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The management chain involved with construction is quite large and as a result, degrees spanning all levels are available. This allows you to pursue a degree that is on par with your desired position. Construction management also reflects many concepts and responsibilities found in other forms of management. Because of this, project management, contract management, and general management majors can pursue construction management careers too.
A degree specifically in construction management offers the best skill-set when pursuing a position for this career choice. Programs will not only explore general management competencies like project management and planning, risk assessment, human resources, and communication but also industry-oriented elements like attention to safety, regulations, and laws. That said, various other majors like project management, general management, and contract management can be applied to jobs in this field.
As usual, the graduate degrees in construction management require more time than the undergraduate degrees. More advanced degrees take longer to achieve, usually on the order of two or more years longer, than less advanced degrees.
The associate’s degree is typically earned in two years of study while the bachelor’s degree takes four. A master’s degree usually requires a year or two of study after completion of a bachelor’s degree. Certification programs aren’t the same as degrees, though one can lead to the other. A certificate in construction management just lets potential employers know that a trusted organization has vouched for your competence in the field.
Students pursuing a bachelor degree in construction usually earn a Bachelor of Science degree (BS), which can lead to management positions and career advancement. A B.S in construction management program teaches the basic set of skills needed to bring a construction project to completion. A BS program in construction management, construction management technology or construction science customarily blends both technical and engineering instruction with a solid business background. Building construction bachelor’s degree programs have a core emphasis on communication and business relations, rather than engineering and architecture. Bachelor’s degree programs in construction engineering or construction engineering management concentrate on specific construction trades and project management.
While it is possible to concentrate in any of the above listed vocations during school, many construction managers get a very broad education at school and then learn the specifics of their chosen niche through practice and on-the-job training.
A student earning a master’s degree in a practical subject like construction management usually has one primary goal: career advancement. Someone seeking a master’s degree usually needs to have previously earned a bachelor’s degree. The MS in construction, construction management, and construction science management programs build upon the educational foundation from a bachelor’s degree in the field. The MS in construction administration programs highlight project management with an emphasis on construction safety. Master’s degree programs in building construction offer advanced instruction specialized in technical areas such as planning and scheduling, materials, high rise construction and building techniques. Construction engineering management masters programs spotlight engineering and industrial applications of construction methods.
Within these construction management degree distinctions, programs have different emphases and specializations. Subject matter that is likely to be included in undergraduate degrees in construction management includes:
Construction managers have to be good at a lot of different skills to do their job well, because they are often responsible for every step of the project, from supplies procurement to scheduling, project management, and completion.
Computers have permeated the construction industry as they have with every other industry, and construction managers may need to have specialized training in certain computer programs and functions.
Drawing up building plans is one major task that is done with complex computer programs that likely require official training to master. While much of the actual planning and drafting of blueprints might be done by an architect, interior designer, or landscape designer, a construction manager can still benefit from learning how to use the following programs:
While basic computer literacy is a prerequisite of any type of higher education and is necessary in any career field, the above programs will be especially useful to aspiring construction managers who want to stay ahead of the curve.
Classroom learning isn’t going to be enough to make you into a great construction manager. This is a hands-on career, and some hands-on experience will be necessary for any student to reach their real potential in this field. Some ways to get experience in construction management before entering school or even while you’re in college are:
Even some work experience or volunteering might not prepare you for what it is really like to work as a construction manager full time. But if you’re interested in the career, and similar careers are also appealing to you, then heading to school for a bachelor’s or master’s degree is probably a good bet.
Bachelor’s Degrees in construction management usually contain a block of core curriculum classes like English, mathematics, history, and other essential components of higher education, as well as a more upper level courses that deal specifically with construction management subject matter. Below is a graph that shows the percentage of general courses to the percentage of construction specific classes in the construction management degree program at Everglades University.
Created in 2010, ConstructionManagementDegree.com is a website serving educational purposes. Its mission to provide a comprehensive overview of construction management degrees. If you are considering a degree and career in construction management, there should be plenty of info on this site to help you get started down that road.
After compiling loads of research, we were able to organize and confine this data to a complete list of schools that offer a degree in construction management, along with a link to basic information about the program. Hopefully this site will allow future students to have an easy and broad list of schools when choosing the right campus.
These construction management degree programs are offered by accredited colleges. You can request information from about any program by clicking the college's logo.