Graduate Diploma/MSc Quantity Surveying

Entry year
Course code
Architecture and the Built Environment
Graduate Diploma: normally three years part-time (one day a week for the first two years, then two days in alternate weeks for the third year). Exceptionally first year full-time followed by one year part-time. MSc: full-time over 12 - 18 months or part-time over three years.
Full-time, part-time day release, starts September
Programme leader
Simon Brennan

This course is open for applications.

Page last updated 2 August 2021


This professionally accredited course gives you the technical knowledge and skills to become a highly employable Quantity Surveyor and member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS).

Accreditations and partnerships:

The MSc Quantity Surveying course is for graduates with a minimum of three years' professional experience or a qualification in a closely related discipline.

The Graduate Diploma Quantity Surveying course is for students with a first degree in an unrelated subject seeking to convert to a career as a Quantity Surveyor. Successful completion of the Graduate Diploma allows advanced entry onto the Masters course requiring only submission of the dissertation to complete your studies.

Learn flexibly

Both courses are for those who aspire to become Chartered members of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. The courses are designed to offer varied and flexible patterns of study, so you can fit studies and experience around your personal and professional commitments. They reflect and address the needs of professional practice and help you develop the skills and knowledge to become an effective professional surveyor in the construction industry. You'll cover construction technology, measurement, law, economics, procurement and contract management.

You can follow the RICS accredited route as a Quantity Surveyor or the Graduate Diploma route. The courses are academically challenging, and encourage independent, analytical and reflective thought and judgement that applies equally to the workplace and professional ethics.

You'll also develop a range of transferable skills, such as investigation, problem-solving, logical and systematic data analysis, information management, sustainable decision-making and effective communication.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience



We introduce you to skills and knowledge in construction technology, measurement, law, economics, procurement and contract management, in the Pre-Enrolment Reading at Level 1.

You then develop your core skills at Levels 2 and 3 and procurement, contractual, project management skills and Building Information Modelling in the M-Level modules.

Grad Dip students take the Level 2, 3 and M modules except the dissertation.

MSc students take the Level 3 and Level M modules.

Level 2:

  • Construction Technology and Building Services (Graduate Diploma Only) (30 credits) - Here you'll take the basic principles of domestic construction into the area of more complex buildings, such as offices and warehousing, in multi-storey and wide span construction. You'll then look at the specification and performance requirements of the finished building elements, as well the process of construction, including sustainable construction and health and safety issues.
  • QS Project (Graduate Diploma Only) (30 credits) - Covers the basic knowledge and skills required to begin work as a QS using the lifecycle of a medium-sized construction project as a case study. You'll cover project-based skills in budget estimating, basic cost-planning, bill production, tender estimating, interim valuations and final accounts.

Level 3: 

  • Strategic Cost Planning (30 credits) - This module introduces you to large projects, often characterised by uncertainty and complexity, where you'll need to evaluate strategic options over extended time periods to maximise value. The module is linked to a European Study visit in November, which exposes you to European practice and culture in construction practice.
  • Commercial Management (30 credits) - As a counterpoint to the previous module, we focus on the contractors' perspective, covering contract and sub-contract management, preliminaries costing and apportionment, payment and claims applications, and cost-value reconciliation. Your coursework looks at new markets for construction services and existing barriers to entry.

Level M:

These modules examine current advanced-level practice in detail and reflect on the latest initiatives. They draw on the expertise of leading industry practitioners as visiting lecturers and speakers. We encourage you to develop coursework based on your own work experience.

  • Construction Contract Law (15 credits) - Builds your knowledge in advanced construction law and developments in standard forms of contract.
  • Construction Procurement (15 credits) - Examines current perspectives on best practice in construction procurement, comparing UK Government guidance on public sector practice with European and international practice across the private and public sectors.
  • Construction Project Management Practice (15 credits) - Project management has become the key discipline for construction professionals in the fast paced construction environment. The focus of this module is on the optimal use of resources and programming to deliver projects on time and on budget.
  • Building Information Modelling in Design Co-ordination (15 credits) - BIM is a vitally important part of the construction industry in the 21st Century. All professionals in the built environment must embrace the new approach in terms of collaboration and design as well as the cost planning and whole life costing elements. Successful completion of this module will equip the student with insight and skills in this fast evolving area.
  • Dissertation (MSc students only) (60 credits) - This is aimed at giving you the valuable experience of advanced independent enquiry, working at the boundaries of current knowledge, and linked to research expertise within UWE Bristol. You'll submit a research proposal and present it at a progress seminar before completing a 16,000-20,000-word dissertation.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved we will inform you.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching methods vary depending on the module, but typically include lectures, project work and tutorials. We encourage 'formative work' to prepare for assessments this is not credited, but gives you valuable feedback to help improve your performance.

Support is available if you have difficulties with numeracy, IT, literacy or study skills. Our staff provide a friendly, enabling environment for learning. They are also actively engaged in research or professional practice, ensuring you learn directly from the latest academic and business developments.

The course is also supported by a group of employers who contribute towards resources used in teaching, offer sponsorship and placements to students, and are keen to employ UWE Bristol graduates.

Find out more about our construction partner employers.

For more details see our glossary of teaching and learning terms.

"I have found UWE a fantastic place to study on a part-time basis and feel that all of the resources and teaching input along the way has been second to none." Tom, Graduate Diploma graduate

Study time

Graduate Diploma

This is normally studied over three years part-time (term time only): one day a week for the first two years, then two days in alternate weeks for the third year.

If you are in (or can find) relevant employment, we encourage you to study part-time and arrange employer sponsorship.

By agreement with the course leader, the course may be studied full-time for one academic year followed by part-time for one academic year.


This is studied full-time over one academic year plus up to six months to complete the dissertation, or part-time over three academic years plus up to six months to complete the dissertation. It is also possible to defer modules and take them over a longer period if necessary.


We assess you through a combination of written examinations, coursework, projects, presentations and case studies. Because of the importance attached to presentation and collaboration skills, up to 25% of assessment is through oral presentation and group work.

For more detail see our full glossary of assessment terms.


Professional accreditation

The Graduate Diploma and the MSc in Quantity Surveying are fully accredited with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) to provide acceptance on the Assessment of Professional Practice, and qualification as a Chartered Quantity Surveyor.

They're also accredited as meeting all the requirements of the Chartered Institute of Civil Engineering Surveyors (CICES). This is an important quality assurance standard and shows the career opportunities available when you've successfully completed the course.

Study facilities

One of our main aims is to foster an active graduate community, bringing together postgraduates on taught courses and research students.

You have a dedicated space on the main campus, with teaching rooms and informal areas, and Student Advisors for pastoral support and advice.

We provide well-equipped laboratories for concrete and environmental services, environmental physics, earth sciences, spatial analysis (including mapping and Geographical Information Systems) and surveying technology. These are all supported by specialist technicians. An audio-visual group provides support for photography, digital imaging, filming and sound recording.

The Department has invested significantly in computer-based resources to support modules especially those available through distance learning. The UWE Bristol library gives you 24/7 access to a vast number of journals and databases, and many computer labs are also open around the clock. The department's suite of computer rooms supports software for word processing, data analysis, spatial analysis, computer-aided design and other specialist software.

Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE has to offer.


Careers / Further study

On graduation from the MSc or Graduate Diploma routes you will be well equipped to meet the challenges posed by changes to the quantity surveying profession and the wider construction industry and to exploit the opportunities these changes offer.

Our award-winning careers service helps you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity plus support for entrepreneurial activity, and access to employer events.


Supplementary fee information

For information on fees, managing your money and determining your fee status, please go to our fees and funding pages.

For information about funding options visit our postgraduate funding and scholarships pages.


Entry requirements

Graduate Diploma
We normally require an honours degree of 2:2 or above.

If your degree is not in Construction or Surveying, you may be asked to complete a programme of preparatory reading before starting the course.

We can consider applicants who do not meet the normal entry requirement, but who do have relevant professional experience or qualifications. In your application, you should describe in detail your professional experience and qualifications.

We normally require an honours degree of 2:2 or above in Quantity Surveying, Construction Management, Civil Engineering or a closely related subject.

You also need two years' professional experience in Construction, which you should outline in your application.

UWE Bristol's International College

If you are an international student and do not meet the academic or English language requirements to study this course, you can qualify by completing preparatory study at our International College.

English language support

If you meet the academic requirements but require additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you may be able to attend one of our pre-sessional English courses. Students who successfully complete the pre-sessional course can progress onto their chosen degree course without retaking an IELTS or equivalent.

Read more about our Pre-Sessional English Programme.

For further information