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About the course

Current standards place considerable value on the sustainability, performance and comfort of new building developments. As resource costs continue to rise and client expectations on design, comfort and energy features change; the industry will look to graduates with specialist design skills and a strong working knowledge of building simulation, acoustic performance and energy assessment to help bring new projects to life.

To help you fill this industry need, our master’s course in advanced building simulation places a unique emphasis on the computer simulation of acoustic and thermal performance. You will leave the course with the practical skills required to design a high performance building and confidently consult on all aspects of its technical specifications.

Modules cover a range of relevant subjects, with a choice of optional modules enabling you to tailor the curriculum to your own unique aspirations and interests. Early modules introduce the concept of sustainable building design and explore how the form, fabric, and equipment of a building affect its environmental impact. This learning will be reinforced as you take part in a live design project.

Modules on the computer simulation of thermal and acoustic performance will see you working with industry-standard software packages and algorithms. This also links into the building assessment module, where you will learn how globally recognised assessment methods like BREEAM and LEED help to inform the sustainable design process and benchmark success. Graduates will leave the course with BREEAM accreditation.

Although the BREEAM Accredited Graduate course is free to study, students are required to pay for the course certificate if they are successful in achieving the qualification. 

You’ll also benefit from the teaching team’s extensive industry links. These links have been built over many years of delivering courses accredited by professional organisations (e.g. CIAT, CIOB, SBID and CABE). Practitioners from a cross-section of the built environment industry regularly contribute to the academic process by providing real-world projects, guest lectures, mentoring sessions and site visits.

This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities
You can apply direct to Solent University for this course.
Apply direct
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies
You can study this course part-time.
Part time option

Students use industry-standard tools and software packages to assess building performance and test building specifications.

What does this course lead to?

Building standards are constantly under review and the industry is always striving to create buildings with higher efficiency specifications. Graduates of this course will be in an excellent position to help drive this progress.

Suitable roles for graduates include: sustainability consultant, thermal and sound specialist, BIM developer, energy consultant, acoustics consultant and architectural engineering.

Graduates will also be well placed to carry out academic research that contributes to a PhD.

Who is this course for?

This innovative course is designed to appeal to candidates from a wide range of built-environment related disciplines. The curriculum is designed to be creative and inclusive, and provides the opportunity to undertake either a dissertation of a technical nature or a design-based final major project.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2020/21 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £8,460
International full-time fees: £14,300
UK, EU and Channel Island part-time fees: £4,230 per year
International part-time fees: Students from outside the EU are usually unable to obtain a visa for part-time study. Please visit our visas and immigration page for more information.

Students in receipt of a postgraduate loan from the Student Loan Company are typically able to pay their tuition fees via instalments.

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Other costs

The 2020/21 other costs are not yet available. For guidance, previous other costs have been:

Students are expected to have access to a personal computer or laptop. Students are required to install an IES student license (annual cost of £50 as of April 2017) to support their studies. Further information is available here.

Although the BREEAM AG course is free to study, students are required to pay for the course certificate if they are successful in achieving the qualification. As of 2016, the cost of the certificate is £30.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

For graduates in 2020, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket was £15 in 2019, but this fee is subject to change for future years. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

An honours degree at 2:2 or higher in a related discipline.

  • Applicants with relevant industry experience may be considered.
  • Applicants may also be required to send a portfolio and may be contacted for an interview either face to face or through Skype.
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.
  • For further information about UK, EU and international qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS 6.0 with no component score below 5.5
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.


Solent alumni save up to 50% on their tuition fees

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Applications for postgraduate courses can be made at any time prior to the start of the course. However, we strongly recommend you apply at your earliest convenience.

Please ensure you upload the following mandatory documents with your application.

  • Two academic references
  • Certified transcripts of qualifications, including English language proficiency if non-UK student
  • Copy of passport
  • Copy of current visa (if applicable)
  • A personal statement
  • Employer sponsor form where appropriate



Starts on 23 September 2020 Starts on 24 September 2020
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Alumni discount

Solent alumni could be eligible for up to a 50% reduction of tuition fees if returning to study a postgraduate course. The discount applied will be dependent on your undergraduate degree classification as follows:

Solent Alumni with a:

  • First (1.1) will be offered a 50% discount to study at PG level
  • 2.1 or 2.2 will be offered a 20% discount to study at PG level

The discount applied will be based on the most recently completed course.

If you are currently a student at Solent University and are continuing on without a break in your studies, your discount will be automatically applied on your return.

If are not following directly on from a course at Solent University, but have studied with us in previous years, you will need to register for the alumni discount.

Click here to register or to find out more

What you'll study

Year one

Core modules

Sustainable and Intelligent Building Design
This unit introduces students to the concept of sustainable buildings and enables them to demonstrate understanding of how the form, fabric, and equipment of a building affect its environmental impact. An understanding of the passive and active design principles of sustainable building will be developed through a live project design.

Computer Aided Simulation- Thermal
This unit introduces a dynamic thermal modelling application to students and covers various logics and concepts including occupants comfort, carbon emissions, HVAC systems, etc. Student will learn various techniques in modelling and simulating by the end of the module.

Research Methods
This unit develops the skills required to carry out research primarily for dissertation or design project. It aims to provide students with comprehensive knowledge and understanding of methodological approaches of research and examines a range of tools used to collect and analyse data.

Sustainable Building Assessment
This unit covers the environmental assessment methods of buildings in the UK and internationally. Students will develop and demonstrate understanding of the sustainable building assessment methods like BREEAM and LEED. Post occupancy evaluation methods will also be explained to highlight the importance of the end user.

Computer Aided Simulation - Acoustic
The use of computer simulation packages to model and predict acoustic behaviour in complex situations is now widespread. This module addresses the two core areas for computer aided simulation – building acoustic modelling and environmental acoustic modelling, examining the standards and algorithms applied by packages, and utilising industry standard modelling packages in the solution of acoustic problems.

Climate Change and Performance Prediction
Our climate is changing and buildings that are built today are expected to have decades of lifespan. It is now necessary to simulate their future behaviour to address increasing future temperature and rectify design errors. The module will deliver a methodology of how to address future challenges in a refurbishment project. The module aims to set a higher design standard for our current buildings and introduce eco-refurbishment principles to students.

Research Dissertation
In this unit students undertake a master's stage research project, present the body of work in a conventional dissertation and communicate the outcomes verbally through formal viva. Students explore in-depth a topic relevant to the discipline to develop a significant level of expertise in the area under investigation.

Optional modules

BIM Frameworks
This unit provides an introduction to Building Information Modelling (BIM) from a holistic perspective. BIM has emerged as the dominant paradigm for information and communication technology in architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC). This unit covers BIM approaches, as well as the impact these have on the various AEC disciplines.

Acoustics in Built Environment
Historically, some of the earlier developments in acoustics were related to sound behaviour in built spaces. Today, the field of building acoustics is an integral part of daily life that reaches living spaces, teaching environments, leisure developments etc. In this module the student will be presented with topics such as sound behaviour in rooms, acoustic design principles, sound and vibration transmission in buildings, insulation and vibration control and sound reinforcement. In addition, national and international measurement standards and building codes will be examined, together with design methodologies and case studies.

Research Themes in high performance buildings
With constantly growing technologies and advances in building construction, students are given an opportunity to be supervised on a research-based project to explore most advanced energy-related topics and methods.

Please note: Not all optional modules are guaranteed to run each year.


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Sarah Radif academic profile Sarah Radif Head of Subject View profile
Dr Monkiz Khasreen academic profile Monkiz Khasreen Course Leader View profile
Chris Barlow academic profile Chris Barlow Professor View profile
Juan Battaner-Moro academic profile Juan Battaner-Moro Senior Lecturer View profile
Masoud Sajjadian Masoud Sajjadian Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


Solent can offer building simulation students access to a range of professional resources and facilities. These include high-spec computers; industry standard modelling and simulation software; built-environment workshops and modern teaching spaces. Shared resources include the 24-hour library, bookable independent study space and numerous leisure facilities.

Students benefit from our collaboration with BRE Academy and our delivery of the BREEAM Accredited Graduate Programme.

Industry links

Students benefit from the teaching team’s extensive industry links, built over many years of delivering courses accredited by professional organisations (eg, CIAT, CIOB, SBID and CABE). Practitioners from a cross-section of the built environment industry regularly contribute to the academic process by providing real-world projects, guest lectures and site visits; as well as working with students in small mentoring groups. Students will also benefit from our collaboration with BRE Academy and our delivery of the BREEAM Accredited Graduate Programme.

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