Construction and Surveying

Tony KilpatrickThe Department of Construction & Surveying led by Mr Tony Kilpatrick has for many years produced more graduates for the construction and property sectors than any other university in the UK and is highly respected for the calibre of its research in the area of built environment, with impact in this area rated as top 20 in the UK combining world-leading and internationally excellent research submissions.

The Department is managed through 4 subject areas:

  • Building & Energy Technology
  • Civil Engineering & Environmental Technology
  • Sustainable Environments & Communities
  • Construction Processes & Practice

The portfolio of taught programmes offered by the Department include:

Undergraduate courses
  • BSc (Hons) Construction Management
  • BSc (Hons) Building Surveying
  • BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying
  • BSc (Hons) Property Management & Valuation
  • BSc (Hons) Environmental Civil Engineering
  • BSc (Hons) Environmental Management
  • BSc (Hons) Building Services Engineering
  • BSc (Hons) Fire Risk Engineering
  • BSc (Hons) Health & Safety Management 
Postgraduate courses
  • MSc Building Services Engineering
  • MSc Construction Management
  • MSc Climate Justice
  • MSc Energy and Environmental Management
  • MSc Energy and Environmental Management (Oil & Gas)
  • MSc International Project Management
  • MSc International Project Management (Oil & Gas)
  • MSc Quantity Surveying
  • MSc Sustainable Urban Environments
  • MSc Water Resource Engineering & Management

Research is firmly grounded in the pursuit of practical and innovative resolutions to practical challenges faced by companies and organisations involved in the construction and property sectors.

The department have an excellent record of success in conducting projects relating to Health and Safety for the HSE (Health and Safety Executive) and IOSH (Institution of Occupational Safety and Health), which provide the benchmarks for best practice in these activities.

Topics currently being researched include:

  • Building Information Modelling (BIM) - developing integrated 3D digital representations of building systems, which will be compulsory for all construction projects from 2016
  • Optimisation of Small and Medium Contracting Enterprises’ supply chain and value in the UK construction industry
  • Offsite construction in commercial and public buildings
  • The impact of elevated levels of high performance thermal insulation on compartment fires
  • An Effective Framework For Strategic Asset Management
  • Construction Strategic Management with a focus on Diversification Strategy in the Construction Industry

In addition a variety of projects concerning sustainability in construction, carbon management and renewable energies are ongoing.


The departments testing facilities and diagnostic methods for materials performance, thermal conductivity and component or building failure are second to none in the country. The Centre for Research on Indoor Climate and Health (RICH) houses twin environmental chambers which allow materials, up to 2.5 metres square, to be placed in simulated conditions encompassing every type of weather our climate can produce, including freezing, thawing, high humidity, driving rain and solar heating.

In partnership with NHS Scotland, Strathclyde Fire and Rescue and BOC, the department will be conducting a series of practical fire tests to critically analyse the behaviour of typical materials found in hospitals and care homes when they are involved in fire in an oxygen-enriched atmosphere.

Other clients include English Heritage and Historic Scotland as well as many commercial entities from across the UK.

Bespoke Training Programmes

The department design training programmes which are geared exactly to the client’s needs and deliver these either in their premises, at one of the university campuses or at another neutral location or even remotely! The vast resources of knowledge and skills amassed by the academic team are frequently asked to provide expertise and advice, research and testing assistance and bespoke training in the following areas:

  • Sustainable Design Policy & Practice
  • Construction Technology
  • Construction & Project Management
  • Fire Safety Design & Regulation
  • Building Standards
  • Water Treatment & Water Resource Management
  • Product Development
  • Construction Innovation
  • Health & Safety
  • Building Performance

Clients range from local and central government authorities to large and small construction and property companies, professional practices and regulatory bodies. Recent clients include Strathclyde Fire Service, Keppie Design (Architects), CBES and Glasgow Housing Association.