering

Web: Enquire online 
+44 (0)1326 259442

Typical offer

View full entry requirements

Relevant degree or technical experience

Contextual offers


  • Designed for experienced mining industry staff, you will be immersed in the mining value chain followed by more detailed study of Mining Engineering
  • Taught by the internationally established Camborne School of Mines (CSM), a combined mining school and geoscience department
  • You’ll be equipped with the business knowledge of the entire mining pipeline and the technical knowledge to support career progression in the area of mining operations
  • Delivered by mining experts and aligned with industry needs, you’ll learn part-time while you work, and benefit from industry wide professional networks and exposure to diverse international mining practices
  • Taught via diverse course delivery methods and assessment types so you’ll graduate as a well-rounded mining professionals with broad industry knowledge.

View 2021 Entry

Apply for Jan 2022 entry

Open days and visiting us

Get a prospectus

Fast Track (current Exeter students)

8th in the world for Mining and Minerals Engineering

QS University World Rankings 2021

Leading research facilities include £2 million analytical mineralogy labs and an automated QEMSCAN scanning electron microscope; the first in any university worldwide

3rd for Materials and Mineral Engineering

The Guardian University League Table 2020

Comprehensive courses with content relating to many varied roles within industry, including design, mechanics, logistics, geotechnics, project management and surveying

Entry requirements

Open to all mining professionals with a relevant degree or with relevant technical experience. Please contact us before making an online application if you do not hold a degree so we can advise on the additional information required.

Entry requirements for international students

English language requirements


Please visit our entry requirements section for equivalencies from your country and further information on English language requirements.

Course content

Year one provides a robust understanding of the complete mining life cycle, from exploration and development to extraction and processing methods to waste management and mine closure. Year one of the course is also an excellent programme for new entrants into the mining business as a fast-track career induction.

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Discovery (CSMM177)

The module introduces the overall Mining Life Cycle and the sequence of activities involved in the mining business, including: mineral deposit types, mineral exploration, deposit evaluation, mining operations and mineral processing, waste management, closure and remediation, corporate social responsibility (CSR), social license to operate and environmental management. The module will then focus on:

  • The mining business landscape
  • An overview of geology, rock properties and processes of mineral deposit formation
  • Forces driving the demand for minerals and exploration activity
  • Exploration programmes and techniques
  • Mineral economics; including discounted cashflows and risk analysis

Design (CSMM178)

The module focuses on pre-mining decision making; how mineral deposits are investigated to ensure that mining is technically possible, financially viable and that the most appropriate mining approach is used.

The main topics covered are deposit evaluation techniques, the stages of an evaluation programme leading towards reserve / resource declarations, a feasibility study, mine planning and construction.

It will examine different drilling and sampling techniques, and how information gained is used to create a geological model. Evaluation processes are outlined to explain how mineral resources and reserves are defined, and how these then form the basis of a mine plan. The module will conclude with a description of how mines are then built and commissioned.

Students must have completed CSMM177 before starting this module and will also use the knowledge, concepts and terminology of the mining lifecycle introduced in CSMM177 to help complete CSMM178.

Recovery (CSMM179)

This module focuses on the operational aspect of mining covering the range of mining methods, the extraction cycle, types of mining equipment, transportation methods, mineral processing techniques, the sale of mineral products and the responsible treatment of mine waste. Topics include:

  • Mining methods - an overview of the main surface and underground mining methods
  • The mining cycle and transportation - how the mine extracts and moves material around the mining operation and the financial implications of efficient mine planning
  • Mineral processing - an overview of the main methods Mine waste and waste management
  • Mineral products and net smelter return calculations

You must have completed Module CSMM177 & CSMM178 before starting this module and will also use the knowledge, concepts and terminology of the mining lifecycle introduced in these to help complete CSMM179.

Impact (CSMM180)

This module covers the vital industry issues of corporate social responsibility, social license to operate, stakeholder engagement and political factors that affect mining decisions. The module explores how environmental impact is measured, monitored and controlled, and what sustainability means in the context of mining. It also explores international and local mining legislation, expectations of local people in mining regions, and the long and short term impacts of mining on local and national scale with a particular focus on the social, economic and environmental impacts of mine closure.

You must have completed Modules CSMM177, CSMM178 and CSMM179 before starting this module and will also use the knowledge, concepts and terminology of the mining lifecycle introduced in these to help complete CSMM180.


2022/23 entry

UK fees per year:

£9,000 part-time

International fees per year:

£9,000 part-time


We invest heavily in scholarships for talented prospective Masters students and have over £2.5 million in scholarships available, including our Global Excellence Scholarships* and Green Futures Scholarships* for international fee paying students.

For information on how you can fund your postgraduate degree at the University of Exeter, please visit our dedicated funding page.

*Terms and conditions apply. See online for details.

Teaching and research

Blended learning

The programme is taught by blended learning; online learning resources combined with teaching residentials, laboratory sessions, site visits and a mine tour. You are provided with comprehensive course materials online and supported by university staff who will use a range of online activities to support your learning, and give individual support and feedback on your progress.


All modules are assessed by diverse assignments aligned with industry needs and expectations such as management style reports, project group activities and including group and individual presentations. Some assessments will be undertaken at residentials including more formal assessment types. The students will have access to learning support staff who will be available to help, assist and guide them through the material and during residentials.

A research and practice-led culture

You will discuss the very latest ideas, research discoveries and new technologies in seminars and in the field and you will become actively involved in a research project yourself. All our academic staff are active in internationally-recognised scientific research across a wide range of topics. You will also be taught by leading industry practitioners.

Read more


To develop international mining talent mines need talented individuals to make the right decisions in a dynamic, safety-critical, and technologically advanced working environment.

Our curriculum and teaching methods are aligned to modern mining industry issues and we enjoy close relationships with local, national and international minerals businesses.

The course has been designed to meet the needs of industry staff, mining companies, regulators and professional associations. The teaching approach, technical content and assessments reflect the professional and industry context of the course participants.

The Course Team have extensive experience of developing blended learning and residential courses for international mining, mining equipment and construction materials companies.

Our practical approach engages academics and students with consultancies, multinational miners, and junior explorers to promote advances in geological exploration and sustainable mining.

Bespoke talent development

The CSM Professional can also be delivered as a tailor-made company or sector specific course and can be focused to address particular company issues and objectives. It can also be integrated into a company's training and talent development process. For more information please contact the Course Director, Professor Kip Jeffrey -

A vehicle for Continuing Professional Development

Elements of the course will also be available in the future as stand-alone CPD activities.

Read more