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Course content

Gain knowledge and expertise to specialise in the design of comfortable and healthy environments in and around buildings, regardless of climate, and with due regard to sustainable issues.

Overview

Conventional methods of construction are highly resource-intensive; they require energy, electricity and water, and generate landfill waste and CO2 emissions. With governments and the public becoming increasingly aware of dwindling global resources and interested in sustainability issues, there is a growing demand for professionals working in the built environment to be well-versed in sustainable design.

Our MSc Environmental Design of Buildings aims to develop knowledge and expertise in the design of comfortable and healthy environments in and around buildings, regardless of climate, and with due regard to sustainable issues.

Please note that you are currently viewing the course details for our full-time course. We also offer part-time and distance learning options which is suitable for professionals working in the field.

You will be based in the School of Architecture’s new studio for graduate students at Friary House, in Cardiff city centre. This is within 5-10 minutes’ walk of our other site, Bute Building.

Distinctive features

  • Study in one of the top Schools of Architecture in the UK.
  • Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE), meets the academic requirements for CEng professional registration.
  • Available as a full-time, part-time and distance learning course.
  • Established course, providing a practical grounding in the subject of sustainable design to built environment professionals since 1993.
  • Based on internationally acclaimed research expertise within the Welsh School of Architecture, we have long-standing experience in designing, monitoring and consulting on sustainable buildings such as the carbon positive SOLCER House.

Structure

Our MSc Environmental Design of Buildings is delivered in two stages. Stage one is comprised of taught and project modules totalling 120 credits. Your dissertation is stage two. If you are a full-time student, you will take both stages in one year. If you are a part-time student or distance learner, you will take around two to three years to complete both stages, depending on the pathway you are enrolled on.

You will undertake six taught and two project modules (stage one) before commencing your dissertation (stage two). All modules will approach environmental design from a different angle, while taking specific themes, such as heating, lighting, acoustics and sustainability into account. Throughout the course, we will address good practice in climates around the world. We will explore:

  • Current issues facing environmental designers and how the profession may be impacted by climate change.
  • Environmental standards - their prediction, measurement, and legislation.
  • Ways of achieving high standards of environmental performance, making appropriate use of building fabric and mechanical services.
  • Broader issues that environmental designers should be aware of in order to practice in a sustainable way.

The taught modules on this course provide a grounding in architectural science within the context of sustainable development and environmental performance of buildings.

The project modules focus on specific themes in building design, such as climatic environment, internal building environment and passive design strategies. In these modules you will have the opportunity to apply taught design ideas to real-world scenarios.

After completing the modules, you will prepare a dissertation, where you will analyse a subject of environmental design that interests you in more depth.

Career prospects

Students on this course frequently go back into their original profession with the advantage of having a new specialism in sustainable design. Following their completion of the course, some of our students with sufficient prior career experience have even gained leading roles in their respective professions.The programme has helped a large number of professionals to pursue a career in a broad range of sectors such as (but not limited to):

  • Practice of architecture or engineering, with specialism in environmental design
  • Consultancy (building environmental analysis and building performance evaluation)
  • Academia (teaching and/or research)
  • Policy (in the UK and abroad)

Visit the Environmental Design of Buildings - MSc page on the Cardiff University website for more details!

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