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Study information

Construction Design Management with Industrial Placement (2023)

1. Programme Title:

Construction Design Management with Industrial Placement

NQF Level:


2. Description of the Programme (as in the Business Approval Form)

​​This MSc is applicable to Level 6 engineering students (civil, structural, architectural or mechanical), who are keen to embrace digital technology to assist them with their future civil engineering management careers, in large national or international civil engineering companies.  The emphasis of the programme will be on the use and understanding of digital data collection (satellite, LIDAR and drones), computer analysis and digital design (including BIM). 

​The programme will give you the skills and confidence to be able to use and understand the array of digital tools, available to the civil engineering industry.  And afterwards you will be able to assist companies to become more efficient and skilled in their delivery of large and complex built environment projects. 

​During the second year of this two year programme, you will find an industrial placement, with assistance from the university, following which you will submit your dissertation. 

​The proposed programme sits across two of the engineering department’s particular strengths; Civil Engineering and Management.​ 


3. Educational Aims of the Programme

On completion of this programme you will be able to achieve the following: 

  • Apply a comprehensive knowledge of mathematics, statistics, natural science and engineering principles to the solution of complex problems. Much of the knowledge will be at the forefront of the particular subject of study and informed by a critical awareness of new developments and the wider context of engineering 
  • Formulate and analyse complex problems to reach substantiated conclusions. This will involve evaluating available data using first principles of mathematics, statistics, natural science and engineering principles 
  • Select and apply appropriate computational and analytical techniques to model complex problems, discussing the limitations of the techniques employed 
  • Design solutions for complex problems that evidence some originality and meet a combination of societal, user, business and customer needs as appropriate. 
  • Apply an integrated or systems approach to the solution of complex problems 
  • Evaluate the environmental and societal impact of solutions to complex problems (to include the entire life-cycle of a product or process) and minimise adverse impacts 
  • Identify and analyse ethical concerns and make reasoned ethical choices informed by professional codes of conduct 
  • Adopt a holistic and proportionate approach to the mitigation of security risks 
  • Use practical laboratory and workshop skills to investigate complex problems 
  • Select and apply appropriate materials, equipment, engineering technologies and processes, recognising their limitations 
  • Apply knowledge of engineering management principles, commercial context, project and change management, and relevant legal matters including intellectual property rights 
  • Function effectively as an individual, and as a member or leader of a team. Evaluate effectiveness of own and team performance  
  • Communicate effectively on complex engineering matters 

Learning and Teaching Methods 

Exeter’s approach to engineering education emphasises collaborative Problem/Project Based Learning, contextualised teaching and a focus on skills development and practical application of knowledge. A blend of traditional and innovative teaching and learning approaches will be deployed. 

Distinctive Intentions 

The programme is built on Exeter’s culture of technology innovation and offers a unique blend of learning and doing. 


4. Programme Structure

The MSc in Construction Design Management with Industrial Placement is a 24 month programme of study at National Qualification Framework (NQF) level 7 (as confirmed against the FHEQ). This programme is divided into 2 ‘Stages’: 

Stage 1 consists of 6 modules taught during year 1. 

Stage 2 consists of a 9-12 month industrial placement, followed by completion and submission of a dissertation 

Students who do not secure a placement will be transferred to the MSc Construction Design Management programme. 


5. Programme Modules

The following tables describe the programme and constituent modules. Constituent modules may be updated, deleted or replaced as a consequence of the annual review of this programme. Details of the modules currently offered may be obtained from the Faculty website: 

Stage 1: 180 credits of compulsory modules.


Stage 1

Code Title Credits Compulsory NonCondonable
ECMM163Sustainable Engineering15YesNo
ENGM035Finance for Engineers15YesNo
ENGM036Digital Mapping and Survey15YesNo
ENGM038Digital Analysis30YesNo
ENGM039Modelling, Simulation and Machine Learning for Operations Management15YesNo
ENGM040Research Ethics and Methodology15YesNo
ENGM037Digital Design15NoNo

Stage 2

Code Title Credits Compulsory NonCondonable
ENGM028MSc Industrial Placement60YesYes
ECMM164MSc Dissertation60YesYes

6. Programme Outcomes Linked to Teaching, Learning & Assessment Methods

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to: Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs) will be accommodated & facilitated by the following learning & teaching and evidenced by the following assessment methods:

A Specialised Subject Skills & Knowledge

1. Gain understanding of advanced design and analysis methods in engineering 
2. Learn advanced topics in the construction of sustainable buildings and infrastructure to safeguard resources for future generations. 
3. Understand the design, operational and management aspects of urban infrastructure and its effect on the larger environment, its characteristics and its impact. 
4. Investigate relevant case studies and make appropriate and critical use of systems modelling, management principles and systems analysis techniques for urban infrastructure. 

5. Develop knowledge of how management of civil engineering projects can be effectively done with the application modern techniques. 

Learning & Teaching Activities

The modules will be delivered by a mixture of formal lectures, tutorial classes and computer practical /demonstration sessions. Example sheets and other assignments will be set and marked by the module lecturers. You will be expected to read the assigned texts and assistance will be given during tutorials and office hours. Dissertations (ECMM164) will be individually supervised, with a weekly meeting (typically one hour) between yourself and your supervisor. 

Assessment Methods

All modules, except for ECMM164, will be assessed by a combination of a written examination and coursework. The dissertation (ECMM164) will be graded both by the supervisor and a second independent marker.

B Academic Discipline Core Skills & Knowledge

6. Identify, formulate, analyse and solve complex problems in civil engineering and design appropriate solutions 
7. Organise tasks into a structured form 
8. Summarise and analyse data 
9. Integrate theory and applications 

10. Develop a working knowledge of software packages and tools, techniques, methods for analysis and modelling 

11. Critically assess research results 
12. Transfer knowledge and methods from one subject area to a different area 


Learning & Teaching Activities

All modules are designed to provide opportunities to gain skills (6 - 12).  The dissertation module ECMM164 will further develop skills (6 -7), assisted by a project supervisor. 

Assessment Methods

These skills will be tested by the marking of coursework, by examination and by the marking of the dissertation. 

C Personal / Transferable / Employment Skills & Knowledge

13. Improve necessary skills for independent learning. 
14. Enhance report and presentation skills. 
15. Improve IT skills. 
16. Work as part of a team. 
17. Manage time effectively. 
18. Plan career and personal development. 

Learning & Teaching Activities

(13) and (14) are required for the dissertation, 

(15) will be developed in Modules ENGM036, 037 and 038. 

(16) teamwork will be encouraged during coursework exercises to allow students to mentor and learn off each other but most coursework will be individually assessed. 

(17) and (18) will be developed throughout the programme. All the modules require timely submission of coursework and encourage students to organise their independent study and ensure effective time management.  We will encourage you to interact, as this will accelerate the learning process. Each student will have personal tutorial advice to achieve (17) and (18). 


Assessment Methods

Assessed through the dissertation and the coursework of the modules 

7. Programme Regulations

Full details of assessment regulations for all taught programmes can be found in the TQA Manual, specifically in the Credit and Qualifications Framework, and the Assessment, Progression and Awarding: Taught Programmes Handbook.

Additional information, including Generic Marking Criteria, can be found in the Learning and Teaching Support Handbook.  


8. College Support for Students and Students' Learning

In accordance with University policy a system of personal tutors is in place for all students on this programme. A University-wide statement on such provision is included in the University's TQA Manual. As a student enrolled on this programme you will receive the personal and academic support of the Programme Coordinator and will have regular scheduled meetings with your Personal Tutor; you may request additional meetings as and when required. The role of personal tutors is to provide you with advice and support for the duration of the programme and extends to providing you with details of how to obtain support and guidance on personal difficulties such as accommodation, financial difficulties and sickness. You can also make an appointment to see individual teaching staff. 

Information Technology (IT) Services provide a wide range of services throughout the Exeter campuses including open access computer rooms, some of which are available 24 hours, 7 days a week. Help may be obtained through the Helpdesk, and most study bedrooms in halls and flats are linked to the University's campus network. Additionally, the College has its own dedicated IT support staff, helpdesk and computer facilities which are linked to the wider network, but which also provide access to some specialised software packages. Email is an important channel of communication between staff and students in the College and an extensive range of web-based information is maintained for the use of students, including a comprehensive and annually revised student handbook. 

The Harrison Learning Resource Centre is generally open during building open hours. The Centre is available for quiet study, with four separate rooms that can be booked for meetings and group work. Amongst its facilities, the Learning Resource Centre has a number of desks, four meeting rooms with large LCD screens, and free use of a photocopier. Also available are core set texts from your module reading lists, and undergraduate and MSc projects from the past two years. 

Online Module study resources provide materials for modules that you are registered for, in addition to some useful subject and IT resources. Generic study support resources, library and research skills, past exam papers, and the 'Academic Honesty and Plagiarism' module are also available through the student portal ( 

Student/Staff Liaison Committee enables students & staff to jointly participate in the management and review of the teaching and learning provision. 


10. Admission Criteria

Undergraduate applicants must satisfy the Undergraduate Admissions Policy of the University of Exeter.  

Postgraduate applicants must satisfy the Postgraduate Admissions Policy of the University of Exeter. 

Specific requirements required to enrol on this programme are available at the respective Undergraduate or Postgraduate Study Site webpages. 


11. Regulation of Assessment and Academic Standards

Each academic programme in the University is subject to an agreed Faculty assessment and marking strategy, underpinned by institution-wide assessment procedures. 

The security of assessment and academic standards is further supported through the appointment of External Examiners for each programme. External Examiners have access to draft papers, course work and examination scripts. They are required to attend the Board of Examiners and to provide an annual report. Annual External Examiner reports are monitored at both Faculty and University level. Their responsibilities are described in the University's code of practice. See the University's TQA Manual for details. 


12. Indicators of Quality and Standards

Certain programmes are subject to accreditation and/or review by professional and statutory regulatory bodies (PSRBs). 

14 Awarding Institution University of Exeter
15 Lead College / Teaching Institution College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences
16 Partner College / Institution N/A
17 Programme accredited/validated by N/A
18 Final Award(s) MSc
19 UCAS Code (UG programmes) ConDesMgmtIP
20 NQF Level of Final Awards(s): 7
21 Credit (CATS and ECTS) 240
22 QAA Subject Benchmarking Group (UG and PGT programmes)
23 Origin Date August 12th 2022 Last Date of Revision: May 31st 2024