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Enhancing the organisation and the management of built environment higher education courses

Kasun Gomis (School of Engineering, University of Central Lancashire, Preston, UK)
Mandeep Saini (Salford Business School, University of Salford, Manchester, UK)
Chaminda Pathirage (School of Architecture and Built Environment, University of Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton, UK)
Mohammed Arif (School of Architecture, Technology and Engineering, University of Brighton, Brighton, UK)

Quality Assurance in Education

ISSN: 0968-4883

Article publication date: 9 December 2022

Issue publication date: 28 February 2023




Persistent critical issues in built environment higher education (BEHE) curricula may need to be addressed by improving course organisation and management. In addition to the implications of the COVID pandemic, issues such as inadequate communication and lack of contemporary and innovative practices integrated with course delivery have resulted in a gap for Course organisation and management. The purpose of this study is to recommend a set of drivers that can assist academics and academic institutions in improving course development, organisation and management in the BEHE context. Thus, the study focused on three themes: course organisation and administration, timetabling and course communication.


A systematic approach was taken to obtain data, where a documental analysis and a close-ended questionnaire were adopted as data collection instruments. The documental analysis considered 334 mid module reviews (MMRs) generating data from architecture, construction management, civil engineering, surveying and real estate students. Content analysis was used to identify critical themes within the MMRs and develop a closed-ended questionnaire. Twenty academics from each discipline completed the questionnaire. Eight drivers were developed from the data obtained from both MMRs and questionnaires. Content analysis and interpretive structural modelling were applied to identify the relationship between the drivers. Finally, these drivers were categorised by their level of influence and reliance to highlight how they contributed to improving course organisation and management.


The study revealed eight drivers that can improve course organisation and management in the BEHE context. The study found that using virtual learning environments and communication are fundamental in course organisation and management.

Practical implications

This research paper suggests drivers to improve how academics and academic institutions organise and manage courses. The study recommends eight drivers that could be used as a guideline and a best practice as per the level partitioning diagram developed to enhance the course organisation and management in BEHE.


The study proposes a set of drivers to improve course organisation and management in BEHE curricula. Furthermore, insight into how these drivers influence and rely on each driver and their relation with the national student survey theme are novel contributions to the current body of knowledge. The paper further clarifies how they should be implemented for successful course organisation and management, thus, improving the quality of courses in higher education curricula.



The data obtained for the below paper was based on a project guided by a steering committee within the University of Wolverhampton, chaired by Professor Mohammed Arif. Credit needs to be given to Mr Peter Harris for his significant input on the data collection among the committee members and the student and academic participants for their insightful comments.


Gomis, K., Saini, M., Pathirage, C. and Arif, M. (2023), "Enhancing the organisation and the management of built environment higher education courses", Quality Assurance in Education, Vol. 31 No. 2, pp. 331-345.



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