he REALM (Rural Estate and Land Management) courses provide a first step on the route to qualification as a chartered surveyor. All prospective chartered surveyors must complete the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) offered by RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors), and the programmes provide the academic foundation for candidates wishing to pursue the rural APC.
The MProf and MSc REALM programmes are both validated by RICS under the RICS-Harper Adams University Partnership agreement, recognising the high regard in which the courses are held. The MProf in particular, is one of a very small number of courses in the country to have this distinction with regard to the rural APC, which is why you are required to study 12 modules (180 credits) rather than eight (120 credits). The postgraduate certificate (PgC) provides a route for students who may fall short of our exacting entry requirements to get up to speed before transferring to either the MProf or MSc programmes.
Modules cover the main areas required for professional practice, in particular providing the necessary legal foundations for practice, and covering the all-important areas of the UK planning system, land tenure, rural valuation, primary production in agriculture and forestry, countryside and environmental management. A wide choice of modules means that you can tailor the programme to your own requirements.
The MProf programme is particularly popular with part-time students, often graduates who are able to combine suitable employment with study and progression through the APC.
Employment prospects in rural practice are good, and successful graduates have gone on to a wide range of jobs in recent years on rural estates and with local and national firms of rural surveyors and agricultural valuers. Feedback from students shows that the intensive modular structure is well-received, along with the practical slant of many of the assignments. This is underpinned by the professional standing of many of the tutors, who are active with the profession at the highest levels nationally and act as Assessors for the APC.
The MProf/MSc will enable you to analyse a range of stakeholder interests and their influence, generally and site specifically, in rural land management. You will become competent in a range of techniques for rural land management and appraisal, be able to appraise the value and worth of rural land, and review the role of property in organisations.
Students also become skilled at evaluating and exploiting the latest developments in technology, and developing performance indicators in rural estate management and strategy. You will learn to formulate land management strategies which meet objectives for sustainable management while taking into account legislature, regulations, ethics and morals, the environment, amenities and commercial needs.
You will also learn to evaluate how previously implemented land management strategies have achieved their objectives, and adapt them to new requirements within an evolving economic, social, legal and political framework, with due regard to developments in sustainable development and biodiversity. You will become competent in professional methodologies used by chartered surveyors to manage and appraise rural land and property.
MSc students carry out an independent research or development project to advance their understanding of a particular issue in rural land management, or to resolve a specific and novel technical problem facing rural land managers in practice.
The full-time and two year part-time courses are eligible for a postgraduate loan.
Visit the Rural Estate and Land Management page on the Harper Adams University website for more details!