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2023/24 Undergraduate Module Catalogue

CIVE3460 Environmental Health Engineering in Developing Countries

10 creditsClass Size: 150

Module manager: Professor Barbara Evans

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2023/24

This module is not approved as a discovery module

Module summary

If you are interested in practical application of civil engineering skills or if you are interested in international development then CIVE3460 is an important option for you to take. The module is taught through a series of nine lectures and two seminars - the lecture team are drawn from Civil Engineering and the Institute of Transport Studies at Leeds as well as from the School of Environment and Development at Manchester and the Water Engineering Development Centre at Loughborough. All of the teaching staff are practitioners also currently working in developing countries. The assessment is via the project (100%), which involves assessing the best options and outline design for low-cost housing development using a set of background data and contexual information. The project will help you develop both technical skills and also has a strong element relating to presentation of information in a report and through drawings. The fieldcourse is obligatory but does not carry a mark. During the fieldcourse, students spend two days at the University farm near Tadcaster and build a low-cost ($100) house using earth-pressed blocks and hand-made tiles, one or more latrines, simplified sewer lines and a ferro-cement water tank. The fieldcourse is always very popular and provides students with the opportunity to learn some practical site skills and work with our highly experienced building technician.


This module will develop student skills in applying engineering knowledge to unfamiliar contexts. Students will develop a knowledge and understanding of the environmental health conditions which typically prevail in low-income urban and rural communities in the global South. They will consider and develop the ability to select appropriate materials and design approaches for the successful implementation of low-cost housing developments in areas which are prone to extreme weather events and earthquakes. In addition they will further develop their practical communications skills including report writing and drawing for professional clients.


- Poverty and development: global distribution of poverty, global burden of disease, growth and urbanisation;
- Environmental challenges: earthquakes, cyclones, drought etc, man-made disasters, civil disruption, population migration.
- Setting priorities for environmental health interventions: communicable and non-communicable diseases, mental illnesses and psychosocial disorders.
- Appropriate civil engineering materials: pozzolanic cements, fibre-reinforces cement companies, soil stabilisation.
- Low-cost housing technology I: design requirements for comfort conditions.
- Low-cost housing technology II: design requirements for earthquake resistance and cyclone resistance.
- Housing policy and projects, self-help housing, microfinance and urban development.
- Transport planning in developing countries.
- Public and private transport design.
- Appropriate road design.
- Planning and design of appropriate water supply and sanitation for informal urban settlements.
- Management and pricing of water and sanitation services in poor cities.

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Private study hours57.00
Total Contact hours43.00
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)100.00

Private study

12 hours revision, 50 hours coursework

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

Attendance requirement - To gain the credits for this module students must attend the field course at the end of Semester Two.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
ProjectProject report100.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 28/04/2023 14:52:55


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