CEM235-Engineering Project Management

Module Provider: School of Construction Management and Engineering, School of Built Environment
Number of credits: 10 [5 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Colm Lundrigan

Email: c.p.lundrigan@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:
«p»Engineering projects have a financial and management context. From the standpoint of management, this module introduces a project management conceptual framework, defining what is meant by a “project” and what comprises the discipline of “project management”. From the financial standpoint two well-known techniques are introduced. First, capital budgeting, which is a technique usually implemented at the beginning of a project to assess its economic feasibility. Second, earned value management, whose main aim is to monitor project progress during the execution phase.«/p»


To understand and be familiar with the main concepts of the Project Management Body of Knowledge® and to be able to implement and adapt to the particular circumstances of a renewable energy project, two quantitative techniques; capital budgeting and earned value management.

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of this module, the student will be able to:

(i) Explain the main concepts in project management (such as project, programme, portfolio, project management, operations management, business value, project lifecycle, phases, processes and areas of knowledge).

(ii) Identify the major stakeholders and the organisational structures in project practice contexts.

(iii) Determine the financial feasibility of a renewable energy project by evaluating the more relevant decision-making criteria.

(iv) Monitor project progress in both time and cost dimensions and propose options for bringing a delayed project back on track.

Additional outcomes:

Students will also be expcted to be able to:

(i) Appreciate and judge the relationships of the main concepts explained and the two techniques learned with broader construction management-related areas of knowledge such as planning, cost control, risk management and quality assurance.

(ii) Apply MS Excel (or equivalent software) for performing the calculations of financial feasibility and earned value analyses in order to solve and model other engineering problems.

Outline content:

Project management. First concepts:

   1. What is a project? Relationships among projects, programs and portfolios

   2. What is project management? Project management and strategic planning

   3. Operations management versus project management

   4. Business value

   5. Role of the project manager

   6. Project Management Body of Knowledge and other standards

   7. Organizational influence on project management

   8. Project stakeholders and project success

   9. Project team

   10. Project life cycle. Phases, processes and areas of knowledge

Project management. First quantitative techniques:

   1. Capital budgeting of projects

          1.1. Cash-flow (CF)

          1.2. Pay-back (PB)

          1.3. Net present value (NPV)

          1.4. Internal rate of return (IRR)

          1.5. Profitability index (PI)

   2. Earned value management (EVM)

          2.1. Key parameters (PV, AC, EV, ES)

          2.2. Performance measurement. Variances and indicators.

          2.3. Forecasting. Time and cost.

Global context:
Project management concepts are going to be approached from the Project Management Body of Knowledge ® (PMBoK) perspective. PMBoK is a USA standard for managing projects, which was the first and probably is the more common at an international level. However, this standard is certainly not the only one (e.g. the International Project Management Association competence baseline ® IPMA ICB which is widespread in Europe and other countries; and the Association for Project Management Body of Knowledge ® APMBoK which is UK-based). Interested students are invited to dig further in other standards that they might consider of interest, but for this first contact, the teacher considers the PMBoK ® proposes a very neat and clear approach to project management.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Every session will normally start with a brief test so as to ensure that the student have performed some requested reading. Then the lecturer will alternate between 15’-lectures, group work, quizzes, videos, exercises, contests, case studies, and computer applications with MS Excel. Most of the reading will be expected to be done at home (but it will be tested!) so that the class time can be better spent devoted to active learning and inductive teaching.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 8
Practicals classes and workshops 8
Supervised time in studio/workshop 8
Guided independent study 76
Total hours by term 100.00
Total hours for module 100.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 40
Set exercise 40
Class test administered by School 20

Summative assessment- Examinations:


Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

The mark of this module will be broken down in three parts with values of 20%, 40% and 40%.

The first part of the mark (20%) will be achieved by a written exam that will be divided in two separate 25-question quizzes (10% each), for which there will be a voluntary 10-question training quiz. These tests will be taken during the teaching week period.

The second part of the mark (40%) will rely on the creation from scratch of a challenging problem that requires the application of the Capital budgeting techniques explained and practised along the module.

The third part of the mark (40%) will be acquired after solving an Earned Value Management (EVM) case study proposed by the lecturer and submit its solution to the teacher.

In any case, the result of a misconduct in this regard will be penalised with a mark of 0 for that part.

We do not bend grades, each student will get his/her grade depending exclusively on his/her effort.

More details will be found in the assignment brief.

Formative assessment methods:

For the three components of the mark, students will be provided with multiple opportunities to learn and train the skills required in class. They will also be given training online test to practise. Constant feedback will be provided during the contact time.

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy.Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information:

Assessment requirements for a pass:
A mark of 50% overall

Reassessment arrangements:

To be reassessed by re-submission of coursework/assignment only. You are required to contact the School to confirm reassessment arrangements.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

There will be no additional costs in this module.

Last updated: 21 September 2018


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