Community Water and Sanitation MSc/MTech/PgCert/PgDip

Full-time/Part-time

Community Water and Sanitation Course

Over one billion people in the developing world remain without access to drinking water from improved sources, and more than double this number are still lacking access to basic sanitation. This course provides students with the essential skills and knowledge required to plan and implement, with communities, water supply and sanitation projects and programmes worldwide, particularly in less developed countries.

Students benefit from dedicated state-of-the-art facilities, including soil and water laboratories, a hydraulics laboratory, a soil erosion research laboratory, a groundwater training facility, water quality laboratories and a field irrigation laboratory.



Course overview

The course comprises eight assessed modules, group projects and an individual project. The modules include lectures and tutorials, and are assessed through appropriate assignments and examinations. There is an emphasis on analysis of real problems, with practical field work to reinforce learning.

Group project

The group project provides students with the opportunity to take responsibility for a consultancy-type project, while working under academic supervision. Success is dependent on the integration of various activities and working within agreed objectives, deadlines and budgets. 

Individual Project

Students select the individual project in consultation with the Course Director. The individual project provides students with the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to carry out independent research, think and work in an original way, contribute to knowledge, and overcome genuine problems in water management. Many of the projects are supported by external organisations and are based in low-income countries.

Modules

The modules include lectures and tutorials, and are assessed through appropriate assignments. There is an emphasis on analysis of real problems, with practical field work, including a week of drilling, to reinforce learning.

Core

  • Communities and Development
    Syllabus
    • Introduction to community-level development
    • Behaviour change, inclusion and equity
    • Water, sanitation and hygiene in communal / public spaces
    • Community management: strengths and weaknesses thereof
    • The project cycle
    • Stakeholder analysis; Logical frames
    • Quantitative and qualitative data collection.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this study the student should be able to:

    General community level water, sanitation and hygiene

    • Discuss how water, sanitation and hygiene interventions can impact development at community level
    • Identify cross-cutting issues in community water, sanitation and hygiene interventions
    • Discuss the relevance of behaviour change in programmes
    • Appreciate the complexities of sustainability in projects and programmes.

    Problem identification, needs assessment, and programme evaluation

    • Describe quantitative and qualitative research methods
    • Describe and understand the project cycle
    • Apply relevant tools from the Logical Framework Approach to programme design and implementation
    • Identify relevant indicators for monitoring.
  • Emergency Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation
    Syllabus
    • Nature & type of emergencies (natural and man-made disasters, rapid- and slow-onset, complex emergencies)
    • Phases of emergency (acute, post-acute, transition to development/normality); contingencies responders, agencies, refugees & IDPs, donors; humanitarian principles and standards
    • Safety & security issues in emergency response acceptance, deterrence and protection. Personal, organisational and served population security.
    • Public health in emergencies
    • Water supply refugee camp supplies (sources & appropriate/specialist kit), non-camp situation requiring emergency distribution (tankers, bottles), rehabilitation of damaged supplies (mobilisation, communication, information requirements)
    • Water treatment in above contexts e.g. camp scale, household water treatment
    • Excreta disposal mainly refugee camp situation (acute versus post-acute phases)
    • Solid waste management hazardous materials e.g. hospital waste
    • Environmental sanitation solid waste, vector control, hygiene education/promotion
    • Disaster management: refugee camp logistics, coordination with other sectors
    • Data collection & analysis rapid and comprehensive assessments
    • Public information needs e.g. health risks, water disinfection, location of emergency centres etc.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this module the student should be able to:

    • Describe the existing humanitarian sector, including key actors, core principles and relevant standards
    • Differentiate and describe the characteristics of different types of emergency situation and phases
    • Understand the main issues surrounding logistics, security and management of emergency situations
    • Describe appropriate emergency water supply, sanitation, and hygiene promotion interventions
    • Identify priority measures to prevent and mitigate public health issues in emergencies and minimise risks of
      epidemics
    • Understand need for relevant information and coordination with other actors and sectors to ensure basic
      needs are met
    • Apply existing, and design customized data collection tools for needs assessments.
  • Health, Sanitation and Wastewater Treatment
    Module LeaderDr Sean Tyrrel - Director of Education for SEEA
    Syllabus
    • Health: classification of water- and excreta-related disease; relationship between water, sanitation and related
      disease; risk behaviours in relation to water-and excreta-related disease; hygiene evaluation and promotion
    • On-site excreta disposal systems: Why they are not used, benefits of their use, pit latrines, VIP latrines, pourflush
      latrines, composting latrines, septic tanks, soakage systems, ecological sanitation
    • Urban sanitation: Conventional and low-cost sewerage, faecal sludge management.
    • Wastewater treatment basics, low energy systems, reuse.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of the module the student will be able to:

    • Identify the principal transmission routes of water and excreta-related diseases
    • Assess the disease risks associated with water and excreta-related behaviours
    • Design a basic programme for hygiene evaluation and promotion
    • Select and design a sanitation system for a given situation
    • Evaluate excreta/wastewater management systems and recommend improvements / alternatives.
  • Managing and Financing World Water and Wastewater
    Module LeaderDr Richard Franceys - Senior Lecturer
    Syllabus
    • Institutional models for urban water supply and sanitation including the role of utilities
    • Public Operator Partnerships and Public Private Partnerships
    • Economic value of water and cost-reflective pricing
    • Commercial, fixed asset accounting
    • Analysis of Financial Statements
    • Tariff principles, increasing block tariffs and lifeline tariffs
    • Average historical cost accounting and long run marginal costing
    • Demand responsiveness: Ability to pay and Willingness to pay
    • Pricing and service differentiation for the poor
    • Sources of finance for a long-term asset based industry
    • Decision-making for financial management: The Waterman Simulation.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

    • Understand the economic and social drivers for the effective, equitable & efficient management of water and
      sanitation
    • Understand the role conventional utilities could and should play in ensuring improved services to all consumers
    • Analyse and understand the meaning of a set of utility financial statements in order to calculate an average tariff
    • Understand the principles of cost-reflective pricing based on historical costs as well as long run marginal costing,
      with respect to capital expenditure, operating expenditure, capital maintenance expenditure and the cost of capital
    • Understand tariff structures linked to differentiated service levels with appropriate subsidies
    • Explain the different institutional models of urban water supply and sanitation service, understanding strengths and
      weaknesses to achieve customer-oriented universal service
    • Understand the different patterns of public private partnerships and recommend a PPCP for different settings.
  • Research Processes
    Syllabus

    The module comprises a mix of lectures (some of which will be optional for certain students depending on which course they belong to) and smaller, discussion-oriented seminars which form the basis for student assignments. Indicative topics are as follows:

    Lectures

    • Knowledge, truth and certainty
    • The nature and purpose of research
    • How and why research gets funded; key drivers and trends
    • Planning a research project
    • Collecting and analysing data.

    Seminars

    • Evaluating and discussing research outputs
    • Establishing a question for the written assignment
    • Writing a research proposal / bid for funding.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

    • Articulate an understanding of the nature, purpose and drivers of research as a process of enquiry
    • Critically evaluate previous research contributions to a field of knowledge
    • Devise a research activity that can generate answers to a specific research question or challenge
    • Identify and summarise the key components of that research activity, including methods, significant costs, the principle associated risks, and potential risk mitigation measures
    • Operate effectively in a research environment.
  • Surface and Groundwater Hydrology
    Module LeaderProfessor Ian Holman - Professor of Integrated Land and Water Management
    Syllabus
    • The hydrological cycle and the influence of man
    • Basics of hydraulics: SI Units, properties of fluids, basic mechanics. Hydrostatics: Pressure, pressure measurement, pressure and forces on submerged surfaces. Fluids in motion: Types of flow. Continuity, energy and momentum equations and their applications. Behaviour of a real fluid
    • Precipitation, measurement of precipitation amount and intensity, spatial analysis. Interception and depression storage. Evapotranspiration, Penman approach, actual evapotranspiration. Runoff processes; overland flow, interflow, base flow
    • Runoff measurement; velocity area methods. Structures; hydraulic principles of weirs & flumes. Stage measurement. Rating curves and other methods
    • Groundwater occurrence: porosity, permeability, water holding formations, aquifers, aquicludes, aquifer types, aquifer boundaries, springs and streams in relation to groundwater. Aquifer properties: transmissivity, storage coefficient, significance and typical magnitudes of these properties
    • Groundwater movement: flow lines and equipotentials, natural flow, recharge, flow to wells, drawdown, cone of influence, radius of influence, interference
    • Pumping tests: aquifer and well tests, conduct, measurement of variables, precautions. Pumping test analysis: Theis and Jacob approaches, well efficiency. Dupuit-Forchheimer and Theis assumptions, deviations from these, and alternative methods
    • Groundwater recharge: processes, main methods of estimation.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this study the student should be able to:

    • Understand the basic hydraulic principles of static and moving water
    • Measure point and estimate areal rainfall. Estimate potential evapotranspiration from weather data and understand the relationship between actual and potential evapotranspiration
    • Differentiate between various runoff processes and identify the conditions under which each are important
    • Choose the appropriate flow measurement technique for different types of watercourses
    • Calculate the discharge of a watercourse by the velocity area method and by use of weirs and flumes
    • Describe and conceptualise the occurrence and movement of groundwater
    • Apply Darcy's law to simple groundwater flow problems
    • Design and carry out groundwater pumping tests, and analyse the resulting data
    • Explain the mechanisms of groundwater recharge in different climatic environments.
  • Water Quality Monitoring
    Module LeaderDr Sean Tyrrel - Director of Education for SEEA
    Syllabus
    • Water quality issues: acceptability for human consumption, agricultural use, ecology. Water quality standards
    • Monitoring fundamentals and approaches. Sampling strategies. Sampling methods: surface and groundwater. Quality assurance. Data handling and interpretation
    • Water quality sampling & analysis: practicals / demonstration of selected, basic measurements/methods.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

    • Evaluate water quality data and the monitoring strategies that generate them.
  • Water Source Engineering
    Module LeaderDr Aine Gormley - Research Fellow in Water Management
    Syllabus
    • Wells and boreholes
    • Gravity and pumped pipe systems for water conveyance
    • Handpumps
    • Surface water storage with earth dams
    • Water treatment principles and challenges.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this study the student should be able to:

    • Specify pipeline and pump requirements for gravity and pumped piped water distribution systems
    • Understand the exploration and investigation techniques available for groundwater studies
    • Outline the design features of protected springs and infiltration galleries, and carry out detailed design of wells and boreholes
    • Select sites for on-stream and off-stream water storage structures; produce outline designs for small earth embankment dams; and describe basic construction techniques and maintenance tasks
    • Understand the working principles and requirements of selected handpumps
    • Understand and select appropriate water treatment processes.
  • Advanced technologies for water supply and sanitation
    Module LeaderProfessor Bruce Jefferson - Professor of Water Engineering
    Syllabus
    • Current and future treatment challenges for water supply and sanitation
    • Advanced biological processes for water supply and sanitation  
    • Advanced physical processes for water supply and sanitation
    • Advanced chemical processes for water supply and sanitation
    • Challenges associated with developing and implementing advanced technologies for water supply and sanitation
    • Tools and methodologies for selecting and sizing advanced treatment technologies.

    Application contexts

    • Small to large scale urban water supply and sanitation
    • Small scale peri urban water supply and sanitation
    • Emergency water supply and sanitation.
    Intended learning outcomes

    On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

    • Describe their understanding of the theoretical aspects and practical challenges of utilising advanced technologies for water supply and sanitation
    • Describe the relative options and understand their comparative strengths and weaknesses across a range of applications scenarios
    • Understand the relative significance of technical, economic and socio-political factors in developing and implementing advanced technologies
    • Select and size appropriate technology options for a range of different contexts
    • Understand the different business models that need to be considered when using advanced technologies.

Assessment

Taught modules MSc 40%, PgDip 66.6%.
Group project (dissertation for part-time students) MSc 20%, PgDip 33.3%.
Individual project MSc 40%.

Start date, duration and location

Start date: Full-time: October. Part-time: throughout the year.

Duration: Full-time MSc - one year, Part-time MSc - up to three years, Full-time PgCert - one year, Part-time PgCert - two years, Full-time PgDip - one year, Part-time PgDip - two years

Teaching location: Cranfield

Overview

Although much progress has been made over the last three decades, still more than one billion people lack access to a safe, reliable and affordable water supply, and more than twice that number still lack access to basic sanitation. This course provides the essential skills and knowledge required to plan and implement, with communities, water supply and sanitation projects and programmes worldwide, particularly in less developed countries.

On successful completion of this option students will be able to:

  • design and implement appropriate and sustainable solutions to water supply and sanitation for small, rural communities in particular in developing countries, with due regard to the technical, social and institutional constraints imposed by the surrounding environment
  • assess water supply and sanitation needs for communities in villages and refugee camps
  • plan and implement water source evaluation and development programmes, including low-cost well drilling
  • facilitate community participation and management projects and programmes
  • design, cost and implement small sustainable water distribution, storage and treatment systems
  • evaluate the health impacts of community water supply and sanitation systems.

Video: Cranfield students explain why they chose this course

Informed by industry

Our courses are designed to meet the training needs of industry and have a strong input from experts in their sector. These include:

  • Anglian Water
  • CARE International
  • CIWEM
  • Environment Agency
  • IoW
  • Jacobs
  • Mott MacDonald
  • OFWAT
  • Pumpaid
  • Practical Action
  • Richard Hill, Independent Consultant
  • Sembcorp Utilities Services.

Your teaching team

You will be taught by our internationally renowned research and academic staff with skills in natural and social sciences and engineering, all of whom have extensive experience of solving real-life water management problems. Many staff are actively involved in the preparation and evaluation of water supply and sanitation programmes in developing countries on behalf of non-governmental organisations and international organisations. They successfully combine professional experience with high-quality teaching and research skills. Most are members of the Higher Education Academy.

Facilities and resources

The School of Energy, Environment and Agrifood operates facilities and associated equipment which are often unique to Cranfield. Students on the Water postgraduate programmes benefit from this infrastructure which includes: 

  • state-of-the-art clean water, fermentation, microbiology, wastewater and water chemistry laboratories
  • soil science laboratories
  • the on-site sewage treatment works, with its own dedicated pilot-plant hall
  • an erosion and sedimentation laboratory
  • a groundwater training facility
  • farm land used for field trials and research investigations
  • a containerised laboratory also operates at one of the University's halls of residence where grey water treatment pilot plants are stationed.

Entry Requirements

Suitable for graduates who wish to work in the planning, implementation and management of sustainable water supply and sanitation projects with rural and urban communities in low and middle-income countries. The part-time option allows practitioners to extend their professional development within their current employment.  Candidates must possess, or be expected to achieve, a 1st or 2nd class UK Honours degree in a relevant discipline such as engineering, environmental science, geography, development studies, earth science or related subjects, or the international equivalent of these UK qualifications.

Students requiring a Tier 4 General Student visa to study in the UK may need to apply for an ATAS certificate to study this course.

English Language

If you are an international student you will need to provide evidence that you have achieved a satisfactory test result in an English qualification. The minimum standard expected from a number of accepted courses are as follows:

IELTS - 6.5

TOEFL - 92 

Pearson PTE Academic - 65

Cambridge English Scale - 180

Cambridge English: Advanced - C

Cambridge English: Proficiency - C

In addition to these minimum scores you are also expected to achieve a balanced score across all elements of the test. We reserve the right to reject any test score if any one element of the test score is too low.

We can only accept tests taken within two years of your registration date (with the exception of Cambridge English tests which have no expiry date).

Students requiring a Tier 4 (General) visa must ensure they can meet the English language requirements set out by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) and we recommend booking a IELTS for UKVI test.


Fees

Home EU Student Fees

MSc Full-time - £9,000

MSc Part-time - £1,500 *

PgDip Full-time - £7,200

PgDip Part-time - £1,500 *

PgCert Full-time - £3,600

PgCert Part-time - £1,500 *

Overseas Fees

MSc Full-time - £17,500

MSc Part-time - £17,500 **

PgDip Full-time - £14,000

PgDip Part-time - £14,000 **

PgCert Full-time - £7,000

PgCert Part-time - £10,800 **

*

The annual registration fee is quoted above. An additional fee of £1,300 per module is also payable.

**

Students will be offered the option of paying the full fee up front, or to pay in four equal instalments at six month intervals (i.e. the full fee to be paid over the first two years of their registration). 

Fee notes:

  • The fees outlined apply to all students whose initial date of registration falls on or between 1 August 2016 and 31 July 2017.
  • All students pay the tuition fee set by the University for the full duration of their registration period agreed at their initial registration.
  • A deposit may be payable, depending on your course.
  • Additional fees for extensions to the agreed registration period may be charged and can be found below.
  • Fee eligibility at the Home/EU rate is determined with reference to UK Government regulations. As a guiding principle, EU nationals (including UK) who are ordinarily resident in the EU pay Home/EU tuition fees, all other students (including those from the Channel Islands and Isle of Man) pay Overseas fees.

Funding

To help students in finding and securing appropriate funding we have created a funding finder where you can search for suitable sources of funding by filtering the results to suit your needs. Visit the funding finder.

Prestige Scholarship

The Prestige Scholarship provides funding of up to £11,000 to cover up to £9k fees and a potential contribution to living expenses. This scholarship has been designed to attract exceptional candidates to Cranfield University so we welcome applications from UK or EU graduates with a first-class honours undergraduate degree. Prestige Scholarships are available for all MSc courses in the Energy, Environment and Agrifood themes.

Merit MSc Bursary

The Merit MSc Bursary provides funding of up to £5,000 towards tuition fees. Applicants should be UK or EU graduates with a first class honours, 2:1 honours or in exceptional circumstances 2:2 honours undergraduate degree in a relevant subject. Merit MSc Bursaries are available for all MSc courses in the Energy, Environment and Agrifood themes.

International MSc Bursary

The International MSc Bursary provides funding of up to £5,000 towards tuition fees. Applicants should be from outside the EU with a first class honours or upper second class honours undergraduate degree or equivalent in a relevant subject. International MSc Bursaries are available for all MSc courses in the Energy, Environment and Agrifood themes.

Cranfield Postgraduate Loan Scheme (CPLS)

The Cranfield Postgraduate Loan Scheme (CPLS) is a funding programme providing affordable tuition fee and maintenance loans for full-time UK/EU students studying technology-based MSc courses.

Conacyt (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia)

Cranfield offers competitive scholarships for Mexican students in conjunction with Conacyt (Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnologia) in science, technology and engineering.

Commonwealth Shared Scholarship Scheme

Students from developing countries who would not otherwise be able to study in the UK can apply for Commonwealth Shared Scholarships for Master’s study, jointly supported by UK universities.

Marshal Papworth Scholarships

Marshal Papworth provide opportunities for students from developing countries to gain the agricultural and horticultural skills needed to achieve a sustainable future for themselves and their communities

The Lorch MSc Student Bursary

The Lorch Foundation is an educational trust supporting Cranfield students with bursaries of up to £5,000. Applicants should be UK citizens and possess a minimum 2:1 UK Honours degree in Engineering or Physical Sciences or related discipline.

The Lorch International MSc Student Bursary

The Lorch Foundation is an educational trust supporting Cranfield international students with bursaries of up to £5,000. International applicants should have an equivalent to a 2:1 UK Honours degree in Engineering or Physical Sciences or related discipline.

Application Process

Online application form. UK students are normally expected to attend an interview and financial support is best discussed at that time. Overseas and EU students may be interviewed by telephone.

Career opportunities

Takes you on to a wide-range of exciting career possibilities in water and sanitation development with non-governmental organisations, emergency relief agencies, UN and similar international bodies. The course also provides an ideal grounding for research positions and PhD programmes.

Dr Bob Grabowski, Environmental Water Management, Course Director

Watch video in full screen.




Water