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The University of Southampton

CENV6153 Transport Modelling

Module Overview

This module builds on theoretical aspects of transport planning and engineering to introduce a more applied approach covering the state-of-the-art in transport modelling. The module is divided into three intermixed strands: 'Transport Demand Models' for predicting overall travel patterns; 'Microscopic Transport Models' for predicting operations of individual road junctions; and ‘Regional Transport Models' for analysing impacts of transport systems across wide areas. The overall aim is to develop an understanding of the different approaches to modelling the consequences of transport engineering, planning and policy decisions.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

This module aims to develop an understanding of the different approaches to modelling the consequences of transport engineering and policy decisions.

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • 4-stage' travel demand models
  • Traffic simulation models
  • Attitudinal and behavioural models
  • UK and international transport policy
  • The use of Geographic Information Systems in a transport context
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Identify appropriate model types for a range of transport situations
  • Create models to represent a range of transport situations
  • Analyse the results from transport models
  • Critically evaluate comparative transport options
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Apply critical analysis and judgement
  • Analyse and solve problems in a methodical fashion
  • Time management and independent learning
  • Evaluate modelling results
Subject Specific Practical Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Utilise a range of common transport models
  • Use Geographic Information Systems to visualise and analyse transport and related datasets.


1. Introductory/Background lectures a. Traffic Flow b. Transport Policy 2. Transport Demand Models a. Trip Generation, Distribution, Modal Split, and Trip Assignment Models b. Generalised Cost and Discrete Choice Models c. Departure Time, Activity Based and Attitudinal Models 3. Microscopic Transport Models a. Driver Behaviour Models b. Traffic Simulation Models 4. Regional Transport Models a. Geographic Information Systems b. Transport Datasets and Applications

Special Features

Students will create working simulation models of road junction operation and vehicle movements.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Lecture sessions introduce underpinning model theory, with worked in-class examples. Computer workshop sessions to give practical experience of using appropriate software to develop transport models. Modelling coursework to with support tutorial sessions to enable understanding of the difficulties of applying models to real life scenarios.

Wider reading or practice30
Follow-up work20
Practical classes and workshops6
Completion of assessment task30
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Ortúzar, J. de D. and Willumsen, L.G.. Modelling transport. 

Datasets - • A range of transport-related geographic datasets obtained as open data or via existing University license (e.g. Digimap).

Department for Transport. 

Software requirements PTV Vissim. 

UK National Planning Policy Framework.


Assessment Strategy

External repeat - Assessment method is Equivalent Coursework and January exam. Internal repeat - Assessment method is Coursework and January exam


MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework 30%
Examination  (120 minutes) 70%


MethodPercentage contribution
Examination  (120 minutes) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Linked modules

Pre-requisite or Co-requisite: CENV6169 Transport Planning: Policy and Governance OR CENV6171 Highway and Traffic Engineering OR Pre-requisite CENV3060 Highway and Traffic Engineering

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