Course details

Course code


Course level

Level 5

Course credits

240 credits

Next course date



2-3 years part time


Enterprise Centre, Distance learning

Course description

The minerals sector, which includes quarrying, surface mining, concrete, cement and related manufacturing industries, is vital to the world economy. In the UK it's worth over £9 billion each year and employs some 70,000 people in a variety of roles (Mineral Products Association, 2012). Jobs exist at many concrete manufacturing sites across the country, as well as marine wharves, mineral extraction sites and aggregate recycling operations.

If you're already employed in the cement industry, or have an interest in it, this programme will enable you to gain an internationally recognised academic qualification. It reflects UK and EU standards and best practice, and will help you if you're aiming to become a technologist or operational manager and wish to acquire professional status.

You'll undertake a portfolio of work relates assessment that applies everything you learn to your workplace, so you can make a real impact in your role.

Study tour

You can choose to join a five day study tour of sites relevant to the minerals industry so you can widen your knowledge and experience.

Programme modules

  • Industry Introduction - 20 credits at Level 4

  • Engineering I - 20 credits at Level 4

  • Mathermatics - 20 credits at Level 4
  • Construction Product Tech - 20 credits Level 4
  • Engineering II - 20 credits Level 4
  • Industry Technology - 20 credits Level 4
  • Cement Technology - 20 Credits Level 5
  • Business Management - 20 credits at Level 5
  • Engineering III - 20 credits at Level 5
  • Cement Raw Materials Processing -20 credits at Level 5
  • Cement Process Engineering - 20 credits at Level 5
  • Cement Clinker Processing - 20 credits at Level 5

Structure, certificates and assessment

Certificate of Higher Education stage

Industry Introduction (20 credits)
You'll gain the underpinning knowledge and understanding of the mineral products industry, covering the economics of the industry, its role in modern economies and how it is rooted in the fabric of civilisation. You'll also cover industry topics such as the variety of materials, importance of health and safety, environmental awareness, geology, communications and surveying.

Mathematics (20 credits)
You'll understand mathematical principles and techniques and learn how to apply them to applications in the fields of engineering and mineral extractives technology. You'll apply your own experience and observation to develop a wider understanding of the use of mathematics.

Engineering 1 (20 credits)
You'll cover the principles of mechanical and electrical engineering which are fundamental to the operation of production, processing and mobile plant. You'll develop an understanding of mechanics, as well as the basic theories and concepts of electricity, electrical circuits, measurement and magnetism and induction.

Engineering 2 (20 credits)
You'll continue to explore fundamental engineering concepts in this module. You'll cover the principles and concepts of heat and fuels, corrosion and fixed structures. You'll also continue to explore the use of AC power, electrical power transmission systems and related topics.

Industry Technology (20 credits)
You'll develop your knowledge of the safe and effective operation of mineral extraction and construction sites and the identification of geological hazards. You'll cover the principles of earth moving and earthwork design, the influence geology has over construction sites, surveying techniques and further work in the area of health and safety.

Construction Products Technology (20 credits)
Mineral resources form the basis of many products used in construction. This module develops knowledge about the technology, standards, specifications and other requirements that apply to these products. It includes aspects such as the methods used to sample and test mineral products in a safe manner. In addition, it develops knowledge of the technology and principles of making and using bituminous mixtures, concrete and clay products. The module also provides knowledge of the techniques used to manage product quality so as to satisfy the needs of the customer.

Foundation degree stage

Introduction to Cement Technology (20 credits)
This module will build on knowledge gained through earlier technical modules, providing a more in-depth study of the cement manufacturing sector itself. It introduces the cement production processes providing an overview of raw materials sourcing, the chemical processes that take place throughout production and the processing and blending of clinker to produce the range of cements required by customers.

Cement - Raw Materials Processing (20 credits)
This module follows on from Introduction to Cement Technology by reviewing the complex range of activities and processes that are used in relation to the extracted raw materials and other components required in the preparation of the material 'kiln feed'.

Cement - Process Engineering (20 credits)
This module looks at the processes involved in the production of cement manufacturing, with particular focus on the efficient use of fuels in the cost-effective production of cement. It will outline the importance of energy transfer aspects of the process, the range of primary and secondary fuels used in its production and how to optimise the economics of the production process through management of fuels and waste streams.

Cement - Clinker Processing (20 credits)
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 as a packaged product. It covers the range of cement types required by customers, including composite cements with additions such as blast furnace slag and coal fly ash.

Business Management (20 credits)
This module develops the business and financial knowledge and skills necessary to achieve the effective management of a mineral extraction site, a road construction site or a related manufacturing facility. This includes an understanding of the human implications of running a successful business. The module also cultivates an appreciation of the importance of achieving the highest standards of performance in health, safety and the environment, especially in the recognition of the importance of people in developing a positive health and a safety culture.

Engineering 3 (20 credits)
The module will develop an awareness of the need for lubrication and bearings, an understanding of the principles and concepts associated with hydraulic systems, their application and associated dangers. Also, the module introduces mechanical power transmission systems applied to plant and instrumentation in the sector and develops an understanding of the behaviour of gases and how these are applied to the construction and operations of compressors, pumps and internal combustions engines. An understanding of plant operating and maintenance schemes and that of safe design and guarding of plant is also developed. Furthermore, the module introduces the different types of electrical generators and motors and their applications within the sector before developing knowledge in the field of electronics and awareness in relation to electrical safety, earthing, earth leakage and overcurrent protection.

How you'll learn

You'll study part time, online, and can choose to attend a number of optional weekend tutorials each year at Derby in the UK. Here you'll work face to face with our specialist academic staff, all of whom have extensive experience within the industry. It's also an opportunity to meet colleagues in your sector - swapping ideas and sharing best practice.

These are not compulsory and will not affect your studying if you don't attend.

Your learning is supplemented through online video and guest lecture presentations. Your programme materials are in an interactive/electronic format and are released to you throughout the year. You'll have full online access to our library and other learning resources.

How you're assessed

You'll be assessed through a combination of exams and continuous assessment.

Entry requirements

If you have experience in the concrete industry, as well as positive support from your employer, we will welcome your application.

Fees and funding

UK and EU students

International students

*These fees apply if you’re starting this course between September 2018 and August 2019. 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

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Cement Technology 0800 678 3311

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