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Course content

This course is run by the School of the Built Environment

This programme has been designed to meet the challenging demands of the modern learner and the rapidly evolving needs of the built environment sector in respect to the emergence of Building Information Modelling (BIM) as a working practice, the MSc in Buiding Information Modelling and Management , through its intelligent use of the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), is designed to deliver a flexible and innovative programme of study.

The MSc is available both as a one year full-time programme, and in open-learning mode that is normally taken over two years (extendable up to 5 years). The course consists of four core modules plus research methods and a final dissertation. As each of these core modules is entirely self-contained students may enter the program in either September or January.

Prior to September 2016 entry, this programme was named Construction Project Management and BIM.

Why choose this course?

- We use an ‘applied approach’ to teaching, and our students work on real-life or reality based problems as experienced within the construction sector and its associated industries, consultants and clients.

- You are also exposed to behavioural aspects of managing projects, which most construction project managers only experience when their careers are well-advanced.

- This provides a more interesting and engaging learning environment than the traditional ‘study and examination’ approach to learning.

Teaching and learning

Teaching, learning and assessment methods are largely determined by the use of the applied learning approach which leads to a more challenging and industrially relevant course than the traditional lecture approach. Learning takes place through groups of students working through problems together. These are often adapted from real situations with much of the complexity and content intact, using published resources or reference to experts who are available to offer advice.

Full-time mode: new material is delivered weekly with intermediate tutorial or seminar sessions. The intensive study weeks and a European field trip, when students in both modes of study come together, complement this delivery pattern.

Open learning mode: the virtual learning environment (VLE) is the primary mode of delivery. Communication with open learning students is supplemented by email and telephone during the periods off campus.

Approach to assessment

Assessment is 100% coursework, which includes a great variety of types of work, including quizzes taken remotely on Moodle (Brookes online learning environment). Material can be downloaded from our virtual learning environment and closed discussions can take place. It also enables on campus and open learning students to remain in contact with each other.

Field trips

A European field trip is a compulsory element of the PGCert modules. It typically takes place over a five day period towards the end of January and is heavily subsidised by the department.

The aim of the field trip is to consolidate the knowledge gained in the early part of the course and to develop team and other relationships through exposing you to European project management practices and to assess their ability to observe and report on the different approaches to project management in the UK and in a European country.

The field trip normally consists of visits to prominent construction/engineering projects and sites, plus architectural attractions, both en route and at the destination. You are introduced to the development and planning practices at the destination, as well as having the opportunity to visit major complex projects.

About our students

The programme attracts students from diverse backgrounds and locations. They normally hold degrees in fields relating to built environment including civil engineering, construction, architecture and building, and have decided to contribute to the development of the built environment around us by effectively managing construction projects.

Our students come from as far afield as Nigeria, Russia and India, with backgrounds ranging from recently graduated at undergraduate level, to working with small local companies, to fully established managers in large international construction companies. This diverse group brings with them individual responses to the applied learning approach that is at the core of our course delivery.

Typically the open learning students are employed by a number of different organisations from the private and public sectors in different countries. They have the opportunity to share their experiences to gain better understanding of the industry, the range of challenges that construction project managers face, and therefore the breadth of skills that they need to develop to perform successfully.

Our full time students benefit from contact with the open learning students engaged in construction project management roles in a variety of built environment projects across many countries.


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 project managers right 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 as Assistant project managers whilst all of our open-learning students are employed full-time by prominent companies in the sector.

Free language courses for students - the Open Module

Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

Please note that the free language courses are not available if you are:
- studying at a Brookes partner college
- studying on any of our teacher education courses or postgraduate education courses.

Research highlights

Many of our academic staff are involved in academic research and/or professional/commercial consultancy work. 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 (GPA x number of full-time equivalent staff submitted) among the 45 institutions that submitted to our unit of assessment.

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 on-going 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.

Research areas and clusters

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.

Visit the Building Information Modelling and Management (MSc/ PGDip/ PGCert) page on the Oxford Brookes University website for more details!






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