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Master in Civil Engineering in UK: Study Guide for International Students

Bhavya Rawal Bhavya Rawal
Study Abroad Expert

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK is a 1.5 to 2-year course with a professional placement program incorporated in most of the universities. The annual tuition fees of a Masters in Civil Engineering in UK universities ranges from £22,750 to £36,950 per annum approximately. 

  • The average starting salary of a Civil Engineering graduate in the UK is £110,000 per year.
  • The rapid pace of technological change is allowing civil engineers to revolutionize construction methods, improve sustainability and attempt bigger projects.
  • The main civil engineering fields offered in universities of UK are structural engineering, environmental engineering, road/highway engineering, and transportation engineering.

Masters in civil engineering in UK is an apt choice for a student intreseted in designing, creating and bulding structures efficiently and wants to be a part of UK’s growing infrastructure. 

Why Study Masters in Civil Engineering in UK

  • UK's 19% workforce are employed by the engineering industry.
  • Over 4000 direct jobs and 5100 indirect jobs are projcted to be created within 2017-2023.
  • The construction industry in has been invested with funds equivalent to 500 million GBP. 
  • 57% of Civil Engineering students after graduating are employed in the reputed industries of the UK. 
  • The employment rate of civil engineers is projected to grow 6 percent from 2018 to 2028, about as fast as the average for all occupations.
  • More than 16% of students often undertake further study or research. Given below is an image depicting of career paths chosen by civil engineering graduates in the UK 
Career paths chosen by civil engineering graduates in UK
  • Industrial Mentoring and internship schemes are available in universities of the UK to connect with potential employers.

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK: Top Universities

The top universities, according to QS global ranking 2020, to study Masters in Civil Engineering in UK are given in the table below. The table also discusses the program offered and the annual tuition fees for pursuing the degree at the top ranking higher education isntitutions in the UK:

QS Global Ranking 2020UniversityProgramAnnual Tuition Fees (GBP)
3University of CambridgeConstruction Engineering30,810
5Imperial College of LondonCivil and Environmental Engineering31,750
=15University of OxfordCivil and Offshore Engineering26,405
=42The University of ManchesterCivil Engineering24,000
45University of LeedsCivil Engineering with Project Management24,000
=47University of SheffieldCivil Engineering and Management23,750
=47University College London (UCL)Civil Engineering28,530
51-100Cardiff UniversityCivil and Environmental Engineering26,555
51-100University of NottinghamCivil Engineering29,861
51-100University of BristolCivil Engineering28,795

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK: Admissions

Students wanting to pursue Civil Engineering as a career can apply through email, downloading the application forms from the individual university websites or via UCAS application portal. They can also receive applications from university representatives.

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK: Eligibility

For pusuing masters in civil engineeing in UK you must fulfill the following requirements:\

  • Bachelor's degree in relevant field
    • GPA 3.0~ 60-70%
  • GRE or GMAT test scores
  • Interview (not mandatory in all universities)
  • Proof of English proficiency

Minimum GPA, GRE and English language proficiency scores required for admission in some of the popular universities of UK offering masters in civil engineering are given below: 

UniversityGPA RequiredGRE Score RequiredTOEFLIELTS
University of Cambridge3.7Accepted1107.5
Imperial College of London3.5159 in Quantitative Reasoning; 145 in Verbal Reasoning1007.0
University of Oxford3.7160 in Quantitative & Verbal Reasoning1107.5
The University of Manchester3.4Accepted906.5-7
University of Leeds2.5Recommended926.5
University of Sheffield3.0Recommended806.5
Cardiff University3.0Recommended906.5
University of Nottingham3.0Recommended626.0
University of Bristol3.4Recommended926.5

Documents Required

To pursue masters in civil engineering in UK, you need to send in your application along with the following documents:

  • Details and Grades of the previous subjects (Maths, Physics and one more Subject) of School.
  • Official Transcript of College or University.
  • A Statement of Purpose.
  • A Letter of Recommendation.
  • Attested Copies of the Following – 10th Standard, 12th Standard Mark sheet, Bachelor's Degree if Applying for Postgraduate Course.

UK Student VISA

The UK is the second most popular destination worldwide for international students. The visa acceptance rate in the UK is 85%. The international students who intend to study a full-time degree course studies in the UK, there are Tier 4 visas. These are of two types: General Student visa and Child Student Visa. UK Student Visa (Tier 4) is provided to foreign students who are 16 years or older and want to study in the UK. The requirements for a student to get a visa are: 

  • Confirmation for Acceptance of Studies (CAS).
  • Completed the online application form.
  • Evidence of funding to pay for course tuition fees and monthly living costs ie. £1075.61 per month
  • Pay a Health Surcharge of £300 each year.
  • Details of passport.
  • A recent photograph.
  • Interview.

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK: Cost of Study

Cost of studying abroad can be broadly categorized as Pre-arrival Cost, Tuition Fees and Cost of Living. Given below are the details of these expenses which can help an international student plan ahead.

Pre-arrival Cost

All the expenses incurred while applying for a university in the UK are included in the pre-arrival cost. These include fees of visa application, exams requried to study in UK, and application fees. 

Type of ExpenseCost (in GBP)
Application Fees50 - 120
Visa Application Fees348
IELTS Registration Fee150
TOEFL Registration Fee140
GMAT application fees194
GRE application fees159

Tuition Fees for Masters in Civil Engineering in UK

The tuition fees for studying civil engineering at engineering colleges in UK is around 24,000 GBP to 31,000 GBP. The cost being highest at Imperial College of London and lowest at University of Manchester and University of Leeds. For an Indian student this amount ranges between 22 to 28 INR Lakhs/year. The cost may seem very high, however, there are a plenty of scholarship options for pursuing masters in UK.
(Conversion Rate for May 2020) 

Cost of Living in UK

The cost ofliving in UK is varying greatly depending on your lifestyle, spending habits and budget. For students who are planning to study masters in civil engineering in UK international students must be aware of the following costs 

ItemsMonthly Costs
Rent£ 450
Food£ 200
Gas and Electricity£ 60
Internet£ 40
Laundry£ 25
Clothing£ 75
Bus Fare£ 45
Movie Ticket£ 9
Dinner at a Restaurant£ 15
Total£ 989

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK with Scholarships

There are many scholarships provided for international students in the UK who are willing to pursue a master's degree in civil engineering. Some of the popular one’s are detailed below

Commonwealth Scholarships for International students 

  • The scholarship provides airfare to and from the United Kingdom, tuition and examination fees, personal maintaining allowance, thesis grant initial arrival allowance.
  • Commonwealth Scholarship is awarded to a student who wants to pursue a Masters or PhD.
  • These scholarships are funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID).

Gates Cambridge Scholarships

  • Gates Cambridge Scholarship covers the full cost of studying at Cambridge. It also provides additional, discretionary funding.
  • A student pursuing a full-time postgraduate degree at the University of Cambridge.
  • This scholarship is available to students of any country outside the UK.

Rhodes Scholarships at University of Oxford

  • The Rhodes Scholarship is the oldest and the most prestigious international scholarship program in the world.
  • These are postgraduate awards that support exceptional international students from selected countries at the University of Oxford. 
  • It covers all university fees, personal stipend, health insurance, and airfare to and from the student’s home country.

University of Sussex Chancellor’s International Scholarships

  • Chancellor’s International Scholarships is awarded on the basis of academic performance and the potential of international students. 
  • Available students who want to pursue full-time postgraduate degrees at the University of Sussex.
  • The award is 50% off international student tuition fees and is offered for one year.

The International Ambassador Scholarship

  • The International Ambassador Scholarship recognizes and provides financial support for students who wish to pursue a full-time undergraduate or postgraduate program at the University of West London. 
  • The scholars will act as international ambassadors for the University of West London. Up to 50 scholarships worth up to £5,000 are available.

Bristol ThinkBig International Scholarship

  • The University of the West of England, Bristol offers more than £100,000 worth of scholarships for international students each year.
  • Bristol ThinkBig International Scholarship covers the full tuition fees for one academic year. 

Masters in Civil Engineering in UK: Jobs

The main task of civil engineers is planning, designing, estimating, supervising construction, managing construction, execution, and maintenance of structures like buildings, roads, bridges, dams, etc. The masters of civil engineering graduates can choose one of the following paths: Consultancy, Contracting, Management Consultancy, or Further Education

The British civil engineering sector faces a skill shortage. Around 20% of civil engineers are predicted to retire in the next 12 years. The year 2017-2022 is considered to be the Golden era for UK infrastructure expected to have a booming rise in number of job opportunities and improvement of work conditions along wih salaries. Pursuing masters in civil engineering in UK during this time can give a student the needed push to their career. Given below is a graph comapring the salaries offered to civil engineering graduates in UK

Salaries of civil engineers in UK

The salary of a civil engineer in 2019 was 3% higher than those of 2018. The trend suggests a slow yet continuous increase in pay in 2021 and future years. Civil Engineers working in government sectors in the United Kingdom earn 4% more than a civil engineer working in the private sector. A student with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering earns about £91,600 annually but a student with a masters in civil engineering in UK earns 39% more than a bachelor’s degree student, which is £127,000 annually.

Job RolesAverage Monthly Salary (GBP)
Consulting Civil Engineer39,918
Civil Engineering Contractor52,500
Civil Engineering Management Consultancy50,000
PhD in Civil Engineering34,152
Building Control Surveyor30,000-40,000
Computer-Aided Design (CAD) technicians20,000-35,000
Design Engineer30,000-40,000
Estimator20,000- 35,000
Nuclear Engineer30,000- 65,000
Site Engineer25,000-35,000
Structural Engineer25,000-40,000
Water Engineer24,000-32,000

Master’s studies include specialized study in a field of research or an area of professional practice. Earning a master’s degree demonstrates a higher level of mastery of the subject. Earning a master’s degree can take a year to three or four years to complete. Before a student graduates, they must write a thesis, about their course and the specialized research area. Masters in civil engineering in UK has to do with designing, constructing and maintaining manmade structures such as dams, canals, and roads. 


Ques. What is the cost of living for a student in the United Kingdom?

Ans. The cost of living in the United Kingdom varies depending on the lifestyle, location, and university to which you are enrolled. The rent in the city is £650 while outside the city is £550 per month.

Ques. What are the top universities for studying a masters in civil engineering in UK?

Ans. University of Cambridge, Imperial College of London, University of Oxford, University of Manchester and University of Leeds are some of the popular universities for studying masters in civil engineering in UK?

Ques. How much do masters in civil engineering students earn in the UK?

Ans. A bachelor’s degree student of Civil Engineering earns about £ 91,600 per year but a Master’s degree student of Civil Engineering earns 39% more than a bachelor’s degree student, which is £ 127,000 per year.

Ques. How to get into masters in civil engineering in the UK?

Ans. For pursuing masters in civil engineering in UK, international students need to have a GPA of 3.0 or more (60-70%). GRE scores may be required along with the applications. IELTS (6.5) and TOEFL (80) scores are also required. 

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