Advanced Geotechnical Engineering MSc

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Why Surrey?

Our MSc in Advanced Geotechnical Engineering is a European-Accredited Engineering Master Degree programme.

It will give you the skills you need to address real-world ground engineering problems and the technological challenges faced every day by the geotechnical engineering profession.

Programme overview

The Advanced Geotechnical Engineering MSc will nurture and develop your understanding of the principles and theories behind ground engineering.

Topics include deep foundations in urban areas, tunnelling, foundations for energy infrastructure, deep water energy resources exploration and field monitoring.

During your studies you will have the opportunity to apply the knowledge and practical understanding of scientific methodology you have acquired on a research project under the guidance and advice of an experienced supervisor.

This will help you develop the skills to acquire, analyse, and critically evaluate data, and then draw valid, defendable conclusions that can withstand professional scrutiny.

Graduates are highly employable, and may progress to relevant specialist PhD or EngD research programmes in the field.

Programme structure

This programme is studied over one academic year (full-time) and between two and five academic years (part-time or distance learning). It consists of eight taught modules and a dissertation.

On successful completion of this MSc programme students will be deemed to have completed the further learning necessary to combine with a suitable BEng (Hons) degree fulfilling the academic base for the professional qualification of Chartered Engineer.

Example module listing

The following modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that not all modules described are compulsory and may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

Geotechnical Engineering Group Modules

Selected Structural Engineering Group Modules

Selected Construction Management Group Modules

Selected Infrastructure Engineering Group Modules

Selected Water and Environmental Engineering Group Modules

Students must choose eight modules from those listed above. For the main and subsidiary awards there are restrictions on the choice of modules within each module group. These are outlined in the table above.

Educational aims of the programme

The programme aims to provide graduates with:

  • A comprehensive understanding of some of the challenges faced during the analysis, design and construction of foundation and geotechnical structures
  • The ability to select and apply most appropriate analysis methodology for problems in ground engineering including advanced and new methods
  • The ability to design foundations in a variety of ground conditions 
  • A working knowledge of the key UK, European and some International standards and codes of practice associated with the analysis and design of foundations and the ability to interpret and apply these to both familiar and unfamiliar problems
  • The necessary technical further learning towards fulfilling the educational base for the professional qualification of Chartered Engineer

Programme learning outcomes

The programme provides opportunities for students to develop and demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas:

Knowledge and understanding

Upon completing the Programme students will have:

  • A knowledge and understanding of the key UK, European and International standards and codes of practice relating to ground engineering
  • A knowledge and understanding of the construction of different types of geotechnical structure on different ground conditions
  • A comprehensive understanding of the principles of engineering mechanics underpinning ground engineering
  • The ability to understand the limitations of ground analysis methods
  • The knowledge and understanding to work with information that may be uncertain or incomplete
  • A knowledge and understanding of ground engineering in a commercial/business context
  • Knowledge and understanding of sustainable development related to ground engineering
  • A knowledge and understanding of the common and less common materials used in ground engineering
  • An understanding of construction management
  • A critical awareness of new developments and research needs in ground engineering

Intellectual / cognitive skills

Upon completing this programme students will have:

  • The ability to apply fundamental knowledge to investigate new and emerging ground engineering problems
  • A critical awareness of new developments in the field of ground engineering
  • The ability to critically evaluate ground engineering design principles and concepts
  • The awareness of the commercial, social and environmental impacts associated with foundations
  • An awareness and ability to make general evaluations of risk associated with the design and construction of foundations including health and safety, environmental and commercial risk

Professional practical skills

Upon completing this programme students will have:

  • The ability to interpret and apply the appropriate UK, European and some International standards and codes of practice to foundation design for both familiar and unfamiliar situations
  • The ability to apply fundamental knowledge to investigate new and emerging technologies
  • The ability to apply the appropriate analysis methodologies to common ground engineering problems as well as unfamiliar problems
  • The ability to collect and analyse research data 
  • The ability to tackle problems familiar or otherwise which have uncertain or incomplete data
  • The ability to use theory or experimental research to improve design and/or analysis
  • The ability to generate innovative foundation design
  • The awareness of professional and ethical conduct

Key / transferable skills

Upon completing this programme students will have:

  • Oral and written communication (presentation skills)
  • Synthesis and graphical presentation of data
  • 3D spatial awareness
  • Use of sketching and engineering drafting
  • Use of word processor, spreadsheet, drawing/presentation
  • Technical report writing
  • Independent learning skills
  • Ability to develop, monitor and update a plan
  • Reviewing, assessing, and critical thinking skills
  • Teamwork, leadership and negotiation skills
  • Time management

Global opportunities

We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.

In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.

Learn more about opportunities that might be available for this particular programme by using our student exchanges search tool.

Academic support, facilities and equipment

Modules are taught by academic members in the geotechnical area, and some lectures for the Advanced Geotechnical Engineering MSc will be delivered by visiting academics and practicing engineers from industry.

You will also be allocated a personal tutor to guide you during your time with us at the University. You can expect a varied, stimulating and rewarding time here and will receive all the support you need to progress your learning. 

In addition to the University Library and Learning Centre’s extensive resources, our excellent testing facilities can support experimentally based MSc dissertation projects. 

Distance learning

This programme can be studied via distance learning, which allows a high level of flexibility and enables you to study alongside other commitments you may have.

Learn more about our distance learning programme (PDF).

Prizes

VJ Tech Prize for Best MSc Student in Advanced Geotechnical Engineering

A prize of £1,000, sponsored by VJ Tech, one of the world’s top geotechnical engineering manufacturers specialising in advanced soil testing equipment for labs.

The prize will be awarded to the best performing student(s) on the MSc Advanced Geotechnical Engineering based on module results and overall performance during the programme.

The £1,000 may be awarded to an individual student or split between two students displaying the best performance in their MSc programme.

Keller Prize for Best MSc Project in Advanced Geotechnical Engineering

A prize of £500 sponsored by Keller Group plc, the world’s largest independent ground engineering contractor.

The prize will be awarded to the student(s) with the best MSc Dissertation completed as part of the MSc Advanced Geotechnical Engineering, as defined by the course leader according to the module results and potential impact of the output of the individual project.

The £500 may be awarded to an individual student or split between a number of students displaying the best performance in their MSc Dissertations.

Related programmes

Postgraduate (Taught)

Related departments/schools

Related research areas

Programme leader

Professor Subhamoy Bhattacharya

Find out more

General enquiries:

+44 (0)1483 681 681

Admissions enquiries:

+44-(0)1483-682-222

admissions@surrey.ac.uk

Programme facts

Type of programme:

MSc

Programme length:

  • Full-time: 12 months
  • Part-time: 60 months
  • Distance-learning: 60 months

Start date:

Feb 2018, Sep 2017

Entry Requirements

A minimum of 60 per cent in a UK honours degree in civil engineering (or a closely related subject) accredited to CEng with a minimum of 60 per cent in Soil mechanics/Geotechnics subjects. Alternatively a minimum of 70 per cent in a UK honours degree in civil engineering (or a closely related subject) accredited to IEng, plus approval from the relevant institution. Overseas equivalent qualifications are also welcome.

If you do not hold the required qualifications, you may still be eligible for the MSc if you have had five years’ experience in the in the geotechnical sector or a professional qualification (for example CEng).

View entry requirements by country

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, 6.0 in each component (or equivalent)

We offer intensive English language pre-sessional courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.

Fees

Study mode Start date UK/EU fees Overseas fees
Full-time Feb 2018 £9,500 £19,000
Part-time Feb 2018 £1,100* £2,200*
Distance-learning Feb 2018 £1,100* £2,200*
Full-time Sep 2017 £9,500 £19,000
Part-time Sep 2017 £1,100* £2,200*
Distance-learning Sep 2017 £1,100* £2,200*

Please note these fees are for the academic year 2017/2018 only. Annual fees will rise by four per cent (rounded up to the nearest £100) for each year of study.

A complete list of all fees for our Masters Programmes

Funding

Loans, scholarships and financial support

There are many streams of funding for postgraduate students including awards, scholarships and loans. Learn more.

 

For more details

Discounts for Surrey graduates

Thinking of continuing your education at Surrey? As an alumnus of Surrey you may be eligible for a ten per cent discount on our taught Masters programme fees.

For more details

Admissions Information

Our Admissions Policy provides the basis for admissions practice across the University and gives a framework for how we encourage, consider applications and admit students.

Further information for applicants

Postgraduate Study Advice

Steps to Postgraduate Study is an official, independent guide for anyone considering a taught postgraduate course. The guide is produced by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales, the Scottish Funding Council and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland.

Find out more

Disclaimer

Modules listed are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability and/or student demand.

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