Reaching Net Zero through Passive Building Design


This six-hour CPD course explores how introducing passive design concepts into a building design can reduce the energy use and whole life carbon emissions associated with buildings.

6 hours CPD       (You will have 6 weeks access to the course material)

Multi-buy Discount: This course is part of a series of four CPD courses developed by UCEM. Each focuses on a different approach to reducing energy use and carbon emissions. You can buy these separately, or click here to buy all four CPD courses together for the discounted fee of £250.

SKU: ONL-CPD (EC2) Categories: , ,


Reaching Net Zero through Passive Building Design

It is possible to dramatically reduce energy use in a building by optimising its design to harness natural sources of energy such as wind and the sun. In this six-hour CPD course, you’ll become familiar with these ‘passive design’ approaches, and how they can help to reduce energy use and associated carbon emissions.

Terms such as ‘whole life carbon’ and ‘net zero’ are not yet widely understood, even among built environment professionals, so learning key terminology and metrics will be a critical first step in being able to quantify and reduce carbon emissions in building projects.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

    • identify how passive design can reduce the whole life carbon impact of a building;
    • recognise the impact that a building’s orientation, form and layout have on its energy use and carbon footprint;
    • explain the effect that natural ventilation, daylighting and solar radiation can have on energy use in a building;
    • explain the benefits of a fabric-first approach.

Time commitment

The total estimated study time for completing this course is 6 hours. This estimate includes time for you to read or view a resource more than once, as well as time for you to take notes and undertake the online assessment.  You will have 6 weeks access to the course. Your access will start from your registration.

Course structure

The course content is divided into the following topics:

  • Passive design principles
  • Climate and microclimate
  • Building orientation, form and layout
  • Daylight and solar radiation
  • Controlling solar radiation
  • Ventilation
  • Airtightness
  • Fabric-first approach and thermal comfort.

As a fully online, self-managed course you are able to stop and restart the course as you progress, working at a time and place that suits your needs.

Entry requirements

There are no entry requirements for this course.


You will be tested with a short multiple choice online quiz at the end of this course. You must achieve 80% or more to successfully complete the course. Additional attempts will be permitted should you not be successful on your first attempt. On successful completion of the course you will receive a personalised UCEM certificate of completion for 6 hours of formal CPD.

Enrolment details

To enrol today simply “add to basket” and proceed to the checkout to pay by credit or debit card.

Individual or corporate bookings welcome.  For alternative payment options, including payment by invoice or to purchase for multiple delegates, please contact:

Have questions about our programmes or need help with your registration? Get in touch with our  friendly admissions team using the following details:

UK (Free): 0800 019 9697 (Press 1)

International: +44 (0)118 921 4696 (Press 1)


UCEM alumni?

Alumni discount is available on this CPD course. Don’t forget to input your UCEM alumni code to gain 15% discount on the full sale price of this product. Contact to receive your alumni discount.

Technical Requirements

In order to maximise your learning experience, you will need access to:
• a personal computer, laptop, tablet or mobile device with audio & video playback capability
• access to the Internet (via a broadband connection recommended)
Be able to
• use an up-to-date web browser (for example):
Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, Microsoft Edge
• open PDF documents using software such as Adobe
Please be aware if using a system within a firewall you may need your IT Team to allow pop-ups and access to YouTube.
Technical Assistance:
Should you require any technical assistance please contact

Interested in studying sustainability further?

This CPD course is part of a series available on the UCEM Online Academy, each covering different approaches to reducing energy use and carbon emissions. You can register for each one separately at cost of £95+VAT each or buy all four CPD courses together and benefit from a multi-buy discount.

Controlling Energy and Carbon Emissions in Buildings £95
Reducing Energy Use through Active Building Design £95
Understanding Energy and Carbon Assessments £95
Reaching Net Zero Through Passive Building Design £95
Energy and Carbon (multi-buy discount offer) – all four CPD together £250