Building Surveying - BSc (Hons)

UCAS Code:
For part-time apply direct to the University.
Full Time (3 years), Sandwich (4 years), Part Time (5 years)
September 2017

Our Building Surveying degree is founded on the core competencies of the profession, preparing our graduates to embark on their RICS assessment of professional competence journey to full professional chartership.

What's covered in the course?

Our programme matches the needs of industry through innovation to real-life building practice, building pathology, construction technology, and the legal framework for industry, risk management and building surveying practice.

The course not only encompasses the conservation, repurposing and adaption of the existing built environment, but also embraces the innovations of the future, preparing you to contribute to securing the success of the profession and supporting the development of a sustainable society for the twenty-first century and beyond.

During this course, you will develop a range of academic and technical skills relevant to the building surveying profession. As in industry itself, this course demands a broad range of technical and creative skills.

Our course is fundamentally based upon the core competencies which are outlined by our accrediting partner, RICS, which gives you a good foundation from the very beginning of your studies. We focus on the core technical knowledge, such as building pathology, construction technology and sustainability, and include the legal framework knowledge required for a future career within building surveying.

However, we also believe that as the industry changes and supports new approaches, so we also, working with our industry partners, give our students the opportunity to learn about the innovative changes which are impacting the industry today.

The course aims to produce building surveyors with a well-rounded ability to mix technical, creative and business skills, and are able to join an equally fast-moving built environment. Our students will therefore be industry-ready and can look forward to a fulfilling and enjoyable career as building surveyors.

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • Balfours
  • Prudential

And in jobs such as:

  • Assistance Building Surveyor
  • Building Manager

Why Choose Us?

  • We will help you to become one of the building surveyors of the future, equipped with the knowledge, tools and skills to operate efficiently and effectively.
  • Our alignment with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) ensures our course remains fresh and relevant, as well as providing key industry links and insight.
  • You’ll learn the analytical and problem-solving skills you’ll need to meet the demands of the broad range of built environment industry elements.
  • There will be regular site visits to enhance your learning experience, and talks from industry leaders will help explain how to gain employment within the real estate world. 

This course is subject to approval

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*Terms and Conditions apply

This course is open to International students

School of Engineering and the Built Environment

Discover the School of Engineering and the Built Environment

Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.

Visit the School website

This course is accredited by:

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

UK students

At the point of application, you must have GCSE at Grade 4 or above in English Language and Mathematics. Equivalent qualifications can be considered in lieu of GCSE subjects as long as the required subjects are covered.

BBC or 112 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels

Typical Offers
UK Qualification Requirements 2017/18
GCE A Level/ AS Level BBC or 112 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels
Access to Higher Education Diploma Pass overall with 60 credits, 45 at Level 3 and 15 at Level 2, including with a minimum of 12 credits achieved from any units awarded at Merit or Distinction
BTEC National Diploma (12-units not including early years) D*D* or combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 112 UCAS points (2017 entry)
BTEC Extended Diploma (18-units not including early years) DMM - 112 UCAS points
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ National Award (6-units not including early years) Combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 112 UCAS points (2017 entry)
BTEC Diploma in Foundation Studies in Art and Design Distinction
International Baccalaureate Diploma 30 points from three Higher Level subjects
Irish Leaving Certificate B2, B2, B3, B3, B3
Scottish Higher/ Advanced Higher AABB
Welsh Baccalaureate (core plus options) Combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 112 UCAS points (2017 entry)
Other qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.
EU/International students
EU/Non-EU (International) Qualifications Requirements 2017/18
IELTS 6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands
International Baccalaureate Diploma (or equivalent, including internationally accredited Foundation courses). 30 points from three Higher Level subjects
Country-specific entry requirements and qualifications.


International students who cannot meet the direct entry requirements can begin their degree studies at Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC).

Additional Requirements

As part of the application process you will be invited to attend an applicant visit day where you will undertake a short one-to-one interview with an academic member of staff. This is your chance to show us how passionate you are about the subject and it will help us make a decision on your application.

This will provide you with more information about the School and your course. In addition, it will give you a chance to meet and our staff and students to gain a better understanding of what it is like to be a student here.

The UCAS tariff is changing

If you're considering applying for this course to start in September 2017 onwards, it's important to know that the UCAS tariff system is changing.

UCAS tariff points – the points system most universities use to compare different qualifications – will be introducing a new system on how points are calculated.

More about the new tariff

From A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BSc (Hons) Sep 2017 FT 3 years £9,250 per year Apply via UCAS
SW 4 years £9,250 per year Apply via UCAS
PT 5 years TBC

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BSc (Hons) Sep 2017 FT 3 years £12,000 per year Apply via UCAS

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Guidance for UK/EU students


UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS
 Register with UCAS
 Login to UCAS
 Complete your details
 Select your course
 Write a personal statement
 Get a reference
 Pay your application fee
 Send UCAS your application

Non-EU (International) students

There are three ways to apply:

1) Direct to the University

You will need to complete our International Application Form and submit it together with scan copies of your original academic transcripts and certificates.

2) Through a country representative

Our in-country representatives can help you make your application and apply for a visa. They can also offer advice on travel, living in the UK and studying abroad.

3) Through UCAS

If you are applying for an undergraduate degree or a Higher National Diploma (HND), you can apply through the UK’s Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS).

You can request a printed form from your school or nearest British Council office. You will be charged for applying through UCAS. Birmingham City University’s UCAS code is B25 BCITY.

Additional costs

There are no compulsory additional costs or charges associated with studying on this course. While you may choose to purchase personal copies of text books, all our key text books are available from our library or online (subject to normal library loan and online access arrangements). If your course includes a residential study session, the accommodation costs for this are already included in your course fee.

Based on the past experience of our students, you might find it helpful to set aside about £50 for each year of your studies for stationery and study materials. All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

This course is available part-time

Part time study

The first two years of all our undergraduate part-time routes are delivered as the HNC Construction. Once you achieve this interim qualification with a good merit profile, you then join the degree programme for a further three years. If you are considering part-time study, please first apply to the HNC Construction.

If you have already obtained a HNC qualification (or similar level of study), we may consider you for advanced entry onto the degree course and you should apply using the application form link below:

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Loans and Grants

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible undergraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Year one

BIM and Innovation
20 credits
Consultancy Project and Professional Development
20 credits
20 credits
Introduction to the Built Environment
20 credits
Residential Technology
20 credits
Design Surveying Skills
20 credits

Year two

Commercial Technology
20 credits
Advanced Design Surveying Skills
20 credits
Design Practice
20 credits
Project 5
20 credits
BIM and Facilities Management
20 credits
Building Pathology
20 credits

Year three

Commercial Development Project
40 credits
Defect Structural Analysis
20 credits
Honours Research Project
40 credits
Building Surveying Practice
20 credits

Just like the building surveying industry, this course will require you to develop a demandingly broad range of technical and built environment knowledge.

The assessment methods used reflect the course philosophy, with a particular focus on the ability to produce consistent work in line with the high standards and competencies RICS expects.

The first year of the course focuses on developing your fundamental skills and knowledge in the residential area of the built environment.  You will explore the traditional areas of the built environment gaining an insight into how your future role is relevant to it. You will be introduced to the innovations of a modern construction project through the Building Information Modelling (BIM) environment, the requirements of the law and an understanding of the key technology relating to residential built environments.

Your skills will be developed further in your second year, with specialist modules and more challenging projects.  You will learn more about commercial technology and surveying practice and experience working collaboratively with students from other courses. You will also develop specialist skills in building pathology, advanced design skills and facilities management. Your level of understanding of the built environment will increase as you start to learn about commercial structures within the built environment.

Your final year will see you refine your skills and realise your full potential.  You will undertake surveys and prepare for your RICS Accreditation of Professional Competence through a series of events which are designed to prepare you for your first steps in industry.

Student stories – Sam Towers

Sam gained a BSc (Hons) degree in Building Surveying from Birmingham City University in 2012. Upon graduating university, Sam joined Savills in June 2012 with the intention of becoming a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in the Autumn of 2014. His experience has been gained through a diverse client base including those from the public and private sectors.

Sam is based within the Birmingham commercial building consultancy team where he has gained a broad range of experience within the commercial property market through his building surveying role.

Student stories – Craig Chatwin

The surveying course content was extremely beneficial in providing Craig with the necessary skills to put him on the path to become a chartered surveyor, and has provided him with a sound grounding for him to develop as a surveyor.

This course is accredited by the following organisations:

Our accreditations from these bodies show employers that you have the level of knowledge and skills they need when you graduate.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)

RICS is the world's leading professional body for setting standards in the surveying industry.

It has members all around the globe delivering knowledge and serving the public interest at a local level. In their work, they draw on RICS' ever-growing range of globally applicable and regionally specific standards and guidance.

Study and work abroad

If you are interested in undertaking part of your studies abroad, the Erasmus scheme may be of interest to you. It allows higher education students to study for part of their degree in another European country.

It is open to undergraduates in their second year (or above) and offers a unique opportunity to enhance your CV and experience new cultures. If you study with us you will have access to an Erasmus co-ordinator, who can provide information about which institutions we have links with.

Find out more

Further Study

On completion of this course, students have continued on to study our MSc Building Surveying. 

At course completion, there is a high level of interest for further study. This relates to the need to continue to research and practice, as a core activity, but also recognises statistical evidence  in 2014 from the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills which noted that someone with a Master’s degree earns  on average £9,000 more per year than someone with a degree qualification, which, when coupled with the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (2014) observation that one in seven jobs will require a postgraduate qualification by 2022, indicates that postgraduate study to employability is increasingly significant.

Trips and visits

There will be regular site visits to enhance your learning experience.

Enhancing your employability skills

Our graduates have a thorough skillset, understanding complex legal issues, building design, contract administrative procedures, building maintenance and business systems.

Engaging with industry and gaining work experience during your studies is essential if you are going to be taken seriously in the job market.  Getting work experience in building surveying can be challenging, so we encourage you to be agile and engage with the broad range of opportunities available. We support you through our virtual learning environment, Moodle, where we have a dedicated page which is regularly updated with potential opportunities for experience, placement opportunities and employment offers for students at all levels of your degree.

The University is eager to recognise students have made the effort to gain industry experience and stand out from the typical graduate, and thus it offers a range options for you to get extra awards and recognition for your work in industry.

You have the option undertake an assessed sandwich year between your second and third year, which will provide you with valuable work experience and give you the real-life skills you need.

The University has a Graduate+ programme, an extracurricular awards framework that is designed to augment the subject-based skills that you’ve developed throughout the programme with broader employability attributes, which will enhance your employability options upon graduating.


There are a range of opportunities for student to gain industry experience, examples of student activities include: 

  • Working part-time for a building surveying practice
  • Doing a placement year between the second and third year of the course 
  • Working directly for clients
Willmott Dixon placements

Building Surveying graduate Jessica Van Rensberg secured a placement with Willmott Dixon. “It was extremely rewarding, I gained lots of experience,” she said. “I learned how a commercial construction site is run and gained experience with sub contractors on how to engage with people on a day to day basis.”


OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.


BCU Graduate+

Through our courses we give you the skills and experience needed to get a head start when applying for jobs. But we offer something extra too – Graduate+.

Our unique programme gives you the chance to develop valuable skills outside of the more formal classroom learning. We award points for Graduate+ activities (including firewalking!) and these can be put towards a final Graduate+ award.

More about Graduate+

Graduate jobs

Former graduates have progressed into roles with a variety of different organisations including Knight Frank, Malcolm Hollis, Savills, Faithful+Gould, and several smaller independent practices.

Several have also continued their career away from the UK, with some of our students now working across Asia and Europe.

Inter-professional project

The Inter-professional Project is a final year module in which you apply the skills you have developed over your course to a live project for an industry client. Our students’ recommendations have informed council policy and the design of high-profile developments.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Studying in the UK is better

Overseas students studying in the UK are happier and have a better learning experience compared to those studying in other countries.

The International Undergraduate Students: The UK's Competitive Advantage report asked 365,754 international students studying outside their home country to give their feedback on what it's like to study in this country. And the UK scored top in every aspect.

So if you're looking at studying with us, you'll be making a good choice.

Overall measures: ranked positions
Undergraduate 2014 2014 2014 2013 2014
Recommendation 1 4 3 5 2
Overall satisfaction 1 4 3 5 2
Arrival overall 1 2 4 5 3
Learning overall 1 4 3 5 2
Living overall 1 2 5 3 4
Support overall 1 4 5 3 2

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.


BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

Building work on our new Conservatoire began in the summer of 2015 – and is scheduled for completion in summer 2017. This, along with the construction of a new city centre accommodation block, means our students have access to their very own building sites.

We couple this with the more traditional, office-based facilities:

Surveying equipment

Part of your learning activity will be hands-on, including carrying out survey work using a range of equipment, such as levels, theodolites, measuring tapes.

Computer Assisted Design (CAD)

You will be provided with the latest CAD software – free of charge – to enable you to acquire the skills you need in a modern design office.

Meet our staff

You'll reap the benefits from the experience of our professional staff.

Sue Hayhow

Senior Lecturer

Senior lecturer Sue Hayhow is a former associate partner of Lawrence and Wightman who moved into Social Housing, managing large regeneration projects in the West Midlands.

Sue is a member of RICS and has been training and assessing young surveyors since 1994. She's recently been a judge for the RICS regional awards.

Paul Laycock

Senior Lecturer

Paul is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Engineering and the Built Environment and Course Director for BSc (Hons) Architectural Technology.

Paul was originally a site manager. He moved into design management and from there became an Architectural Technologist. He taught at Northumbria University and then moved back into industry as a developer, before returning to education at Birmingham City University in 2005.

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295