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Real Estate - PgCert/PgDip/MSc

Be inspired, study Real Estate at Ulster.

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Overview

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Be inspired, study Real Estate at Ulster.

Summary

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

In this section

About

This is a linked programme of awards leading to a Postgraduate Certificate/Diploma or an MSc in Real Estate. The rationale is to provide an intensive postgraduate educational opportunity for ambitious 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 management, 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 management, valuation, risk analysis, development 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, 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. The course also meets the licencing requirements of the Property Services Regulatory Authority (PSRA) in the Republic of Ireland.

The full-time offers two points of entry in each academic year: September and January. For the full time September intake, the degree will normally be completed in three semesters across a single academic year. For the full time January intake, the degree will normally be completed in three semesters but across two academic years.

FOR THE SEPTEMBER FULL TIME INTAKE, THE SEQUENCE OF MODULES ARE AS FOLLOWS:

Semester one of the FT study

4 Compulsory Modules:

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 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.

Semester two of the FT study

4 Compulsory Modules -

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.

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.

Semester three of the FT study

1 Optional Module:

Real Estate Work Based Project; 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.

or

Dissertation

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.

FOR THE JANUARY FULL TIME INTAKE*, THE SEQUENCE OF MODULES ARE AS FOLLOWS:

First Semester of Year 1 FT study

4 Compulsory Modules:

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.

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.

Second Semester of Year 2 FT study

4 Compulsory Modules:

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 Asset Management - 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.

Third Semester of Year 2 FT study

1 Optional Module:

Real Estate Work Based Project - 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.

or

Dissertation - The January full time intake students will take the scheduled semester two modules (Development Appraisal and Regeneration; Risk Management Practices; Real Estate Investment Analysis; International Real Estate Markets) during their first semester of study and the remaining modules (Real Estate Economics; Real Estate Valuation; Sustainable Real Estate; Real Estate Asset Management) in their second semester of study. They will progress onto the Masters Module (Real Estate Work Based Project; or Dissertation) during their third semester of study in the Spring semester in their second year of the course.

* Subject to interview or relevant industry/academic experience

Attendance

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.

Start dates

  • September 2019
  • January 2020

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.

Start dates

  • September 2019
  • January 2020
How to apply

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Content

The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.

Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:

- the relevant generic national Qualification Descriptor

- the applicable Subject Benchmark Statement

- the requirements of any professional, regulatory, statutory and accrediting bodies.

Attendance and Independent Study

As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days and periods of attendance will be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.

Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.

The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.

Postgraduate Master’s courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.

Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.

Assessment

Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be a combination of examination and coursework but may also be only one of these methods. Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.

Normally, a module will have 4 learning outcomes, and no more than 2 items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.

Calculation of the Final Award

The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6, (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).

Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Master’s degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.

All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Master’s degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.

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.

Academic profile

The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (18%) or Lecturers (57%).

We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.

The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.

Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.

Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.

Entry conditions

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.

In this section

Entry Requirements

(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 4 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.

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

In this section

Career options

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
  • Valuation.

Professional recognition

Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)

Accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) for the purpose of graduate membership.

Apply

How to apply Request a prospectus

Applications to our postgraduate courses are made through the University’s online application system.

Start dates

  • September 2019
  • January 2020

Fees and funding

In this section

Fees (total cost)

Important notice - fees information Fees illustrated are based on 19/20 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:
£5,900.00

International:
£14,060.00  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 annual 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. There is also a Knight Frank Scholarship award of a £1,000 for full study mode on a competitve application form basis. The candidate upon completion of the taught modules may qualify for a 3 months summer internship in Dublin.

Additional mandatory costs

There will be a 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.

Disclaimer

  1. The University endeavours to deliver courses and programmes of study in accordance with the description set out in this prospectus. The University’s prospectus is produced at the earliest possible date in order to provide maximum assistance to individuals considering applying for a course of study offered by the University. The University makes every effort to ensure that the information contained in the prospectus is accurate but it is possible that some changes will occur between the date of printing and the start of the academic year to which it relates. Please note that the University’s website is the most up-to-date source of information regarding courses and facilities and we strongly recommend that you always visit the website before making any commitments.
  2. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  3. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
  4. The University does not accept responsibility (other than through the negligence of the University, its staff or agents), for the consequences of any modification or cancellation of any course, or part of a course, offered by the University but will take into consideration the effects on individual students and seek to minimise the impact of such effects where reasonably practicable.
  5. The University cannot accept any liability for disruption to its provision of educational or other services caused by circumstances beyond its control, but the University will take all reasonable steps to minimise the resultant disruption to such services.

Testimonials

Name - Elizabeth O’Hara Year Graduated - 2016

Current Position - Graduate Surveyor, Industrial, Cushman and Wakefield, Ireland

Background

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.