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Construction Law and Practice


School - School of the Built Environment

Subject area - Built Environment

Start Date(s): September


LLM- two years distance learning

PgDip- one year and four months distance learning 

PgCert- eight months distance learning

Fees 2018-19:

2019-20 fees will be displayed shortly.

Distance Learning - £1,332 per 30 credit module

In Brief:

  • RICS accredited
  • Combine study and your career with our innovative distance learning course
  • Operate effectively and accurately in areas of construction law
  • International students can apply

Course Summary

Construction law and practice affects stakeholders working across the international construction sector. This course will provide you with the legal knowledge and commercial awareness required to perform your current role more effectively or to move into a specialist role in construction law.

You will examine the responsibilities of employers, contractors and construction professionals together with the problems raised by the complexities of construction, design liability and insurance. Construction contracts and the law underpinning them, together with a wide range of standard form contracts  are  studied to assess and manage risk. You will also study the complex issues arising from the multiparty nature of the construction process and the particular challenges of international construction, together with the uncertainties that can arise from the passage of time and latent defects.

The full masters award is accredited by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), allowing exemption from their academic entry requirements, as well as ensuring that you are educated to the highest industry standards.

There is also an MSc route available for this course.

Awards and Accreditation

Course Details

Learn how to:

  • Conduct and communicate legal analysis with confidence and accuracy in relation to any aspect of mainstream professional construction practice
  • Examine construction practice from a legal perspective, to include detailed consideration of construction contracts, tortious and multi-party liability, insurance, dispute resolution, procurement, and the environment
  • Assist individuals in taking effective roles in specialist construction law departments or firms
  • Promote high quality research in areas of law relating to construction, including a high level of legal analysis.

Course Structure

This course is studied part-time by distance learning.  Admission onto the course is in September.

Distance learning study:

A 30 credit taught module is studied in each semester for the first sixteen months.  Assessment of these modules is driven by real-world problems aligned to your workplace and job role.  Teaching is based around a virtual learning environment supported by interactive online sessions.  In the final two semesters you undertake a dissertation worth 60 credits which is also delivered online and incorporates extensive tutor engagement and support.

-Common law underpinning construction contracts
-Source, rationale and nature of key terms (Scope, cost, quality, time, variation)
-Contract formation
-Implication of terms
-Mistake, frustration, breach, causation and loss
-Operation and administration of Standard Form Contracts (SFCs)
-Comparison between SFCs
-Consideration of key terms in SFCs
-Role of the Contract Administrator
-Impact of the industry specific legislation on construction contract
-Legal complexities and commercial risks
-Design liability
-Contribution and contributory negligence
-Dispute resolution procedures
-Management of dispute resolution procedures
-Statutory adjudication in the UK
-Decision drafting
You will then need to complete your Dissertation, LLM students complete a distinct LLM dissertation module and will typically have access to legal practitioner supervisors active in industry.

This module allows you to develop a research proposal with clear aims and objectives related to your study. The dissertation will typically adopt a black letter law approach, although other methodologies can be used if justifiable. You will undertake critical analysis of existing research and engage in various forms of recognised research in order to produce a sustained, sophisticated, and logical argument in the form of a written dissertation.

Entry Requirements

  • A second class undergraduate honours qualifying law degree, or
  • A recognised appropriate professional legal qualification

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

English Language Requirements

International students must provide evidence of proficiency in English - IELTS 6.5 with no band below 5.5 or an equivalent qualification are proof of this.

Applicant profile

The course allows you to build on current knowledge and experience by aligning learning to real-world problems you may face in your workplace or job role, therefore the course is ideally suited to practising professionals.  

The LLM route of this course requires a qualifying law degree or professional legal qualification.

Built Environment professionals including surveyors, managers, engineers and architects may be interested in the MSc route.

Fees 2019-20

Fees for entry in 2019 will be displayed shortly.

Fees 2018-19

Type of StudyFee
Distance Learning£1,332 per 30 credit module
International Distance Learning£1,755 per 30 credit module

Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Scholarships and Bursaries

For more information please see our funding section.


To help you fit your studies around your work, the course is taught by distance learning. This takes the form of an online learning environment supplemented by constant support from experienced tutors.

During your studies, you’ll log on for weekly online tutorials, which will be led by tutors and provide the opportunity for interaction with your fellow students. These tutorials are archived in case you miss one. Learning is designed to equip you for the real-world problems that you are likely to meet in your job.


You will be assessed through:
  • Written coursework (100%)
  • Continuous informal assessment by your tutors

Postgraduate Staff Profile

The Course Director, Paul Tracey is a dual qualified Chartered Quantity Surveyor with a degree in law and 30 years of experience of challenging construction projects around the World.

As an experienced Claims Manager and Expert Witness, with extensive international experience on high value international construction projects, Paul has been instructed on complex disputes in the following sectors: building, manufacturing, nuclear, offshore, oil and gas, petrochemical, power, process, rail, renewables, water and wastewater.

Paul’s research interests are in respect of influence of national culture on the outcome of time and money claims around the World.


Career Prospects

On this course, you’ll gain the legal knowledge you’ll need to perform your current role more effectively or to move into a new role relating to construction law. Construction law and practice affects professionals throughout the construction industry. Graduates of this course have included surveyors, architects, engineers, planners, construction managers, financial managers, solicitors and lawyers.

Alumni Profile

I graduated from the University of Salford’s Construction Law and Practice Masters programme in 2014. I initially joined the programme to support my (previous) role as contractors’ Quantity Surveyor – the distance-learning format worked well alongside my day job. The course quickly increased my knowledge in construction law, changed the way I thought about practical problems, and provided leverage for a career change to a more specialist role. I now work as a claims consultant and expert witness for a major global consultancy in the Middle East, advising clients, contractors, and specialists on contentious issues across the region. I was also lucky enough to publish research undertaken for the Masters’ dissertation in a leading construction law journal. Overall, the Masters programme has been transformative for my career, and I’d highly recommend anybody interested in construction contracts, law or related issues to give it a try.

Alan Whaley Bsc (Hons) Dip. (Adj) APA LL.M MRICS MCIOB FCIArb
Contracts and Disputes Manager
Mace International Ltd.

Links with Industry

The School of the Built Environment enjoys excellent links with the local, national and international construction industry.  This course meets the needs of the industry by providing formal postgraduate level education for built environment professionals in the vital and complex area of construction law. Guest lecturers from industry with expertise in relevant areas are invited to give lectures throughout the duration of the course.

Further Study

The School of the Built Environment has an exciting and vibrant research community engaged in advanced research in the built environment, please see and for more information.

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