Built Environment Higher Education in Scotland: Pressures, Challenges and Change in Uncertain Times

Richard Laing, Gerry Buda, Steven Devaney, Deborah Jane Roberts

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    2 Citations (Scopus)


    This paper assesses the current position and future prospects for built environment higher education in Scotland, focusing, in particular, on Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) accredited property and construction programmes. Both student demand for programmes and the supply of graduates for the property and construction professions are considered. The themes explored have a wider relevance and echo debates at a UK level in regard to built environment higher education in general.

    In recent years, there has been noticeable growth in the number of students taking RICS accredited programmes in Scotland, with most of this growth occurring in taught postgraduate numbers. However, several factors including demographics, changes in the funding environment and the recent economic downturn, point to uncertain times ahead. The research discusses the difficulties faced at present by graduates from property and construction-related courses in obtaining employment. Despite this, it highlights that there may be shortages of such graduates in Scotland in the medium term owing to unfavourable demographic changes, increased competition for overseas students and proposals to reduce teaching funding for the built environment subject area.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)41-59
    Number of pages19
    JournalCEBE Transactions
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011


    • Higher education
    • Scotland
    • Funding
    • Demographics
    • Graduate employment


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