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Postgraduate study

Course overview

The programme is designed for graduates and professionals involved in the civil engineering, structural engineering and construction sectors who wish to deepen and broaden their technical knowledge and understanding of specialised areas of civil and structural engineering.

You enhance your technical skills in various core areas of civil engineering that are in demand in the construction industry, such as advanced structural design, advanced geotechnics, and water and waste water treatment processes. You also further develop your conceptual understanding of critical aspects of structural engineering, such as advanced structural analysis and design, and become familiar with complex analysis and design techniques, modelling the causes and solutions of problems involving the real behaviour of structures. You also acquire an advanced knowledge and understanding of the design of structures under dynamic and earthquake conditions. Advanced project planning and visualisation methods, such as building information modelling, are also integrated into the course. The 60-credit dissertation gives you the opportunity to conduct a supervised research project developing original knowledge in a specific area of civil or structural engineering.

Professional accreditation

Our MSc Civil and Structural Engineering is accredited by the Joint Board of Moderators (representing the ICE, IStructE, IHE and CIHT) as a technical master's. This means it meets the requirements for further learning for Chartered Engineer (CEng) under the provisions of UK-SPEC for candidates who have already acquired a CEng-accredited BEng (Hons) undergraduate first degree.

By completing this professionally accredited MSc you benefit from an easier route to professional membership or chartered status. It also helps improve your job prospects, enhancing your career and earning potential. Some companies show preference for graduates who possess a professionally accredited qualification.

The Joint Board of Moderators represents the following four professional bodies:
Institution of Civil Engineers
Institution of Structural Engineers
Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation
Institute of Highway Engineers


Course details

For an MSc award you must successfully complete 120 credits of taught modules and a 60-credit master's research project.

Examples of past MSc research projects include:

  • Shear strength of composite and non-composite steel beam and concrete slab construction
  • Investigation into the self-healing capability of bacterial concrete
  • A review of the use of smart materials and technologies in cable stayed bridge construction
  • FRP and its use as structural components
  • Non-linear modelling of ground performance under seismic conditions

Course structure

Core modules

Advanced Geotechnics

In this module you will learn advanced geotechnical concepts and techniques and will further your understanding of soil behaviour and its impact on geotechnical design. You will apply advanced method of geotechnical analysis and critically investigate the role of geotechnics in the civil engineering design process.

Advanced Project Planning and Visualisation

This module will provide students with knowledge and understanding of the principles of project planning and management. Students will explore a range of advanced planning and visualisation techniques used to increase cost and resource efficiency in engineering projects.

Advanced Structural Analysis with Dynamics

This module enables you to advance your knowledge and understanding of structural analysis, introducing you to new methods of analysis. You apply complex analysis techniques, including static and dynamic analysis methods, to model the causes and solutions of problems involving the real behaviour of structures. The module also aims to develop a thorough understanding of the behaviour of structures subjected to dynamic loading.

Advanced Structural Design

This module further develops your knowledge and understanding of the design of structural elements and complex structural systems. You apply complex design techniques modelling the causes and solutions of problems involving the real behaviour of structures. Case studies are used to demonstrate application and effectiveness of design techniques.

Engineering Research Project

On successful completion of the taught modules, you proceed to this 60-credit research project. It allows you to bring together everything you have learnt on the course to address a relevant problem.

Research and Enterprise

This module explores issues such as information skills, qualitative and quantitative research, and ethical research, creating appropriate research material, referencing and avoiding academic misconduct. In addition, you will be given the opportunity to further tour career skills.

You will develop specific skills that can assist in the encouragement of an enterprising, entrepreneurial mind-set that is better equipped to perceive opportunities to develop viable, practical projects from research emanating from conceptual thinking.

Water and Waste Water Treatment Processes

You develop an understanding of the water and wastewater treatment processes, enabling you to apply them in an engineering context. Relevant current and future challenges associated with the water sector are discussed to help you propose potential solutions.


Modules offered may vary.


How you learn

You learn through lectures, tutorials and practical sessions. Lectures provide the theoretical underpinning, while practical sessions give you the opportunity to put theory into practice, applying your knowledge to specific problems.

Tutorials and seminars provide a context for interactive learning and allow you to explore relevant topics in depth. Some of the modules require using specialised technical software and practical computer-based sessions are timetabled.

In addition to the taught sessions, you undertake a substantive MSc research project.

How you are assessed

Assessment varies from module to module. The assessment methodology could include in-course assignments, presentations or formal examinations. For your MSc project, you prepare a dissertation.


Entry requirements

You need a first degree in civil engineering, structural engineering or relevant engineering discipline equivalent to at least a UK second class (2.2) honours degree.

Students with a degree awarded outside the UK must also meet the University's minimum English language requirements.

Non-EU international students who need a student visa to study in the UK should check our web pages on UKVI-compliant English language requirements. The University also provides pre-sessional English language courses if you do not meet the minimum English language requirement.
Non-UK students must also meet the University's minimum English language requirements.

For general information please see our overview of entry requirements

International applicants can find out what qualifications they need by visiting Your Country



Career opportunities

The course will equip you with the relevant technical and transferrable skills to pursue a career as a civil/structural engineer or technical manager with leading multidisciplinary consultancies, contractors, as well as research and government organisations.


Information for international applicants


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2021/22 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£6,695 a year

More details about our fees

Fee for international applicants
£13,000 a year

More details about our fees for international applicants

  • Length: September enrolment: 1 year, January enrolment: 16 months, including a summer break
  • Start date: September or January
  • Semester dates

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2021/22 entry

Fee for UK applicants
£745 for each 20 credits

More details about our fees

  • Length: September enrolment: 2 years, including a summer break, January enrolment: 28 months, including two summer breaks
  • Attendance: Typically one day a week
  • Start date: September or January
  • Semester dates

Apply online (part-time)

Apply online (fast-track) for current students


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