Civil Engineering BEng (Hons) or MEng – 2016 entry

The tuition is great; academics use a variety of different teaching styles that enable you to investigate topics of interest for yourself. They’re willing to help with any course-specific question and are very knowledgeable in their subject area, researching and writing their own papers on current developments in the profession too.

What you'll study

Civil engineers shape our world’s physical infrastructure, including earthquake engineering, supplying clean water through humanitarian crises and designing multi-million-pound infrastructure projects. Join us and discover why the expertise of civil engineers is paramount to the physical preservation of our society.

Creative and proactive civil engineers combine technical, practical and managerial skills. They are responsible for the planning, design and construction of roads, dams and waterways, tunnels, buildings, harbours, sports stadia, airports and bridges.

Programme overview

The University of Surrey has offered degree programmes in Civil Engineering since its inception, and we are recognised nationally as providing an excellent balance of academic studies, practical skills and professional experience. Our programmes are designed to give you the knowledge and skills you will need for a rewarding career as a Chartered Civil Engineer. By gaining a sound understanding of mathematical, analytical and practical engineering techniques, you will have built the foundation for developing safe, sustainable and cost-effective design ideas. Alongside this, you will gain the management skills required to bring any project into reality.

A core benefit of studying at the University of Surrey is that you can carry out your studies in exceptional facilities which include purpose-built soil mechanics and geology laboratories and a Centre for Environmental and Health Engineering (CEHE).

You can choose to study either an MEng or BEng degree, and a Professional Training placement year (which can be taken abroad) is an option for both programmes. Both the BEng and MEng are accredited routes for chartered status. The MEng degree fully satisfies the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) and therefore offers you a fast-track to senior levels of responsibility in industry and chartered status. The BEng partially satisfies the educational base for a Chartered Engineer. A programme of accredited Further Learning will be required to complete the education base for CEng.

Read about the experience of Civil Engineering student Helen Piggott.

Programme structure

Year 1 (FHEQ Level 4)

During Year 1, our aim is to provide you with experience across a broad base of engineering topics and to introduce the core personal and professional competencies of communication and teamwork.

This level includes various intensive modules, such as the geology field course and a week-long intensive module in integrated design. These, along with a number of site visits, offer a refreshing, interactive and student-centred approach to learning.

Modules include:

  • Civil Engineering Practice and Surveying
  • Engineering Geology
  • Fluid Mechanics and Pipe Hydraulics
  • Integrated Design 1
  • Materials and Statics
  • Mathematics
  • Structures

Year 2 (FHEQ Level 5)

In Year 2, you will cover the major civil engineering subjects in depth, alongside teamwork, leadership and further opportunities to consolidate your communication skills. Learning is undertaken in a variety of ways – through small groups and via individual work – and covers the full range of civil engineering design and practical laboratory-based tasks. There is a week-long intensive study on the surveying field course and on integrated design.

Modules include:

  • Construction Materials
  • Hydraulics and Environmental Quality
  • Integrated Design 2
  • Statistical and Numerical Methods
  • Soil Mechanics
  • Structural Design
  • Structural Mechanics and Analysis
  • Surveying, Measurement and Health and Safety

Professional Training placement (optional)

We also offer you a Professional Training placement. Some companies that participate in the Professional Training year include: Atkins, Balfour Beatty, Waterman, Costain, Hewson, Bachy Soletanche, Ringway, WSP, Tony Gee & Partners, Hyder Consulting, BAM Nuttall, Mott MacDonald, Capita, Skanska, Kier Group, Keller, Kellogg, CH2 Hill Halcrow, Arup, Sisk and Peter Brett Associates.

Year 3 (FHEQ Level 6)

During Year 3, you will have the opportunity to specialise in specific subjects. In addition to core material (structural, geotechnical and hydraulic engineering and management studies), you will be able to choose from a list of optional modules and will undertake an in-depth individual project on a topic of interest to you. This usually involves several components and may include a literature study, experimental work, computer modelling and comparisons with previous research.

Modules include:

  • Construction Business and Project Management
  • Environmental Engineering and Hydrology
  • Geotechnical Engineering 1
  • Individual Project
  • Integrated Design 3
  • Optional modules covering water and environment, and transportation
  • Structural Engineering

Year 4 (MEng only, FHEQ Level 4)

During Year 4 (MEng only), group design and project work form a major part of your studies, involving collaboration with both industrial consultants and students from other engineering disciplines. In Year 4 you receive the opportunity to appreciate other engineers’ perspectives. A wide range of optional modules to broaden and deepen your knowledge are also offered.

Modules include:

  • Multidisciplinary Design Project
  • Construction Management and Law
  • Wind Engineering
  • Geotechnical Engineering 2
  • Choice of three optional MSc modules covering advanced topics in structural, bridge, traffic and transportation, and water engineering

Professional recognition

These courses have been accredited by The Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), The Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE), the Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE) and The Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation (CIHT).

MEng Accredited CEng (Full)

MEng Civil Engineering (4 year FT, 5 year FT SW thick)

This degree is accredited as fully satisfying the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng).

See for further information.

BEng (Hons) Accredited CEng (Partial)

BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering (3 years FT, 4 year FT SW thick)

This degree is accredited as:

1. fully satisfying the educational base for an Incorporated Engineer (IEng).

2. partially satisfying the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng). A programme of accredited Further Learning will be required to complete the educational base for CEng.

See for further information and details of Further Learning programmes for CEng.

Engineering Council accredited degree
Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation
Institution of Civil Engineers
Institution of Structural Engineers
Institute of Highway Engineers
European Accreditation of Engineering Programmes

Professional Training

One of the benefits of studying at Surrey is the opportunity to undertake a Professional Training year and gain practical industry experience. You are encouraged to undertake a Professional Training placement to learn how industry works.

Taking a Professional Training placement year enables you to try out a specialised engineering sector, earn a salary, enhance your CV and build up a network of contacts, as well as enabling you to apply and enhance the skills you’re learning and appreciate things that you cannot learn in a lecture or laboratory. The enhanced interpersonal and management skills you gain will be highly valued by employers, giving you a real head-start as you enter the job market.

Placements also normally contribute towards the requirements for becoming a Chartered Civil Engineer.

In addition to applying and enhancing skills as you study, students also find the year deepens their understanding of studies in the later stages of their degree programme.

Arrangements for your placement are made through the University. During the placement you are employed by a company but are still a member of the University and you will receive up to three visits from your personal tutor, who will monitor your progress and liaise with your company. Occasionally students secure overseas placements.


All our degrees are organised on a modular basis, with teaching delivered via a mix of formal lectures, seminars, tutorials and laboratory classes. For many subjects, you will also be able to take advantage of our online electronic teaching resources which both supplement and extend the material being presented.

The material, at all levels, seeks to provide a core of knowledge of the various subjects, but you are expected to extend this with personal research and learning guided by tutorials and other material. The balance between lectures and less formal tutorials and laboratory classes varies between levels and semesters.


Year 1 marks do not count towards the classification of any of our degrees but allow us to ensure that you are making good progress with your studies. All subsequent work is considered for your final award, and assessment takes the form of coursework, projects, laboratory reports and presentations, along with traditional examinations. You should find this mix helps you to plan your time and achieve your best performance.

Generally about 60 per cent of the degree award is based on examinations and 40 per cent on continuous assessment.


Specialised facilities include:

  • Structures (Instron) laboratory
  • Purpose-built soil mechanics and geology laboratories
  • Composites technology laboratory
  • Centre for Environmental Health Engineering (CEHE)
  • Six wind tunnels including an environmental wind tunnel

Career opportunities

Our employment record is outstanding and graduates from our degrees are in demand by consultants and contractors alike. The work they have undertaken has varied from a small role in a prestigious project, to heavy responsibility for a local scheme. We find that the work record established during professional placements gives our students a decided advantage when employers are making offers.

Recent graduates are working for a wide range of companies, including major consultancies and contractors such as Costain, Atkins, WSP, Skanska, Balfour Beatty and Mott MacDonald.

As our graduates are highly numerate, literate, computer-literate, organised, confident, business-minded and commercially aware, they are also very attractive recruits for companies operating in many other professions, including management, banking, accountancy, software development and so on. A degree in Civil Engineering from Surrey is an excellent foundation for your career in the construction industry, and in professions far removed from engineering.

Graduate prospects

Recent graduates have entered employment in roles such as:

  • Atkins, Structural Engineer
  • Balfour Beatty, Highways and Transport Engineer
  • Costain, Site Engineer
  • Hewson Consulting, Bridge Design Engineer
  • Mott MacDonald, Engineer
  • Skanska, Design Engineer
  • WSP Developments, Design Engineer

Global opportunities

The international exchange programme offers undergraduate students the opportunity to study abroad at a partner university for either one semester or a full academic year as part of their degree. Currently, for students on the Civil Engineering programme this is possible in your second year at one of the partner institutions in the USA (eg, Texas, North Carolina, Cincinnati or Florida), Australia, Singapore or South Korea.

The exchange programme enables you to study and live in another country, without paying additional tuition fees to the partner. In doing so you will broaden your horizons; meet other students from around the world and experience student life in some of the most prestigious universities in the world. Studying abroad also enables you to become more independent, teaching you how to adapt and adjust to the culture and climate of another country.

In addition, or alternatively, you may wish to consider spending your Professional Training year working in another country. Students have worked at Arup in Hong Kong, Melcro Crown in Macau or at Ryobi-Kiso in Singapore. If you work in another part of Europe, you will be eligible for an Erasmus+ grant. This is an excellent opportunity not only to acquire valuable work experience, but also improve or learn another language.

2016 Entry requirements

What qualifications do you need?


For BEng programmes: Grades required - AAB

For MEng programmes: Grades required - AAA

We do not include General Studies or Critical Thinking in our offers.

BTEC (QCF Level 3) Extended Diploma

For BEng programmes: DDD

For Meng programmes: D*DD

(both in appropriate subjects, with a supporting A-level in Mathematics at grade A for MEng and grade B for BEng)

European Baccalaureate

For BEng programmes: 76%-75% 

For MEng programmes: 78% 

International Baccalaureate

For BEng programmes: 35 points

For MEng programmes: 36 points

Other international qualifications

If you are an international student and you don’t meet the entry requirements to this degree, we offer the International Foundation Year.

Select your country:

Required subjects

GCSE English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above (or international equivalent – see relevant country page).

Mathematics A-level and at least one of the following A-level subjects (or equivalent) are required: Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Design and Technology, Further Mathematics or IT.

Selection process

Offers are normally made in terms of grades. Suitable candidates will be invited to an Applicant Day. During the visit to the University the candidate can find out more about the programme and meet staff and students.

English language requirements

6.5 IELTS minimum overall

6.0 IELTS minimum in each sub-skill

If you are an international student and you are concerned that your English is not to the required standard, you may benefit from our International Foundation Year.

Please note that the University of Surrey offers English language programmes and is also an IELTS Test Centre.

See 2015 entry information

Course Options

Qualification Course Length Professional Training UCAS code KIS code
BEng (Hons) 3 years H200 View KIS data set
BEng (Hons) 4 years H201 View KIS data set
MEng 4 years H209 View KIS data set
MEng 5 years H210 View KIS data set

Tuition fees, bursaries & scholarships

Bursaries & Scholarships

We're committed to making sure that we offer support for students who might need it.

Find out more

Fees for UK/EU students

Tuition fees are currently set at £9,000 per year for UK/EU undergraduates starting in 2015. Fees for 2016 entry will be available in the autumn.

Fees for overseas students

Fees for students classed as overseas for fees purposes are as follows: £16,600 for 2015 entry. Fees for 2016 entry will be available in the autumn.

The University will assess your fee status. If you are unsure whether you are likely to be considered a home, EU or overseas student for fees purposes, the UKCISA website offers more information.

Professional Training placement fees

Programmes marked with a tick in the table above include a Professional Training placement.

A reduced fee is charged for Professional Training placements.

Fees will not have to be paid up front for those eligible students who decide to take up the Government's loan for higher education fees. The Professional Training placement is a key factor in the high employability rates achieved by students with Surrey degrees.

View a complete list of all fees for our undergraduate programmes.

International students

Experienced staff in our International Student Office are available to help from the moment you consider studying at the University. We offer professional advice on immigration, visa issues, entry qualifications, pre-departure information, employment regulations and international student welfare.

How to apply

Find out how and when to apply to study at Surrey.

More info

Why Surrey?

  • The Guardian University Guide 2016 ranks Surrey’s Civil Engineering programmes in seventh place
  • The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2015 ranks Surrey’s civil engineering programmes in seventh place
  • Surrey’s Civil Engineering programmes have reached eighth position in the Complete University Guide 2016
  • Strong links and excellent employment opportunities with civil engineering companies such as Costain, Atkins, WSP, Skanska, Balfour Beatty and Mott MacDonald
  • Field course and site visits built into the degrees
  • University of Surrey/ICE scholarship scheme offering an academic bursary, together with vacation and Professional Training placements
  • Further opportunities for specialised study at MSc and PhD level
  • Flexible degree structure with both MEng and BEng (Hons) degrees, with specialist modules

Contact Us

Phone: +44 (0)1483 681 681

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