MSc Civil Engineering

The MSc Civil Engineering programme is your opportunity to establish or consolidate your career as a Civil Engineer. Your engineering studies will develop the critical and analytical skills, and management expertise needed to manage civil engineering projects and implement sustainable solutions.

The course provides the further learning required to progress to Chartered Engineer (CEng) status. Working professionals may progress towards CEng status through a tailor-made route. This will help you accelerate to the remaining steps of CEng status by working with your employer in the process. This is a unique feature of a Masters course and significantly reduces the period required to achieve Chartered status.

The course has two distinct pathways to enable you to specialise in either Structural or Environmental Engineering. As well as developing your analytical and problem-solving skills, tuition covers project planning and management. The MSc Civil Engineering course is also underpinned by research into areas such as the use of novel and sustainable materials, geotechnics, and structural modelling.

2022/23 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

[Update excludes online-only courses].

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for delivering our courses in the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to change during the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. Whether you’re on-campus full time, part-time with online study, or full-time online, USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year September Treforest A
Part-time 2 Years September Treforest A

Advanced Civil Engineering Materials 20 credits – develop knowledge of a variety of construction materials and use them to maximise sustainability

Geo-Environmental Engineering 20 credits – developing geotechnical concepts and applying field and laboratory data to geo-environmental problems.

Project Management 1 Theory & Practice 20 credits – application of project management framework and HR management for construction projects

Individual Dissertation 60 credits - a major, comprehensive, innovative piece of investigative individual research.

Structural Pathway

Advanced Structural Mechanics 20 credits – advanced understanding of structural mechanics to solve engineering problems, including seismic and finite element analysis.

Advanced Structural Design 20 credits – understanding design of advanced structures and exercising appropriate judgement, based on requirements of client/multidiscipline design team and sustainability.

Design of Timber & Masonry Structures 20 credits – develop design techniques for Timber and Masonry construction and embodied carbon assessment.

Environmental Pathway

Carbon Management 20 credits - develop knowledge and deepen understanding of Low Carbon Technologies and Sustainable methods.

Environmental Management 20 credits – broadening awareness of current and established environmental management issues and practice, to critically evaluate strategies for business improvement.

Environmental Engineering 20 credits - develop an understanding of environmental processes and environmental engineering and the impact they have on public health.


This postgraduate degree in Civil Engineering is delivered in three major blocks that offer an intensive but flexible learning pattern, with two entry opportunities for applicants each year – February and September.

You will learn through lectures, tutorials, and seminars, as well as guest lectures and seminars with prominent industry experts. You will complete a research dissertation on a chosen topic of interest using our excellent laboratory facilities and specialist support.


Some modules are assessed through coursework, others by a combination of design projects and a formal examination.


Access to a range of industry standard facilities, including:

  • Laser Master-Sizer 2000
  • Thermogravimetric and derivative thermogravimetric analyser
  • Prior Clave environmental chamber
  • High resolution image microscope
  • Mercury intrusion porosimeter
  • Thermal conductivity equipment
  • Avery-Denison tensile/compressions 600kN load machine
  • Electro-hydraulic test stations
  • Fatigue and non-destructive testing machine
  • Overhead two-tonne gantry crane
  • CBR and Proctor compaction equipment’s
  • Shear boxes and tri-axial testing machines
  • Model pad foundations and retaining walls
  • Pressure testing equipment
  • Armfield S6-MKII Glass sided tilting flume with a sediment loop to simulate Open Channel Conditions
  • Surge tank and water hammer apparatus
  • Series / Parallel pump
  • Hydraulic benches



  • Luan Al-Haddad, Course Leader (Applied Mathematics and Hydraulics)
  • Emma McGivern, Academic Subject Manager, (Highways & Transportation and Project Management)
  • David Baxter, (Applied Mathematics and Fluid Dynamics)
  • Jerome Daly, (Geotechnical Engineering)
  • Jiping Bai, Associate Professor (Sustainable Materials and Structural Systems)
  • Joanne Thomas, Lecturer (Structural Engineering)
  • Phil Young, (Architectural Design, Engineering Drawing, Sustainability)
  • John Kinuthia, Professor (Materials Engineering and Highways)
  • Jonathan Oti, Associate Professor (Materials Engineering)


Our open-door policy ensures that support and advice from academic staff is always available during your studies.

We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

An Honours degree, normally a JBM-accredited BEng degree of class 2:2 or above, or a BSc Honours degree of class 2:1 or above in Civil or Structural Engineering (or equivalent professional or recognised overseas qualifications), or sufficient and relevant industrial work experience.

Applicants with a JBM-accredited IEng degree will be treated on an individual basis but must have attained competences in the core subject areas of civil engineering at undergraduate level.


International Entry Requirements

The course welcomes international applicants and requires an English level of IELTS 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component or equivalent.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2022 - July 2023 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International:  £14700 

  • Part-time UK: TBC

Student Perks

At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.

Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future proofed.

Click here to learn more about student perks at USW.

Additional Costs

As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment. Below we’ve listed what types of additional costs are associated with this course:

UK students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK residing applicant, applying for year one of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International and EU students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK. 

Admissions statement

On completion of this MSc Civil Engineering course, you will be able to develop a career as a Civil Engineer, technical manager, or research and development manager. These roles can be with leading international consultancies, contractors, national and local consulting companies, as well as international research and government organisations.

Graduates may also progress to an engineering research degree.

Possible career options

Whether you are a graduate or a professional with industrial experience, the MSc Civil Engineering offers excellent opportunities for career progression. You can develop a career as a civil engineer, engineering project manager, or work in the environmental management or health and safety sectors, with leading international consultancies, contractors, or national and local civil engineering companies. Alternatively, you can work as a technical or research and development manager in research, regulatory authorities, local government, or non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty-based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.