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MSc Civil Engineering

Course Description

Why take this course?

Civil engineering is key to economic and social stability throughout the world. From roads and bridges to skyscrapers and airports, modern civil engineers plan, design, construct and manage the large-scale public works and amenities that underpin our society.

This course is a dynamic mix of specialist civil engineering knowledge and essential learning of current technical and practical methods.

What will I experience?

On this course you can:

Create your own designs and models in response to industry-relevant civil engineering demands
Apply your skills to real-life practical problems as part of our partnership schemes with local and global organisations
Venture overseas on a European exchange programme or do a paid work placement in industry

What opportunities might it lead to?

This course will lead you to a recognised professional qualification in civil engineering. It is accredited by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), the Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE), the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) and the Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE).

It fully satisfies the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) under the UK Standard for Professional Engineering Competence (UK-SPEC). We maintain excellent links with these professional bodies and regularly update and advise you on matters relating to your progress to professional status.

Here are some routes our graduates have pursued:

Civil engineering
Site engineering
Project management

Module Details

Year one

During your first year you will study fundamental engineering principles and be introduced to the key theories upon which civil engineering practice is based.

Core units include:

Construction Management and Practice
Engineering Analysis
Professional Development 1
Soils and Materials 1
Understanding Structures - Analysis and Design
Water and Environmental Engineering

Year two

In year two you will extend your understanding and ability to analyse complex civil engineering systems.

Core units include:

Behaviour of Structures
Design of Structural Elements
Numerical Skills and Economics
Professional Development 2
Soils and Materials 2

Options to choose from include:

Diving and Underwater Engineering A
Diving and Underwater Engineering B
Fieldwork for Civil Engineers
Heritage Property
Introduction to Project Management Principles
Water Infrastructure

Years three and four*

During your final two years you will build on all the knowledge you have acquired enabling you to analyse, design and manage civil engineering systems in an integrated manner. You will develop practical proposals for complex civil engineering problems in a simulated professional organisation. You will also complete a dissertation on a topic of your choice and a design project, which covers the practical application of knowledge and techniques in the identification, design and management of a simulated major construction project.

Year three

Core units include:

Professional Development 3
MEng Individual Research Project
Project Management for Civil Engineers
Design of Bridges
Soils and Materials 3
Year four

Core units are:

Advanced Engineering Science
Environmental Management
Integrated Design Project

*This course is also available as a 5-year sandwich (work placement)

Programme Assessment

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials and group work, and be fully supported throughout your degree. We promote many practical teaching methods by way of lab and fieldwork supplying you with proactive, hands-on learning opportunities.

We guarantee sustained feedback to make sure your studies are on track. Providing you with valuable skills and experience, you will be assessed in a variety of ways, including:

Written exams
Web assessments
Essays and reports
Project presentations
A 10,000-word dissertation

Student Destinations

Working in the construction and engineering sector will make an interesting, challenging and rewarding career. There will be a wide range of roles within the construction industry open to you once you have completed your studies.

This course is an appropriate first degree leading to a recognised professional qualification in civil engineering should you wish to continue your studies. What’s more, it also meets the entry requirements for many of the major graduate engineering programmes.

Overall, you will be a versatile graduate who will have the employable skills to secure work in many areas of the job market.

Roles our graduates have taken on include:

Structural engineer
Construction manager
Design engineer
Highway engineer
Envinronmental and drainage engineer
Site engineer
Traffic engineer
Assistant engineer

Visit the MSc Civil Engineering page on the University of Portsmouth website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Stephanie Mergen

206.jpg Stephanie Mergen, completed her first degree in Germany and switched to Portsmouth to complete her Master’s in Civil Engineering.
The desire to live by the sea helped bring me to England and, more specifically, Portsmouth and now the threat of floods globally and finding ways to keep water at bay is what is inspiring my studies.
I am working as a researcher and doing testing for a Manchester-based company on developing permeable pavements which help prevent flooding and which also contain micro-organisms which ‘clean’ pollutants from the water.
In my first degree I specialised in water and environment management. It was fascinating and I wanted to further deepen my studies in this area. I am very interested in the environment, natural water cycles, the supply of water and rain water treatment so I decided to write my dissertation for my Master’s on this subject.
My work on permeable pavements involves testing different products to use under the block paving surface to collect and store water and filter it to remove harmful metals and oil washed into drains from cars.
It’s important work is done to help find a solution to increased rainfall and risk of flooding as well as ways to help combat pollutants from vehicles entering the drains and waterways.
Permeable pavements are already used in many cities across Europe but my current research and testing aims to help advance the science of collecting water and making such a system self-cleaning and self-sustaining.
Once I graduate I hope to stay in the UK and get a job so I can gain more industry experience


Entry Requirements

A good honours degree in Civil Engineering or a related subject, or equivalent industrial and work experience.English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

Last Updated

14 November 2016

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