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Unique work-based construction courses launched

Four work-based degree apprenticeship courses for the construction sector have been launched by Middlesex University

William Franklin CC 2.0

Four new courses aimed at giving those in the construction industry a higher education qualification while they continue working have been launched by Middlesex University.

The courses are designed to enable those in work, including those with significant experience, to gain a university degree, progress their career and contribute to a professional body membership.

Three honour degrees and a foundation degree are on offer. They are:

  • BA (Hons) Professional Practice in Construction Site Management
  • BA (Hons) Professional Practice in Quantity Surveying and Commercial Management
  • BSc (Hons) Professional Practice in Engineering Management
  • Foundation degree Professional Practice in Construction Operations Management

These 'on-the-job' programmes are built around modules such as managing commercial risk, delivery, scope and specifications, as well as designing a specific construction management project. They enable students to continue working within a construction environment while building their own academic portfolio on a live project.

Of the programmes, three have been approved as higher and degree apprenticeships by the Construction Industry Training Board, which means they are eligible for government funding. Under the scheme, the Skills Funding Agency and the employer split the course fees, meaning the student pays nothing if they are employed as degree apprentices.

The qualification are all also designed to contribute to the student's professional body membership with organisations such as the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors and Chartered Institute of Builders, boosting the career progression of the graduate and adding further value for employers.

Middlesex was one of only two higher education institutions to receive funding from the Government's Higher Apprenticeships Fund to develop Higher Level Apprenticeships in the construction industry in 2011. Its construction programmes are lead by Keith Buckland and Neville Webb who have extensive experience in the construction and mechanical engineering industries, meaning students learn from practitioners with real-world knowledge.

Commenting on the new courses, Dr Darryll Bravenboer said: "We have specifically designed these programmes for apprentices and managers in the construction industry who are looking to gain that critical qualification and professional recognition within this vital industry sector.

"Construction and engineering play a fundamental role in creating jobs and growth, which is why it is important that we have set up these courses to allow workers to develop the advanced skills needed.

"The beauty of these professional practice courses is that students gain a highly recognised qualification while carrying out their work. The modules have been created to draw strongly on everyday work activities on a construction site, including managing cost, quality and time on surveying and construction management projects."

All courses will start in October 2015.

Photo by William Franklin (Creative Commons 2.0)

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