Be inspired, study Real Estate at Ulster.
Are you interested in the sourcing, financial analysis, execution of property acquisitions and developments? What are the strategies and decision-making processes for real estate investment, finance and development? How can you successfully manage a real estate portfolio? How do you underwrite and undertake the due diligence of various investment and development opportunities?
The MSc Real Estate is designed for those graduates with a non-property related degree who wish to cross over to the real estate discipline. The programme is for anyone with an interest in the workings of real estate markets and property businesses. Core areas include development and investment appraisal, economics, sustainability, asset management, valuation, international real estate, land and housing market analysis. Graduates will gain the key skills necessary to embark across a wider range of employment opportunities at the local, national and international levels.
The unique qualities which this programme will offer include integrating concepts in finance, investment and valuation with an understanding of the dynamics of property and capital markets. It will provide students with the capacity, skills and knowledge to provide analytical solutions within the property business environment.
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About this course
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The rationale of the Master's Programme in Real Estate is to provide an intensive postgraduate educational opportunity for able and motivated graduates wishing to be real estate professionals by making a career in property at local, national or international level. The subject matter is presented with an international perspective to reflect the increasingly strong role of property in today’s global business economy and to be of relevance to a career incorporating multinational organisations operating particularly in the UK, Europe, UAE, North America and Asia.
The overarching aim of this master's programme is to facilitate the personal and intellectual capacity of full time and part time students and to produce graduates with the knowledge and skills appropriate to the understanding and management of property based on the investment, pricing and financing of real estate assets. The unique qualities which this programme will offer include integrating concepts in finance, investment and valuation with an understanding of the dynamics of land and property markets. It will provide students with the capacity, skills and knowledge to provide analytical solutions within the property business environment.
The programme will also provide for the integration of theory and practice in real estate finance, investment and development appraisal methodologies. The key areas of real estate asset pricing and risk analysis, relevant to the commercial real estate industry, banks and institutional investors, are where the research interests of the core teaching group are closely related to the delivery of the programme. The multidisciplinary nature of the programme will use expertise from professional practice to develop thematic approaches to asset pricing, valuation, risk analysis, finance and investment fund management. Particular emphasis will focus on real estate performance, land and housing markets and the impacts of changes in the economy on yields, rental values, development activity, real estate investment returns, asset management and pricing of multi-asset portfolios.
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) as the professional body plays a very significant role in advising and accrediting property related programmes within the School. This MSc in Real Estate is accredited by the RICS for both full-time and part-time modes of delivery.
This is a full-time, one year (12 month) programme, delivered across three semesters. For students commencing in January, the programme is delivered in three semesters across two academic years.
- September 2018
- January 2019
In the full time mode, students take four 15-credit modules per semester and each module equates to a student effort of 150 hours, made up of direct contact hours (i.e. that delivered in the classroom) and the remainder as independent study time which would involve reading books, journals and researching for coursework etc. The optional Dissertation module carries 60 credit points, equivalent to 600 total hours of student learning on research and project design, methodology and data analysis, practical skills and report preparation. The optional Real Estate Work Based Project Module (60 credits) is designed as an alternative to the Dissertation module to provide a 3 month work internship for students with no prior real estate industry experience, who then produce a work diary and report related to their work experience.
On average the contact time per week for each module will be 5 hours (with a mix of lectures and tutorials) i.e. 5 hours x 4 modules = 20 contact hours. This varies in some modules but will never be more than 5 hours per week per module. Usually these contact hours are spread across a minimum of 2-3 days in the full time mode across 12 weeks per semester.
- September 2018
- January 2019
Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.
Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.
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Development Appraisal and Regeneration
This module is designed to provide students with an understanding of the planning and property development process in context of sustainable urban regeneration, a contemporary and priority agenda in cities. The module provides the students with knowledge of key issues related to mixed use developments and the deliverability of sustainability principles within an urban regeneration context. This module addresses the policy objectives related to sustainable communities and low carbon growth in cities.
Risk Management Practices
The objective of the module is to provide students with a broad understanding of the general principles of risk in business, the key risks encountered by organisations operating within the financial services industry, the influence of corporate governance, regulation and codes of conduct, and the approaches typically used to identify, reduce and manage specific aspects of risk. The module will extensively assess previous risk events to both illustrate previous deficiencies and to identify the potential for future enhancements to risk management.
Real Estate Investment Analysis
This module considers the financial characteristics of investment and examines real estate from the point of view as a single asset or held within a portfolio of assets. It identifies the processes, procedures and regulatory framework necessary to value commercial real estate investments and cash flow appraisals.
Real Estate Asset Management
This module aims to foster a deep understanding of the fundamental challenges and opportunities presented by investment and occupational property assets. It adopts an approach of proactive asset management and seeks to equip the students with skills to add value to real estate assets and to prepare the student for employment in management of the principal events in the life cycle of property assets.
International Real Estate Markets
The module on International Real Estate Markets will provide students with the necessary knowledge of market dynamics in developed and emerging investment markets. The module will enable students to develop a sound knowledge of workings of the global market in terms of the participants in the market, the type of asset in which they invest, and the rationale behind their investment strategy.
Real Estate Economics
This module introduces students to a range of property market data in relation to contemporaneous issues facing property professionals. Students are exposed to the key issues facing property development and provision and are challenged with developing real-life appraisals. The module provides students with the core concepts required to understand the wide spectrum of real estate. This will enable the student to think through the problem and to propose possible strategies to tackle the issues.
Real Estate Valuation
This module introduces students to the challenges of valuing property for investment and development purposes. It provides students with a comprehensive overview of key valuation theory, practice and techniques both traditional and contemporary. It focuses specifically on the critical understanding of the different valuation techniques and their applications. The module will also develop student understanding of the regulatory market within which real estate valuations and appraisals are conducted.
Sustainable Real Estate
This module introduces students to the challenges facing the real estate sector in responding to the sustainability agenda. It focuses specifically on developing critical appraisal skills to enable students to make informed decisions regarding assessing the sustainability of projects, buildings, investment decisions and operational/management activities.
Real Estate Work Based Project
This module is optional
The real estate work-based project module integrates and further develops the knowledge and skills acquired within the taught element of the programme. The module specifically allows the student to apply the knowledge and skills acquired to undertake a project relevant to the real estate sector and of interest to the student.
This module is optional
The dissertation module integrates and further develops the knowledge and skills acquired within the taught element of the programme. The module specifically allows the students to apply knowledge and skills acquired to undertake a research dissertation investigating a topic relevant to the real estate industry and of interest to the student. The dissertation topic will vary, depending on the interests of the student and expertise of staff.
We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.
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(a) Applicants must have gained an Honours or non-Honours degree from a University of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, or from a recognised national awarding body, or from an institution of another country which is recognised as being of an equivalent standard; or
(b) an equivalent standard in a Postgraduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate or an approved professional or other qualification; and
(c) provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English (GCSE grade C or equivalent);
As an alternative to (a) or (b) and/or (c) in exceptional circumstances, where an individual has substantial and significant experiential learning, a portfolio of written evidence demonstrating the meeting of graduate qualities (including subject-specific outcomes, as determined by the Course Committee) may be considered as an alternative entrance route.
Evidence used to demonstrate graduate qualities may not be used for exemption against modules within the programme.
This is a linked Postgraduate Certificate/Postgraduate Diploma/Master’s programme. Students will register on the Postgraduate Certificate. Successful students will be permitted automatic progression through each stage of the programme to Master’s level. Alternatively, students who have successfully completed the Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma stages may exit the programme with the appropriate award.
Prior certificated or evidence from the accreditation of prior experiential learning may be accepted as exempting candidates from part of the programme provided that they shall register as students of the University for modules amounting to at least the final third of the credit value of the award at the highest level in respect of a Master’s award and at least 50% of the credit value of the award in respect of the Postgraduate Diploma or Postgraduate Certificate award.
English Language Requirements
English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.
Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.
Teaching and learning assessment
The Real Estate programme is delivered via a variety of lectures, seminars, computer tutorials, educational videos, practical exercises and study visits. Staff are encouraged to vary their teaching styles and facilitate small group teaching or break-out seminars as much as possible. Class sizes are kept small to ensure that students benefit from one-to-one support and tutorage. Modules are assessed through a mix/combination of coursework, examinations or practical exercises depending on the skills being assessed.
Exemptions and transferability
With regard to transferring to and from the course and claiming exemption for completed modules, the University has developed a formal procedure, which allows recognition through the award of credit for previous modules that have been successfully completed. Therefore, modules passed in respect of other qualifications awarded by the University or by another university or other educational institution, or evidence from the accreditation of prior experiential learning, may be accepted as exempting candidates from part of the programme provided that they shall register as students of the University for modules amounting to at least the final 50% of the credit value of the award at the highest level.
Careers & opportunities
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The programme is designed to provide a wide range of career opportunities for student choice. Employers include major real estate surveying firms, property investment and development companies, financial institutions, specialist research department/companies, governments and other public sector organisations around the world.
Real Estate professionals provide business advice on the purchase, sale, leasing and acquisition of commercial real estate including management of real estate portfolios to maximise the value of real estate as an asset class. Real estate players are able to creatively apply technical, legal and economic knowledge to deliver on a stakeholder’s property objectives and meet current business needs and future strategy.
This course is designed to prepare graduates for future employment in a number of the RICS APC Pathways, which include:
- Commercial Property Practice
- Residential Property Practice
Accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) for the purpose of graduate membership.
Fees and funding
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Fees (total cost)
Important notice - fees information
Fees illustrated are based on 18/19 entry and are subject to an annual increase. Correct at the time of publishing. Terms and conditions apply. Additional mandatory costs are highlighted where they are known in advance. There are other costs associated with university study.
Visit our Fees pages for full details of fees
- Northern Ireland & EU:
- £13,680.00 Scholarships available
Where the postgraduate course selected offers multiple awards (e.g. PG Cert, PG Dip, Master’s), please note that the price displayed is for the complete master’s programme. Postgraduate certificates and diplomas are charged at a pro-rata basis. Find out more
Scholarships, awards and prizes
The top two students (and part time equivalent) qualify for the Real Estate Excellence Awards each year. These awards are sponsored by the real estate industry and are designed to provide recognition to the students for their hard work and commitment to their studies.
Additional mandatory costs
There will be an optional field trip prior to the start of Semester Two. The field trip location will vary depending on the number of students taking the course and the availability of industry experts. The cost of a field trip, which must be budgeted separately will be in the region of £750 - £1,000 depending on location.
Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.
Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.
We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.
There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.
Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.
Please contact the course team for more information.
Dr Jasmine Lay-Cheng Lim
Programme Director MSc Real Estate
For more information visit
Name - Elizabeth O’Hara Year Graduated - 2016
Current Position - Graduate Surveyor, Industrial, Cushman and Wakefield, Ireland
I had previously completed a degree in Economics and Geography at University College Dublin.
Why did you choose postgraduate study at Ulster?
Ulster, offered me coming from a non property related degree to cross over to the real estate discipline. Studying at Ulster would also allow me to explore the city of Belfast and meet new people.
How has your postgraduate course at Ulster enhanced your career?
The Real Estate MSc course at Ulster has enhanced my prospects greatly. I am due to take up employment with a highly regarded commercial property company in Dublin on completion of the course as a Graduate Surveyor. Ulster Real Estate, MSc being RICS accredited will allow me to fulfill my future goal of completing my APC and becoming a chartered surveyor.
What has been the best thing about your course?(e.g. quality of teaching, support received, flexible delivery, links with industry, networking opportunities)
The support given throughout the course was next to none. The ability and drive to keep the course current and the exposure to the key players/professionals from the industry from day one, highlights the reputation the course has throughout the property industry. When I go out into industry, I feel I will be well prepared from an academic and business perspective.
What skills and knowledge have you gained?
Core module helped me gain an understanding of the development and investment appraisal, sustainability, asset management, valuation, international real estate. Giving me an excellent grounding in the knowledge needed to embark on my career within the property industry.
How did you find balancing work, family and study?
Despite the MSc being highly work demanding, I was able to keep up my part time job. The lecturers were able to be somewhat flexible in regards to the delivery of modules allowing me to balance my work, family and study life.