Civil Engineering MEng
Placement Offered This course has a Professional Development option.
- Special Features
- Course Content
- Teaching & Assessment
- Entry Criteria
About the Course
The course in Civil Engineering aims to produce the next generation of leading Civil Engineers, with a focus on structures, materials and construction. Drawing on an impressive body of pure and applied research engineers and scientists, we will introduce you to mainstream civil engineering knowledge, ranging from geotechnical site assessment to assessing and designing structures and water engineering.
Civil Engineers for the 21st Century: facing the challenge
The next few decades promise to be amongst the most challenging ever for the Civil Engineering community. Increasing populations, progressive urbanisation and ongoing economic development, not to mention climate change and the persistent risk of extreme events, already present many threats to infrastructure.
As a result, civil engineers need to draw deeply on their knowledge, skills and ability to innovate through design and use of materials. Doing this they provide essential facilities such as sustainable structures, roads, bridges, tunnels and flood protection and waste management, while minimising the negative impacts on communities and the environment.
Alongside this, we will explore the role of the engineer in current and future projects, following the sustainable ‘cradle to grave’ approach called for by major institutions such as the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Institution of Civil Engineers.
Our course has been designed very much as a ‘hands-on’ learning experience. You will learn fundamental theory, and then have the opportunity to test and apply much of that theory through design in the laboratory, using advanced software, and during field work. Professional engineers working with major clients, consultancies and contractors contribute to the course delivery, bringing real world experience to the course.
The final year of the MEng is about broadening and deepening your knowledge and understanding of the discipline, to better meet the leadership needs of industry.
This course aims to produce the next generation of highly qualified civil engineers with a focus on sustainable structures and construction, and with qualities and transferable skills for demanding employment in industry, and the wider local, national and global community, where leadership, initiative, personal responsibility and professionalism are required.
Course Director: Dr Philip Collins
School of Engineering and Design
Tel +44 (0)1895 266633
- Staff teaching on the course carry out much of their research with collaborators outside the University, including major oil companies, manufacturers of construction materials, and government and development agencies. This means that links between the Civil Engineering staff and industry are very strong.
- Learning to work as part of a team is an essential objective of the MEng course. All MEng students take part in a Major Group Project, not only designing, but also making an artefact. The project focuses on their development of management skills, alongside the application of technical knowledge. There is the opportunity to exhibit projects at the graduate showcase, known as Made in Brunel.
- Students benefit from excellent laboratory facilities which are extensive, modern and well-equipped. We have recently made a major investment in our Joseph Bazalgette Laboratories, with new facilities for geotechnical engineering, structural analysis and testing of innovative civil engineering materials. In addition, industry-standard specialist software for engineering design is available to students 24 hours a day in dedicated computer clusters.
- If you start on the full-time course, you can transfer to the sandwich course at any time before the end of Level 2.
- If you enter on the BEng route, you can transfer to the MEng programme at the end of Level 2 by obtaining a pre-set progression standard.
- Although we recruit a large number of highly qualified students to our undergraduate degrees each year, we don’t forget that you are an individual. From the beginning of your time here, you are allocated a personal tutor who can guide you through academic and pastoral issues. Student representatives can raise issues for you about modules, the course, or the University – either with academic staff directly, with the Course Director, or through our regular Student-Staff Committee.
- The School offers a diversity of courses, including Civil Engineering, Aviation Engineering, Product Design and Computer Systems Engineering. Interacting with students from different specialisms and with different interests is an important part of the University experience. To help with this, we have introduced a multidisciplinary project for Level 1 students. This is a design-based competition between teams made up of students from a number of subjects.
- You can also take a year out in industry between Levels 2 and 3.
This course has been designed in close consultation with industry and is accredited by the Institution of Civil Engineers, the Institution of Structural Engineers, the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation, and the Institute of Highway Engineers, for 2007-2012.
This course has been accredited as fully satisfying the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng).
MEng Accredited CEng (Full)
The MEng degree course has been accredited as fully satisfying the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng). See www.jbm.org.uk for further information.
To become a Chartered Engineer you must fulfil certain requirements laid down by the Institution of Civil Engineers. The duration for these usually takes eight years, as follows:
- An accredited 4-year MEng degree; or
- An enhanced 3-year degree, i.e. a BEng (a BSc will not do), plus accredited Further Learning of minimum one-year’s duration;
- A minimum of two years’ approved industrial training with an appropriate company;
- A minimum of two years’ professional experience as a practising engineer.
Brunel’s sandwich courses help smooth the way through this stage because the integrated work experience is included in accreditation. With a large proportion of the industrial training already completed, students are well on the way to registration, even before graduation.
Facts and Figures
The Civil Engineering Subject Area has around 170 undergraduate students, 11 researchers and 9 academic teaching staff. Each year we take in about 70 new students.
Brunel’s School of Engineering and Design is one of the largest of its kind in the UK, with over 150 academics and a substantial and high quality pool of technical and administrative staff. As a result, we have excellent resources to support your time here as a student.
Typical ModulesLevel 1
- Construction and Sustainability
- Fundamentals of Geotechnical Engineering and Surveying
- Fundamentals of Structures
- Fundamentals of Fluid Mechanics
- Analytical Methods and Skills for Civil Engineers
- Professional Skills
- Structural Design
- Civil Engineering Materials
- Geotechnical Engineering
- Civil Engineering Hydraulics
- Structural Mechanics
- Sustainable Construction and Professional Skills
- Major Individual Project
- Construction Contracts, Business and Sustainability
- Steel and Concrete Design
- Innovative Construction Materials
- Structural Analysis
Level 4 (MEng only)
- Major Group Project
- Sustainable Construction, Management and Professional Studies
- Structural Design and FEA
- Risk and Financial Management
- Water Infrastructure Engineering
- Earthquake and Disaster Relief Engineering
MEng Final Year Project
All students participate in a team project of 5-6 people, which develops not only their transferable skills, but also their ability to produce a working design. Recent examples of projects undertaken by students on related courses have included the investigation into the design of a novel city airport, and the redesign of a major pumping station.
The ethos of Civil Engineering at Brunel stems from the initial formation of the University as a technological institution in the mid-1960s.
Our philosophy is to underpin theoretical aspects of the subject with hands-on experience in applying civil engineering techniques. Although you may move on to project management and supervision roles, we feel it important that your knowledge is firmly based on an understanding of how things are done. To this end, industrial partners will provide guest lectures on specialist topics.
In addition to teaching, all civil engineering staff are active researchers. This keeps us at the cutting edge of developments and, we hope, allows us to pass on our enthusiasm for the subject.
In Level 1 contact between students and academic staff is relatively high at around 17 hours per week, to assist you in adjusting from school/college to university life. As the course progresses the number of contact hours is steadily reduced as you undertake more project-based work.
How will I be taught?
Lectures – These provide a broad overview of the main concepts and ideas you need to understand and give you a framework on which to expand your knowledge by private study.
Laboratories – Practicals are generally two or three-hour sessions in which you can practice your observational and analytical skills, and develop a deeper understanding of theoretical concepts.
Design Studios – In a studio you will work on group projects with guidance from members of staff. In this situation you can develop your management and leadership skills and ensure that all members of the group deliver their best. You may be required to produce a design or develop a solution to an engineering problem. These sessions allow you to develop your intellectual ability and practice your teamwork skills.
One-to-one – On registration for the course, you will be given a personal tutor who will be available to provide academic and pastoral support during your time at university. You will also get one-to-one academic supervision on Level 3 project work.
You will undertake assignments, project work, essays, reports on laboratory practicals, oral presentations and short tests. A residential field course also takes place in Level 1. There are written examinations in May of each year. In Level 3, all students undertake a major individual project. This is worth a third of the overall marks for the year.
In the final year of the MEng course, assessment is biased towards coursework, and there are fewer exams. This reflects the workload of projects found in engineering industry.
The final degree classification is calculated from a combination of Level 2, Level 3 and final year grades. Level 1 does not count towards your final degree, but you must pass the year in order to progress.
The four-year thick-sandwich degree programme enables you to gain high-quality, relevant professional experience which is sought by employers. This puts graduates from the course in a strong position when entering the job market. Students have the opportunity to change from the full-time mode of study to the thick-sandwich course up to the end of Level 2.
Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) surveyCivil Engineering is a new degree course with the first graduating students leaving in 2009/10. The number of students graduating in 2010/11 was very small so survey findings should be treated with some caution as one or two graduates in any one category may disproportionately affect the total numbers.
In 2010/11, six months after graduating:
- 61.5% of graduates with a first degree were in employment
- 23.1% were in full-time further study
- 7.7% were combining work and study
This is a new course, its first intake of students arriving in 2012. We anticipate that our students will help fill the increasing demand for high-quality civil engineering graduates. Contractors and consultants working on large infrastructure projects such as bridges, tall buildings, tunnels, flood defence schemes, transport and power generation are likely environments for many of our graduates to begin their careers.
Some may progress to take posts of responsibility with national and local government agencies or major firms of consulting engineers. Others may specialise in fields such as construction, sustainability, innovative materials, foundation engineering, tunnelling, geotechnical exploration or building services engineering, both within the UK and overseas.
Recent graduates and sandwich students on related courses have secured positions at
- Clancy Docwra
- Laing O’Rourke
You can choose to study either a full-time course or the prestigious sandwich course. Sandwich students undertake high-quality, paid work placements within prominent companies and organisations. The placement in industry is usually taken between Levels 2 and 3 for at least 44 weeks. This time can count towards becoming a Chartered Engineer.
Brunel’s award-winning Placement and Careers Service will support you to get the best placement to suit your aspirations. They can help you with advice to compose the best possible applications, and coach you with mock interviews – often with the support of industry visitors.
The organisations that employ the students on placement are checked to ensure they can provide suitable training experiences. Quite often, Brunel graduates within firms mentor current students. The placement is assessed, and students must pass it to graduate with the words 'with Professional Development' in their degree title. Each student is allocated both a mentor within the company and an Industrial Tutor from Brunel, who is on hand to help ensure that the placement yields the best possible experience for the student’s personal professional development.
UK/EU students: £9,000 full-time; £1,000 placement year
International students: £15,000 full-time
We are introducing over 700 scholarships for 2013, meaning that one in five applicants who join Brunel next year will receive financial support from the University. See our fees and funding page for full details
Fees quoted are per annum and are subject to an annual increase.
Entry Requirements for 2013 Entry
- GCE A-level AAB, including Grade A in Maths and Grade A in a Science or Technology subject (General Studies and Critical Thinking not accepted).
- Irish Leaving Certificate AAABB, including Grade A in Higher Level Maths and Grade A in a Science or Technology subject.
- Scottish Advanced Highers AAB, including Grade A in Maths and Grade A in a Science or Technology subject.
- Advanced Diploma Progression Diploma in Engineering: Grade A, plus the Specialist Unit in Maths for Engineers at grade B along with 1 AS-level (excluding General Studies) At Grade A for Additional and Specialist Learning Progression Diploma in Public Services: Grade A, plus the Specialist Unit in Maths for Engineers at grade C along with 1 A-level in a Science subject at Grade A for Additional and Specialist Learning.
- BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma D*D*D to include Distinctions in Further Mathematics for Technicians, and Further Mechanical Principles or equivalent (BTECs are welcomed in a variety of related subjects – please contact the Course Director for details).
- IBDP 37 points, including 6 in Higher Level Maths and 6 in a Higher Level Science or Technology subject.
- Foundations of Engineering see the course page; for external foundation courses, please contact the Admissions Tutor.
- Access Access courses are not accepted for the MEng entry. Access students are encouraged to apply for the BEng degree in this subject and if they achieve sufficient grades on year one of the course they can discuss transferring to the MEng.
For all of the above, 5 GCSEs or equivalent at Grade C or above are also required, to include English and Maths (please note that these must have been gained by the time you submit your UCAS application).
English Language Requirements
- IELTS: 6 (min 5.5 in all areas)
- TOEFL Paper test: 550 (TWE 4)
- TOEFL Internet test: 79 (R18, L17, S20, W17)
- Pearson: 51 (51 in all subscores)
- BrunELT 60% (min 55% in all areas)
Brunel also offers our own BrunELT English Test and accept a range of other language courses. We also have a range of Pre-sessional English language courses, for students who do not meet these requirements, or who wish to improve their English.