“Cost Engineering is the application of scientific principles and techniques to problems of estimation; cost control; business planning and management science; profitability analysis; project management; and planning and scheduling.” [Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering: AACE].

Principle of Cost Engineering short course has been running at the Cranfield University since 2005. Cranfield University has over 15 years of experience in delivering this short course online and attracted more than 300 students across different industrial sectors.

With the rapid shift of the manufacturing and industry towards digitalisation, the conventional approaches to cost estimation and forecasting are no longer suitable. Therefore, this innovative course is designed to integrate digitalisation and advanced data science techniques in cost engineering. This short course aims to develop core competencies that you can learn and apply as a cost engineer or project cost manager in your workplace. You will also explore digitalisation techniques and advanced data analytics methods to analyse, predict and validate cost estimates for application in manufacturing and operation. In this short course, you will learn about a wide range of advanced digital technologies such as Stochastic simulation techniques, Digital twins, Digital threads, Artificial Intelligence, and Data ontologies in the context of cost engineering, including but not limited to cost estimation, cost control, cost data analysis, risk and uncertainty assessment, and cost management.

Note: The 2 week course is divided into 3 individual modules which are delivered in two weeks. The modules are designed in a way to promote the relevant skills progressively from module 1 to module 3. The modules are: Estimator (Module 1), Senior estimator (Module 2), and Manager (Module 3); you can find more information in the ‘Course details’ section below.

At a glance

Course structure

The course is delivered online with several pre-recorded and live online sessions on the Virtual Learning Environment using the CANVAS platform. The short course includes pre-works, post-works and a series of group and individual activities to solve several case studies, real-world examples, and exercises in cost engineering. The tutors for each session provide narrated power-point presentations, recordings in the format of audio/video, lecture materials, additional resources, and references. The short course is designed in a way to enhance accessibility for students on the online platform.

What you will learn

Intended learning outcomes for module 1

  • Explain the principles of cost engineering, essential competencies for a cost engineer and standards for cost estimation.
  • Build cost models for whole lifecycle costing and apply data analytics for cost data presentation.
  • Apply different cost estimation methods and techniques in different case studies.
  • Analyse risk and uncertainty in cost estimates and evaluate the level of accuracy.
  • Develop cost validation and cost report.

Intended learning outcomes for module 2

  • Implement cost planning and cost control over PLM.
  • Develop financial analysis models including investment appraisal, value analysis, return on investment and cost-benefit analysis.
  • Design the next generation of cost modelling and simulation (e.g. machine learning) ontologies, digitalisation, and automation to develop robust cost estimates.

Intended learning outcomes for module 3

  • Apply cost management techniques such as constructability and value engineering
  • Apply project control techniques such as benchmarking, contract design and risk management.

Key features

  • Innovative competencies for practising cost management who aspire to higher positions.
  • An advanced modelling, simulation, and data analytics for cost engineering practitioners.
  • Flexible curriculum to suit your professional interests in cost engineering.
  • Digitalisation technologies and techniques for automating/ semi-automating cost engineering.

Core content

Module 1
Day 1 Introduction to cost engineering
Day 2 Cost estimation methods
Day 3 Data Analysis and Presentations (hands-on Exercise)
Day 4 Decisions, Risks and Uncertainties
Day 5 Cost Report & communication
Module 2
Day 1 Cost control and Planning
Day 2 Investment appraisal (hands-on Exercise)
Day 3 Introduction to digitalitalisation of cost engineering
 Module 3
Day 1 Cost management
Day 2 Project Control

Who should attend

This course is suitable for manufacturing and service industry professionals, including aerospace, defence, automotive, healthcare and energy, who work with, or are responsible for, cost engineering and project cost management. Due to the course being online, it is best suited to those interested in distance learning.

Academic requirement

You should have relevant certificates or degrees in either engineering, manufacturing, finance, data science, or management.

(OR) Work experience requirement

You should have a minimum of two years of experience in a managerial, technical, or professional role relevant to cost engineering and cost management.

Language requirement

Your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study.


Dr Maryam Farsi


20% discount for Cranfield Alumni. 
10% discount when registering 3 or more delegates, from the same organisation at the same time.  

How to apply

To apply for this course please use the online application form.

Read our Professional development (CPD) booking conditions.