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Specifying Concrete using BS8500

In-house course

This course can be delivered in the offices of a company to a group of up to 16 engineers. It is currently not available as a public course.


The current UK standard for concrete specification is European Standard BS EN 206–1 together with the supplementary British Standard BS 8500, both of which should now be familiar to professionals engaged in the writing and interpretation of concrete specifications. This course explains the principles of the standards and how to achieve durable concrete.

Aims & objectives

At the end of this course delegates will understand the principle in BS 8500 and its associated documents. They will be able to specify concrete to be durable in its intended environment and ensure that it is placed correctly.

At the end of the course delegates will:

  • Know how BS 8500, and SD 1 work together

  • Understand the terminology in BS 8500

  • Understand the differences between the concrete types

  • Be able to identify the durability requirements for particular situations

  • Understand how to specify concrete to meet the durability requirements

  • Be able to to ensure the concrete meets the specification through conformity and identity testing

Course outline

Session 1 (1¾ hrs)

  • Introduction to BS 8500

  • Strength classes

  • Cover to reinforcement

  • Design life

  • Concrete types

Session 2 (1¾ hrs)


  • Durability

  • Exercise – determining durability requirements

Session 3 (1 hr)


  • Cement types

  • Aggregates

  • Consistence classes

  • Chloride classes

  • Density

Session 4 (1½ hrs)


  • Specifying concrete

  • Conformity testing

  • Identity testing

  • Tolerances

  • Action on non-conformity

Who the course intended for?

The course is intended for professionals in the construction industry who specify and oversee the placing of concrete including designers and site engineers.

Course duration

Days (hrs) 1 day (6 hours) IPD/CPD

For full terms and conditions of our in-house courses, click here.



The courses above are delivered by Owen Brooker BEng CEng MICE MIStructE MCS who has a wide range of experience in the design of buildings using reinforced concrete, structural steelwork, timber, masonry and glass. Owen has previously worked for The Concrete Centre, where he wrote technical publications, delivered training courses and answered technical queries through their helpline on a range of concrete related topics. Owen is a marking examiner for the IStructE Chartered Membership Exam. Owen has delivered training courses on Eurocodes 0, 1, 2 and 3 throughout the UK and on a number of occasions worldwide.

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