Read the views of our students and alumni, and let their comments and stories inspire you to consider or further develop a career in the Built Environment.




Lewis Denbow
Chartered Surveyor apprenticeship (Building Surveying pathway)
Apprentice Building Surveyor
Ridge and Partners LLP

Fred Allott

Fred Allott,
CIOB Chartered Membership Programme,
Building Surveyor,
Poole Housing Partnership,
Broadstone, UK

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I really enjoyed my experience undertaking the CIOB Chartered Membership Programme with UCEM’s Online Academy. Right from the first email enquiry, they made the process easy to understand. The programme has helped me at work by broadening my knowledge of construction management and wider construction and contractual issues.

With the tutor’s advice, my report-writing has improved. I now produce a more succinct document in half the time.

My head of department was so impressed he offered to fund the second half of the course. I’m already looking at signing up with UCEM for a postgraduate qualification.

Sam Boyle

Sam Boyle,
Surveying Technician Diploma apprenticeship (Quantity Surveying and Construction pathway),
Trainee Quantity Surveyor,
Banbury, UK

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I am really enjoying the UCEM apprenticeship, having been out of education for 10 years before starting it.

Being dyslexic, I wasn’t looking forward to getting back into learning, but with the support from my employer and the support from all UCEM’s tutors and support tutors, it has made me feel I am good enough to be back in education, with my dyslexia only being identified after my school years.

The support from UCEM has made a huge difference to me and given me a big confidence boost in myself. The module leaders are fantastic and a massive help whenever I am stuck or need my assignments sense-checked.

Louise Slimm 329x220

Louise Slimm,
Chartered Surveyor apprenticeship (Quantity Surveying pathway),
Degree Apprentice Quantity Surveyor,
Cambridge, UK

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I started my role with Faithful+Gould in September 2017 as a degree apprentice. Faithful+Gould uses UCEM for all their degree apprentices so we can all work towards the same degree with a reputable university, no matter where in the country we are working. It has been very useful having a consistent learning provider for all the Faithful+Gould apprentices.

I have recently started my fourth and final year with UCEM. I have had a positive experience of learning alongside my day job. I knew very little about construction before starting with Faithful+Gould and UCEM, but the role of a quantity surveyor suited my skillset and so far, I have not been disappointed. Both my workplace and UCEM have been incredibly supportive along the way and offered me some great opportunities. It’s fantastic to implement the knowledge I gain from my modules with UCEM into the workplace and vice versa.

Throughout my three years of studying with UCEM, I have seen first-hand how the university takes on feedback and implements real changes based on their student’s thoughts and experiences. UCEM is a dynamic place to study and constantly evolving, with students at the heart of what they do. It is empowering to implement this philosophy into my career.

I was brand new to the construction industry when I started with UCEM and so it is tangible to see how my career has changed since then. My technical capability, industry knowledge and confidence have all drastically improved, which has allowed me to take ownership of numerous projects and seize opportunities in my professional life.

I have felt very supported throughout my degree and apprenticeship. Attending quarterly meetings with both my workplace mentor and my UCEM co-ordinator allows me to raise any concerns I may have and reflect on my studies and career. My apprentice co-ordinator with UCEM is always on hand to answer any questions I have and provide guidance when needed.

On the VLE, there are forums each week to ask questions about the weekly learning material and exam/assignment. Student central services are also there to answer non-module specific questions and they are very efficient in responding.

Overall, I have enjoyed the online learning, as it gives me the flexibility to study anywhere. Not having to worry about travelling to a fixed university gives me more time and mental space to focus on my studies, career and home life. Everything is easy to locate and there are plenty of resources available.

Going forward, I would like to continue to feel fulfilled in my career, take on exciting projects and make a difference to the world around me.

Joanne Cunningham 329x220

Joanne Cunningham,
BSc (Hons) Building Control,
Trainee Building Control Surveyor,
Butler & Young Approved Inspectors Limited,
Cardiff, UK

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Coming from a 13-year career in childcare and education, I decided to take on a new exciting challenge and dive into not only a new career, but a new industry! Construction has always been an interest of mine and I have always wanted to pursue that interest further. Butler & Young Approved Inspectors Limited allowed me to do so; they gave me the opportunity to study on the BSc (Hons) Building Control programme with UCEM.

The BSc (Hons) Building Control programme is great! Each semester, the modules are very different and most interesting which is really important when studying as it prevents you from getting bored.

Being so new to the industry, my career is just starting out at the moment. I have a lot of knowledge to gain. I have gained a lot of knowledge since September 2019, when I began the UCEM degree, from the weekly tasks, resources, lectures and assignments!

The support I receive from the staff at UCEM is fantastic! The tutors are very knowledgeable and always around to help at any time of day/evening. I have had a few very long phone calls with some of the tutors, discussing any issues I may have had. They are all lovely. They want you to succeed, pass and to do well.

The VLE is amazing. All the resources you need are on there and the e-Library is very easy to use and very useful.

I have also met a few friends via the VLE forums, students in the same position as me, that has been most helpful. It’s important, I think, to have that connection with someone going through the same life experiences as you – to know that you are not alone, which is great.

I am striving to gain the knowledge and intelligence that my colleagues and tutors hold. I aim to provide excellent guidance in the building control industry whilst gaining valued relationships with clients that I work with in the future.

I would definitely recommend University College of Estate Management.

Jack Tucker

Jack Tucker,
MSc Real Estate,
UK Specialised Estate and Business Rates Manager,
London, UK

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I had no previous experience of real estate prior to joining BT and the programme gave me the opportunity to learn about the wider field, rather than just job-specific knowledge. Studying the accredited degree also gave me the opportunity to sit the APC at an earlier date as my previous qualification did not meet the RICS criteria.

The programme is challenging, but it is also rewarding and enjoyable. I liked that the programme has several optional units which allows you to further your knowledge in areas that interest you. There was no shortage of choice when it came to these units which gives you the flexibility to tailor your degree.

The online forums provide all the assistance needed throughout the degree, with plenty of questions being publicly answered by both the lecturers and the tutors. The lecturers also put on several revision webinars towards the end of the semester and the week before deadlines which allows any questions to be answered quickly and thoroughly. Other students are helpful and also willing to help.

The online learning aspect was extremely beneficial as it meant I could work on the degree at a time that suited me, watching recorded webinars and submitting questions to the online forums. Completing a degree part-time is never easy, but the flexibility to work whenever and wherever I needed to made the process considerably more manageable.

The next step for me is to complete the APC and progress my career within real estate. The degree has given me the foundations to progress within the field.

Jenna Hull

Jenna Hull,
MSc Real Estate,
Development Surveyor,
Cushman & Wakefield,
Leeds, UK

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The UCEM MSc Real Estate programme was recommended by my employer as a flexible way to gain an RICS accredited degree whilst working full time. I completed my undergraduate degree in History at Durham University so completing the UCEM MSc in Real Estate provided me with a valuable grounding in the principles of surveying which I could fit around my in-work training.

I found the MSc programme to be very accessible and enjoyable. The modules were well-structured and interesting, and all of my tutors were very helpful and easy to contact. What I enjoyed most was that the course content was very practical and relevant to my work; it was useful to gain a wider academic context around some of the issues which I was dealing with in my day-to-day work.

The support from UCEM was great throughout my studies. My tutors were easy to contact through the module forums and my dissertation tutor in particular provided fantastic support over the phone and via email.

The online learning aspect of the course made it a lot easier to balance study with work and undertake my studies flexibly. The online study materials were easy to access and provided a comprehensive overview of each topic. I liked that the study materials were varied in their nature, from online webinars to academic journals.

Since I started studying with UCEM, I have progressed through the Cushman & Wakefield graduate programme and I recently passed my Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) and gained my MRICS designation.

In the future I hope to progress in my career as a chartered surveyor and continue to work in the development consultancy specialism.

Elizabeth Roulston

Elizabeth Roulston,
MSc Real Estate,
Residential Chartered Surveyor,
London, UK

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Taking part in an online learning degree programme allowed me to study alongside my day-to-day role as a graduate surveyor. Upon starting my career, I did not have a background in real estate so the degree gave me both the fundamental background knowledge needed and provided a stepping stone into the world of real estate. Achieving the MSc allowed me to sit my APC and I have since qualified to become a Chartered Surveyor.

Undertaking an online degree does require a certain level of self-motivation, however, I found that UCEM manages to provide a good level of support with weekly webinars and online forums, enabling us to seek help and support from our tutors whenever it’s needed.

I particularly liked the fact that the degree programme allowed us to select our modules to tailor to our interests and careers, with an opportunity to undertake a dissertation in a subject relevant to us.

The Graduation ceremony was held at Reading Town Hall. I strongly recommend that everyone who completes their programme attends the ceremony as it was a great opportunity to celebrate your achievements with friends and family.

Winning the MSc Real Estate Prize [for best performance on the programme] was a huge achievement, and is something I will always be very proud of.

Cillian Doyle 329x220

Cillian Doyle,
MSc Real Estate,
Financial Planning and Reporting Manager,
Quintain Ireland Limited,

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I chose the MSc in Real Estate as it was highly recommended and is well recognised internationally. The flexibility of the course allowed me to view lectures and complete assignments in my own time, while working in a demanding full-time role. The tutors were very supportive and always available to answer questions and give feedback. I have recently changed employer from Hudson Advisors to Quintain Ireland and I find the qualification a key asset in my daily role.

Laetitia Reboux 329x220

Laetitia Reboux,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Cadastral Survey Manager,
Civil service (French Ministry for the Economy, Finance, Public Accounts and Policy),
Toulon, France

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I decided to enroll on an MSc in Quantity Surveying because I would like to change the course of my career and get the chance to work abroad.

I was a bit concerned my lack of experience in Quantity Surveying would make it challenging to find a job after graduating so I find the future more reassuring having armed with this degree.

Quantity surveyors are sought after across the world too so I decided to study on this programme and I do not regret it because, among other things, I enjoyed learning about the project and cost management side of the profession and I believe these are excellent transferable skills.

I found the support great. The support from the tutors was excellent, and even though I didn’t need wellbeing support, it was good to know that it was there and very clearly advertised to the student population.

I quite liked the independent aspect of online learning. I have always been a bit more comfortable with learning at my own pace so it was perfect for me. The tutors are monitoring the forum just as it needs to be in order for students to get fast answers to our questions.

Samuel Phipps-Ward

Samuel Phipps-Ward,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Army Officer,
Royal Engineers,
Kent, UK

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I chose to study UCEM’s MSc in Quantity Surveying as it allowed me to balance my existing role with studying at a suitable pace. In addition to flexibility, the programme was accredited by a variety of key professional bodies; this would support my future professional development. As someone with limited commercial experience, the programme also offered the opportunity to learn from experienced tutors and understand relevant industry practices.

So far, I have found the course to be both a rewarding and enjoyable learning experience. The engaging content combined with the genuinely helpful and knowledgeable tutors has exceeded my expectations; I’m pleased to see the progress I’ve made in such a short period of time.

Both the tutors and academic support staff always respond quickly and accurately to questions. Since the start of the course I’ve felt there has been excellent support in place, not just from the academic team but also wider support from UCEM that has enabled me to manage my work and studies more effectively.

The online learning aspect has given me the flexibility to learn at my own pace. I find that online learning has encouraged me to take ownership of the programme, resulting in more effective learning compared with traditional tuition. Compared to my previous studies, the academic support has been far more readily available, and having the option to ask tutors directly by email or on the forums around the clock is particularly useful.

My aim is to secure a Quantity Surveying role after transitioning from the Armed Forces, then successfully pass the APC and achieve MRICS.

Murtuza Challawala

Murtuza Challawala,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
M&E Quantity Surveyor,
Al Mulla Engineering,

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I am an Electrical Engineer and had been working as a contractor QS for a few years. I wanted to have a degree in Quantity Surveying in order to have a sound knowledge of the subject, so I decided to study on UCEM’s MSc programme. The thing that attracted me to undertake the course at UCEM was that it is a conversion course so as a student without an academic QS background, I was able to study on it – the course is designed for students like me. Another aspect was the competitive fees for the course offered by UCEM when comparing other universities who provide similar courses, not to mention the various accreditations from professional bodies, all of which led to me to study with UCEM.

The programme is very good. As a conversion course, the programme was designed in such a way that it introduced you to the topic from the basics. From there, it takes you through understanding the best practice to be followed as recognised by the industry, and the assignments test your understanding based on real life scenarios. The tutors always encourage you to think critically about the subject.

My career has changed since the inception of my studies. I have gained strong knowledge about the Quantity Surveying practice as a whole and become more confident when am dealing with any aspect or challenge at work, with the clear knowledge of the industry best practice to be followed each time. My experience and knowledge has widened.

The support on the programme by the tutors is truly fantastic. Whether it’s on the discussion forums, webinars or chats, the tutors are available if you have any doubts about any topic. They are patient and, with many of the tutors having industry experience, have the necessary practical knowledge of the subject to make you understand. They offer assistance and help during the assignments and exam times. The tutors undertake a lot of webinars and are extremely active each day on the discussion forms. They make you aware of assignment deadlines and exam dates months in advance and help in all possible ways to help you achieve success.

Online learning is really the way to go forward if you are looking to balance your work and studies. UCEM outline your study materials each week which vary from interviews, textbook reading, presentations  and weekly webinars which you can access at any time.

My future career aspiration is to become a chartered surveyor and become a claim quantum specialist.

Ahmed Elhalouty

Ahmed Elhalouty,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Senior Quantity Surveyor,
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

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I chose to study on the MSc Quantity Surveying programme with UCEM because it is an RICS-accredited programme which would help me towards my ultimate target of becoming Chartered.
Whilst studying on the programme, I joined Arcadis which was a good move in my career.

The support I received from UCEM was great. Even after graduating, I still receive useful information as part of the Alumni Association.
My favourite aspect of studying with UCEM was that I was learning online. This afforded me great flexibility and the quality of the learning resources were excellent too, most importantly.

In future, I hope to face new exciting challenges overseas, especially in the UAE.

Jonathan Bayfield

Jonathan Bayfield,
MSc Real Estate,
Head of UK Real Estate Research,
Aviva Investors

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UCEM’s unique selling point is its flexibility. I joined one of the largest real estate companies in the world with no academic background in the sector. After a couple of years of work, I did not want to return to full-time studies, but I wanted to continue learning away from my professional life. UCEM’s Real Estate MSc programme got me up to speed with some of the industry fundamentals. I was able to do this in my own time and at my own pace, whilst still growing professionally.

The Virtual Learning Environment [VLE] is easy to use and the majority of lecturers and fellow students were active participants. This brought an eclectic mix of people together and stimulated interesting debates online. The dissertation module also gave me the opportunity to make contacts within the industry and position myself as an expert in this subject area. In addition, the programme also helped me to appreciate what I enjoy doing and what I am good at.

Harvey Allen

Harvey Allen,
BSc Access Module,
Apprentice Quantity Surveyor,
Morgan Sindall Infrastructure

I found the BSc Access Module very informative and easy to follow whilst balancing it alongside full-time work. Since studying with UCEM, I have gained a better understanding of construction.

The support I received from UCEM whilst studying on the BSc Access Module was always helpful and easily accessible. Studying online enabled me to do the work in my own time and helped me with my time management.

I am now studying on UCEM’s Chartered Surveyor degree apprenticeship on the Quantity Surveying pathway which is very fun and informative.

In terms of career aspirations, I would one day like to strive for a director role in a construction company.

Ben Smith

Ben Smith,
Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship (Building Surveying Pathway),
Assistant Project Manager - Construction,
Cornwall Council

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I have been working as an Assistant Project Manager for three years and have had an incredibly steep learning curve, having transferred internally from another department. Just over a year ago I applied, and was accepted onto, the Building Surveying BSc at UCEM. After completing the first year, my employer was able to offer me the chance to become an apprentice.

Having commenced as an apprentice since October 2019, I have been impressed with the support available, the standard of course material continues to be high, the Tutors are extremely knowledgeable and the variety of people who are undertaking the course enable discussion. Having attended my first RICS workshop recently, it was great to meet people face-to-face and discuss the topics at the workshop, as well as our own experiences with apprenticeships and different work places.

Louise Lawrence

Louise Lawrence,
Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship (Valuation Pathway),
Apprentice Development Surveyor,

View course

Completing university online has many benefits. The biggest benefit by far to it all being online is that I can access it anywhere at any time, as long as I am connected to Wi-Fi! This gives me the freedom to tune into lectures on my commute to work and complete any readings when I have a few minutes spare. The flexibility of this is immensely beneficial as it allows me to access previous work and future work as well as the lectures, due to the fact they are recorded. The staff are super friendly, as is my apprenticeship outcomes officer and there are several support forums that allow me to express my opinions and give feedback too. Overall, there is a great work environment and support system in place, and the flexibility of study is key.

Billy Diec

Billy Diec,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Assistant Quantity Surveyor,
Arcadis Hong Kong Limited

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I studied on UCEM’s MSc Quantity Surveying programme. I chose to study at UCEM because of its esteemed reputation in the industry. UCEM’s degrees are recognised by HKIS and RICS which means I am qualified to become Chartered.

I would like to thank UCEM for providing guidance to me throughout my studies. All the Module Leaders and Tutors were very willing to help and I never felt alone during my studies. UCEM’s programmes are ideal for those who want to work while studying. The VLE platform is very user-friendly so it makes studying more efficient which is very important for those who have little time to study each day after work.

UCEM provides an abundant amount of learning resources and you can speak to your peers on the online discussion forums which helps with getting ideas for assignments and general studies.

With the degree I acquired from UCEM, I am truly confident that I can pursue a successful career in quantity surveying. I am looking forward to the many opportunities and challenges awaiting me in future.

Karen Skelhorn

Karen Skelhorn,
BSc (Hons) Real Estate Management,
Surveyor (Trainee), Ports of Jersey,
Jersey, Channel Islands

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Studying with UCEM has been the highlight of my career as I have been able to prove to myself that studying is achievable as a parent with a full-time job. The reward of doing this is extremely worthwhile, particularly when the hard work and dedication pays off in your grades!

As a mature student with two children and a full-time job, organisation is key. I have adapted into a good routine of self-study and am fortunate that my employer supports my studies, allowing time during the day to attend live webinars. I have employed the organisation skills from my former Royal Navy career which have enabled me to have a good work, study and home life balance.

The accessibility of online learning was a big factor for me in deciding to study with UCEM.

I have found the structure of the programme far superior to other online learning that I have completed in the past. The live webinars are easy to log into, I like how the content is broken down into weekly elements, the discussion forums are great and the tutors are there to support you.

Initially I found the VLE a little daunting however, the more access you have to it, the quicker you find your way around and there are various videos that can also assist. The tutors and students are also great at helping you find your way.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is the flexibility of being able to log in on any device at any time to read or catch up. All the webinars are recorded which allows you to listen or watch back at your convenience.”

Francis Odongo

Francis Odongo,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying,
Assistant Quantity Surveyor,
Mandhry Associates,
Mombasa, Kenya

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The support at UCEM is fantastic and the Tutors respond to queries comprehensively and in a timely manner. The VLE [virtual learning environment] has a friendly user interface and lots of study resources.

The flexibility of planning study time around the rest of my day creates a perfect balance with work/life/study as the course materials are always accessible online at any time and you can study and work at your own convenience without missing family commitments.

I searched online for universities that offer accredited online degrees in Quantity Surveying with a possibility of a bursary and UCEM showed up.

I chose to study with UCEM due to the flexibility of when and where to study since it allows me to fit my learning around my work and home life, but most importantly, I was able to study with UCEM because of the bursary I received.

I decided to study on the BSc Quantity Surveying programme to achieve personal development and professional goals of being a Chartered Surveyor. In addition, the strategic aspect of the work of a Quantity Surveyor and the diversity of the projects makes it an exciting career path. Most of the work is done on-site and travelling is often part of the job which breaks the monotony of the office. You interact with many people as you are part of a team.

Studying online was initially challenging for me as it was my first experience of online learning but after transitioning from the traditional methods of study, I found the learning environment more convenient without face-to-face classes so I can listen to lectures with no need to fight traffic, leave work early or miss important family time because of this rare opportunity to plan study time and set your own pace.

The support at UCEM is fantastic and the Tutors respond to queries comprehensively and in a timely manner. The VLE [virtual learning environment] has a friendly user interface and lots of study resources.

The flexibility of planning study time around the rest of my day creates a perfect balance with work/life/study as the course materials are always accessible online at any time and you can study and work at your own convenience without missing family commitments.

My ambition is to become a Chartered Quantity Surveyor and studying with UCEM is helping me fulfil my dream of gaining accreditation as their programmes are accredited by RICS.

I was concerned about the change from a traditional classroom to a virtual classroom due to a lack of face-to-face interaction with Tutors but I took up the challenge with an open mind and so far, I am enjoying my experience with UCEM.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is that the institution provides financial aid to students who need it and their programmes are accredited by RICS.

I would definitely encourage others to study with UCEM because I am finding my experience thrilling. I recommended two of my friends to study with UCEM and they are now also enrolled on the BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying programme.

The highlight of my career so far was my firm being selected to be the Quantity Surveyors for Swahili Gem Apartments. The project won The Architectural Association of Kenya Awards of Excellence in Architecture for best residential building project in 2017 which was a source of great pride for me.

Mohamed Humdhan

Mohamed Humdhan Nahuman Batcha,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying,
Executive Director/Head of Project and Program Management Services,
Utamacon (B) Sdn Bhd,
Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei

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UCEM’s top-quality study materials, flexible learning and online platform for ease of collaboration with the lecturers and fellow students took the element of ‘distance’ away from my learning experience and gave me a feeling as if I was studying at the campus. Qualifying from UCEM with a first-class honours degree was the catalyst for my rapid career growth.

I had 10 years’ experience with Davis Langdon & Seah working under a chartered surveyor before studying for my BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying degree with UCEM. It had always been my aspiration to be a chartered surveyor. To do so I had to qualify on the right, accredited course whilst working.

UCEM was and still is a perfect fit for this situation. UCEM’s top-quality study materials, flexible learning and online platform for ease of collaboration with the lecturers and fellow students took the element of ‘distance’ away from my learning experience and gave me a feeling as if I was studying at the campus. Qualifying from UCEM with a first-class honours degree was the catalyst for my rapid career growth.

Aaran Pearson

Aaran Pearson,
Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship (Quantity Surveying Pathway),
Degree Apprentice Quantity Surveyor, Faithful+Gould,
Ferryhill, County Durham, UK

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The best thing about being an apprentice is earning a real income while gaining real experience in your profession and also earning a degree!

I enjoy the flexibility of doing the work when it best suits you and that you are not restricted to set timetables – if you can’t attend a live webinar, you always have the opportunity to watch the recording at a later date.

The VLE works well and it’s good to have all the information readily available in one place.

After achieving my degree, I intend to gain RICS accreditation and UCEM has been very supportive of this, holding a number of workshops to explain the process and providing information on the competencies required.

Leslie James

Leslie James,
BSc (Hons) Building Surveying,
Administrative Clerk, Tunapuna / Piarco Regional Corporation,
Trinidad and Tobago

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UCEM came to my attention when I was studying an Advanced Diploma in Construction and was pursuing a career in the Built Environment. I couldn’t attend university as a full-time student and my lecturer spoke highly of UCEM. UCEM offering online, part-time degrees accredited by RICS, CIOB and CABE was perfect for my situation.

Online learning offers flexibility, in that, you can study anywhere and on any device. It is also a great option for those who must work or desire to do so, as one can learn while working. I have found the VLE to be very student-friendly, which is very important for mature students who may have been out of the school environment for some time. I have also met very helpful tutors. For example, one tutor, Tony Selman still offers me practical guidance and a listening ear whenever I speak to him despite completing his module a while ago. He has become a mentor to me.

My advice to any UCEM students is that you must be determined, flexible, focused, patient and positive.

UCEM set me on the path to fulfilling my dream as I was initially awarded a 50% bursary. Then I was eventually awarded a 100% bursary. Without the bursary, I would not have been able to start or complete my degree. In addition, I have already seen the benefits of a UCEM education. Besides the technical knowledge, I have been pushed to accomplish tasks which I initially felt were beyond me. I have learnt the value of time management, self-discipline, sheer determination, and believing in myself, which are qualities that I also apply to other aspects of my life and future career.

I have encountered many challenges during my studies. As mentioned before, I was lucky enough to receive a 100% bursary from UCEM. I applied for this after my personal circumstances changed which meant halfway through my studies I was unable to afford to continue. Also, a year after starting my studies my mother became very ill, which resulted in her moving in with me. So, I am currently her primary caregiver.

Despite these challenges, I have always been determined to succeed and I have enjoyed studying with UCEM. It’s great to be able to share ideas with my peers in countries such as Nigeria and Hong Kong! UCEM’s programmes are perfect for professionals like me who are studying while working.

I look forward to graduating and working towards chartership with RICS and the CIOB as I continue to follow my dreams and progress my career in building surveying.

Ranikque Hayden-Best

Ranikque Hayden-Best,
Foundation Degree Surveying Practice,
Sutton, UK

View course

I honestly would encourage anyone interested to study with UCEM! Everyone goes above and beyond to be there and support students. The team are lovely and the self-investment is worth it!

The flexible learning is great and having things online really makes it easier to fit studies around day-to-day life as I work more than 50 hours each week. It can be tough but I find that UCEM structure the weekly tasks and activities in such a way that it all seems manageable.

The staff at UCEM have always gone the extra mile to make sure I stay afloat with my studies. It is really great to know they are there and I really do appreciate this.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is learning all the new things! I look at things so differently now! When I see buildings my mind overflows with the thought of how much work has gone into them! I have found studying with UCEM has instilled discipline in me – financial discipline, mental discipline and also, time discipline.

Bryn Jones

Bryn Jones,
MSc Real Estate,
Graduate Surveyor, Scotts Property LLP,
Beverley, UK

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I looked at a number of courses with other institutions but they just couldn’t offer the same levels of flexibility, course content and at the same competitive pricing that UCEM could so it made the decision an easy one.

UCEM’s MSc Real Estate programme provides a broad range of learning relevant to my current job role, specifically valuation, property management and property transactions.

I have found the experience of supported online learning very good. I was cynical at first but was surprised at the ease of it and the quality and content of the webinars – they’ve been a huge help in achieving success in passing my first year. Tutors are very responsive on forums and the open forum for discussion with peers is transparent and helpful also.

Studying part-time took a bit of getting used to initially. In order for you to be fully committed to working and studying as well as your family life, you do have to make some compromises in other aspects, but these are only temporary and the results are worth it in the end.

Once qualified, my aim is to be an RICS registered valuer – a vocation that wouldn’t have been available to me but for my studies at UCEM.

The best part of studying with UCEM is its flexible approach to learning. At a more ‘traditional’ university you must attend lectures and seminars at certain times and you’re not looked upon too favourably by your tutors or peers if you cannot make certain lectures.

At UCEM it’s the complete opposite. Webinars can be attended and students can ask questions and join in with their tutors live which is always encouraged. However, UCEM recognise that all students lead busy lives outside of their studies and as such make the learning available online and viewable an unlimited amount of times with students being able to contact tutors to ask questions about the learning, even if they haven’t been able to make the live webinar. This is especially useful if students need to revisit learning in subsequent weeks.

Charlotte Hatt

Charlotte Hatt,
Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship (Quantity Surveying Pathway),
Trainee Quantity Surveyor, AECOM,
Southampton, UK

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I chose to enrol on the apprenticeship programme because it offers the chance to get a degree and get chartered in four-and-a-half years – even quicker than the ‘traditional’ route of going to university full-time then studying for the APC afterwards. Also, the flexibility of studying online really appealed to me as it meant I wasn’t always out of the office on a certain day and can fit my studying around work and private life commitments.

Having only ever studied via the traditional method before at school and then college, I did find it a big adjustment to online learning. Although daunting to start with, once I had got used to the format of the VLE and managing my time, it quickly became the norm! I think the key is just good time management and self-motivation and UCEM is really supportive in helping students develop these skills.

I find UCEM’s webinars really useful to help explain the weekly learning – especially if there is something I can’t quite get my head around. The webinars, along with the VLE forums, are also a great way to feel part of the UCEM community as it gives you the chance to speak to other students. The module leaders are very knowledgeable and are always happy to answer questions.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is the flexibility. You can study when you want, where you want and how you want – be it at your desk at lunchtime, on the train to a meeting or even next to the pool on holiday (if you really have to!). Also, the student cohort is international which gives a great insight into the Built Environment in other countries through the discussion forums, adding a really valuable extra dimension to the study materials.

My studies have already led to me being nominated for ‘Apprentice of the Year’ at the RICS Matrics Young Surveyor of the Year Awards in 2018. I was so thankful to have been nominated and it has made me more excited for what’s to come in my career.

My short-term goal is to become a chartered Quantity Surveyor by the time I’m 25! This would not be possible without my studies at UCEM as this is providing the necessary qualifications and knowledge in order to become chartered.

Sridhar Pentapati

Sridhar Pentapati,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Contracts Manager, Protecon BTG Pvt Ltd,
Vizianagaram, India

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My ambition is to flourish in the field of contracts, claims and arbitration. A degree with UCEM is the first step in achieving my goals and gaining membership of the likes of RICS is important too. UCEM’s modules are updated to reflect the latest developments in the field of quantity surveying, procurement and contracts that enable me to compete in the global market.

I chose to study at UCEM due to its internationally recognised accreditations, its long history and learning format.

The MSc Quantity Surveying programme appealed to me as it would enhance my knowledge and credibility in the profession, further guides in attaining professional memberships.

Online learning is much more convenient and flexible than other regular study options. The VLE [virtual learning environment] is a vast ocean of knowledge with all the learning resources needed for my programme, including useful guidance on referencing and research, and I have also found it to be helpful in troubleshooting work matters.


Adam Henchcliffe

Adam Henchcliffe,
Diploma in Surveying Practice,
Surveyor, Countrywide Plc,
Reading, UK

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The experience of supported online learning with UCEM has been amazing as it gave me the platform to do on-the-job, hands-on training with my studies. I felt supported throughout my studies. Someone was always available to offer help and guidance.

Balancing work with my studies and personal commitments was difficult but I am reaping the rewards now and it has been thoroughly worth it.

For me, the best thing about studying with UCEM was the support, whether through the detailed content on the VLE (virtual learning environment) or availability of staff to talk to.

I was honoured to be nominated for the Valuation award at the RICS Matrics Young Surveyor of the Year Awards 2018 – the pinnacle of my career so far – and I will forever be grateful for the foundations UCEM gave me to progress in the Built Environment.

Eleanor Robinson

Eleanor Robinson,
Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship,
Apprentice Surveyor,
Cushman & Wakefield

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Through studying with UCEM I have been able to work to my own speed and intensity. With online learning you can easily switch from watching a webinar to reading an e-book to researching using other resources. It is a lot less intense and strict compared to traditional studying as it allows me to take me time and stop and rewind anything on the webinars without having to interrupt the entire class. It is difficult to manage my work-life balance. However, online learning makes it easier for me than traditional learning as I can spread it out across the week meaning that I can really take the time to understand and appreciate all that is on offer.

Since starting my apprenticeship I have had so many great experiences. I’m currently the Communications Manager for the RICS Matrics Birmingham Committee, I’m an Executive Committee member of CRE-ation Property Network, I’m on the Birmingham and Black Country NSPCC Business Board, and I’m a part of Cushman and Wakefield’s Internal Socio-economic group. It’s an exciting time!

James Cannon

James Cannon,
MSc Real Estate,
Professional rugby player,
Connacht Rugby, Galway, Republic of Ireland

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“The career I am in at the moment won’t last forever. I wanted something challenging and different to get my teeth into, and I had an opportunity to do a bit of work experience in the real estate industry.

I enjoyed it so I spoke to people who had careers in the industry and they suggested I look at UCEM to do a course there.

It’s been great. It has fitted around my work commitments and lifestyle very well.

When I first started studying at UCEM, I was playing for Wasps and then part-way through the season, moved to Connacht.

If I was at a traditional institution, there would have been no way I would have been able to continue with my studies. The flexibility you get with UCEM has been invaluable.

The MSc Real Estate programme gives me the opportunity to experience what a surveyor does in their day-to-day role. I’m learning more about the sector.

When I first started the course, one of the big draws was that it was RICS-accredited. It’s only a good thing if you are doing a course like this. We want it to be accredited by potential employers.

The Tutors have been very, very good. If I have any questions, they have been very promptly answered. They are very helpful. They have helped me a lot, particularly not having a real estate background to fall back on, the tutors’ help has been invaluable.”

Ayesha Azar

Ayesha Azar,
MSc Real Estate,
Graduate Surveyor,
Valuation Office Agency, London, UK

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“I chose to study with UCEM due to its flexible mode of study and the fact its programmes are RICS-accredited.

When I joined the Valuation Office Agency, I had no set plans or goals for my career. UCEM’s Diploma in Surveying Practice helped me recognise my own potential and to make life-changing career decisions.

I then studied on the BSc (Hons) Real Estate Management programme and am now studying on the MSc Real Estate programme.

The experience of supported online education fits perfectly with the digital era of our day-to-day life. Access to the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) from my phone, iPad, laptop or work computer allows me to listen to webinars or participate in discussion forums any time of the day.

The online learning offering and support from Tutors gives me flexibility and allows me to manage time for studies at my convenience which makes UCEM great for my studies.

I am a wife and a mother, working as a Graduate Surveyor and studying at the same time. It can be difficult at times, but, gaining surveying qualifications gives me confidence and determination knowing the future is bright and promising.

My ambition within the surveying industry is to qualify as a Charted Surveyor. Studying with UCEM has enabled me to progress within the Valuation Office Agency, from starting as an Admin Assistant to becoming a Graduate Surveyor.

The online learning facility and support of the Tutors have helped me manage my studies whenever I struggled. UCEM staff and the VLE have made my learning journey a pleasure.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is that its programmes are RICS-accredited. I am on track to achieve my goal to have my RICS assessment at the end of 2019.

I have encouraged my colleagues and friends to study with UCEM. A colleague of mine started the Diploma in Surveying Practice to begin his surveying career. My friend started an MSc in Real Estate a few months ago because of my encouragement.

The highlight of my career has been studying with UCEM and attaining Higher Education qualifications that helped further my career progression and self-development.”

Sadaquat Hussain

Sadaqat Hussain
Chartered Surveyor Apprenticeship
Apprentice Surveyor
Cushman & Wakefield

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“My initial reaction to studying with UCEM was one of scepticism because the only type of learning I had known was face-to-face. However, I have been pleasantly surprised as there has been support available in every aspect of my learning from student support services and webinars to podcasts, group forums and frequent interactions with tutors through the Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). It begs the question: what was I so worried about?! One thing I love about learning with UCEM is the flexibility. You are given the responsibility to plan your learning at a pace which suits you. You can easily juggle periods where you have heavy workloads or a study deadline to meet. It does mean you may need to spend the weekend doing something other than socialising though!

My ambition is to become a chartered surveyor – not for the money but because I am passionate about the profession. I know that UCEM will continue to provide me with the right foundation to achieve this aim and provide me with the knowledge and skills to complete my job to the highest RICS-approved standard.”

Manal Abdo

Manal Abdo,
PGDip Surveying Diploma in Real Estate,
General Manager,
M.A Cluster llc.
Beirut, Lebanon

“The course has been a wonderful experience and a major turning point not just in my career but my personal life, it has enormously restructured my thinking methods and my approach to life and I strongly recommend studying with UCEM for people who are really looking for further self-development.

I founded my Corporate Real Estate agency in November 2015 in Beirut; the past couple of years have been challenging times amid an unstable political and economic climate and finally the hard work is now starting to witness success. The tools I learned during my Post Graduate course made me realise, that nothing is impossible if we have the will and the determination and if we act with transparency and integrity.”

Paul Whittle

Paul Whittle,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Senior Quantity Surveyor,
Thomas Sands Consulting Ltd, Slough, UK

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“Early in 2004, I was working in my family contracting business and I was looking to study for some formal qualifications. I’d left school with very little in the way of qualifications and my marks were not good at all. Therefore, I began to research ‘distance learning’ and CEM [now, UCEM] seemed the natural choice.

I was managing construction projects at the time, so after I’d graduated with a diploma in surveying I decided to study a BSc degree. At the time I never thought I was smart enough. It was my tutor (Graham Hough – UCEM BSc (Hons) Construction Management Programme Leader) who persuaded me to go for it. Graham has always been a great support to me over the years, and I have a lot to thank him for.

I studied with UCEM for seven-and-a-half years in total; firstly, on the Diploma in Surveying Practice then the BSc (Hons) Construction Management programme and finally on the MSc Quantity Surveying programme.

Studying with UCEM worked for me as I was able to study and work, utilising both my study and experience which both contributed to my ongoing career. As my career progressed I chose to study more specialised subjects which matched my career goals.

I would certainly recommend UCEM to others. Two of my directors studied at UCEM. There is an appreciation by other people who’ve studied at distance whilst they worked and had young families of how determined you have to be. It’s very hard work but it is hugely rewarding. When you sit in an interview with someone who has also studied at UCEM, they automatically have respect for you and know that you can manage your time and work effectively, as without those two attributes, no-one gets through the courses successfully.

I also have UCEM to thank for meeting my wife! We met during lectures when I was studying my BSc programme and the rest is history. We both work in construction. She’s currently working on a Crossrail project. We now have two sons and live a couple of miles from Reading.”

Sean Henry

Sean Henry,
MSc Real Estate,
Development Director,
Venturis Investment Group, Dublin, Republic of Ireland

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“It seemed a logical decision to go into real estate when I had to retire from rugby through injury. I had worked in construction a lot when I was younger and had already completed my degree in Construction Management and Engineering, so it was more about figuring out exactly what area of real estate I wanted to get into. The variety of property development appealed to me so that’s what I focused on.

I spent a lot of time researching courses to see which one would suit my situation best. I was fortunate to get a job relatively quickly after rugby finished with a development company in the US called the MG2 Group. Therefore, I needed a Master’s programme that would allow me to travel, work full-time and was accredited by RICS.

When I learned about UCEM, it was simply a case of picking a programme that complemented my undergraduate degree so I was upskilling in the right areas. After a couple of phone conversations with David Hourihan [UCEM’s MSc Real Estate Programme Leader] I settled on the MSc in Real Estate.

It takes a small bit of adjustment to get used to the supported online method of learning but by the middle of my second semester I was completely comfortable with it. The Real Estate Faculty do a great job, especially in the early stages, to ensure you are not found wanting anything.

Anyone thinking about completing a Master’s programme while working full-time must realize that it does require a huge amount of hard work. Having said that, the flexibility of UCEM’s programmes means that you can structure your week in a way that allows time for your friends, family and any other social occasion that might come up. A little planning goes a long way.

Eventually I would like to set up my own development company but it won’t be today or tomorrow as there is just so much to learn on this side of the business. I feel as though my MSc in Real Estate has given me excellent foundation from which I can progress.”

Vilma Segonds

Vilma Segonds,
MSc Real Estate,
Junior Valuer,
Cushman & Wakefield, Paris, France

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“The VLE is well designed and provides plenty of documentation and support on all kind of subjects. I have found the Tutors to be both supportive and available; whenever you have a question, they reply to your message on the forums very quickly and are always there, like the Module Leaders, to reassure you during the most challenging moments.

I am interested in pursuing a career working for an international firm, serving international clients and perhaps even with the opportunity to work overseas in the future. Studying UCEM’s MSc Real Estate programme has already allowed me to start a career in surveying and serving international clients, and it will certainly help me to achieve my other ambitions.”

Jaco Willemse

Jaco Willemse,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying,
Quantity Surveyor,
CES Africa (Pty) Ltd., Pretoria, South Africa

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“The main reason I chose to study with UCEM was that the institution’s programmes are accredited by RICS. The online mode of study, making the learning resources accessible 24/7, played a huge part as well.

There aren’t many other institutions offering the same quality programmes as UCEM in my field of work.“I started working within quantity surveying which made my choice of programme an obvious one.

With working full-time and having to study part-time, online education was the only option. Having access to the latest study materials and information throughout my studies was a big plus for me. UCEM’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) provided access to information which is not readily available through traditional learning methods.

The Tutors are professional and quick to respond to questions. They were always friendly, understanding and knowledgeable.

Studying with UCEM has allowed me to progress in my career. I have learnt a lot which I can now apply in my working environment. Studying with UCEM makes you very employable within quantity surveying and has opened the pathway towards professional membership of RICS which is my next goal.

I would encourage anyone who wants to study undergraduate or postgraduate programmes through online education to study with UCEM.”

Jodie Ronan

Jodie Ronan,
MSc Real Estate,
Ronan Group Real Estate, County Dublin, Republic of Ireland

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“The key draw to UCEM for me was that my studies could be flexible around my work commitments. I have a very onerous job so the fact that UCEM’s programme could be completed in my own time was extremely helpful.

I did not have to worry about missing lectures due to work commitments. I found the experience of supported online education very positive. The VLE system works well – all core learning materials are on the VLE at the start of each module so you can check what topics you will be studying when, easily access the reading resources, and see when assignments and exams are scheduled which allowed me to plan accordingly.

The weekly online discussion forums are useful as they provide guidance as to what topics you should be reading and when, as well as insights from other students and your Tutor. Again, you can do this in your own time – there are international students so posts are being uploaded around the clock.

The support from the Tutors and the online student support function was very good – when I wrote on the VLE, they always wrote back with comprehensive feedback in a timely manner. For example, I needed an extension on an assignment due to work commitments and the Tutor accommodated me with this request which enhanced my student experience.

My current day-to-day role is predominantly asset management of a real estate investment portfolio. The UCEM MSc Real Estate programme was very beneficial as it included many topics which relate to my current job and thus greatly furthered my knowledge base.”

James Terry

James Terry,
MSc Building Surveying Student Rep,
Cambridge, UK

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“What I liked about the UCEM MSc Building Surveying programme was that I could work alongside studying. This is important to me as I couldn’t afford to undertake studies without a full-time job.

UCEM’s Tutors care about your success and are happy to help with areas you are struggling with. The VLE [Virtual Learning Environment] has a feedback system built into it which allows Tutors to improve the programme.

I’ve enjoyed being the Student Rep for UK students on the programme. It’s more work but I enjoy speaking with students to understand how they want to change the programme. I like to think I am helping to create a better programme for future students.

I want to become an RICS Chartered Building Surveyor and eventually a partner within a firm. The Careers Service at UCEM has helped me to become more employable within the sector.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is whenever I get marks back from a piece of work, I know I am one step closer to becoming Chartered.”

Sinead Murphy

Sinéad Murphy,
MSc Real Estate,
Cushman & Wakefield, Paris, France

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“A career in real estate appealed to me because the industry is forever changing and I found the progression of the market interesting to follow.

I heard about UCEM through my manager as a previous employee had studied with UCEM. I contacted her to ask her opinion and she encouraged me to start the MSc Real Estate programme.

Studying on a supported online programme was more flexible for me than the traditional method of studying as I was working full-time at the same time and it allowed me to remain in France while studying in English.

I found that it was quite difficult at the beginning getting the balance right between study and working and free time, but after one semester, the routine is easier to get used to.

I was fortunate enough to meet two fellow students who were working in the Valuation department of JLL and also living in Paris. Having the opportunity to revise and learn together was a huge advantage and we remain very good friends.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is the flexibility of the programme and I would recommend others study with UCEM if they are motivated and wish to pursue a career within the property industry.”

Yashwant Tohooloo

Yashwant Tohooloo,
MSc Quantity Surveying,
Proposal Executive,
Forges Tardieu Ltd, Mauritius

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“I chose UCEM because the institution is one of the best online learning providers and has competitive programme fees.

The supported online education model was amazingly well organised and prepared, and was more efficient than conventional teaching. The Tutors are experienced and induce students to think more critically.

My studies have enabled me to enhance my knowledge of contract administration and gain a competitive edge in dealing with contractual matters and risks in construction projects.

What stood out for me was the prestige of the University College, the consistency of the teaching materials and the exposure to international trends and practice.”

Bex Gibson

Bex Gibson,
MSc Construction Management,
Project Officer,
FX Plus, Cornwall, UK

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“UCEM offered a flexible learning approach I could fit in with my full-time job and came highly recommended by colleagues.

Supported online learning works very well for me. All webinars and learning materials can be accessed at any time so I am able to fit my studies around my life. I use the VLE daily and find it a very useful tool for discussion and clarification. The module and programme discussion forums are a good substitute for face-to-face support and the Tutors have always been quick to respond to any queries.

I chose to study the MSc Construction Management programme as the areas covered within the programme are relevant to all aspects of construction management. I already feel more confident and knowledgeable in my current working role, and will have a solid foundation to progress professionally.

Having been out of education for almost 10 years, the thought of writing essays initially terrified me. However, I was given support and encouragement by the Tutors and Module Leaders, and it made me feel a lot more comfortable submitting that first assignment!

The best thing about UCEM is the flexibility and support. Even though I live in Cornwall, I feel connected and involved in the UCEM student community.”

David Clayton

David Clayton,
MSc Building Surveying,
Self-employed Building Surveyor, Herefordshire, UK

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“I chose to study with UCEM due to a combination of the quality promised on the VLE, my confidence in the expertise and knowledge of the Tutors, the reputation that UCEM has, and the simplicity and convenience of online learning.

Supported online learning is largely a positive experience. The ability to study whenever we like is very helpful. The discussion forums are of great use, as are the webinars.

The best things about studying with UCEM are: the quality of the teaching material; the access to the e-Library and the resources it offers; access to RICS’s ‘isurv’ information service; the knowledge and experience of the Tutors; the support from fellow students through the discussion forums and informal WhatsApp groups; the flexibility of study time; and the recognition UCEM has in the industry.”

Sukh Seehra

Sukh Seehra,
BSc (Hons) Construction Management,
Site Manager, London, UK

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“Due to me wanting to further my career in construction management, with a possible move abroad, I chose UCEM’s degree as it would provide me with further knowledge for both self-improvement and progression, along with a worldwide recognised qualification.

The support was excellent from day one. After having panicked a bit during the first semester, where I was having trouble with one of the assignments, the student support services on the VLE were very quick to offer advice and guidance, which helped me pass the assignment with a First.

The resources on the VLE for learning were excellent. I used them regularly to further my understanding of the topics. The Module Leaders and Tutors were also excellent, providing regular feedback on the weekly discussion forums, which further gave me confidence that I had made the right decision to learn.

The best things about studying with UCEM were the support services, the Module Leaders and Tutors, being able to learn at my own pace in my own time and making some good friends along the way.”

Celia Lee

Celia Lee,
MSc Real Estate,
Director of Operations,
Agon Hotels and Resorts Ltd, Hong Kong

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“The support from UCEM has gone beyond my expectations. Feedback on the VLE is quick. It is a pleasant surprise that I receive courtesy phone calls from UCEM. The flexibility in enrolling on Programme Leader webinars is appealing to me as I sometimes work long hours and travel often.

I aspire to be a business executive on asset management related to hospitality. With UCEM’s help, I have a better understanding of all the stakeholders involved and utilise resources more effectively.

The recognition of UCEM programmes is an important part of the institution’s appeal and I enjoy choosing which modules to study to suit my preferences.”

Mohammad Bader

Mohammad Bader,
MSc Construction Management,
Project Director,
Millennium Challenge Corporation, Jordan

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“The few enquiries I had before joining UCEM were handled with such a personal touch which I appreciated. It gave me the impression that this institution genuinely cares, and this caring is reflected in its teams’ attitude.

These pre-enrolment enquiries of mine were also handled with a distinguished level of professionalism that was unmatched by any of the other institutions that I was communicating with. After enrolment, this level of professionalism only multiplied, as I experienced later.

In addition to the institution’s high level of professionalism and caring approach, I also value the progression towards membership of the CIOB and RICS this programme grants.

Finally, the reasonable costs associated with the programme was a major selling point for me, especially considering that I’m self-financing my education.

The experience of supported online learning has significantly widened my horizons, and was as convenient as I hoped it would be, in the sense that I could continue my education, pursuing a degree whilst fulfilling my tough job obligations, and yet still have a life away from work and study.”

Dean Knowland

Dean Knowland,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying,
Senior Quantity Surveyor,
Omnium International, Dubai, UAE

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“The method of learning is perfect for people such as myself who have worked in the industry for many years and never got a qualification. The VLE platform is very user-friendly and easy to navigate. The mixed use of learning resources from videos to case studies really helps those that don’t enjoy solely reading from a textbook.

The VLE is an excellent system. The resources available through the e-Library are a big benefit when researching for assignments. The Tutors are always on hand to provide guidance on some of the more difficult subjects and the point is made to always to get back to you within 48 hours.

I have been in quantity surveying since 1999 and worked myself up to Commercial Manager for national housebuilders in the UK such as Barratt looking after teams of quantity surveyors and buyers. I am now working in a project quantity surveying consultancy in Dubai on some of the largest and most iconic buildings in the world, including the new tallest building in the world. Without the degree, I most certainly would not have got a look in.

The flexibility of learning with UCEM is great and the cost of the programme is very reasonable.”

Kara Tomes Meek

Kara Tomes-Meek,
Foundation Degree Construction Practice,
Asset and Leasehold Manager,
Red Kite Community Housing, High Wycombe, UK

“The Tutors are very helpful and have a great sense of humour. They make studying fun, and are always there for a motivational pep talk if needed! I am really enjoying studying with UCEM. The flexibility means I am able to work full time and enjoy my hobbies.

I think online learning is great. Webinars are great to catch up with your Tutor and discuss assignments and exams. Having them recorded is excellent for me as I’m not always able to join them live if they are during working hours.

Since studying with UCEM I have progressed twice in my career at Red Kite.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is the flexibility of study hours. I can study late at night and at weekends which suits my lifestyle. I’ve also really enjoyed connecting with people all over the world and learning different practices in other countries. I returned to UCEM from a six-month study break and have been able to pick up where I left off.”

Paul Westcott

Paul Westcott,
BSc (Hons) Real Estate Management,
Development Surveyor,
Seymours Land and New Homes, Reading, UK

View course


“I chose to study with UCEM because it’s a highly respected institution with highly relevant course content and is a very cost-effective and flexible way to study.

My experience of supported online education has been life-changing. My ambition is to qualify as a Chartered Surveyor and so far, so good. I am currently on track to complete my objectives, be an example to my kids and be the first in my family to graduate at degree level.

The programme has enabled me to engage with fellow students from a wide spectrum of backgrounds, cultures and expertise.

The programme has given me an insight into aspects of the property industry completely closed off to me before and given me a huge amount of confidence. As a direct example, I acted on behalf a client to help them acquire a £300 million mixed-use development scheme. The programme enabled me to provide my client with concise and objective advice which has been supported with highly professional reports – all skills I picked up on the programme.”

Annie Chu

Annie Chu,
MBA Construction and Real Estate,
QnS Consultancy Limited, Hong Kong

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“The programme equipped me to progress from a professional quantity surveyor into a business entrepreneur. I fully utilised the knowledge I gained from the UCEM MBA in my start-up company from setting up business strategies and team-building to marketing, accounting and financial control.

I obtained useful knowledge and extended my network to other countries as well. Since graduating, I have set up a company. It seems to me that the UCEM MBA programme was tailor-made for me to acquire all the necessary skills and knowledge for overcoming the difficulties encountered during the start-up process.

My studies provided the perfect opportunity for me to rehearse my company start-up before actually doing it.”

Gary Worthington

Gary Worthington,
BSc (Hons) Construction Management,
National Store Development Manager,
Screwfix Ltd, Yeovil, UK

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“It was really key to take time to complete the Induction Module to become comfortable with the VLE. The fact that I can study at night in a hotel on business or at weekends really helps me fit the programme around my job and family life.

The use of e-books works really well along with the variety of study materials to suit learning styles. I was surprised how connected I feel with both Tutors and other students through webinars and discussion forums.

Each module being broken down into weekly blocks of study provides a helpful structure and study plan. I have been really impressed that the Tutors and Module Leaders have a very current understanding of their topic. The relevant industry experience they have is a positive factor. I also found the study skills material on the VLE very helpful.

The best thing about studying with UCEM is the ability to be able to truly apply the learning to my job. It helps me understand the roles of legal teams, designers and quantity surveyors who I interact with.”

Theodora Jack-Ryan

Theodora Jack-Ryan,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying,
Assistant Quantity Surveyor,
Glossy Bay Construction Ltd, Trinidad and Tobago

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“UCEM was the only institution which allowed for the flexibility I needed to fit my lifestyle.

I have had a really great experience with UCEM. The response time is good when asking any questions and webinars make the learning experience just as good as having a face-to-face lecture.

My ambition is to start my own practice and to become a member of RICS. UCEM helped me lay the foundations to achieve these goals.

Staff were always supportive and I would encourage others to study with UCEM.”

Sophie Banks

Sophie Banks,
BSc (Hons) Real Estate Management Apprentice
Apprentice Surveyor,

In my view, apprenticeships are the way forward for those wanting to become a qualified surveyor. Not only does being on an apprenticeship mean I will gain an RICS accredited degree, but I am also studying while working allowing what I am learning to be put into practice every day, putting me in a far more advanced position than that of a standard full-time graduate.

The degree in Real Estate Management is an enjoyable and engaging one. It not only covers a broad range of topics relevant to the industry, but presents them in a way which enables the student to work up to higher levels of understanding. UCEM offers a broad support network to utilise, with forums, webinars and private assigned tutor groups available: bridging the gap between the student and university, aiding quick communication. Each of the learning weeks offer a diverse selection of resources through a number of media, keeping the programme varied and interesting. For me, there is a good balance of resources and assessments, and there is a manageable work load in consideration to working at the same time.

Studying with UCEM has been the best decision I have made so far and I would recommend this route to anyone considering a career in Real Estate!

Mike Woods

Mike Woods,
MSc Building Surveying
Chartered Building Surveyor,
R K Lucas & Son, UK

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The tutors really stand out as masters of their craft, they’ve been there, done it and the T-shirt is superfluous because their knowledge and enthusiasm is obvious from their interactions on the forums.

My enthusiasm for the industry has also never tempered and I truly believe that a huge part of that is the continuation of education and support from UCEM that has guided through a successful BSc graduation to my current MBA studies. It’s infectious, I love my job, and I love the courses.

Lucy Winzer

Lucy Winzer,
BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Estate Surveyor, Pret A Manger, UK

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“I was already well aware of The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) before undertaking the degree in Estate Management (now Real Estate Management), having previously completed the Diploma in Surveying Practice. The degree was therefore the next logical step for me, and key to being able to obtain chartered status.

I was referred to CEM by both my employer and my training advisor at the Chartered Surveyors Training Trust, not long after commencing employment, both of whom considered the College to be the best place for surveying based qualifications.

Personally, the academic reputation and flexibility of the College were particularly attractive. The ability to work full time whilst learning was also paramount, acquiring the key technical skills alongside professional expertise. The importance of this academic and experienced based relationship became very apparent for me at the outset of the recession, with many of my peer surveyors who had studied full time courses struggling to find employers willing to take them on, whilst my fellow students and I had a choice of positions.

The ‘faceless’ nature of the course may be concerning to some students – however you are never really alone. The online student forums provide a fantastic way to talk to fellow students all over the world, asking those seemably stupid questions everyone wants to ask and bouncing assignments ideas off each other, steered ably by the tutors.

For me, as a commercial valuer, the most enjoyable subjects were the valuation topics. The material taught provided an exceptional technical base which was highly relevant to my work in practice, and combined with the experience gained throughout working during the degree, has led to success both professionally and academically.

Distance learning is certainly not the easy option; it requires dedication and perseverance. However, if you are willing to apply yourself, the rewards are great. It is only in hindsight that I have realised just how much the course has improved my employability. Undoubtedly, employers recognise that it requires a certain level of self discipline and aptitude to undertake the course, and consequently a person who succeeds is extremely well regarded within the profession.

I cannot recommend the degree more highly for fellow aspirational surveyors.”

Darren Bennett

Darren Bennett,
Foundation Degree Surveying Practice
Head of Business Development,
Prime Centrum, UK

“I first came across UCEM after applying for a new role with a major real estate company. At first, I was daunted by the workload, however the staff and support team at UCEM have made my learning journey a pleasure. The depth of their online learning materials has increased my knowledge of the Built Environment and considerably helped me in my day-to-day work.

I thought studying with an illness would hold me back, however with the help from UCEM’s Disability and Wellbeing Adviser and her team, I was able to finish my studies and graduated as the proud recipient of the UCEM Chapman Adkin Award.

The support structure at UCEM ensures no student should feel held back when overcoming a disability. I have since recommended UCEM to other work colleagues.”

Jesse Meek

Jesse Meek,
BSc (Hons) Construction Management
Head of Operations, Sovereign Housing, UK

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“I initially wanted to study with The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) as their degree is accredited with the CIOB. This accreditation guarantees that they are a reputable academic institution and trusted within the construction industry. CEM offered me the chance of studying for an accredited degree whilst continuing to earn a living. They also offer exciting networking events with industry professionals providing CPD.

After studying my BSc (Hons) Construction Management, I was so impressed with the College that I enrolled on the MBA Programme and will graduate from this in 2015. The degree programmes are designed for working people and I found that part-time study became a way of life! The VLE provides information at your fi ngertips, whether at a desk, on a train, using your laptop, your tablet or your smartphone. Being able to learn something new and then immediately implement it in the work place was great. The degrees don’t just teach you, they allow you to practice at the same time – solidify learning for the future.

My education with the College helped me to take on and achieve what at fi rst seemed an incredibly diffi cult challenge – to balance work and study. The quality of the study materials, the tutoring and the student support services all really helped me to improve my personal effectiveness and succeed in my studies. Rapid career promotion was the result of my studies and I would recommend CEM’s degrees to anyone working in the construction sector.”

Kirk Davidson

Kirk Davidson,
BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Graduate Surveyor, Bruton Knowles, UK

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“After 22 years in the Royal Navy, I started my second career by enrolling on the BSc (Hons) Estate Management (now Real Estate Management) course with The College of Estate Management. Having studied with a number of external learning providers, I was very impressed with how well organised the College’s programmes were. All courses are designed for remote study and are particularly well suited to the regular displacement of Servicemen. My qualifi cation is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors; the leading institute for property professionals worldwide.

The course is extremely well run, very interesting and relevant to the profession I am now working in. The tutors are very knowledgeable, patient and committed. Coursework deadlines are always advertised well in advance and the online resources, including the e-Library, are very comprehensive.”

Philip Y M Chen

Philip Y. M. Chen,
MSc Property Investment
Head of Property Development Management,
The Hong Kong Jockey Club, Hong Kong

“I chose to study with The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) because of its academic reputation in the property profession, and enrolled on a master’s degree to gain a deeper understanding of property development. The course, and my association with CEM, has been an absolute pleasure from the beginning. The quality of professional-led teaching, a first-class syllabus, depth and clarity of teaching materials and the immense support given has been much appreciated. I am based in Hong Kong, so online learning was most convenient; allowing flexibility of time and place. I hold a senior position in my company and the modular approach of the course enabled me to complete the course at a pace that allowed me to maintain my responsibilities and commitments at work.

I would strongly recommend the College to anyone who is looking for a quality postgraduate education and internationally recognised credentials for professional and career development.”

Martin Brogan

Martin Brogan,
BSc (Hons) Construction Management
Construction Consultant, Dimensions Information Technology, Saudi Arabia

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“Distance learning suited me as I work full-time and overseas; during the duration of the programme I’ve worked in the UK, Zambia and most recently Saudi Arabia.

No other programme offered such flexibility and affordability, while still being of the high academic calibre and providing CIOB accreditation. The broad scope of the BSc Construction Management allowed me to change job roles without the programme losing relevance – the BSc degrees offered by CEM (now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) are second to none.”

Ross Willan

Ross Willan,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying
Weapon Systems Operator (Electronic Warfare), The Royal Air Force, UK

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“I am currently serving in the RAF and wanted to gain a qualification that would help me find employment after I leave the forces. I chose to study with The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) as they offer undergraduate supported online learning, which has enabled me to continue with my full time role in the RAF while studying for my BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying. CEM are also registered with the Enhanced Learning Credits scheme, which has allowed me to claim financial support for my studies through the MOD.

My job sees me moving around a great deal and CEM has always ensured that my examination centres have suited my needs wherever I have been located. I found the studies extremely well organised and flexible; for instance having all the study materials and assignments at the start of the year has meant that I could effectively use periods where I’ve had more spare time to get ahead. The ability to request extensions of time for assignments has also been useful to me in managing a busy workload.

Although I do not work in the construction industry, I found the pace and level of the studies initially enabled me to grasp the basics that I’m sure many who do work in the business take for granted. The Virtual Learning Environment and particularly the assignment discussion forums also enabled those with a greater level of knowledge and experience to share this with others.

My ambition is to achieve chartered status as a Quantity Surveyor. CEM’s accreditation with RICS has provided me with the first step to achieving this goal. I will also hold a degree from a recognised establishment within the construction sector which will hopefully help me find an employer and help me with the next steps.”

Steve Simms

Steve Simms, BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Corporate & Commercial Valuations Surveyor, Santander UK Plc, UK

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“After a number of years’ experience in the surveying industry, in 2009 I made a serious commitment to seek a career as a Chartered Surveyor and I began to look for ways to obtain RICS accredited qualifications without having to leave my job or move away from home.

With these criteria in mind I looked into enrolment with The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) and was pleasantly surprised to find that their long distance diplomas and degrees were industry recognised and world-renowned.

In a nutshell, CEM provides and facilitates a realistic and achievable route to pursuing a career in surveying and becoming a member of the RICS (MRICS). Their methods of online tuition provided me with the tools to teach myself, enhance my skills, and be confident in my own knowledge base. Although a ‘long distance’ course, the online discussion forums allowed for constant close contact and discussion throughout my structured learning programme.

As someone who wouldn’t describe themselves as a natural academic, CEM has provided me with a fantastic service. I am very aware that, without the tuition and support supplied by CEM, these aspirations would have been very difficult to realise. The decision to enrol was life changing and has enabled me to progress my career in unfathomable directions. If I could pass on one comment to prospective students it would be – ‘however daunting a diploma or degree may sound, dedicate the time and you can do it!’”

Chantal Havelock

Chantal Havelock,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying
Quantity Surveyor, Project Planning and Implementation Division, Ministry of Land Use and Housing, Seychelles

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“After graduating with a City & Guilds Advanced Diploma in Construction, I wanted to continue my studies with a bachelor’s degree. As I was about to become a mother, I found the option of studying with The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) via supported online learning very appealing. I had to organise my learning schedule to cater for my family and work and it took a lot of sacrifice – however it was all worth it. I have not missed a day in the life of my daughter and I am still at work and still have my family.

Being an international student, I had to depend a lot on the Virtual Learning Environment as there are limited resources available in my country. I am grateful to the College for the vast amount of educational resources they provided, without those I would not have passed.

Work colleagues saw me as an inspiration since I was amongst the first Seychellois to graduate from a supported online learning degree within the construction field. I see myself as an ambassador for CEM in my country and have recommended the College to colleagues and friends.”

Pok Kam

Pok Kam,
BSc (Hons) Construction Management
Project Officer, Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden (2009-2011), Hong Kong

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“I chose to study with The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) because of its global reputation and I made the right choice. Aside from the quality of the study materials, I was particularly impressed by the support structure CEM offered. The Virtual Learning Environment provided a hub for two-way communications, logistic support, problem-solving, discussions, questions and the sharing of experiences. The Project Management module was a particular highlight; those working towards a career in Project Management would agree that its state-of-the-art course contents will have life-long use.”

Wonder Maverudze

Wonder Maverudze,
BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Property Administrator, Zimre Property Investment Limited, Zimbabwe

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“I regard The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) as ‘a game changer’ as it provided the education I needed in helping me fulfil my ambition of a career in real estate. CEM is internationally recognised, which means I can develop my career locally and also work abroad. The fl exibility of online learning meant I was able to balance study with other commitments. In 2011 I was relocated, and frequently travelled to South Africa, however this did not impact on my studies. My course also provided practical learning skills and I was able to apply newly learnt concepts and techniques at work. I would strongly recommend supported online learning with CEM to anyone considering a real estate related course.”

Sara Kelleher

Sara Kelleher,
BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Surveying Executive, Jones Lang LaSalle

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“I chose The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) as an alternative to the usual campus lifestyle offered by the majority of full time degree courses. I currently work full time and needed the flexibility that CEM offers. Also, by working for a large property management company I am gaining experience at the same time as doing my degree. CEM offered the academic and professional quality that I required, and no other academic provider was able to match what they offered.

I work in retail management; therefore the BSc (Hons) Estate Management was perfect for me with exposure to valuations, finance, law and construction. The course is relevant to my work but I also wanted to study the degree to develop and enhance my general understanding of the property industry.

There are huge commitments to be made when taking online learning courses, but CEM has a great support structure, and the benefi ts of completing the course are enormous, from both a career-enhancing and financial perspective. I also love the fact I can work at my own pace and go over the lectures again if there is something I don’t understand.

By the end of the degree, because of my experience, I will be able to complete my APC in one year, which means I can get RICS Membership after one year of study. I would recommend CEM to all people from any walk of life. So long as you are 100% committed to your studies, with the help of CEM you will certainly learn a lot and enjoy it too. I am hopeful that once qualifi ed there will be a position of Surveyor for me with my current company – however with my degree the world is my oyster.”

Kirsty Huxtable

Kirsty Huxtable,
MBA Real Estate and Construction Management
Project Manager, Fordingbridge plc, UK

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“I chose to study at The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) as it is internationally recognised as the place to gain professionally accredited construction sector qualifi cations. I always had access to great support from academic staff at all levels and my studies with CEM have completely changed the way I think, for the better.

My time at CEM (now UCEM) has seen a rich interweaving of knowledge between the course modules and my every day work, creating an enhanced understanding of all aspects of both environments. Covering a huge breadth of business subjects, the course has developed my analytical skills, enabling me to excel at gathering and interpreting large amounts of new information to form an overview of a situation, understand its constituent parts and to identify solutions and conclusions.

My MBA has been a great and challenging journey, one that has helped me develop into a professional and provided me with a qualifi cation from an internationally recognised and respected College.

My course material was well structured with additional podcasts, webinars and videos for a range of learning styles. I would highly recommend the course to others.”

Kabo Musyani

Kabo Musyani,
BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying
Senior Quantity Surveyor, Peter Richards and Partners International, Zambia

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“The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) was recommended to me by both a colleague and a friend. They both considered CEM to be the best place to study for surveying-based professional qualifi cations whilst working at the same time. The College has enabled me to obtain an RICS accredited academic qualification from an institution regarded by many within the sector as being the best. The tuition is excellent and is delivered by experts and practicing professionals.

The flexibility of the payment terms for overseas students, coupled with the level of academic support, really suited my need for a value-for-money study route, which would also save me time compared with other learning options. After I completed the Diploma in Surveying Practice, I had no hesitation in enrolling on another RICS accredited degree with CEM and I chose the BSc (Hons) Quantity Surveying.

During my study and since graduating, I have applied the vast majority of what I learnt in my working environment. My qualifications have increased my job opportunities in Zambia and South Africa, and have opened the door to professional registration with the Surveyors Institute of Zambia, South African Council for the Quantity Surveying Profession and Chartered Membership of the RICS.

I would strongly recommend the College to anyone considering a construction related course. CEM, the course and the experience, has changed the path of my life and I am looking to continue my studies with a postgraduate course.”

Eleanor Newton

Eleanor Newton,
BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Senior Surveyor, Workman LLP, UK

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“The layout of the CEM (now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) Virtual Learning Environment is very inviting, and I particularly like the fact that you can tick tasks off as you go, making it easier to keep track of whether you are up-to-date. So far I have encountered numerous different course materials, and this variety allows you to break each module down into manageable chunks.

Being able to speak to other people on the course through the forum reminds you that you are not alone, even though the course is based on long-distance learning. So far, I have been impressed by the support network, both internal and from other students.

I must admit, I have had to adjust my lifestyle since the start of the course, and a great degree of selfdiscipline is required to open up textbooks after the commute home, whilst still trying to keep my horse in competition fi tness. However, if making a few sacrifices is the price to pay for the opportunity to obtain a degree, I can live with that! It is still early days, but I can honestly say that I am pleased with my decision to read a degree in BSc (Hons) Estate Management with The College of Estate Management and look forward to furthering my knowledge and potential for career progression over the next four years.”

Pete Ewbank

Pete Ewbank,
BSc (Hons) Building Surveying
Senior Building Surveyor, Fairhurst Estates Ltd, UK

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“The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) offered a way of gaining an RICS/CIOB accredited degree via supported online learning, in my own time and around full time work commitments. This method of learning was perfect for me and the fees were also very reasonable, which was important as the course was self-funded.

The tutors and support staff were always very helpful and informative, and always at the end of an email or phone call to help. The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is also a great tool for communicating with other students and tutors when studying for assignments and revising for exams. I used the VLE more than I thought I would, to discuss ideas and theories with other students, to obtain clarification from tutors on assignment queries, and also to generally communicate with other people who were in the same boat as me. I found the VLE to be very useful and would defi nitely recommend it to all future students.

Due to the flexibility and structure of courses, I would definitely consider an additional course and recommend CEM to others considering undertaking a professional, construction related degree, who may be restricted by full time work constraints and personal commitments.

Gaining the BSc (Hons) Building Surveying is by far the most valuable qualifi cation I have achieved to date and has since helped me to secure a more senior role, become involved in larger construction projects and also enrol onto the RICS APC to fulfil my ultimate achievement in becoming a Chartered Surveyor. I thank CEM for the help and support in achieving this goal.”

Lynette Kashorda

Lynette Kashorda
BSc (Hons) Estate Management

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“Throughout my course I have been incredibly impressed with the constant support and guidance provided by the course administrators, and knowledgeable and empathetic tutors. My course encouraged me to be self-disciplined and even though it was challenging at times, I was determined to complete it. The College of Estate Management (now UCEM) is recognised internationally and I am confident of a bright and promising future ahead.”

Michael Sacks

Michael Sacks,
BSc (Hons) Estate Management
Director, Sequre Property Investment, UK

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“I chose The College of Estate Management (CEM, now UCEM, University College of Estate Management) as an alternative to the usual campus lifestyle offered by the majority of degree courses. I wanted to work, earn money and, most importantly, gain experience at the same time as doing my degree. CEM offered the academic and professional quality that I required, and no other academic provider was able to match their offering.

Choosing to study with CEM was probably the best decision of my life. I’m now years ahead of my friends who all went down the traditional university routes, both fi nancially and experience-wise. I would say that online learning is suitable for people who have a hard-working mentality and who can organise themselves suffi ciently; skill sets that are extremely useful in professional life.

I knew that the key areas I was interested in were investment and development, with a level of exposure to valuations, fi nance, law and construction. At the time I was working in a mixture of property development and investment. The course was relevant to my work but I also wanted to study the degree to develop and enhance my general understanding of the property industry.

I knew that if ever I did struggle with something specifi c then I had the relevant email addresses and contact numbers for all of my tutors. I did receive some fi nancial support from my employer and they gave me study time in work hours. Although they didn’t actively help me with my studies there was always someone around at work who could give me another perspective if I had a specific question.

The online learning degree at CEM has allowed me to develop my career and to get a good education at the same time. There are huge commitments to be made when taking online learning courses, but CEM has a great support structure, and the benefi ts of completing the course are enormous, from both a career-enhancing and fi nancial perspective.

I really believe that it’s because I studied with the College that I‘m streets ahead of most people my age. I’m already working on extremely exciting projects and the future is bright. I also believe that my chances of securing new job opportunities and developing my career are excellent, because of the extra experience I gained while I was studying for my degree.

I can’t emphasise enough how much I recommend CEM to all people from any walk of life. I’m only young but unlike many other people my age that have a degree I have no university debts.”