New course offers key to tackling crumbling roads

A new university qualification has been launched to help equip highway engineers with the skills they need to fix the UK’s crumbling roads.

With demands for better road surfaces and pavements to provide better journey times with minimum disruption to motorists, local authority highways departments are under pressure to deliver for the taxpayer.

Authorities are faced with reduced funding, extreme weather changes, an ageing infrastructure and increasing regulations and bureaucracy – but academics and industry partners behind the University Diploma in Road Surface Technology at University of Derby Corporate say the course will give people the tools to deliver on these issues by developing their technical skills.

Subjects covered include paving materials, environmental management, health and safety awareness, treating surfaces, maintaining pavements and contracts management.

Dr Tony Stock, programme leader for the new course, said: “This is the first higher education qualification for the road surface treatments industry and is a real step-forward for those who wish to set themselves apart from the rest of the industry.

“It is all delivered online which ensures it fits around the busy schedules of professionals in the field and support is available from tutors online and by telephone.”

The nine-month course which starts in October has been developed jointly by leading industry bodies, the Road Surface Treatment Association (RSTA) and the Institute of Asphalt Technology (IAT), along with University of Derby Corporate.

Howard Robinson, chief executive of the RSTA, said: “This course is aimed at developing the next generation of industry leaders in the road surface treatments sector.

“It will appeal to individuals who currently work within the sector and also those who need to further their knowledge on the range of economic options now available for road surface maintenance.”

For more information on the course, visit www.derby.ac.uk/rsta

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