Civil Engineering and Structural Engineering

Our Civil Engineering courses are ranked top 10 in the UK in the Guardian University Guide 2020. Heriot-Watt is ranked in the world’s top 150 for Civil and Structural Engineering in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017.

View all Civil Engineering courses

Engineering is the art of the possible. Throughout the world, civil and structural engineers provide the infrastructure which underpins economic development and ensures a better quality of life. The challenge for the modern engineer is to achieve this while minimising the impact on the environment.

Civil and Structural Engineering require a broad understanding of scientific principles, knowledge of materials and the art of analysis and synthesis. They also require research, team working, leadership and business skills.

Studying Civil or Structural Engineering will provide access to a range of career opportunities including consultancy and contracting in areas such as the water industry, transportation and the energy sector. Our graduates are highly sought after by employers in the sector and are generally paid a higher average salary than the national rate.


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Teaching and assessment

Learning methods include:

  • lectures and tutorials
  • guided study
  • group projects
  • design studio and laboratory work
  • computing
  • fieldwork and site visits.

Assessment methods include end-of-course examinations, continuous assessment and coursework assignments.

All of our Civil and Structural Engineering courses follow the same course for the first two/three years so it is easy to change between them in the first few years.

Professional recognition and exemptions

Our MEng degrees fully satisfy the educational base for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) while our BEng degrees partially satisfy this requirement. Accreditation is provided by the Institution of Civil Engineers, the Institution of Structural Engineers, the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation, and the Institute of Highway Engineers.

Opportunities abroad

Year 4 of the MEng courses can usually be spent at either a European, North American or Australian university.


Our Year 2 Civil Engineering, Architectural Engineering, Quantity Surveying and Construction Project Management students take part in a week-long Constructionarium field course which provides a "hands-on" construction experience. Learn more about the Contructionarium.  

Key information

Admissions Team