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Developing Higher Level Construction Short Courses 

80% of the workforce of 2030 are already in work today, and we need to offer them the opportunity to upskill and reskill over their careers. Skills for Jobs White Paper, 2021 

LTE Group, on behalf of Greater Manchester Colleges, successfully bid for strategic development funds to develop new higher-level short courses, aligned to higher skills needs in the construction sector. In response to our analysis of local needs, each college has worked with employers to co-design a course with micro-credential value, with clear pathways to further learning and higher level job roles.

The Strategic Development Fund (SDF) has enabled the colleges to

  • upgrade their facilities, equipment and curriculum to better meet the needs of their local economy 
  • build their overall capacity to meet local skills priorities, and to drive more effective and efficient use of funds through a more coordinated FE offer 


Our Greater Manchester project has been ambitious in scope, with all nine FE colleges, that serve the ten boroughs of Greater Manchester, working collaboratively to develop high quality short courses, with clear progression pathways to further learning and higher level jobs in the construction sector. Each course has been badged through Navigatr.

“Gives very good insight of BIM and help us get the license in Drones which is critical for surveying especially where access to the site is limited.”
“This course has made me take a closer interest in the application of new technologies to construction.”
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Drone Surveying

An introduction to drone surveying; students will examine the methods and technologies used in surveying in construction. Students will explore the different types of drones used in surveying and associated methods.

Students will demonstrate the practical skills required, when undertaking drone surveying. Students will be able to use this course to progress onto a programme, with a local employer, enabling them to gain the GVC Drone Pilots Licence.

Case Study    Click to View Badge

Retrofit Internal Insulation and Building Treatments in Domestic Properties

This short course is designed to allow learners to gain new knowledge or update their existing knowledge in recognising issues of damp proofing, timber decay and condensation in domestic buildings. They will also learn how to carry out the necessary remedial treatment to cure the problems caused by the deterioration of the building due to these common issues. In addition, they will learn how to effectively thermal insulate internal walls and suspended floors of buildings to create warm habitable living spaces, reducing energy consumption and costs.

Introduction to Renewable Technology

This short course is an introduction to some of the underpinning theoretical theories of renewable technologies and the different types. We look at and explain appropriate renewable energies, their benefits, uses and benefits both to cost and carbon reduction. The course goes deeper into Solar PV battery storage and wind energy production on the electrical side and along the air source heat pump and ground source heat pumps on the plumbing side. Regardless if you have an electrical or plumbing background both sides will complement and cross over into each specialism and fall into the building services remit. Alongside the theoretical learning, there will be an opportunity to gain practical hands on experience to look at the installation, and operation of these pieces of equipment and their energy outputs.

Case Study    Click to View Badge

Introduction to Modern Methods of Construction, Design & Surveying

The short course will introduce participants to current approaches to modern construction methods by using a range of techniques required for good design using technical information for modern design projects.

The short course will enable participants to experience and practice how digital techniques are used in design, surveying and planning activities. They will explore how digital technologies are used in the construction industry, including the benefits of using digital technologies throughout the life of a construction project.

It consists of three segmented micro courses:

  • Introduction to Modern Methods of Construction, Design & Surveying: VR Technologies
  • Introduction to Modern Methods of Construction, Design & Surveying: Laser Scanning
  • Introduction to Modern Methods of Construction, Design & Surveying: Using Drones

The course will also introduce participants to modern methods of construction including:

  • 3D Printed Buildings

Case Study   Click to View Badge

Introduction to Digital Surveying Technology

The short course will enable participants to Set up and conduct a digital survey using a laser scanner. Generate a digital drawing based on the information from the laser scanner. Present the survey and evaluate their own performance.

Case Study    Click to View Badge

BIM – Building Information Modelling. What, Why and How?

A short course in the fundamentals (What, Why and How) of BIM is aimed at learners working towards the Design-Planning and Surveying, Building Services, and on-site Level 3 T-levels. Providing the essential knowledge to respond to the learner outcomes within these qualifications. Learners will gain knowledge of the concepts associated with BIM and develop an understanding of the drivers leading to the implementation of BIM, the barriers to success, and the benefits that can be gained.

Case Study   Click to View Badge

Introduction to Sustainable and Alternative Sources of Energy

To help meet targets on NetZero and Sustainability. This course has been designed to meet the needs of existing workforces and new entrants by upskilling them and providing them with an understanding of ‘Green’ technologies that will enable them to progress in their careers.

The aim of the course is to provide learners with knowledge of different sources of energy, and renewable sources. Learners will be able to identify the advantages and disadvantages of different sources of energy and identify the types of energy used in a range of environments

Case Study   Click to View Badge

Digital Applications in Construction to Support Project Co-ordination

This course is designed to look at how BIM can be utilised throughout a project lifecycle to manage data and information.  This course will look at specific examples such as reviewing and replacing rooftop plant/equipment.  We will look at digital skills that can be explored in this specific task which will include; 

Scanning utilising different technologies (including drones) 

  • 3D modelling 
  • 2D drawings  
  • Data handling  
  • Develop knowledge and skills to support the effective use of drone flight and technologies.
  • Understand and use BIM software for designers

Case Study   Click to View Badge

An Introduction to Alternative Energies

This course will provide an introduction to alternative technologies, those currently available, and an insight into future provisions emerging for upgrading current housing stock or for new build. Learners will also explore the grants available within the Greater Manchester region and investigate government targets and how they are being met within the region. This course might be for you if you are responsible for overseeing the installation of alternative technologies or are interested in expanding your organisation’s portfolio into this area, or you may be interested in extending your personal knowledge of solving the problems associated with our current energy issues.

Case Study   Click to View Badge

Learning Assets

Courses were supported with the creation of custom learning assets to support blended learning. These were designed with and under the guidance of the course tutor. The aim being to provide interactive resources to support both face to face teaching and deliver a blended learning exercise in the form of self assessment. These will be amended and refined based upon user feedback at the end of the project.

Samples of these can be seen here.

GM Pathways in Construction

Below is a working prototype of the Pathways tool developed to support the short course development program. This provides information for CEIAG professionals, teachers, parents and potential students on career pathways into technical and higher technical job roles in the construction sector.

Surveyor is the only active route but leads through to an interactive display of all the routes into and out of the courses supported by the program.

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Building Capacity Through Communities of Practice and Events

We built capacity through a coherent programme of activity including communities of practice, one-to-one coaching and face-to-face events, facilitated by our Central Team.

Event’s were organised where all nine colleges briefly presented their proposed short course offer. Designed to align with key priorities for the sector, around green and digital technologies, each course is also designed to provide clear progression to further learning at a technical or higher technical level. Employer partners were present on all occasions and played active roles in the development of the courses. Details of one of these events can be seen here.

Building Capacity through the development of HE Leads and Curriculum Leads, support by our team of consultants.

Building capacity supported by expert consultants

Geoffrey Matstukis

An accomplished academic leader and manager with a proven record of developing successful learning and training programs across further and higher education; through the application of strategic thinking, attention to detail and passion for education and training development.I have more than 15-years’ experience of leading the development, management and promotion of education and training programs; combined with business skills developed in working with awarding organisations and through professional practice as an architect. As published author and researcher, I am highly skilled in communicating to different audiences.

Joanne Miles

Twenty years’ experience in teaching, training and coaching roles in the education sector. Extensive experience leading staff development projects and embedding coaching networks.
Specialties: staff development training, coaching and mentoring. Supported Experiments action research model consultancy for the FE sector and project management.

Anne Gornall MBE.

Executive Director of the Greater Manchester Learning Provider Network (GMLPN) and Co-Chair of the Northern Skills Network (NSN). Anne has managed teams and supported skills providers including FE Colleges, Independent Training Providers (ITPs), voluntary and community and employer providers through significant economic and policy changes.

Neil Mosley

An education consultant and designer who specialises in digital, online and distance learning. I work with a range of education providers including universities, small & large companies, arts & cultural organisations, schools and skills organisations. I support organisations at the early stages of developing digital, online or distance learning courses or programmes, developing strategies and capabilities, infrastructure and approaches to suit their ambitions and context. Assist education providers to design and deliver high-quality digital and online courses and programmes. 

Beej Kaczmarczyk

An experienced consultant and trainer in the post-16 education and training sector, Beej also has extensive experience as a senior manager in FE colleges, schools and the private sector. He has delivered organisational development and change programmes in the UK and also in Eastern Europe. An acknowledged expert in education funding policy, leadership and management development, curriculum development and vocational education, he has delivered presentations at national and in-house events on a wide range of topics over the last 20 years.

Neil Raven

An independent researcher and evaluator with over 21 years of experience in the development, management and evaluation of educational projects and programmes.