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Building Surveying MSc - Frequently Asked Questions

Learn more about our RICS accredited degree.

Thinking about studying our distance learning Surveying (Building Surveying) MSc course? To help you make your decision, below we’ve answered some of the questions we’re asked most frequently about the course, learning online and more.

If you have any other queries, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 0191 278 4874 or at

Yes, you are. Whether you already work in the industry and want to take your career forward, or you’re looking for a change in direction, you're eligible to study our Surveying (Building Surveying) MSc. All we ask is that you have a minimum of a 2:2 honours undergraduate degree in any subject (or international equivalent).

If you are an international applicant, you may also need to provide evidence of your English language ability, for example holding a minimum overall IELTS score of 6.5 with 5.5 in each component or an approved equivalent.

If you don’t meet the academic requirements above but you can demonstrate considerable professional experience in a related field (at least three years), you may still be eligible for the course.

All of our Surveying MSc pathways are divided into seven 20-credit modules plus a 40-credit research study. At the beginning of your course, you will study three core modules alongside students from our Quantity Surveying and Real Estate pathways, giving you the opportunity to learn and collaborate with the wider Surveying MSc cohort. You’ll develop your knowledge of the most pressing issues, key concepts and frameworks affecting the surveying industry as a whole.

During the second part of the programme, you will branch off into your pathway group. At this point, you will delve into three specific modules to grow your specialist surveying skillset. As a Building Surveying student, you will study:

  • Building Pathology for Practitioners
  • Contract Administration and Practice
  • Facilities Management

Finally, you will conclude your Building Surveying MSc by enhancing your research skills through a Research Methods module and during an in-depth research study on a topic of interest to you.

RICS is the global professional body for promoting and enforcing the highest international standards in the valuation, management and development of land, real estate, construction and infrastructure.

All of our Surveying Masters pathways are accredited by RICS. Graduating with an RICS accredited degree shows employers that you have an in-depth knowledge of the most industry relevant content and have developed the highest ethical standards of practice. It demonstrates that you are a well-rounded, confident graduate with the knowledge needed to succeed.

Having an RICS accredited degree will mean you can join the body as a graduate member after finishing your studies, and begin your journey towards chartered surveyor status. To become a chartered surveyor in the UK, you must complete the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC). If you’re new to surveying or have less than 5 years’ experience within it, your degree could fast track your journey significantly.

Read more about what an RICS accredited degree could mean to your career.

You’ll be able to gain your Building Surveying Masters in two years to four years, depending on the pace you choose to study.

However, if you need to take a break during your course, whether it is for personal reasons or otherwise, our flexible course design will allow you to opt out and rejoin at a time more suitable for you. Please be aware, you must complete your course within 4 years and any breaks in study will affect the date of your graduation.

The course is designed to be studied completely online - there will be no need to come to campus.  As a distance learning student, you will have access to quality teaching and research facilities, just as you would on campus, while being free to study whenever and wherever you want. Study your Building Surveying course, your way.

There is no difference between the qualification you receive on our distance learning course and any equivalent qualification which you might study on campus. You’ll be taught by tutors with years of experience in the sector, who also teach our on-campus courses. They’ll help you to gain the skills needed to lead in an ever-changing world.

For each module, you’ll have regular virtual assessments to help you keep on track. The format of these will vary but they will all be submitted through Blackboard Ultra, our eLearning portal.

The recommended study time for this course is 15 hours a week, so it's ideal for busy working professionals. Plus, our distance learning delivery and flexible learning model means you’ll be able to balance your studies alongside any existing commitments – no need for a career break or to disrupt your personal life.

It is vital that you have regular internet access throughout your course to access Blackboard Ultra, our e-learning portal, which contains your online learning materials, in-course communication tools, advice and support services.

The recommended computer operating systems are:

  • Windows 7 or newer
  • Mac OSX 10.6 or newer
  • Linux – chromeOS
  • Mobile – iOS 7 and newer/Android 4.2 and newer

You’ll be part of a supportive, engaging community, and during each module, you’ll participate in interactive seminars with tutors, group tasks with other students and more. Throughout, your course leader will be available to assist you with your studies and any academic questions. You’ll also be assigned a Student Success Advisor, who will be there to support you from day one to graduation. Whether you need pastoral guidance, help meeting deadlines or advice about fees, they’ll be on hand at every step. 

Applying for our Masters is easy and quick, and you can apply online on our course page for our intakes in January, April, July or October. A personal Enrolment Advisor will be with you at every step of the way, in case you have any questions about your application.

During the process, you’ll need to upload some important documents onto our online applicant portal including:

  • A copy of your degree certificate or transcript (if this was awarded in a language other than English, you’ll need an official translation too)
  • A photocopy of your driving licence, passport or other proof of identity
  • A 500 word personal statement (this could cover why you wish to do the course, what you think you could bring to it and why you would like to study with Northumbria University)
  • Proof of your English Language proficiency if English is your second language

After receiving your application, our Admissions Team will aim to respond to you as soon as possible.

The full course fee for 2023/24 is £9,960* for UK, EU and International students. You’ll be able to pay your fees in module by module instalments, spreading the cost out over the duration of your course.

For more information about this, plus any financial support you may be entitled to, please contact our Enrolment Team on (+44) 191 276 4874 or at

*Please note, fees correct for academic year 2023/2024 but may change for new intakes starting in subsequent academic years. 


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