Course details

Course code


Course level

Level 5

Course credits

60 credits

Next course date



1 year part time


Distance learning, Enterprise Centre

Course description

The distinctive nature of this programme is represented by the flexibility of its design and delivery. Its construction and innovative modes of delivery recognise the diverse and dispersed nature of not only the industry itself, but the potential student body it will serve. Due to the geographical spread of the industry, manufacturing sites and offices are often remote and isolated. Technical and operational staff very often spend a significant proportion of their time working outdoors, can be transient (with seasonal working activities sometimes playing a part) and they may also find that they are suddenly re-located, in some cases abroad. The provision offered within this programme of study, has had to evolve to meet the needs of such learners: taking advantage not only of traditional teaching and learning techniques, but utilising the most advanced learning technology for teaching, learning, supervision and assessment.

Key Characteristics

  • The programme is designed to enable agile delivery of the teaching and learning activities. The programme delivery model comprises a blended distance learning model, which allows on-line learning material to be supported by face-to-face sessions.
  • Delivery of face-to-face teaching is undertaken at the Enterprise Centre which provides a more corporate environment.
  • Assessment strategies allow direct application of knowledge learned which is directly related to the workplace.

The programme enables the following opportunities:

  1. Equips learners for shortfall in international, national and local development needs.
  2. Develops the learner’s knowledge and understanding of the Mineral Products sector and the context in which they operate, including global and environmental influences.
  3. Prepares individuals to be operationally effective in management positions in the Mineral Products industry by providing them with the tools to achieve this, a strong theoretical base and a range of skills relevant to today’s business practice.
  4. Enables a learner to develop their intellectual breadth and be able to make integrative links across the various areas of their organisations.
  5. Develops knowledge and skills to enable a leader/manager to be responsive to change.
  6. Increases capacity to learn, both on the programme and as independent lifelong learners following completion of the programme.
  7. To act as a role model, with responsibility for those in senior positions.
  8. Provides an academically rigorous and challenging programme of study aligned with the QAA Qualification Framework enhancing critical and reflective practice.
  9. Provides flexible learning opportunities in a diverse environment that widens participation.

Structure, certificates and assessment

This module reviews the complex range of activities and processes that are used in relation to the extracted raw materials and other components required to prepare the dry or semi-dry material known as 'kiln feed'.

The efficient use of a number of fuels is an important factor in the cost-effective production of cement.

Recognising the importance of managing the energy transfer aspects of the process this module reviews the range of primary and secondary fuels used in cement production, including waste streams from other industries and outlines the ways that they can be used in a balanced way to optimise the economics of the production process.

This module provides an understanding of the processes that grind and blend the output from the cement kiln into a cement that can be sold to the customer in bulk or in packaging. It covers the range of cement types required by customers, including composite cements with additions such as blast furnace slag and coal fly ash.

This module develops the operational, business and financial knowledge and skills necessary to achieve the effective management of a mineral products facility.

This includes an understanding of the human implications of running a successful business. The module also recognises the importance of communication (written and none written skills), people and values in developing a positive workplace culture. Furthermore, the concepts and principles of asset management are introduced to develop skills in relation to performance measurement and monitoring.

To meet with modern day challenges students are also provided with the fundamentals of building a sustainable business and the concept of cyber security. Additionally, for apprentices this module supports and develops completion of the e-portfolio required for End Point Assessment purposes.

This module brings together the learner’s knowledge of the industry gained from the programme and asks them to offer a detailed discussion of a problematic area and locate it within the wider context of current academic and professional thinking as presented in the literature and within the context of the area of the Mineral Product industry in which they work. Learners will be expected to demonstrate the ability to diagnose an organisational issue, to present this issue in a coherent manner, and to draw conclusions from their reading, personal analysis and workplace experience.

*Module is not available until September 2023*

How you'll learn

The programme is influenced by the principles of work-based learning. As such a flexible range of teaching and learning methodologies are used relevant to particular groups or practices. For example:

  • Face to face taught modules combining tutor input with structured opportunities for discussion, reflection and planning for workplace application
  • Learning opportunities identified and taken directly from the learner’s workplace situation
  • Action learning sets and other facilitated group activities
  • Individual reflection on learning
  • Technology enhanced learning using a sophisticated virtual learning environment (VLE).

At undergraduate level, the emphasis is on fostering independent learning, whilst providing a supporting environment in which to study at higher level. One of the key aims of any undergraduate programme is to produce an independent learner capable of properly managing their time and resources to identify issues, decide how to collect and analyse evidence and reach reasoned evidence based conclusions, and to subsequently present this information via various methods of communication (written and oral).

Indicative methods of assessment include activities such as:

  • practical projects focused on particular workplaces
  • management and technical reports
  • annotated presentations
  • reflective portfolios or collections of work completed throughout the module / programme
  • E-assessments via the Virtual Learning Environment
  • problem solving tasks
  • varied writing tasks and oral assessment
  • practical assessment of professional competence.

These indicative approaches will be used to test attainment of knowledge and understanding as well as skills and capabilities thereby promoting ‘deep learning’.

Entry requirements

The programme has been designed to appeal to a wide audience.

  1. Operational managers, assistant managers and supervisors within the industry who have significant experience but limited qualifications, who wish to improve their level of competence within the industry.
  2. Graduate employees who already possess a degree in a related subject (e.g. mining engineering or geology), but who need to specialise in the sector.
  3. Employees from industry suppliers/manufacturers who would like to gain knowledge of the sector in order to better serve their specific industry clients.
  4. Consultants who would like to gain knowledge in a wider sense within the mineral products environment in order to support the service that they provide.

The following broad criteria applying for entry:

  • Learners are employed or have affiliation with an employer.
  • Learners will have been nominated to attend following a review/discussion with their line manager and/or recruitment manager.
  • Learners will have been identified by the organisation as being able to succeed on the programme.
  • The selection of participants is consistent with the University’s equal opportunities policies and sensitive to legal obligations to avoid discrimination on the basis of gender, race or disability.
  • Learners can demonstrate English language capability to that of GCSE English Language, IELTS 6.0 or its equivalent as a prerequisite of enrolment on the programme.
  • Learners will complete an application form as provided by the University of Derby and meet the above requirements.

While the ultimate responsibility for ensuring that learners meet entry requirements and acceptance on to programmes rests with the University of Derby, employers typically nominate the majority of learners expected onto this programme. The prior experience of learners is a key factor in programme design and development as such employers, potential learners, professional bodies, and key stakeholders have been consulted during the programme development stage.

Fees and funding

UK/EU students

  • £2,575

International students

  • £3,165

Optional modules

  • UK/EU students £910
  • International students £1,130

*These fees apply if you’re starting this course between September 2021 and August 2022. We recommend you check fee details with us though, as they can change.

How to apply

Students should apply directly to the University.

Apply directly to the University

Empower your workforce with block bookings

Take advantage of a short courses block booking to upskill your employees. Our short courses run on-campus and online and include new legislation and other up-to-the-minute issues. Get in touch today and we will tailor a package to meet the needs of your business.

Block booking for businessBlock booking for business

Contact us

Cement Studies 0800 678 3311
Programme Leader: Chris Rowan 01332 597 963

If you want to find out more about studying a short course, please contact us and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Contact us Contact us