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Undergraduate study

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Abi Holt

Abi completed her HNC at college before coming to Teesside University.

Abi Holt

BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering

'I considered two universities - I preferred the course content at Teesside, and I liked the fact that I would obtain a BEng rather than a BSc.'

What brought you to study at Teesside University?

After I finished my HNC in civil engineering at New College Durham, I considered two universities that offered part-time study in a civil engineering degree course. I preferred the course content at Teesside, and I liked the fact that I would obtain a BEng rather than a BSc. This course is also accredited and would help me gain my professional qualification. From discussions with colleagues who had completed a HNC in civil engineering at Teesside University, who talked highly of the teaching staff and facilities, I felt Teesside was the best choice.

What’s your course like?

The course is broad ranging and each module has its own challenges. The content pushes me to expand my knowledge and gain not only engineering skills such as mathematical and scientific understanding, but wider, softer skills such as analytical, and verbal and written communication. I’ve particularly enjoyed the Water Engineering, Materials, Structural Engineering and Geotechnical Engineering modules. These subjects are interactive and use real life examples, visual aids and laboratory sessions. I find the classroom environment to be relaxed, with students being able to interact and have open discussions on topics, and therefore keeping student interest on some potentially dry subjects.

What’s the best thing about your course?

The best thing about the course is, it is actually pretty interesting! There is a good mix of subjects, not every module is highly technical. Areas such as project management and construction management provide options within civil engineering for future careers away from the standard structural route. The lecturers show interest in their subject fields and have impressive experience, either from external projects they have worked on or University supported research. They keep the course content interesting and make reference to projects undertaken to make the theory relevant.

What has been your favourite module?

I enjoyed Hydraulics and Water Engineering. I liked the maths behind it, developing formulae from first principles, and undertaking laboratory experiments. The course assessments were interesting and the lectures were always unique! This subject area was completely different to anything I had ever been involved in previously and I enjoyed the challenge of learning, understanding and applying the principles.

Has studying at Teesside helped you to progress in your career, or get closer to your goals?

As a part-time student I have been working full-time within the civil engineering industry alongside my studies. During the four years I have been at the University, I have been promoted from Engineer to Senior Engineer within my company. Although the field I work in, highways, is not directly related to much of the course content, I feel that the skills I’ve developed during my time at Teesside University has helped with my professional development.

Would you recommend Teesside University and your course?

I would recommend this course at Teesside University for a number of reasons. The course is challenging but rewarding if you apply yourself. The students and staff are friendly, and you have access to lecturers who meet with you to discuss any issues and respond quickly to emails.