Module code: ENG3208

Module Overview

The module provides insight into the key challenges faced by transportation engineers in seeking to design, deliver and maintain sustainable transportation systems. Transport is placed in the context of sustainability and urban living. Thus addressing the positive and negative impacts of transport with respect to the economy, society and the environment. The module addresses passenger and freight transportation covering the main modes of road, rail, water, air and pipeline and does this in the context of sustainability and ways of prioritising active modes of transport. Trends in society, and associated developments in transport technology will be examined in the context of future infrastructure needs and associated disruption management.

Module provider

Sustainability, Civil & Env Engineering

Module Leader

BRISTOW Abigail (Sust & CEE)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

Module cap (Maximum number of students): 100

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 80

Lecture Hours: 12

Seminar Hours: 12

Tutorial Hours: 2

Guided Learning: 40

Captured Content: 4

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content includes: • Definitions of sustainability and its application in the context of transportation systems. • Characteristics (function and capacity) and roles of the different modes of passenger and freight transportation and their interactions at nodal interchanges within networks. • Positive and negative impacts of transportation systems (environmental, social and economic) and methods for mitigating negative impacts when developing urban transport systems. • Assessment methodologies for transport schemes and policy interventions. • Future challenges and opportunities, issues might include, disruptive technologies (e.g. Hyperloop), HS2, sustainable aviation, autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles, etc.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework COURSEWORK 30
Examination Online ONLINE EXAM (4 HOURS) 70

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate:  

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to: 

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of sustainability and apply them in the context of transportation system and their development within, and between, urban centres. 

  • Critically assess the roles and performance of different modes of transportation and the interconnections and interdependencies that exist within transport networks. 

  • Consider particular transport challenges within an urban environment and develop potential solutions demonstrating an understanding of the context and constraints.  

  • Evaluate the costs and benefits of transport schemes taking due account of the three pillars of sustainability. 


  Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of: 

  • Coursework assignment (LO 1 and 4) 

  • Exam (LO1 to 4) 


 Formative feedback and assessment will be provided through: 

  • Discussions within tutorial and seminar sessions 

  • Verbal feedback on students answers to a range of exercises and worked examples 

 Feedback  will be provided through: 

  • Individual written feedback on coursework. 

  • Generic feedback on common characteristics of good pieces of work and common mistakes/omissions. 

Module aims

  • Outline the context in which transportation systems develop and operate with particular regard to sustainability, urban living and the (global) development of population centres.
  • Provide an understanding of the different modes of transport, their advantages and disadvantages, how they interact and the challenges engineers face in their delivery.
  • Consider future challenges in delivering a sustainable transport network as technology, society and the economy evolve.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of sustainability and apply them in the context of transportation system. KP
002 Critically assess the roles and performance (function and capacity) of different modes of transportation. CP
003 Consider particular transport challenges and develop potential solutions that demonstrate an understanding of context and constraints. KC
004 Evaluate the costs and benefits of transport schemes. KC

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to enable students to gain an understanding of sustainable transportation systems and an ability to critically assess different options in terms of infrastructure development and policy interventions. 

The learning and teaching methods include: 

  • A series of inter-active lecture style sessions to provide students with an overview of the key issues relating to transportation; supplemented as appropriate with captured content. 

  • A computer lab based tutorial

  • Directed reading to support the lecture notes provided to enable a broader and deeper understanding of the issues that underpin the sustainable development of integrated, urban transport networks. 

  • A number of discussion-led tutorial and seminar sessions based on directed reading and structured questions. 


Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: ENG3208

Other information

Surrey's Curriculum Framework is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module is designed to allow students to develop knowledge, skills and capabilities in the following areas::

Sustainability:This module embeds sustainability from the beginning – framing transport problems and solutions in a sustainability framework.  This enables students to develop an holistic view of the transport systems and routes to sustainability. 

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Civil Engineering BEng (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Civil Engineering MEng 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2022/3 academic year.