Masters in Research (MRes) Architecture, Design and the Built Environment

Entry year
Course code
Geography and Environmental Management
One year full-time; two years part-time
Full-time, part-time
Programme leader
Dr Juliet Jain

Please note that new student recruitment to this course has been suspended for the September 2020 intake. Applications for 2021 should be made from October 2020. If you would like information about our alternative courses, please visit our Geography and Environmental Management page.

Page last updated 16 July 2020


An opportunity to undertake in-depth research training in your chosen field of Architecture, Design and the Built Environment with the support of UWE Bristol's research teams and centres.

Urbanisation, advances in technology and the drive towards sustainable living are all changing our world and transforming businesses. Architecture, design and the built environment disciplines need adaptable, multi-skilled and influential leaders to deliver a coherent and sustainable response to the challenges ahead. This MRes course gives students the opportunity to develop advanced research skills and apply them to an extended research project with either a technical, management or strategic focus.  

Depending on your chosen subject area, you will graduate with one of the following qualifications:

  • MRes Architecture
  • MRes Construction
  • MRes Real Estate
  • MRes Product Design

The course is suitable for students who have enjoyed the research components of their undergraduate degree and wish to prepare for a research-based career. It also offers excellent preparation for Doctoral study. Likewise, it is appropriate for people who are already working and who wish to either develop their research skills or undertake a research project to enhance their continued professional development.

Real world research skills

This Masters degree will equip you with the skills necessary to undertake sustained, independent and innovative research. You will gain the confidence to work in creative and flexible and ways, and develop the ability to plan, produce and present rigorous, independent and theoretically informed studies. It also fosters the development of essential professional skills to enhance your employability, such as self-management, team work, problem solving and communication.

The taught components of the course provide a balance between training in interdisciplinary research methods and subject specific research under the supervision of UWE Bristol's active research specialists.

For the final extended research project, you can choose to engage with ongoing research from one of UWE Bristol's specialist research groups or to embark on a new project relating to or inspired by your particular interests. In either case, this may relate to your current or future employment.

Flexible learning options

This Masters is available as a full-time or part-time course with a high degree of flexibility. The taught modules are delivered on one day a week, making it suitable for day release study.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience



The course consists of two taught modules. You will then undertake a supervised extended research project in one of the available subject areas.

Research Design and Methodologies (30 credits) covers qualitative and quantitative research methods, their use and analysis.

Research in Context (30 credits) a subject specific module designed to develop your research skills through reviewing, evaluating and presenting independently generated research material relevant to your extended project. Includes library skills development.

Extended Research Project (120 credits) allows you to investigate a relevant research topic in detail, working with a research supervisor and drawing on the skills developed in the taught modules.

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

The course is designed to allow students to develop transferable research skills and then put them into practice under the supervision of active researchers. You will work both individually and in teams to build your skills.

The teaching staff includes researchers from UWE Bristol's active research groups, including the Centre for Architecture and Built Environment Research, Sustainable Planning Environments and the Centre for Floods, Communities and Resilience. You will also have access to leading academics and industry experts in architecture, interior architecture, design, product technology, building information modelling (BIM), building surveying, building services, environmental engineering, flood risk management, construction project management, construction law, quantity surveying, real estate management, finance and investment, sustainability and planning.

Regular consultation with our Construction and Real Estate Consortia helps us to ensure our courses meet the needs of employers and are relevant to the real world. Our partners include Bam, Midas, ARUP, GVA and Cushman & Wakefield, who offer the potential of sponsorship, placement and graduate employment opportunities.

Learning methods will include lectures, workshops, seminars, student presentations, supervised independent study and one-to-one supervision.

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

Study time

The MRes degree can be taken as either a one year full-time or two years part-time course.

The taught component of the course is delivered on one day a week during term one. If studying full-time, you will be expected to complete your extended research project during term two. For those studying part-time, you will have a further year to complete your extended project. This enables you to schedule your study time around work and other commitments.


We will use a variety of assessment tools throughout the course. These include coursework, a portfolio, written exams and an extended research project.

For more detail, see our full glossary of assessment terms.


Study facilities

Throughout the course you will have access to our flagship Studios Building, which was recognised with an award from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) for its sustainable design. Its facilities include integrated studios for CAD (Computer Aided Design), model-making and drawing, architectural modelling resources including laser cutters, wood, metal and concrete workshops.

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


Careers / Further study

The course will prepare you to step into a wide range of research-focused roles across relevant industries. It is designed with the flexibility to allow you to target both skills and subject matter towards a particular career trajectory or to your current employment.


Supplementary fee information

For information about funding for postgraduate courses see our funding pages.


Entry requirements

We normally require an honours degree of 2.1 or above (or the equivalent if it is a non-UK degree) in a relevant subject.

With your application you should submit a 300-500 word draft project proposal to include a project title, aim or research question, possible methods and 6 relevant references.

You may be invited to informal interview, where your proposal will be discussed and appropriate optional modules selected. International students who are not able to attend an informal interview may be interviewed electronically or by telephone.

For further information