Taught course

Pipeline Integrity Management

Northumbria University · Faculty of Business and Law

Entry requirements

Normally successful applicants will hold an honours degree (2:2 or above) in Engineering. Candidates may hold a professional qualification of equivalent standing which had a significant requirement for academic study. Applicants who are not graduates and do not hold professional qualifications of equivalent standing may be considered for entry if they show evidence of a strong motivation and capability for academic study and personal development (e.g. evidence of attendance at short courses) and/or significant depth of work experience and responsibilities for initiating and influencing performance improvement and innovation. Please note that you must have successfully completed the PG Cert and PG Dip awards before progressing to the Masters.

Months of entry

January, September

Course content

Pipeline Integrity Management is a corporate validated award offered by Northumbria University in partnership with Penspen Ltd. as a Postgraduate Certificate (PG Cert), a Postgraduate Diploma (PG Dip) and a Masters (MSc). Each award must be studied in sequence; therefore all modules shown in the PG Cert and PG Dip must be completed before the Masters Project may be studied. Please see the ‘modules’ tab on each of these awards for details.

Oil and gas are the world’s major sources of primary energy, and 3,500,000 km of large diameter, high pressure pipelines transport most of these hydrocarbons around the world. The pipelines carry vast quantities of energy and represent big business; for example, a large pipeline transporting 1,000,000 barrels of oil per day, with oil priced at $US100/barrel, will deliver $US36.5 billion of oil each year!

Many of these pipelines are ageing – they are typically over 30 years old - but are required to operate for many more decades to meet increasing demand, and as new sources of oil and gas are discovered. Hence, their ‘integrity’ (safety and security of supply) is a major challenge for their operators. Pipelines have an excellent safety record, but failures do occur, sometimes with tragic consequences.

There is a shortage of skilled pipeline engineers in the world today, together with an increasing need, as the pipelines continue to age, for pipeline engineers with specific skills in pipeline integrity. This distance learning course enables students to understand and apply the theory and practice of pipeline integrity engineering in a work-based environment. The course aims to produce highly skilled and professional graduates in key aspects of pipeline integrity - in particular ensuring the continued safety of ageing pipelines.

This is the first course of its kind and a market-leader, its development primarily driven by the skills-crisis within the industry. The Masters typically takes 36 months to complete (PG Dip + 12 months) and is available with January and September starts. It is achieved after completing a total of 180 credits (the PG Dip 120 credits in Integrity Assessments, Land Pipeline Engineering, Pipelines and Geohazards, Pipelines Risk and Materials Technology, plus a further 60 credits from the MSc Project).

On completion of the course, students will have relevant skills in dealing with the special problems facing pipelines: assessing pipeline damage, assessing risk, and corrosion problems, as well as general knowledge in pipeline engineering. The course presents a holistic view of pipeline integrity, which ensures students understand the history, theory, and foundations of the technologies they will use.

Full guidance in distance learning study-planning will be provided.

The Pipeline Integrity Management course is presented by on-line distance learning enhanced by tutorials, case studies and fully interactive quizzes, used as a self-evaluation tool.

Formal assessment takes place by examination and coursework at the end of each module of the course. Tutors will give students details of examinations and coursework.

Typically, students who participate in the course will already be in permanent employment in the pipeline industry. However, the qualifications allow students who are not in the industry to develop skills that are attractive to an industry that has a recognised shortage of skilled staff.

Information for international students

Students whose first language is not English must have an IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum score in each component of 5.5. Pearson Academic score of 62 (or above) with a minimum score in each component of Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking of 51

Qualification and course duration


distance learning
12-36 months


distance learning
12-24 months


distance learning
12 months

Course contact details

0191 227 4453