DA5042 - Contract Practice & Dispute Resolution

What will I learn on this module?

You will learn about how to evaluate construction legislation and various forms of contract used in a project, and become able to appraise the legal aspects of a project and select the most suitable form of contract to be used to ensure fairness and efficiency. You will learn to apply techniques for the avoidance of conflict and dispute resolution between stakeholders in a project, such as adjudication and arbitration.
You will explore topics such as:
• Key principles of Contract law
• Standard Forms of Contract (e.g. NEC, JCT, FIDIC etc.)
• Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act, with regard to payment provisions and the consequences of non-compliance
• Impact of amendments and adhesions to standard form contracts
• Pre-tender contract review
• Notification, recording, evaluating and recovering Change
• Key risks and mitigation controls associated with project contracts
• Philosophies and practices of collaborative working and conflict avoidance
• Importance and benefits of accurate and timely record keeping
• Specific contract requirements for record keeping, notifications and the reporting of changes to project time (delay) and/or cost
• Project risk registers
• Society of Construction Law Delay and Disruption Protocol
• Dispute resolution methods, including arbitration, adjudication and litigation
• Arbitration, including procedural steps, timescales and people involved

How will I learn on this module?

Most of your learning on this Degree Apprenticeship module will be in your workplace. You will gain a theoretical understanding of the topics through live (online or face-to-face) university sessions and online resources such as recorded lectures, videocasts, podcasts, electronic books, journal articles and websites. Your involvement in construction quantity surveying tasks will enable you to put the theory into context, thereby cementing your understanding. You will agree with your Workplace Mentor a Module Learning Plan (MLP) designed to achieve the Module Learning Outcomes via a series of directed workplace learning activities, such as shadowing a colleague, visiting a site or producing a poster.

The module will typically span 11 weeks, with scheduled or directed activities each week, and one piece of summative assessment submitted in week 12 or 13. This may also be supplemented with up to one day of face-to-face interaction, if appropriate, at Northumbria University or a regional hub. The module will include around 11 hours of ‘Seminars’ (synchronous classroom and online delivery via Blackboard Collaborate), 7 hours of ‘Lectures’ (asynchronous online delivery via Blackboard or Blackboard Collaborate), 2 hours of ‘Tutorials’ (1-to-1 support from Workplace Mentor and Workplace Coach), and 40 hours of workplace learning activities. The remaining hours in the Notional Student Workload for the module are attributed to independent learning, with the estimated ratio of tutor-guided to student independent learning at 2:3, as appropriate for a Level 5 module.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Your Module Tutor(s) will deliver an online module induction session and lead live sessions that enable you to interact with your tutor and peers. They will provide and direct you to essential and recommended online resources available via the University’s eLearning Portal and University Library. Outside of live sessions, they will provide advice and respond to questions via the eLearning Portal.

Your Workplace Mentor will support you in developing your Module Learning Plan. You will be provided with a guidance document that outlines the principles of workplace learning and provides examples of a large and diverse range of potential workplace learning activities. You may also discuss your Module Learning Plan with your Workplace Coach.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
MLO1: Appraise construction legislation and apply various forms of contract to projects

MLO2: Apply techniques for the avoidance of conflict and dispute resolution between stakeholders in a project

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
MLO3: Advise on the legal aspects of a project and select the most suitable form of contract to be used to ensure fairness and efficiency

MLO4: Apply the principles for the avoidance of conflict and dispute resolution such as adjudication and arbitration between project stakeholders

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):


How will I be assessed?

You will be formatively assessed by the completion of the workplace learning activities identified in your Module Learning Plan. You will receive informal, often verbal, formative feedback from your Workplace Mentor, and sometimes from other colleagues and your Workplace Coach. You will also have the opportunity for formative feedback from your module tutor(s), particularly during the assessment guidance sessions.

Your summative assessment will provide you with the opportunity to translate your workplace learning into a coherent output that demonstrates that you have achieved the module learning outcomes.

This will be in the form of an online open book assessment (24-hour access, 2-hour nominal time to complete), which will require you to: identify key risks and recommend mitigation controls for example contracts; and recommend solutions and procedures to avoid conflict or resolve disputes for example scenarios.





Module abstract

This module is an integral part of your Degree Apprenticeship programme, designed in collaboration with employers to meet the requirements of the Construction Quantity Surveyor Apprenticeship Standard and provide a solid skills base for career progression and professional qualification in the construction industry.

You will learn to appraise construction legislation and apply various forms of contract to projects, advise on the legal aspects and select the most suitable form of contract to ensure fairness and efficiency. You will learn to apply techniques for the avoidance of conflict and dispute resolution between stakeholders in a project such as adjudication and arbitration.

You will gain theoretical understanding through university sessions and online resources but as a Degree Apprentice, you will do most of your learning in the context of your role in the construction industry via a series of workplace learning activities agreed with your Workplace Mentor.

Course info

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 4 years Part Time

Department Architecture and Built Environment

Location Various Locations

City Newcastle

Start September 2024

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


Useful Links

Find out about our distinctive approach at 

Admissions Terms and Conditions

Fees and Funding

Admissions Policy

Admissions Complaints Policy