The Department of Built Environment delivers a range of programmes in two distinct areas; property and construction management and occupational safety, health and environment with undergraduate and post-graduate provision in both areas. Most property and construction management undergraduate programmes are offered in part-time and full-time mode and the post-graduate property and construction management programmes may be offered in full-time, part-time and, for some, distance learning mode. The occupational safety, health and environment provision is delivered only by distance learning mode.
Professional body engagement is a very important part of the Department’s activities and programmes may be accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) or the British Occupational Hygiene Society (BOHS). Accreditation is a key feature of our programmes and all academic staff are expected to be members of appropriate professional bodies.
Exciting and innovative approaches to teaching and learning are being continually developed and increasing use is being made of online resources including the University’s extensive online library and virtual learning environment. Field trips both in the UK and overseas are becoming an important part of programme delivery with students having the opportunity to gain experience in their areas of study both at home and overseas. Other innovative teaching and learning activities include debates, quiz shows and scenario based problems. The professional skills courses allow theory to applied to practice through the use of linear projects that run throughout the full academic year allowing students to experience how projects develop from inception to completion.
The Department has extensive overseas engagement with collaborative partners in Hong Kong, China, Malaysia and Trinidad and Tobago and with individual distance learning students in many more regions around the world. This international experience informs much of the teaching and learning carried out within the Department, particularly at post-graduate level. In an increasingly globalised industry, this international experience is invaluable in preparing students for a global rather than national or local career.
The Department’s research is mainly delivered through the Sustainable Built Environment Research Group (SBERG) which is active in the wider climate change agenda and in particular examining the challenges faced by built environment professionals as they seek to integrate mitigation and adaptation measures into existing commercial and domestic buildings. Researchers from the SBERG are currently involved in a range of projects from a study of user-centred control systems for comfort, carbon saving and energy management in housing, to developing a set of tools for improving the resilience of local communities to the impacts of extreme weather events. This research informs teaching at every level and the concept of sustainability is applied across all of the Department’s programmes