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Architecture, Building & P…×

Cardiff University, Full Time MSc Degrees in Architecture, Building & Planning

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The design of low and medium-rise buildings has, for some time, taken climatic variations and sustainability into account. Read more
The design of low and medium-rise buildings has, for some time, taken climatic variations and sustainability into account. However, despite the increase in the number of large-scale buildings worldwide during the last few decades, high-rise buildings are still seen as mega-scale energy consumers with little regard for sustainable design and performance. The current environmental agenda and interest in sustainability across the globe raises the significance of mega-buildings.

On this interdisciplinary course, we focus on the principles of sustainable planning and design of mega-buildings and prepare students to specialise professionally in this 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

• Accredited by the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) at Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago and by the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE), meeting the academic requirements for CEng professional registration.

• Available on a 1 year full-time or 2 year part-time basis.

• See sustainable mega-building design in practice on a variety of national and international field trips.

• Study in one of the top schools of architecture in the UK, and benefit from exceptional facilities, such as the School’s artificial sky dome.

Structure

You can study this course on a one year full-time or two year part-time basis.

There are two stages to the course; stage one comprises taught and specialist modules totalling 120 credits, stage two will be your dissertation (60 credits).

The taught modules on this course will provide a grounding in architectural science within the context of sustainable mega-buildings. On several of these modules, you will be taught alongside students on our other architectural science master’s courses, which is a good opportunity to exchange ideas from different perspectives and broaden your group of friends and contacts.

Our taught modules will help you to explore the interdependence and relationship between social, technological and environmental issues. You will also learn how to relate these issues to the economic, political and legal contexts of planning and designing mega-buildings. We will introduce and review the latest design methods for sustainable mega-buildings in architectural, engineering and building contractor fields.

On the course, we encourage you to articulate your perspectives on sustainable design, which should enable you to become well-versed and experienced in promoting the benefits of sustainable mega-buildings.

Core modules:

Earth and Society
Low Carbon Footprint
Climate Comfort & Energy
Investigation of the Built Environment
Architectural Science Research
Sustainable Mega-Buildings Overview (Climate, Context and Culture)
Sustainable Service Systems for Mega- Buildings
Sustainable Mega-Buildings Design (Project Module)
Dissertation

Teaching

The methods of teaching we employ will vary from module to module, as appropriate depending on the subject matter and the method of assessment. We teach using a mixture of lectures, seminars, workshops, study visits, project work, and group tutorials.

In lectures and workshops we aim to make appropriate use of audio-visual support to aid learning and development of subject-specific skills. You will be given access to relevant teaching materials through the University’s virtual learning environment, Learning Central.

The specialist modules on the course include project work, where you will use mega-building case studies to build 3D physical models in the School’s workshop and Digital Fabrication Lab and can test them in the School’s artificial sky dome.

You will also be taught to use various environmental simulation software programmes, some of which have been developed in the Welsh School of Architecture.

Finally, you will research an area of sustainable mega-building design and planning of interest to you and submit a dissertation based on this research. Your dissertation will be conducted independently with supervision by a member of staff.

Assessment

Taught and project-based modules are assessed in a variety of different ways depending on the module content and learning outcomes (found in the module descriptions). We use class tests, course work (both written assignments and oral presentations or critical assessments/crits), and project work, or a combination of these to assess your progress on the module.

In the dissertation stage, your dissertation is the sole object of assessment. The dissertation is a written report on a piece of research which you have carried out in an agreed subject area under supervision.

Career Prospects

There is currently a worldwide shortage of architects and built environment professionals specialising in the field of planning and designing mega-buildings which perform sustainably. Therefore there is a rising demand for graduates from this type of course.

Typically, graduates from this course will gain employment in large-scale building design or planning companies and practices, environmental design consultancies, research and development centres, or may even set up their own companies/ practices.

Given the current intense public, governmental and professional interest in this area, employment opportunities for graduates who specialise in this field are only likely to grow and become even more attractive both in the UK and globally.

Fieldwork

During the course we go on a range of study trips in the UK, Europe, or further afield. On these trips we will organise guided visits to buildings that demonstrate how principles taught in the programme are applied in revolutionary large-scale eco-buildings. You will also have the opportunity to meet architects and built environment professionals who collaborate with the School.

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The course, which is offered on both a part-time and a full-time basis, aims to be unique amongst schools in Britain in two ways. Read more
The course, which is offered on both a part-time and a full-time basis, aims to be unique amongst schools in Britain in two ways. Firstly, the teaching offers a design-based iterative element, thereby testing the formulation of informed decisions. Secondly, it places emphasis on the role of sustainability within the historic context at both technical and strategic levels. By using the Welsh School of Architecture’s established expertise as a research locus for sustainable design, it addresses these concerns which have been identified internationally by ICOMOS as the critical future direction of conservation education.

The course seeks to attract a broad range of students with varied levels of experience in professional practice who share an interest in the conservation of architecture, urbanism and the environment. Candidates may be graduates with a degree in architecture and/or RIBA part 2 exemption embarking on their professional careers or have been professionals in practice for some time seeking to refine or augment their career paths.

Distinctive features

The course is both RIBA approved and IHBC accredited. Completion of the RIBA approved course for RIBA and ARB registered Architects entitles them to apply to become 'Conservation Registrants' immediately. As an RIBA approved course, it reduces the number of years in practice required to be entitled to apply for registration as 'Specialist Conservation Architect' to 4 years (from 5) and 2 years (from 3) for 'Conservation Architect'. Completion of the IHBC accredited course enables suitably qualified candidates to achieve full IHBC accreditation in 2 as opposed to 5 years.

As a part of the fourth module, students are taken to Rome for a two day intensive visit during which we meet with tutors from the 2nd level International Masters in Architectural Restoration and Cultural Heritage at Roma TRE University. Travel to Rome, entrance fees and accommodation are covered in the course fee but travel to and from the UK airport is not.

Structure

The programme is offered on both a full-time and a part-time basis. The taught modules are all delivered over six two-day sessions per year thereby attracting part-time candidates who are employed in full-time practice. Part-time students will complete three modules (i.e. 60 credits) in the first year and two modules in the second year. They will be given until the following December to submit their dissertation module.

Core modules:

The Conservator's Role
Tools of Interpretation
Energy Use in Historic Buildings
Case Studies and Regional Work
Design Tools: Methods of Repair
Dissertation

Teaching

The taught material is largely delivered by a range of specially selected guest speakers, all prestigious within their particular field. The speaker’s presentation is followed by lively debate and discussion with the group, taking the opportunity to learn from a range of perspectives. We undertake several relevant site visits during the course of the programme, engaging with practitioners, clients and statutory authorities.

Assessment

Each piece of work or report is assessed at an outline stage and at completion stage, with feedback given to guide future submissions. There are no class tests or exams during the programme, however, students are required to submit written and project work on time and also on occasion to be able to present their work orally to the group.

The course briefs are designed to enable students from differing backgrounds to pursue paths relevant to their chosen or existing career progression.

Each 20-credit module is assessed via a combination of written assignments (4,000 words approx. each) and presentations.

Career Prospects

The course is both RIBA approved and IHBC accredited. Completion of the RIBA approved course for RIBA and ARB registered Architects entitles them to apply to become 'Conservation Registrants' immediately. As an RIBA approved course, it reduces the number of years in practice required to be entitled to apply for registration as 'Specialist Conservation Architect' to 4 years (from 5) and 2 years (from 3) for 'Conservation Architect'. Completion of the IHBC accredited course enables suitably qualified candidates to achieve full IHBC accreditation in 2 as opposed to 5 years.

Experienced professionals are provided with an opportunity to adjust their career path by gaining specialised expertise in an area of practice that increasingly demands proof of capability. Recent graduates are offered the chance to focus the skills and credentials they can offer to prospective employers or indeed to lay foundations in a specialised area in which they may choose to start up their own businesses.

Our students have gone on to be employed by the National Trust, the Planning Inspectorate, to be promoted within local authorities and to set up new divisions in their practices and businesses.

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The MSc Spatial Planning and Development is the ideal starting point for taking on the professional challenges of making liveable, prosperous places. Read more
The MSc Spatial Planning and Development is the ideal starting point for taking on the professional challenges of making liveable, prosperous places. You will develop core planning knowledge and skills, professional judgement and the specialist skills necessary to make you employable with a range of organisations.

The course is underpinned by a recognition that planning is undertaken in diverse, and sometimes unjust, societies, and that objectives and approaches to planning can be subjects of debate and struggle. The course will provide you with the sensitivity and ability to form independent judgements on these ethical, political and professional matters.

While its focus is on planning in developed capitalist societies, especially the UK/Europe, its understanding of planning is comparative, and the skills taught are applicable in many planning contexts.

Distinctive features:

• The skills and knowledge acquired through this course are of direct relevance to planning roles in public, private and voluntary sectors.

• You will have the opportunity to work on projects for 'real life' clients.

• This course is a combined planning course and is itself fully recognised by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). The course provides the full RTPI educational requirement, so that successful completion of the MSc with the necessary RTPI practice requirements allows direct membership entry to the Institute.

• It is also accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), allowing completion of the educational requirement for RICS membership.

Structure

The MSc Spatial Planning and Development can be completed full-time in one year or part-time in two years.

It is divided into two parts:

Part one comprises a teaching programme of compulsory and optional modules over four semesters.

Part two comprises an individual dissertation. You will select your topic in consultation with members of staff. The topic must be planning related. If you are a student from a country outside the UK, the dissertation may focus on a planning issue in your country of origin. An important aspect of the dissertation process is student reflection on what is involved in researching a planning topic.

Core modules:

Site Planning, Design & Development
Live Project
Planning and Real Estate
Planning: Nature, Purpose and Instruments
Dissertation
Researching Spatial Planning (Part-time only)

Assessment

The assessment methods used include:

Essays
Reports
Project work
Posters
Reflective journals
Verbal presentations.

Essays and reports will be used particularly to test your core knowledge and powers of analysis. They will allow you to employ knowledge generated during the modules in pieces of policy evaluation or sustainable development in action.

Project work and reflective journals will be especially important in testing subject skills in planning.

Seminar presentations, debates and posters will encourage you both to develop and clarify your understanding of core knowledge (in order to defend a debating a position) and give you an opportunity to enhance your communication skills.

Career Prospects

Graduates of this course do extremely well in getting the jobs they want and the input of people from practice into the degree keeps it relevant. You also benefit from making great contacts.

Principal graduate employment destinations are UK and EU town and regional planning organisations, including local and regional authorities, national government agencies, private planning consultancy firms and voluntary organisations. We also have students employed in North America and Australia.

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Transport touches almost every aspect of our day-to-day lives. This course encourages you to address the challenges ahead for developing the transport systems of tomorrow. Read more
Transport touches almost every aspect of our day-to-day lives. This course encourages you to address the challenges ahead for developing the transport systems of tomorrow.

The MSc Transport and Planning is unique in offering you an opportunity to study different aspects of transport including planning, policy, operation and management, as well as other areas of urban planning.

The course will explain and demonstrate the principles and practice of transport scheme appraisal and evaluation and will enable you to understand and use statistical and modelling methods for analysing travel behaviour and a range of transport options.

You will be able to critically appraise a range of transport policies for promoting greater sustainability at national, regional and local levels, and to design transport policies at the local level that respond to the economic, social, health and environmental challenges of the society.

Distinctive features

• This course is professionally recognised by the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT). This means that all graduating students are exempt from the qualifying examinations of the Institute.

• Also recognised by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) as a 'specialist' masters, allowing those who have completed a three year RTPI recognised undergraduate spatial planning degree to complete the RTPI's educational requirements for membership.

• The course also meets the academic requirements for the Transport Planning Professional Qualification from the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT).

Structure

The MSc Transport and Planning is offered as a one year full-time course.

It is divided into two parts:

Part one comprises a teaching programme of core and option modules over two semesters. The core modules provide the necessary analytical, economic and planning framework, while the selection of optional modules provides the opportunity to study particular aspects of transport and related topics in depth.

Part two comprises an individual dissertation on a topic related to transport, selected in consultation with members of staff. You have discretion to select topics over a wide area, including, for students from overseas, issues arising in your country of origin.

Core modules:

Module title Module code Credits
Principles of Transport Economics
Researching Transport
Transport and the City
Transport Analysis
Sustainable Transport Policies
Dissertation

Optional modules:

Environmental Management
Space and Place: International Planning Practice
Governance of the Eco-city Development Process
Urban and Regional Development in Practice

Teaching

The modules are ‘M value.’ Acquisition of 120 credits will lead to an award of a Diploma in Transport and Planning. Currently this constitutes part one of the MSc course. Part two of the MSc is a Dissertation.

Passing both parts of the programme entitles you to the award of MSc in Transport and Planning (with Distinction if the appropriate standard attained).

The dissertation constitutes a further 60 credits, and the MSc requirement will be 180 credits at M level (with Distinction assessed according to the University’s rules for modularised Master’s programmes).

Assessment

Modules are assessed through continuous assessment (a variety of seminars, essays, project work and practical exercises) and examinations. Where required there is room for flexibility in setting alternative, comparable assessments.

Examinations take place at the end of the semester in which the module is completed. Coursework is submitted on one or more dates in the academic session.

Career Prospects

The course offers the knowledge and expertise for a career in major transport planning and engineering consultancies, local authorities and transport operators.

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The MSc International Planning and Development aims to provide a broad education in international planning and development, enabling you to acquire the knowledge and critical understanding to make a significant contribution to the management of human settlements and urban systems. Read more
The MSc International Planning and Development aims to provide a broad education in international planning and development, enabling you to acquire the knowledge and critical understanding to make a significant contribution to the management of human settlements and urban systems. The course is suitable for those who want to work in the planning profession and especially those who want to gain an international perspective on planning and development issues.

The course tackles the challenges of urbanisation in the 21st century. Since 2008, more than half the world's population has lived in cities. Cities are crucibles of culture, knowledge and innovation, but also harbour poverty and exclusion; globalisation, environmental pollution, and climate change all threaten the well-being of urban residents.

This course spans the disciplines of spatial planning and development studies, enabling you to acquire the knowledge and critical understanding to make a significant contribution to the design and management of cities.

Core teaching focuses on issues of development and underdevelopment, city futures in a globalising world, and creation of space and place within different political, cultural, economic and environmental contexts. Options enable you to follow specialisms in urban design, real estate and housing – or a general route with options in planning, environment, transport, real estate, site planning, regeneration and housing. The dissertation is an opportunity for you to develop your specialist interests.

Distinctive features

• The course capitalises on the research and teaching links the School has with countries throughout Europe and the world. Staff have experience and long-standing academic and professional links in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas.

• Accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), allowing completion of the educational requirement for RICS membership.

• This is a combined planning course, fully recognised by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI). Successful completion of the MSc, followed by a period in practice as indicated in the RTPI’s Assessment of Professional Competence, allows direct membership entry.

• No previous planning education or experience is required to undertake the course.

Structure

This course is offered full-time over 12 months and is divided into two parts:

• Part one includes the taught programme of core and optional modules, allowing you to develop specialist skills and knowledge to support a range of career paths. Cutting-edge techniques in planning and international development are taught where relevant.
• Part two is the individual dissertation which allows you to develop advanced postgraduate research skills.

Your taught modules will have a credit value of 120 and the dissertation is 60 credits. Acquisition of 120 credits will lead to an award of a Diploma in International Planning and Development, and acquisition of 180 credits to the award of MSc International Planning and Development.

Core modules:

Development and Urbanisation Processes
Planning City Futures
Researching Spatial Planning and International Development
Space and Place: International Planning Practice
Dissertation

Optional modules:

Site Planning, Design & Development
Environmental Policy and Climate Change
Planning and Real Estate
Designing Cities
Housing in a Globalising World
Planning for Sustainability
Sustainable Transport Policies

Teaching

Core teaching focuses on issues of development and underdevelopment, city futures in a globalising world, and creation of space and place within different political, cultural, economic and environmental contexts.

Optional modules will enable you to follow specialisms in urban design, real estate and housing – or a general route with options in planning, environment, transport, real estate, site planning, regeneration and housing.

The dissertation provides an opportunity for you to develop your specialist interests.

Assessment

Modules are summatively assessed by way of coursework. Assessment methods used may include essays, reports, project work and verbal presentations.

Essays and reports will be used to test your core knowledge and powers of analysis. They will allow you to employ knowledge generated during the modules in pieces of policy evaluation or sustainable development in action.

Project work will develop your skills in project design and implementation, and spatial awareness to test subject skills in planning.

Seminar presentations and debates will encourage you both to develop and clarify your understanding of core knowledge (in order to defend a debating a position) and give you an opportunity to enhance your oral presentation skills.

Career Prospects

This course offers the knowledge and expertise for a career in academia, government and the private sector, in a wide variety of organisations including international agencies, central or local government, consultancy and NGOs.

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Climate change, the global consumption of energy and the use of fossil fuels to provide us with heat, power and transportation are all engineering challenges which need addressing now and in the future. Read more
Climate change, the global consumption of energy and the use of fossil fuels to provide us with heat, power and transportation are all engineering challenges which need addressing now and in the future. It is clear that solutions to these long-term problems ­– ensuring the best use of resources, and developing new more sustainable ways to produce and use energy – will require graduates who can work in an increasingly multidisciplinary environment.

This course will offer you the knowledge and expertise you will need in relation to sustainable energy and the environmental impact of energy systems.

The distinctive features of the programme include:

• The opportunity for students to learn in a research-led teaching institution serviced by staff rated in the highest possible category by independent Government assessment.

• The opportunity to work in facilities commensurate with a top-class research unit.

• The opportunity for students to undertake project work in a successful, research-based environment.

• The programme has been designed to provide technical and managerial skills needed by industry, academia and the public sector.

• The substantial industrial input to the programme through invited lecturers and where appropriate offer industrially-based projects.

• A variety of specialist modules on offer.

• An open and engaging culture between students and staff, with student representatives as full members on School committees.

Structure

The programme is presented as a two-year part-time Master's level programme, and is also available in full-time mode over one year.

The programme is presented in two stages: In Stage 1 students follow taught modules to the value of 120 credits, with a limited amount of choice between optional modules. Stage 2 consists of a Dissertation module worth 60 credits.

Core modules:

Risk and Hazard Management in the Energy Sector
Energy Management
Energy Studies
Fuels and Energy Systems
Sustainable Energy and Environment Case Study
Dissertation: Sustainable Energy and Environment

Optional modules:

Earth and Society
Low Carbon Footprint
Environmental Fluid Mechanics
Advanced Power Systems & High Voltage Technology
Condition Monitoring, Systems Modelling and Forecasting
Alternative Energy Systems
Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer 1
Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer 2
Waste Management and Recycling

Teaching

A wide range of teaching styles are used to deliver the diverse material forming the curriculum of the programme. You will be required to attend lecture-, lab- and tutorial-based study during the semesters, and later undertake an individual research project.

While a 10-credit module represents 100 hours of study in total, typically this will involve 24–36 hours of contact time with teaching staff. The remaining hours are intended to be for private study, coursework, revision and assessment. Therefore all students are expected to spend a significant amount of time (typically 20 hours each week) studying independently.

At the beginning of Stage 2, you will be allocated a project supervisor. Dissertation topics are normally chosen from a range of project titles proposed by academic staff in consultation with industrial partners, usually in areas of current research or industrial interest. You are also encouraged to put forward your own project ideas.

Learning Central, the Cardiff University virtual learning environment (VLE), will be used extensively to communicate with students, support lectures and provide general programme materials such as reading lists and module descriptions. It may also be used to provide self-testing assessment and give feedback.

Assessment

Achievement of learning outcomes in the majority of modules is assessed by a combination of coursework assignments, plus University examinations set in January or May. Examinations count for a third to a half of assessment in Stage 1 of the programme, depending on the options chosen, the remainder being largely project work and pieces of coursework.

Award of an MSc requires successful completion of Stage 2, the Dissertation, with a mark of 50% or higher. Candidates achieving 60% may be awarded a Merit and for those achieving a 70% average a Distinction may be awarded. Candidates failing to qualify for an MSc may be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma of Higher Education for 120 credits in Stage 1. Candidates failing to complete the 120 credits required for Stage 1 may still be eligible for the award of a Postgraduate Certificate of Higher Education for the achievement of at least 60 credits.

Career prospects

Graduates typically gain employment in large energy-focussed companies, the public sector, consultancies, research and development, or set up their own companies. A number also go on to undertake PhD study.

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The MSc Eco Cities course addresses how cities can be planned and built to promote low carbon lifestyles. You will explore how ecological development can mitigate climate change and promote more sustainable ways of living. Read more
The MSc Eco Cities course addresses how cities can be planned and built to promote low carbon lifestyles. You will explore how ecological development can mitigate climate change and promote more sustainable ways of living.

The course addresses the serious and complex questions of how cities can be planned and managed in a more resource efficient way. These include:

• What is a low carbon and ecological (sustainable) city?
• How can city and regional planning effectively guide sustainable development?
• Can cities be planned and built to promote low carbon lifestyles and foster ecological development that can mitigate climate change?
• How can urban areas adapt to climate change?

You will gain a critical understanding of the forms of development that badge themselves as sustainable or low carbon and will develop the skills to take forward innovative environmentally friendly urban developments that are sensitive to the needs of sustainable spaces.

Distinctive features:

• You will travel to a global city and work in depth on a ‘live’ planning project and/or governance issue. Previous destinations have included Xiamen and Jakarta.

• The course is recognised by the Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) as a 'specialist' masters, allowing those who have completed a three year RTPI recognised undergraduate spatial planning degree to complete the RTPI's educational requirements for membership.

Structure

The programme is offered full time (12 months) consisting of 180 credits. It is fully modularised.

You will take core options to the value of 60 credits, optional modules to the value of 60 credits, and then undertake a piece of independent research (Dissertation) also worth 60 credits.

The programme is divided into two parts:

Part one comprises a teaching programme of core and option modules over two semesters. Options are available in the School of Geography and Planning, the School of Engineering and the School of Architecture.

Part two comprises an individual dissertation on a topic selected in consultation with members of staff. Whilst there are few constraints on the choice of topic, it must address at least one of the core course themes of the Eco-Cities programme.

Core modules:

Debates in Eco-City Planning and Development
Governance of the Eco-city Development Process
Live Project for Eco-city Development
Researching Eco-cities
Dissertation

Optional modules:

Environmental Management
Environmental Policy and Climate Change
Planning and Real Estate
Transport and the City
Planning for Sustainability
Transport Analysis
Sustainable Transport Policies
Food Security and Justice
Renewable Energy Development and Planning

Teaching

The programme will be delivered through a mix of lectures, seminars and field study visits/empirical data collection.

The formative learning experience is particularly fruitful when you undertake the Live Project as staff will be alongside you in the field, and in your dissertations when you will have regular meetings with your supervisors on the progress of your research.

A particularly notable feature of the course is the Live Project in which you will have the opportunity to visit an ongoing eco-city development. This is a core module and provides an opportunity for you to undertake an overseas field study visit and work in-depth on a ‘live’ planning and/or governance issue in an eco-city.

You will work in groups and work closely with a partner organisation and will deploy skills in problem-definition; draw upon, and develop, knowledge of the planning, political and cultural context of the development; and appreciate the operational context within which a report will be delivered to the partner organisation.

Assessment

Formative assessment takes place in modules on an ongoing basis and will take a variety of forms including essays, group reports, individual reports, presentations and multiple choice tests.

Career prospects

It is estimated that there are about 170 eco-cities (towns) under development in Europe, Asia, North America, South America, Africa, and the Pacific Area. In China alone, more than 90% of cities have expressed their interest in developing a new eco-city or to apply the principles of eco-city to their existing urban area.

The scale of current and future eco-city development and its global reach means that the programme will appeal and offer value to:

• Those who are currently engaged in eco-developments and wish to develop their professional expertise and academic knowledge in a School of Geography and Planning.

• Those who wish to pursue a career in eco-development and wish to learn about best practice and leading edge academic thinking.

Fieldwork

You will travel to a global city and work in depth on a ‘live’ planning project and/or governance issue. Previous destinations have included Xiamen and Jakarta.

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Conventional methods of construction are highly resource-intensive; they require energy, electricity and water, and generate landfill waste and CO2 emissions. Read more
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.

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.

Please visit the website for more information about the structure and content of this course:

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught/courses/group/environmental-design-of-buildings

Assessment

Taught and project-based modules are assessed in a variety of different ways depending on the module content and learning outcomes (found in the module descriptions). We use class tests, course work (both written assignments and oral presentations or critical assessments/crits), and project work, or a combination of these to assess your progress on the module.

In the dissertation stage, your dissertation is the sole object of assessment. The dissertation is a written report on a piece of research which you have carried out in an agreed subject area under supervision. 

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.

Fieldwork

During the course, Cardiff-based students go on a range of study trips. Guided visits are organised to buildings that demonstrate the application of ideas taught in the course. In the past, these have included visits to the carbon-positive SOLCER House. We currently also offer an optional student exchange trip to Navarra in Spain.

Our distance learning students are welcome to join these field trips, if their circumstances allow.

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Our MSc Building Diagnostics for Energy and Environmental Performance aims to give students a solid foundation in the evaluation of the operational performance of buildings for energy and environmental aspects. Read more
Our MSc Building Diagnostics for Energy and Environmental Performance aims to give students a solid foundation in the evaluation of the operational performance of buildings for energy and environmental aspects. The programme will focus on the diagnostics of energy and environmental performance, integrating technical and occupants’ data. It will prepare you for a future career across a range of roles in facilities and building management, consultancy, energy and environmental performance assessment and research.

Most existing programmes in this subject area focus on the design of new buildings. However, the efficient operation of existing buildings is becoming more important. There is a need to improve the quality of environments and, at the same time, to reduce the energy that they consume and their carbon dioxide emissions. You will learn from interdisciplinary approaches, as the programme draws on bodies of theories from building science, social sciences and humanities.

On successful completion of the programme, you should be able to conduct sound evidence-based environmental and energy performance assessments of buildings in operation. You should also be able to analyse and integrate technical and social aspects of performance using methods of energy and environmental monitoring and human studies.

Our structured curriculum will enable you to develop essential knowledge and practical skills in building diagnostics. We will support you to become an independent learner, able to undertake and understand the industry and policy challenges and to respond to them effectively. The Welsh School of Architecture at Cardiff University is a friendly, supportive and culturally diverse environment in which to study.

Distinctive features

• Study in one of the top schools of architecture in the UK

• Available on a 1-year full-time or 2-year part-time basis

• Looks at buildings diagnostics in a holistic way by considering both technical and human aspects affecting the performance of existing buildings Develops an advanced knowledge of investigation methods and techniques to conduct performance evaluation exercises, integrating technical and human data

• Includes management strategies to improve the building performance and to meet energy and environmental goals

• Looks holistically at building performance evaluation, explaining the relationship between environmental conditions in buildings and occupants’ satisfaction, comfort and wellbeing

• Highly relevant, as the efficient operation of existing buildings is becoming more important

• Work on a live project to embed your knowledge of building energy and environmental performance with a focused and hands-on approach

• Benefit from our close links with industry and other building clients to boost your employability

Structure

The taught element of the programme consists of modules to the value of 120 credits taken over two years . After successfully completing the taught modules, you will undertake a dissertation to the value of 60 credits. The dissertation will provide you with the opportunity to follow your professional and academic interests in the field, supported by experts in different aspects of building performance evaluation. This gives you the flexibility to follow your personal interests.

Through the programme’s taught modules you will gain fundamental knowledge around energy and environmental aspects of the built environment. Several of these modules are shared with some of our other postgraduate master’s courses, which will enable you to network with other students and make connections. You will also undertake most specialist modules which focus on developing discipline-specific skills and knowledge in conducting sound evidence-based building performance evaluations.

Core modules:

Earth and Society
Low Carbon Footprint
Climate Comfort & Energy
Architectural Science Research
Perspectives on Performance
People and Buildings
Advanced Monitoring Tools and Techniques
Post Occupancy Evaluation for Sustainable Building Management
Dissertation

Assessment

Taught and project-based modules are assessed in a variety of different ways depending on the module content and learning outcomes (found in the module descriptions). We use class tests, course work (both written assignments and oral presentations or critical assessments/crits), and project work, or a combination of these to assess your progress on the module.

In the dissertation stage, your dissertation is the sole object of assessment. The dissertation is a written report on a piece of research which you have carried out in an agreed subject area under supervision.

Career Prospects

Typically graduates from this type of programme will have employability opportunities in energy and environmental consultancy, building management, facilities management, architectural and engineering firms, and research.

Fieldwork

An important element of this course is a live project on a real building or development. This will entail study trips to the area in question.

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Our PgDip/Msc in Social Science Research Methods aims to provide advanced training in research methods across the full range of the social sciences. Read more
Our PgDip/Msc in Social Science Research Methods aims to provide advanced training in research methods across the full range of the social sciences. 

You will be provided with a thorough theoretical and practical knowledge of how to construct effective research studies, of the variety of data collection methods available to the social scientist and of the principal methods of analysing social scientific data. You will also be introduced to the political and ethical frameworks within which social science research is conducted, and to some of the ways in which the results of social science research are disseminated.

The course pathways have ESRC recognition and they each provide the appropriate training basis for proceeding to a PhD. These programmes provide extensive opportunities for interdisciplinary study, the application of social research expertise for occupational career development, and the pursuit of substantive areas of interest at postgraduate level. 

Environmental Planning pathway:

This Postgraduate Diploma provides the opportunity to acquire generic research skills required by all social science researchers, as well as the subject-specific requirements of the ESRC’s Environmental Planning Subject Area Panel.

Structure

• PgDip

The course can be completed in one year with full-time study or in two years by part-time study.

You will be required to complete six 20-credit modules - five core research modules and one specialist pathway module.
In all modules, you will have the opportunity to engage with literature and research relevant to your pathway.

For a list of modules for the FULL-TIME route, please see website:

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught/courses/course/social-science-research-methods-environmental-planning-pgdip

For a list of the modules for the PART-TIME route, please see website:

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught/courses/course/social-science-research-methods-environmental-planning-pgdip-part-time

• MSc

The course can be completed in one year with full-time study or in three years by part-time study.

You will be required to complete six 20-credit modules - five core research modules and one specialist pathway module. In all modules, you will have the opportunity to engage with literature and research relevant to your pathway.

On successful completion of the taught component, you will prepare a dissertation of a maximum 20,000 words. The 60-credit dissertation component requires independent study. You will choose your dissertation topic in agreement with your supervisor.

For a list of modules for the FULL-TIME route, please see website:

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught/courses/course/social-science-research-methods-environmental-planning-msc

For a list of the modules for the PART-TIME route, please see website:

http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/taught/courses/course/social-science-research-methods-environmental-planning-msc-part-time

Teaching

Your programme will be made up of scheduled learning activities (including lectures, seminars, tutorials and practical sessions) and guided independent study.

You will be expected to actively engage in all the educational activities on your programme of study, to prepare for and attend all scheduled teaching activities, and continue your development as an independent and self-directed learner.

Assessment

You will have to successfully complete the taught component which comprises of 120 credits.

On successful completion of the taught component, you will prepare a dissertation of a maximum 20,000 words (MSc only).

Career prospects

This programme provides knowledge and expertise suitable for careers in research and development, business, market studies, public agencies at international, national and local levels, education, teaching and other public services work, and voluntary organisations.

It also provides appropriate training for proceeding to a PhD.

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With over 50 percent of the world’s population now living in cities there has been an increasing trend to associate global issues with urban issues. Read more
With over 50 percent of the world’s population now living in cities there has been an increasing trend to associate global issues with urban issues. Cities have been seen as the causes of global problems – as sources of pollution and environmental damage; as concentrations of economic polarisation and sharpening social inequalities; as sites of privatised governance and non-democratic control. Alternatively, and increasingly, cities are seen as potential solutions to these global problems – from the benefits of urban density for reducing pollution and supporting sustainable energy regimes, through to sustainable economic transformations to reduce poverty, and as sites of experiments in new urban politics and social movements.

This course explores the dimensions of contemporary urbanisation in the context of the challenges and opportunities of contemporary processes of globalisation. There is an emphasis on analysing, from a theoretical and methodological point of view, the practical aspects of problem solving in the context of the globalised city and anticipated city futures.

We offer a programme that focuses on the changing nature of cities and urbanisation in a globalising world. It looks at the major problems and dilemmas of globalised urbanisation – urban growth and its environmental impacts, the role of cities in a globalised economic system; urban mobilities and transport systems; governing cities in a globalising world.

The course is aimed at those aiming to move onto further geographical/urban academic research or a career in a practice/policy environment (public, private, NGO, Third Sector) working on urban problems and solutions (economic, social, environmental) in an international context.

Distinctive features

• an interface between academic theory and analysis and more applied strategy, policy and practice on urban problems.
the breadth of issues (environmental, social, economic, planning and design) that you can study, as well as the geographical range (Cities of the Global North and South).

• the opportunity to cover a wide range of urban challenges or to focus on certain substantive fields (such as environmental sustainability and policy; sustainable transport systems; urban planning and design or the study of the economies of cities and regions).

• Staff who work closely with academics and urban professionals worldwide.These collaborations are embedded in the course teaching and materials.

• encouragement of participatory methods and engagement with a wide range of urban stakeholders.

Structure

The Programme lasts a year. You will take taught modules to the value of 120 credits between October and May, taking 60 credits each semester.

On successful completion of the taught component you will complete a dissertation worth 60 credits between June and September.

You will take six taught modules worth 20 credits each. Three of these modules will be core modules. The remaining three will be optional modules.

You will compete a dissertation based on original research. You will be able to specialise in different areas by choosing specific combinations of option modules and by your dissertation topic, if you wish. You will be advised at the start of the programme on the different specialist areas.

Core modules:

Planning City Futures
Advancing Urban Theory
Researching Cities for Social Change
Dissertation

Optional modules:

Development and Urbanisation Processes
Environmental Policy and Climate Change
Designing Cities
Housing in a Globalising World
Transport and the City
Planning for Sustainability
Debates in Eco-City Planning and Development
Urban and Regional Dynamics
Governing Places
Urban and Regional Development in Practice
Sustainable Food Systems
Sustainable Transport Policies

Teaching

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and computer lab and studio work where relevant.

Lectures take a range of forms but generally provide a broad structure for each subject, introduce key concepts, and convey relevant up-to-date information.

In seminars you’ll have the opportunity to discuss particular themes or topics, to consolidate and get feedback on your individual learning and to develop skills in oral presentation.

In computer lab and studio work you will have the opportunity to learn various research methods such as GIS, statistics and urban design skills depending on the modules you take.

You will practise and develop intellectual and presentational skills by participating in diverse learning activities, such as, small-group discussions, debates, oral presentations, independent research tasks and written assignments. You will also enhance your team-working skills.

Assessment

You will take six taught modules worth 20 credits each. These will be assessed by a combination of essays, presentations, group work, report writing, debates and computer lab work depending upon the core and option modules selected. The majority of modules are assessed by two different pieces of work.

Following the taught stage, you will complete a dissertation of no more than 20,000 words.

The classification of your degree is based on two-thirds of the average grade of the taught modules and one-third of the grade of your dissertation.

Career prospects

The course offers knowledge and expertise to enable you to enter a wide range of urban-related careers working in private, public and Third Sector organisations. These can range from research, policy and implementation professions careers covering elements of the urban challenges offered on the course, including urban environments and sustainability, urban and regional development, transport and housing infrastructures and aspects of planning and design. The course also enables to further study towards an academic career in geography and urban studies.

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