Civil Engineering BEng (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years, 4 years with placement)


January 2017, September 2017

Intermediate awards: BEng (without honours), CertHE, DipHE


Learn to solve some of society’s most complex problems by applying civil engineering techniques and technologies. Get hands-on experience on site and in our labs, and gain the practical skills employers want. Our accredited course leads to Incorporated Engineer (IEng) status as well as Chartered Engineer (CEng) status when combined with further learning. This course has been validated to include an optional Sandwich Placement year in industry.

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For more information about Sandwich Placement opportunities, please contact the Placements Team.

Full description

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Civil engineers can specialise in two areas – design and production. Our course prepares you for both.

  • Design civil engineers work mainly in offices, looking at the need for projects and how a particular project can be achieved.
  • Production civil engineers work and plan on-site, check the quality of work, and oversee schedules and budgets.

Graduation doesn’t need to be the end of your time with us. If you would like to continue your studies we offer a wide range of full-time and part-time postgraduate courses including MSc Civil Engineering.

Modules & assessment

Year one, core modules

  • Land Surveying
    Through the use of a range of traditional and contemporary instruments and methodology the module will enable you to gain experience in applying the elementary surveying techniques of levelling and linear measurement, both for detail acquisition and setting out. The relevant mathematical skills will be introduced and developed contextually. Final survey drawings will be produced and annotated.
  • Geotechnics and Engineering Geology
    You’ll be introduced to the broad area of Geotechnical Engineering and basic Geological concepts, modern methods of treating soils and rocks in order to improve your engineering properties and the underlying principles of different methods of ground treatment. You’ll be provided with the fundamental understanding of the classification, properties, behaviour and mechanics of soils that will allow you to proceed at a later stage to geotechnical design. Additionally you’ll be introduced to soils laboratory practice and given the opportunity to relate the results of soil laboratory tests to theoretical concepts and the practical needs of civil engineering construction. This module will provide a medium for development of skills in algebraic manipulations which are applied to the relationships between basic soil properties.
  • Civil Engineering Construction
    This module covers earthworks and groundwork techniques. You'll learn the principles and practice of earth-moving plant selection, safety, cycles and economics. We'll include soil stabilisation techniques of dynamic consolidation, vibratory systems and grouting, as well as their suitable foundations. We'll discuss temporary and permanent support techniques, such as cofferdams; contiguous piling and diaphragm walls, as well as long-span low-rise and medium rise structures, their material selection, construction methods, foundation types and form and processes used in their construction. We'll assess your learning through group work, investigating a civil engineering related problem. You'll present your solution through a report and 20 minute presentation.
  • Mathematics for Civil Engineers 1
    You'll gain the underpinning knowledge and skills in mathematics for use in subsequent modules in civil engineering such as structural analysis, structural design, hydraulics and geotechnics together with application of mathematical techniques to surveying and management. About half the module will cover the theory and applications of calculus to engineering problems. You'll also deal with a range of mathematical theories and techniques but in particular will develop practical applications such as the position and second moment of area for a given shape. The equations of curves from observed or measured data, the calculation of irregular areas and volumes and problems of geometry will also be explored. You'll also study basic statistical techniques applied, where possible to engineering applications such as concrete mixes.
  • IT and Research
    This module is intended to be both preparatory and supportive, building a strong foundation for learning and later development. You will gain Information and Communication Technology (ICT) skills for information management and presentation purposes. You will be encouraged to use contemporary ICT methods for research and for the production and presentation of reports, in a style suitable both for your university coursework and the commercial environment. You will also develop skills in carrying out desk top research and self-directed study.
  • Elements of Engineering Design
    This module will introduce you to some of the basic analytical concepts and processes involved in the design of structures. You will develop the analytical skills required to carry out basic calculations and will be introduced to basic 2D drafting techniques using industry standard software which will allow you to effectively interpret technical drawing. You will also be introduced to Building Information Modelling (BIM) and gain an appreciation of the role of the designer in civil engineering and develop an understanding of the design process.
  • Engineering Science and Materials
    For an engineer to make reasoned decisions about the materials to be used in a project an understanding of processing, structure and properties is necessary. By the end of this module you will be familiar with the material properties relevant to engineering performance and how these properties are defined. You will also be introduced to the basic building blocks of materials and how these affect their engineering properties and relevant properties of materials will be defined and discussed in the context of engineering solutions.
  • Design and Detailing in CAD for Civil Engineers
    This module provides you with an understanding of the relationship between design and technology. It introduces you to the concept that the realisation of design into built form requires building technology and also how that technology has a very real influence on the generation of the design. Technological tools used in current design practice will be studied and you will be encouraged to investigate the most recent innovations in design practice.

Year two, core modules

  • Structural Mechanics and Dynamics
    Test structural behaviour under static and dynamic actions, forces and moment. You’ll understand how structures resist external static loads by internal actions; the distribution of internal actions within structures and the fundamental relationship between loads, shear force, bending moment, as well as the effect of combined shear and direct/bending stresses. You’ll focus on structures and the principles of static indeterminacy and the methods of analysis of simple indeterminate forms. The structural dynamics part of the module will develop your understanding of effects of dynamic actions (loads) and its applications to predict the dynamic response of civil engineering structures. You’ll spend much of your time in laboratory sessions and take part in group-based problem solving tutorial classes.
  • Fluid Mechanics
    You’ll be introduced to the principles of fluid mechanics and establish its relevance in civil engineering, develop the fundamental principles and mathematical concepts required to model flow of liquids and gasses, demonstrate how these are used for the design of simple hydraulic components. You’ll cover the principles of hydrostatics and fluids in motion in pipes and open channels. They'll derive and apply equations for calculation of pressures and forces on submerged and partially submerged objects. Continuity, energy and momentum equations are used to analyse uniform flow in pipes and open channels. You’ll look at the principle of flow in networks for water supply and surface water drainage using simple models, whilst gaining awareness of the availability of commercial computer models for more complex analysis. Laboratory sessions are used to give you the opportunity to explore the limitations of the mathematical models of fluid behaviour. You’ll be assessed through a group based lab report covering a series of fluid mechanics experiments and a written examination.
  • Site and Engineering Surveying
    Discover both traditional and contemporary advanced survey techniques and capture, manipulate and utilise field data for both horizontal control and detail acquisition. You’ll gain experience in the theory and practice of traditional traversing and curve ranging techniques alongside contemporary practices. You’ll also gain hands on experience in advanced contemporary surveying equipment, such as theodolites and total stations, for data capture and for setting out. You’ll also gain an understanding of how remote surveying by extra-terrestrial systems has evolved and of how a variety of control systems relate to the Ordnance Survey National Grid. Finally, you’ll learn how to acquire data and sorted and processed it both manually and electronically to convert it into a format suitable for CAD output. You’ll produce and annotate your final survey drawings using AutoCAD 2006 and present them in a style appropriate to industry.
  • Mathematics for Engineers 2
    You'll be introduced to the techniques that lie behind the solution of engineering problems. The methods tend to be hidden within software, you'll gain an insight into the techniques, their application and their limitations so that you can make informed judgements on reliability of software solutions. Calculus is extended to partial differentiation and its applications and Laplace transforms and matrices are considered in depth. A statistics section is also included applied to the numerous areas of civil engineering which use these techniques. You'll be prepared to undertake appropriate analysis in areas such as hydraulics, geotechnics, structural analysis and design.
  • Design of Structures 1
    You’ll cover the design of structures in general and the elemental design in three materials. You’ll be introduced to basic design philosophy, principles and procedures used in the design of structural elements in buildings and structures; you’ll link knowledge of structural forms, loading, structural analysis and materials behaviour; you’ll appreciate the importance of producing structural drawings of elements in sufficient details for construction and/manufacture. This module is specifically designed to cover the fundamentals of structural design for simple elements in bending in simple frames. It'll also cover strut or column design with axial, eccentric and biaxial loading for timber, concrete and steel. You’ll be expected to learn mainly through application of the design theory covered in class and by completing the design coursework and tutorial exercises and through independent study. It's envisaged that undergoing this course will gain you an appreciation of the role of the designer in the construction process and have an understanding of the design process.
  • Material Technology for Engineers
    This module is designed to give you a thorough grounding in the principles and manufacture of materials used in the construction industry. The aim is to provide you with a practical understanding of the factors, which influence the properties and durability from the design requirements to the finished product. You will be introduced to the more common construction materials such as steel, concrete and timber as well as polymers and bituminous materials. Materials will be analysed in terms of their molecular structure and constituent materials, engineering properties and behaviour, performance in service, quality control and sustainability. A well-structured laboratory work programme is used to give you practical experience of the theoretical concepts explained in the lectures.

Year three, core modules

  • Civil Engineering Contract Administration
    Consider the selection of partners for achieving successful design and construction of a civil engineering contract. You’ll investigate the way in which traditional and more modern contracts handle situations that may arise on site. We’ll compare different approaches to contractual arrangements and payment so you’ll be able to advise on the most appropriate approach for a particular project. We’ll look at the documents forming the contract, and well as methods for selecting partners, and consider developments in the construction industry that are intended to foster a team approach. You’ll also cover external influences such as European and National legislation and standards.
  • Design of Structures 2
    You’ll enhance your understanding of the behaviour of low rise steel and concrete structures. This module has two parts: Analysis and Design. The analysis part aims to introduce you to the modelling and solutions of indeterminate frames and trusses. The design part of the module aims to introduce you to the design of low-rise structures and alternative forms of structural elements. You’ll enhance your confidence in applying the design theories for tackling structural analysis and design problems for simple steel and reinforced concrete structures; you’ll link knowledge of structural forms, loading, structural analysis and materials behavior; you’ll appreciate how connections can affect fabrication and erection of steel work; you’ll appreciate how the methods of construction are considered in modelling the structural behaviour, analysis and design of steel and reinforced concrete structures. Your lectures are specifically designed to cover the fundamental principles of structural analysis and design theory. These are reinforced through group-based coursework assignments and problem solving tutorial classes. You’re expected to learn mainly through application of the design theory covered in class and by completing the design coursework and tutorial exercises and through independent study. You’ll undertake a piece of coursework on structural design to Eurocodes as well as an end examination.
  • Geotechnical Engineering
    You’ll extend your knowledge of basic soil properties gained in the pre-requisite module. This will include: an appreciation of the nature of soil strength in the context of the principles of total and effective stress; an introduction to modern methods of treating soils in order to improve their engineering properties; an insight into the range of methods available for measuring soil parameters for design, and the rationale for selecting the most appropriate method for a given case; identification of when such treatment may be necessary, and what results can be expected in different soil types; Introduction to geotechnical design methods for foundations and modern design of earth-retaining systems; use of Codes of Practice and the philosophy of Factor of Safety within soils design. You’ll be assessed through a piece of coursework and end examination. For the coursework you’ll be expected to show an understanding of geotechnic engineering through a piece of design work.
  • Design Methods for Sustainable Buildings
    This module is one response to the concern of many about the effect that the built environment is having on the natural environment. It has been designed to give you an insight into the scientific basis of the environmental performance and construction of buildings and their services. You’ll focus on the introduction of modelling tools that can be used to simulate a building's performance and its affect on the environment. Understanding the principles by which a building interacts with the external environment through its fabric, is therefore key in understanding building performance. Considerable emphasis is placed on the use of environmental criteria to assess a building's thermal, visual and aural performance. You’ll explore a number of scientific methods and there'll be a limited amount of practical experiment-based work. A number of technical solutions will be explored for lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioning a building. You’ll also explore the passive design features of a building. This module identifies and evaluates different low-carbon energy strategies available, to be incorporated whilst designing low-carbon buildings. This module will introduce different standards and benchmarks for low-carbon buildings, and highlight strategies and approaches that could be deployed in heating and cooling of buildings. You’ll undertake an individual piece of coursework on environmental building design and services and have an end of module exam.
  • Environmental Management for Civil Engineers
    You’ll be introduced to the growth in environmental awareness, at all levels from local to international, over recent decades and this will be considered in the context of the construction industry. Legislation and other pressures for the protection of the environment are considered, including pollution control and environmental impact assessment. The advantages and disadvantages of formal and informal environmental management systems are examined. Design implications of concepts such as life cycle analysis are considered. By the end of the module you should look at environmental management, not as a burden, but as a fundamental part of the efficient management of the construction industry. This outlook will enable you to guide your present or future employers towards a sustainable future.

Year three, optional modules

  • Flood Defence
    You’ll be introduced to administrative background to flood defence, including the roles of the bodies involved in executing and funding works. You’ll examine methods of flood prediction. You’ll then compare traditional hard engineering approaches with techniques such as managed re-alignment that are closer to 'working with nature'. You’ll learn about techniques of economic appraisal together with an indication of their limitations when assessing intangible effects of flooding. The content is placed in the context of climate change and planning policies.
  • Highways Design and Construction
    You’ll appreciate problems and techniques associated with highway design, construction and maintenance and learn how to formulate technical solutions. You’ll become conversant with pavement design, which will be discussed in the context of construction techniques. You’ll also acquire knowledge on the principles and practice of bridge construction, maintenance and design. The concept of sustainability in construction using recyclable materials will be discussed, project work is used to give you a practical feel of the theoretical concepts explained in the lectures.


Throughout the course, we’ll use a range of assessment methods to help you and your tutors measure your progress. Besides exams, you’ll demonstrate your learning though a mix of assignments, group work, presentations, drawings, lab work and projects.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Science & Technology is one of the largest of five faculties at Anglia Ruskin University. Whether you choose to study with us full- or part-time, on campus or at a distance, there’s an option whatever your level – from a foundation degree, to a BSc, MSc, PhD or professional doctorate. 

Whichever course you pick, you’ll gain the theory and practical skills needed to progress with confidence. Join us and you could find yourself learning in the very latest laboratories or on field trips or work placements with well-known and respected companies. You may even have the opportunity to study abroad.

Everything we do in the faculty has a singular purpose: to provide a world-class environment to create, share and advance knowledge in science and technology fields. This is key to all of our futures.

Where can I study?

Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

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Additional study information


This course gives you the opportunity to take a work placement year between years 2 and 3 of your studies. You’ll get experience of seeking and securing a job and working in an industry relating to your course. You’ll also get the practical experience and industry contacts to benefit your studies and enhance your long-term career prospects.

Although they can’t be guaranteed, we can work with you to find a placement using our contacts with a large number of employers. You’ll have regular contact with one of our course tutors and be supported by a supervisor from your placement company. Together they’ll monitor your performance and give you feedback.

To find out more about placement opportunities, email us at

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students, 2016/17 (per year)


International students, 2016/17 (per year)


UK & EU students, 2017/18 (per year)


International students, 2017/18 (per year)


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For more information about tuition fees, including the UK Government's commitment to EU students, please see our UK/EU funding pages

Additional costs for Constructionarium

You will be asked to make a contribution of between £250 and £300 towards the cost of food and accommodation. You will also be asked to provide your own safety shoes or boots and warm outdoor clothing. Other personal protective equipment will be provided.

How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

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Most English undergraduates take out a tuition fee loan with Student Finance England. The fees are then paid directly to us. The amount you repay each month is linked to your salary and repayments start in April after you graduate.

How to apply for a tuition fee loan

Paying upfront

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If you choose not to take out a loan you can pay your fees directly to us. There are two ways to do this: either pay in full, or through a three- or six-month instalment plan starting at registration.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You must pay your fees up-front, in full or in instalments. You will also be asked for a deposit or sponsorship letter for undergraduate courses. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees
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Funding for UK & EU students

We offer most new undergraduate students funding to support their studies and university life. There’s also finance available for specific groups of students.

Grants and scholarships are available for:

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Funding for international students

We've a number of scholarships, as well as some fee discounts for early payment.

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

All tariff points must come from A levels. Points from AS levels cannot be counted towards the total tariff points required for entry to this course.

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International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

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English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for undergraduate courses.

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Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry onto a degree course.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

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International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

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