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Course content

Mathematical models are fundamental to how we understand, analyse and design transportation systems, but these models face challenges from the rapidly changing nature of mobility.

Innovative technologies are being harnessed to deliver new approaches to transport services, and huge volumes of data create new opportunities to examine how patterns of movement are evolving.

If you’re a highly numerate graduate with a desire to apply your quantitative skills to the real world, or a practitioner working in the sector, this course will take you to the next level and prepare you for a career as a transport modelling specialist.

97% of our graduates find employment in a professional or managerial role, or continue with further studies.*

Experience a course designed in collaboration with employers, learning skills the industry desperately needs to unlock the full potential of big data.

Learn to think creatively, beyond the standard application of established solutions, and use your technical expertise across multiple scenarios.

Develop and apply mathematical models to analyse and improve the performance of transportation networks and flows:

  • Use mathematical models to represent transport systems and forecast demand
  • Test solutions and strategies using different models
  • Apply optimisation algorithms to traffic networks
  • Develop computer code to enhance and visualise outputs
  • Critically evaluate and adapt existing modelling techniques
  • Write scientific reports for technical and lay audiences
  • Develop research and advanced scholarship skills.

And experience what it is like to be part of a project team working across disciplinary boundaries within the transport sector. Through this, gain insights into how modelling, environmental science, planning, economics and engineering can work together to develop sustainable solutions to global challenges. This industry-inspired approach will enable you to apply your knowledge to real-world issues in the field.

Your colleagues will be among the best and brightest from the UK and across the globe. Together you will learn mathematical modelling skills that can be applied to design smarter transport solutions founded on robust methods.

With a strong focus on industry needs, our degrees will prepare you for employment in your chosen field. They will also address the multi-disciplinary nature of transport – enabling you to make effective decisions for clients, employers and society.

Other Study Options

This programme is available part time, allowing you to combine study with other commitments. You can work to fund your studies, or gain a new qualification without giving up an existing job. We aim to be flexible in helping you to put together a part-time course structure that meets your academic goals while recognising the constraints on your study time.

You can also study this subject at Postgraduate Diploma level, part time or full time, or at Postgraduate Certificate level with our PGCert in Transport Studies.

Course content

Alongside specialist modules, study common modules that will address key issues currently facing transport industry professionals. These provide you with a holistic overview of transport problems and approaches to policy formulation.

Our new Transport Integrated Project module enables you to employ project management scenario-based learning. You will cover a range of transport disciplines and be supervised by experts in the field. Join forces with a project team of other students from our other degrees to develop a solution to a ‘real-world’ transport problem, identifying how your own interests need to interact effectively with others to achieve an effective solution.

You will learn about the methods and models used in transport analysis and the software packages that implement them. You will be trained to think creatively, beyond the standard application of established ‘solutions’ and learn how to use your technical expertise as a mathematical modeller in interdisciplinary teams. Being equipped with these skills will open up a range of future career paths, whether in government, consultancy, academia or going on to further study.

The core of the programme includes the following compulsory modules, which have been designed together to enhance the learning potential of this programme:

  • Concepts and Mathematics for Modelling Transport – examines how transport systems can be modelled and the methods, assumptions, tools and algorithms involved (Semester 1).
  • Transport Modelling in Practice – applies the theory covered above to realistic example scenarios. Includes use of state-of-the-art commercial software (Semester 1).
  • Transport Data Science – how to manage, interrogate and visualise ‘big data’, and incorporate it into transport modelling (Semester 2).

Course structure

Compulsory modules

  • Shaping Future Transport Systems 15 credits
  • Concepts and Mathematics for Modelling Transport Systems 30 credits
  • Transport Data Science 15 credits
  • Transport Modelling In Practice 15 credits
  • Transport Dissertation 60 credits
  • Transport Integrated Project 15 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Mathematical Modelling for Transport MSc Full Time in the course catalogue

For more information on typical modules, read Mathematical Modelling for Transport MSc Part Time in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

The programme involves a range of teaching methods, supported by independent learning. In addition to the traditional lecture and seminar formats, students experience a blend encompassing workshops, computer exercises, practical sessions, directed reading, reflective journal, student-led discussions and tutorials.


Assessment is equally varied and will include coursework essays, case-study reports, group assignments, posters, presentations and exams.

Career opportunities

Links with Industry

This programme was developed in consultation with practitioners in the transport modelling sector, to ensure that its graduates will be highly employable. Many consultancies, local authority planning departments and other organizations in the transport industry have expressed interest in this new programme.

Jacobs, one of the world's leading professional services firms, has pledged their support for this new course by offering two prizes for academic excellence, a commitment to engage with students through lectures and workshops, and an invitation to students on the course to attend the Summer Placements they run each year around the UK.

Many of Jacobs' current Directors and Senior Professionals are ITS Alumni and this year it made offers to six of our Transport Masters students.

Visit the Mathematical Modelling for Transport MSc page on the University of Leeds website for more details!






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