Industrial Project Management Masters/MSc/Diploma/Certificate

Postgraduate degree course in Industrial Project Management Masters/MSc/Diploma/Certificate

The course is industry focused and looks to cover both theory and application of project management principles, practices and tools. Leadership, team building and influencing skills, integral to successful complex project delivery are also explored.

After several years of a successful in person course the decision has been taken to convert to an online blended learning mode. This is in keeping with the current needs of industry.

Chemical Engineering is dynamic and evolving. It provides many solutions to problems facing industries in the pharmaceutical, biotechnological, oil, energy and food and drink sectors.  It is vital to many issues affecting our quality of life; such as better and more economical processes to reduce the environmental burden, and more delicious and longer lasting food due to the right combination of chemistry, ingredients and processing.  

Birmingham is a friendly, self-confident, School which has one of the largest concentrations of chemical engineering expertise in the UK. The School is consistently in the top five chemical engineering schools for research in the country. It also has a first-class reputation in learning and teaching, and regularly ranks highly in league tables.

Programme aims

The course is industry focused and looks to cover both theory and application of project management principles, practices and tools. Leadership, team building and influencing skills, integral to successful complex project delivery, are also explored.

The key objectives of the course are:

  • A systematic understanding of Project Management knowledge, and critical awareness of current challenges in an industrial context
  • A comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to advanced study of Project Management
  • Innovation in the application of Project Management knowledge, but with a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interpret information
  • Conceptual understanding of Project Management that enables them to critically evaluate current research and advanced scholarship and evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them

Programme content

The course is modular in structure with six compulsory taught 20 credit modules (120 credit taught material) and a major project in the third year (60 credits). Students may choose to complete one year (for a Certificate in Project Management), two years (for a Diploma in Project Management) or a full three-year MSc course. The first two years are made up of three modules per year. Each module is a mix of theory, practical example and coursework, and requires the equivalent of around 200 study hours. The course also offers three on campus Learning Hub sessions, each consisting of between one and two and a half days of intensive consolidation and interaction. The third year comprises a major project on an in-depth industrial project, managed using the principles and tools taught in the previous two years.

The University of Birmingham's virtual learning platform presents students with a superior environment for their online studies. We have moved beyond the traditional classroom structure, taking full advantage of digital media with modules that draw on interactivity, active student participation and social connectivity with staff and peers to provide a more dynamic learning experience.

Rather than simply reading lecture transcripts and sending in assignments, the University of Birmingham's online students engage with the curriculum directly using:

  • Video Lectures: Access content at any time and from any device
  • Interactive Assignments: Actively participate in learning exercises
  • Real-Life Case Studies: Gain skills you can apply immediately
  • Social Interaction: Connect with peers, professors and industry managers online

Related links


Course modules

Each module is a mix of theory, practical example and coursework. The third year is a major project on an in-depth industrial project, managed using the principles and tools taught in the earlier two years.

Modules (MSc and Diploma)Credits
1: Introduction to Industrial Project Management
This module introduces the course and covers introductory material paying particular focus to topics such as project and project types, the business case and benefits management, project selection, sponsors and stakeholder management and personal styles and teamwork. 
2: Planning and control
This module introduces the ideas behind planning of industrial projects. This comprises an overview of all aspects of project management with particular focus on risk management, sponsorship, project organisation and scope definition. It puts strong emphasis on the importance of front end planning on the overall project success. This module also introduces the concepts required to control a project, including topics such as scope, cost and schedule control. In addition, the implementation of a project is considered through topics like: recruitment, procurement, safety, handover and project closure.
3: Project skills and delivery
This module will enhance students' skills for running projects. In particular areas such as leadership, communication, problem solving influencing and expectations management are covered. It also looks to cover areas that are required for working with all parts of a project team. This will include topics such as identity of project team contracts and how location of project influences the team.
4: Advanced planning
This module will further enhance students' skills for running projects. In particular areas such as leadership, communication, problem solving influencing and expectations management are covered. This module looks to extend planning and financial management techniques. This will include reviewing and challenging the business cases, value improvement and operational excellence methods, set based design and modular thinking, along with standardisation and re-use in design with an emphasis in sustainable practices. The financial management will cover topics such as accounting procedure, decision support and depreciation.
5: Advanced controls
This module extends the idea of project controls to larger projects. The areas of scope, cost and schedule are still key, but techniques to cope with these topics on much larger scale are shown. This module takes industry examples to show how techniques learned in earlier modules have been made specific to that industry; topics considered are advanced cost estimation, earned value, progress tracking curves and advanced (quantitative) risk management.
6A: Safety in implementation, and 6B: The business case
6A will consider the importance of safety within industrial projects and how different methods of implementation can impact on this. 6B will consolidate the other taught modules and to show how the topics covered can be used to influence the business case.
Major Project up to 1 year (MSc only)
This module involves the student taking a large project or a number of smaller projects with supervision from both industrial and academic staff and creating set of documents which will include a summary of the whole project lifecycle. Part of the assessment is by presentation and report.

Please note: The modules listed on the website for this programme are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up-to-date and informed by the latest research and teaching methods.

Fees and funding

Contact us for fee information.

Entry requirements

2:1 Honours degree in a science or engineering subject, although relevant industrial experience may also be considered. Learn more about entry requirements.  

International students

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries – learn more about international entry requirements. Standard English language requirements apply.

How to apply

International students requiring visas

Monday 2 July 2018 is the application deadline for international students who require a visa to study in the United Kingdom. We are not able to consider applications for 2018 made after this date; a new application should be made for September 2019. Applications will reopen for 2019 entry by 21 September 2018.

Before you make your application

You may wish to register your interest with us to receive regular news and updates on postgraduate life within this Department and the wider University.

Making your application

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

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A mixture of lectures, seminars and discussion. A lot of emphasis is placed on student interaction and also work place learning (where appropriate) and use of enquiry based learning. 

Skills gained

  • A sound and broad understanding of the principles, practices and tools available for use in project management, particularly in an industrial context
  • Ability to critically assess when implementation of novel or more traditional approaches in project management is appropriate
  • Abilility to make sound decisions in complex and unpredictable situations
  • Capability in transferable skills to communicate effectively and work as part of a multinational and multidisciplinary team
  • Capacity to be responsible for their continuing personal and professional development and for acting in a professional and ethical manner
  • Obtain and process (possibly conflicting) information from a wide range of courses, and be aware of the limitations of the potential solutions
  • Selecting and using appropriate ICT, recognising the capabilities and limitations of computers based methods


The course is aimed at people currently in work (in an industrial setting) and should provide significant development within their existing career path or offering an opportunity to change to a more project orientated career.


Assessment is predominately by coursework, but also with assessed tutorials and presentations in some cases. The major project is assessed via report and presentation.

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