Postgraduate Courses in Flood and Coastal Risk Management

Accredited training for water and environmental industry practitioners.

As the UK recovers from the impact of flooding and coastal storms, following the wettest winter in almost 250 years, society is recognising the importance of understanding and managing risks to our environment in the face of increased frequency of extreme weather and climate change.

In partnership with JBA Consulting, a specialist water environment and flood risk management consultancy, we have developed flexible and accessible training for water and environmental practitioners focused on the application of technical skills and best practice techniques.

Flexible and accessible postgraduate training that works around you

  • Flexible delivery enables you to continue working whilst studying.
  • Gain technical skills and knowledge that can be directly applied to a wide range of roles and disciplines in the water, environment and flood risk management sector.
  • Start at any time throughout the year.
  • Delivered by practitioners who are experts in their field.
  • Leads to a Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits) with options to progress to a Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits) or an MSc (180 credits).
  • Single modules can also be taken as CPD.


The course is designed to be flexible and can be taken part-time over a maximum of five years.  Delivery can be tailored to individual needs to provide accessible training and allow the course to be taken whilst working. Delegates can choose from the following core modules, each of which are worth 15 credits:

Each module comprises five days of teaching which will be delivered at Lancaster Environment Centre in blocks of two or three days. This includes seminars, workshops, practical demonstrations, case studies and site visits and is focused on the practical application of skills and techniques.

Background reading and learning resources will be provided to allow you to complete pre and post-course learning in your own time.

Levels of Study

Postgraduate Certificate

For a Postgraduate Certificate delegates must achieve 60 credits by completing four of the modules listed above.

Postgraduate Diploma

For a Postgraduate Diploma students must achieve 120 credits by completing all eight modules listed above.  You may choose to swap up to two of the modules listed above for two alternative MSc modules on the Sustainable Water Management MSc.


The MSc follows the course structure for the Sustainable Water Management MSc in which delegates must achieve 180 credits and complete a dissertation project. 

CPD (Continuing Professional Development)

We also offer these modules individually as short courses which can be taken with or without the assessment component (depending on whether you would like to gain credits).

Please get in touch with the Director of Studies, Dr Nick A Chappell if you would like to discuss any of these options in more detail.

Who is it for?

The course provides essential practical skills for practitioners and organisations including:

  • Local Authorities (in particular those with new flood risk management responsibilities).
  • Infrastructure, network utilities and asset owners.
  • The water and flood risk management industry and the private sector.
  • Catchment managers, Rivers Trusts and environmental NGOs.
  • National agencies such as the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency, Environment Agency, Natural Resources Wales, Rivers Agency Northern Ireland and the Office of Public Works in Ireland.

Links with industry

The course material will be delivered in partnership with industry leading specialists at JBA Consulting who have extensive experience of delivering training and education, particularly to enable practical application in a professional context.

Course Details


The completion of a case study at the end of each module will enable you to apply the skills and techniques you have learnt and will form the majority of the assessment.


On successful completion of four modules you will be awarded a Lancaster University Postgraduate Certificate in Flood and Coastal Risk Management.  If you wish you can then progress to a Postgraduate Diploma or an MSc.


The majority of modules will be delivered at the Lancaster Environment Centre and where field trips are part of the course, transport will be provided.  Depending on demand, modules can be delivered nationwide.

For group bookings of individual modules for eight or more people the training location is entirely flexible, we can come to you or provide a training venue near to where you are based.

Entry requirements

We recognise prior learning and experience; there are no formal entry requirements and you don’t necessarily need a degree to apply.

Tuition fees

Level 2016/17 start 2017/18 start
Postgraduate Certificate £3,920 £3,900
Postgraduate Diploma £5,880 £6,850
Individual module £1,335 tbc
MSc £7,390 tbc

Assessment and award of credits by Lancaster University

  • Lunch and refreshments during the teaching days and transport to and from field study sites.
  • All training material and resources, including online course materials.
  • Access to University facilities (library and social spaces).

Discounts are available for multiple bookings and delivery location is flexible.

How to apply for the PGCert or PGDip

If you have any questions or would like to discuss the course in more detail, please contact the Director of Studies, Dr Nick A Chappell.

If you would like to apply for the PgDip or PgCert Flood and Coastal Risk Management programme, you need to use the University’s online My Applications website.

You need to submit the follow three items to the online admissions website:

  • Curriculum Vitae (CV) containing full details of your experience pertinent to the PgDip / PgCert Flood and Coastal Risk Management programme.
  • Names and email address of two referees.
  • Personal Statement stating why you wish to study for a PgDip / PgCert Flood and Coastal Risk Management.

Pertinent certificates and/or degree transcripts may be included. Please note that these requirements differ from those of the MSc programmes within LEC as stated on the general LEC Postgraduate webpages.  

To submit an application, simply create an account on the My Applications website and then select Create a new application from your homepage once you are logged-in. Using your account on the My Applications website, you are then able to submit applications for the PgDip or PgCert Flood and Coastal Risk Management programme, upload supporting documentation and provide us with information about referees.

How to apply for one module

If you would like to apply for one module to be undertaken as a short course or CPD please contact the Director of Studies, Dr Nick A Chappell.