What Does Civil Engineering Involve?
Civil engineering involves designing, creating and maintaining man-made infrastructures, such as roads, bridges, dams and, of course, buildings. Professionals in this field are in high demand and earn competitive salaries that can reach over $80,000 with experience and expertise.
To succeed in a civil engineering degree program, you must have a technical, mathematical and analytical mind, an interest in the structural components of our world, organization skills and the ability to pay close attention to detail.
Course Work in Civil Engineering Degree Programs
Civil engineering degrees cover a variety of subjects, including principles of engineering, design, structural design, project management and more. Along with engineering skills, a variety of math courses, including statistics and calculus, will be required, as well as science courses like chemistry and physics. Students will also learn various types of engineering, such as geotechnical engineering, environmental engineering, transportation engineering, and more.
You can take civil engineering at many institutions across the country, but many facilities also offer the option of obtaining a civil engineering degree online. Online civil engineering degrees are a great option for those who require flexible schedules (due to existing jobs or family situations), or for those who simply wish to work from home. Many people will choose to do an online civil engineering master's degree, after completing their undergraduate training, so they can work in their field while they learn.
After completing an undergraduate civil engineering program, students may be required to pass exams or gather a certain amount of work experience in order to become certified. These regulations will vary by country.
Civil Engineering Jobs
On just entering the civil engineering field, many employees will start off with low levels of responsibility, such as monitoring construction zones and assisting senior engineers. With experience and comfort level, they will move into more complex tasks, such as analysis, design and project management.
Civil engineers are needed at many levels, including municipal, government and the private sector. There are many areas of specialty for engineers, such as environmental engineering (treatment of toxic chemicals, water purification, waste water management, air pollution and more); materials engineering (specializing in concrete, asphalt and other ceramics); construction engineering (managing logistical issues, material supplies and other aspects of construction projects); structural engineering (design and analysis of bridges, towers, tunnels and other man-made structures); and many others.