Civil Engineering: University of Birmingham

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Civil Engineering: University of Birmingham, Civil Engineering, The University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 2TT, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Civil Engineering
3 years for BEng, 4 years for MEng
Scholarship and Grants

(+44) (0) 121 414 5137
(+44) (0) 121 414 3675


Courses available

  • Civil Engineering BEng/MEng
    UCAS code: H200
  • Civil Engineering with Industrial Experience MEng
    UCAS code: H202
  • Civil Engineering with International Study MEng
    UCAS code: H203
  • Civil Engineering with Business Management BEng/MEng
    UCAS code: H2NC
  • Civil and Energy Engineering BEng/MEng
    UCAS code: HH28

The world is changing. New societies and economies are emerging and the physical signs of global climate change are all around us. Creating an environment to meet these challenges calls for civil engineers with the imagination, creativity and technical expertise to cross engineering boundaries.

Civil engineers use their skills to design and develop buildings and infrastructure to withstand the extremes of the environment and to enhance the lives of millions. They also have an important role to play in meeting basic human needs across the globe, such as the right for every person to have safe, clean drinking water; and in regenerating and conserving the environment for current and future generations.

At Birmingham we believe in developing the engineer in you, right from the first year. Civil engineers solve complex, real-world problems and our courses are designed to give you as many opportunities as possible to tackle such problems. These take the form of design projects, which thread through our degree programmes. The design problems increase in complexity from the first year, where you will learn the importance of good conceptual design, until the third year, which sees you spending about half your time working on a real engineering problem provided by our industrial advisers.

In the Civil Engineering Department, we are professional engineers who are passionate about our specialist areas of engineering. When we are not teaching, we can be found working with industry, either as advisers or research partners. Senior academics in the department currently act as government advisers for issues ranging from flooding to road management in developing countries. Our research informs our teaching, so our students are exposed to the latest developments in the industry and get to experience current engineering projects alongside practising engineers.

First year

During the first year you study a broad range of engineering subjects. This gives you the breadth of knowledge needed by all engineers today and also allows you to keep your options open if you are not sure which branch of engineering interests you most. You can also choose to study a language – French, German, Japanese or Spanish.

Second year

This year extends your technical knowledge and teaches you how to apply your knowledge and creativity to solving engineering problems. You learn how to design real structures using concrete and steel. You can also broaden your outlook by studying subjects such as ethics, disaster science or sustainability.

Third year

During your third year you solve real-world problems through challenging design projects. You work in teams and individually to engineer appropriate and creative design solutions. If you have chosen to include international study in your MEng degree, the third year is your year abroad.

Fourth year

The highlight of the fourth year is a challenging individual research project. You will deepen and specialise your knowledge in an area that particularly interests you, within either structural, water, geotechnical or energy engineering. If you have chosen to include Industrial experience in your MEng degree, you will spend a semester working in industry.

Year in industry

If you would like to gain industrial experience during your degree but still complete your MEng degree in four years, Civil Engineering with Industrial Experience will be an excellent choice for you. During the third year of your degree they will help you to apply to companies and find a placement most suited to you. You will then complete the first term of your fourth year at University and spend the next term out in industry. Your term in industry is counted as a module on your degree programme, with marks from the placement contributing to the marks for your final year.

Year abroad

If you would like to spend the third year of your degree studying Civil Engineering in another country, either in English or in a foreign language, then the Civil Engineering with International Study option will be an excellent choice for you. You will apply to your chosen overseas university during your second year at Birmingham. Your personal tutor and degree programme manager will help you to select appropriate modules, to ensure that you cover material similar to the Birmingham programme. You will then spend your entire third year at the overseas university and your grades from that year will be directly transferred into your Birmingham degree. When you return, you will rejoin your classmates to do the fourth and final year of your MEng degree.

Teaching and assessment

You will study with lecturers who are professional engineers and experts in their own fields, which cover structural, geotechnical, wind, water and transport engineering. Your days are split between attending lectures, doing tutorials and laboratory practicals, and your own individual study time. In the third and fourth years, project work increases in importance so that you spend up to 25 hours a week working on your design or research projects.

Career opportunities

Upon graduation you may choose to join a big engineering consultancy and gain experience in all areas of civil engineering, or you could choose to specialise in a particular area, such as structural design, geotechnical, energy or water engineering. There are also many opportunities to work abroad as a civil engineer.

Entry requirements

  • Number of A levels required: 3
  • Typical offers: ABB for MEng; BBB for BEng
  • Required subjects and grades: A level Mathematics; GCSE Physics (or Double Science) grade C if not offered at A or AS level
  • General Studies: not accepted, but a good performance may be taken into account if you fail to meet the conditions of the offer
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma: 30–34 points including HL Mathematics

Other qualifications are considered – see the entry requirements section for full details

Professional accreditation

These programmes are accredited by the Institutions of Civil and Structural Engineers, and are compatible with the latest guidelines for professional engineering registration (SARTOR 3). They are also recognised by the European Federation of National Engineering Associations (FEANI).

Additional information

  1. H202 includes an industrial placement
  2. H203 includes an overseas study option
  3. H2NC incorporates the Business Management Minor – a co-ordinated suite of modules delivered by the Birmingham Business School, occupying one-third of each year.
  4. HH28 incorporates the Energy Engineering theme
  5. A Foundation Year is also available.

Related links

Contact details

For general information about open days

Main University Switchboard

  • Postal Address: The University of Birmingham
    B15 2TT
  • Tel: +44 (0)121 414 3344
  • Fax: +44(0)121 414 3971


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