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Civil Engineering In The UK: Best Universities, Admission Process, Scholarships, Fees & Jobs

Civil Engineer in the UK

At its core, civil engineering is a course that enables students to acquire the skills with which they can shape the world. Not only does it include design and construction, but it also focuses on repair and maintenance. Thus, students who enrol in this course learn the intricacies and basics of civil engineering in depth. UK universities that offer this course provide the advantage of global exposure, world-class technology, and top-notch teaching techniques. Thus, to walk you through the admission process of civil engineering in the UK, our guide compiles all the necessary information. Continue reading to find out!

Why Study Civil Engineering In The UK?

The United Kingdom is home to many world-class universities that consistently rank at the top of the list. Not only do they have a plethora of opportunities, but they also offer their students the facilities to work on themselves and their careers. Thus, it is one of the best countries for an MS in civil engineering. Here are some of the top reasons why such a large number of international students prefer to study civil engineering in the UK.

  • Around 19% of the working class in the United Kingdom is employed in the different fields of engineering. This signifies that this field can offer secure job opportunities to new graduates as well.

  • Approximately 4,000 direct and more than 5,000 indirect job profiles are expected to be created by the end of 2023.

  • The United Kingdom has an employment rate of 57% for graduates of civil engineering.

  • UK universities also offer mentorship programmes and internships so students can connect with potential employers and work on their portfolios.

Top Universities For Civil Engineering UK

Every university has something else to offer. The facilities, opportunities, networking and exposure that one institute can provide might not be offered by another. Thus, it is quite crucial to choose the university carefully. Here are some of the best civil engineering universities in the UK.

UniversityQS World Rankings
University of Oxford4
Imperial College London6
University of Cambridge2
University of Edinburgh22
University of Manchester28
University of Glasgow73
University of Birmingham91
University of Sheffield96
University of Southampton78
University of Nottingham100

Course Structure

Pursuing a civil engineering course in the UK involves studying the facilities, latest technology, infrastructure and construction techniques. Since the graduates will be equipped with the repair and maintenance of several public and private properties, they must have an extensive knowledge of infrastructure.

When selecting civil engineering in the UK, students must pick their specialisations. They can choose from a plethora of options as provided by the university. Some of the standard ones are listed here. 

  • Construction Engineering
  • Coastal And Ocean Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering
  • Fire Protection Engineering
  • Structural Engineering
  • Bridge Engineering
  • Irrigation Engineering
  • Land Development
  • Materials Engineering
  • Transportation Engineering
  • Urban Engineering

Eligibility Criteria & Admission Requirements

Once you explore the different universities, courses and specialisations, you can move on to other aspects, like the eligibility criteria and admission requirements. It is essential to verify whether you fulfil these as it would confirm your seat at the institute. Here’s the list of prerequisites for international students.

  • 10+2 or equivalent
  • All official academic transcripts
  • Scores of entrance exams (if applicable)
  • Scores of English proficiency tests
  • Letters of recommendation (minimum 2)
  • Statement of purpose
  • CV/Resume
  • Financial documents
  • An interview may be conducted (not mandatory)

The minimum scores required by the university in different entrance exams are as follows. Students must aim to score higher than these to increase their chances of enrolment.

ExamMinimum Required Score
IELTS6.5 – 7.0
TOEFL80 – 110
PTE58 – 62
GRE321

Admission Process

The application process for any college offering civil engineering in the UK is quite simple and straightforward. Look at the following step-by-step guide to get a deeper understanding.

  • Explore the universities, courses and their specialisations to find the one that suits you best. Also, check where your interests truly lie. For instance, compare civil engineering vs architecture and ensure you like infrastructure more than design.

  • Verify the eligibility criteria and admission requirements to ensure that you fulfil them.

  • The universities often announce the registration dates and deadlines a few days before the portal opens. Maximum times, applicants will be required to create an account to ensure a successful application.

  • Input all your personal and educational credentials. Upload all the necessary documents, like academic transcripts, letters of recommendation, scores of entrance exams, etc. You may be asked to pay an application fee.

  • Depending on your application, the university will send an acceptance letter or a conditional offer letter. Fulfil their requirements and confirm your spot at the university.

Cost Of Studying

The cost of studying civil engineering in the UK includes different expenses. However, the two most significant ones are the tuition fees and the cost of living. It is crucial to conduct thorough research and prepare for these costs as they may pose a problem for international students. For a bachelor’s degree, the average annual cost of attendance is £13,000 to £26,000. On the other hand, the average annual cost of tuition for a master’s degree is around £22,750 to £36,950. Check out the following table for a better idea of the tuition fees at different universities. 

UniversityAverage Annual Cost Of Tuition
University of Oxford£28,560
Imperial College London£35,100
University of Cambridge£35,517
University of Edinburgh£30,400
University of Manchester£27,000
University of Glasgow£25,750
University of Birmingham£26,640
University of Sheffield£26,200
University of Southampton£26,000
University of Nottingham£26,500

Other than this, the second hefty expense is that of the cost of living. The average cost of living in the United Kingdom is approximately £13,848. A detailed breakdown of how we arrive at this figure through the costs of housing, commute, groceries, utilities and recreation is mentioned in the following table.

Item Cost of living in the UK (per month)
Off-Campus Accommodation£408
On-Campus Accommodation£472
Transportation£65
Food£360
Utilities£189
Groceries£28
Clothes£64
Entertainment£40
Total Cost Of Living With Off-Campus Accommodation£1,154
Total Cost Of Living With On-Campus Accommodation£1,218
Annual Cost Of Living£13,848

Scholarships

As evidenced by the above section, studying civil engineering in the UK is expensive. Students can reduce the burden of finances through education loans, maintenance loans, or collateral loans. However, the best and most preferable option is grants. Universities, NGOs and the government offer several scholarships and awards to help students manage their expenses more efficiently. The following table compiles a list of all these scholarships.

Scholarship Amount Awarded
Commonwealth ScholarshipsFlexible amount
University of Sussex Chancellor’s International Scholarships50% tuition fee waiver
International Ambassador Scholarship£5,000
Bristol ThinkBig International Scholarship£1,00,000

Students must note that most scholarships are specific to the institute they are applying to. Moreover, each scholarship has different eligibility criteria and requirements. Thus, it is crucial to read through the official website of the university to get in-depth information about the scholarships, their application and disbursement.

Future Scope

Universities arrange several kinds of facilities for students to gain more exposure to their professional fields. Seminars, internships, part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities and even a placement cell are some of these facilities. Students must avail of these in order to strengthen their portfolio and work on acquiring more skill sets. 

On completing a civil engineering degree UK, students can proceed to acquire jobs. According to the available data, graduates of civil engineering who are employed in the public sector earn 4% more than those working in the private sector. To get a broader perspective, refer to the following table with the most popular job profiles and their average annual salaries.

Job ProfileAverage Annual Salary
Civil Engineering Management Consultancy£50,000
Consulting Civil Engineer£39,918
Building Control Surveyor£40,000
Nuclear Engineer£65,000
Structural Engineer£40,000
Site Engineer£35,000

FAQs

Q1. How much is the civil engineering fee in the UK?

Ans: For a bachelor’s degree, the average annual cost of attendance is £13,000 to £26,000. On the other hand, the average annual cost of tuition for a master’s degree is around £22,750 to £36,950.

Q2. Which universities in the UK offer civil engineering programmes?

Ans: University of Oxford, Imperial College London, University of Cambridge, University of Edinburgh, University of Manchester, and University of Glasgow are some of the best universities in the UK that offer civil engineering programmes.

Q3. Are there scholarships available for civil engineering students at UK institutions?

Ans: Commonwealth Scholarships, University of Sussex Chancellor’s International Scholarships, International Ambassador Scholarship, and Bristol ThinkBig International Scholarship are a few examples of the different scholarships available for civil engineering students at UK institutions.

Q4. What are the job prospects for civil engineers in the UK after completing their education?

Ans: Civil engineers in the UK can acquire job profiles like Building Control Surveyor, Nuclear Engineer, Structural Engineer and Site Engineer after completing their degree.

Q5. How long does it typically take to complete a civil engineering programme in the UK?

Ans: Depending on the college and course, a civil engineering programme may take three to four years to complete.

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Civil Engineer in the UK

Civil Engineering In The UK: Best Universities, Admission Process, Scholarships, Fees & Jobs

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