Study Civil Engineering – Top 19 Schools


A civil engineer is an engineer who designs and supervises the construction of public works, such as roads, bridges, dams, tunnels, buildings, airports, water and sewage systems, and other large infrastructure projects.

Civil engineering is a long-standing branch of engineering that has evolved over time to meet the growing needs of people living in permanent settlements. It involves the construction of various structures, such as walls, roads, bridges, dams, dikes, wells, irrigation ditches, and trenches. Furthermore, some of the most famous civil engineering projects from antiquity include the Roman Empire’s roads, the Great Wall of China, the Pyramids of Giza, Stonehenge, Mesa Verde’s cliff dwellings, and Mayan ruins. The names of the engineers who designed these wonders are often lost in ancient times.


Modern civilization is often defined by its built environment, but civil engineers also contribute to less visible creations. Additionally, they design systems that transport water to cities from mountain sources, ensuring safe, intelligent, and economical use of the environment. Civil engineers understand the environment and how to use it safely, intelligently, and economically to improve our quality of life.

Now let’s give you a bit more information BELOW about civil engineers brought to you by your favourite scholarship website.


What Does A Civil Engineer Do?

Civil engineers do much more than design buildings and bridges.  They work in the aerospace industry, designing airplanes and space stations.  Additionally, they can be found in the automotive industry, calculating the load capacity of a chassis and improving the shock resistance of bumpers and doors.  They are part of the shipbuilding industry, the energy industry, and many other industries that require built facilities.

Notably, civil engineering is a particularly exciting profession because those who work in this field can see the results of their work: a complete bridge, a high-rise building, a subway station, or a hydroelectric dam.

The civil world is extremely diverse.  It follows, therefore, that civil engineers have particularly varied career options.  This means that the answer to the question, what does a civil engineer do?  It also varies, depending on the specialty pursued.  However, regardless of the subdiscipline chosen, there are some common tasks that most civil engineers will perform daily.

Generally, civil engineers are often responsible for large teams that participate in project design, planning, and construction processes.  This requires that these team members regularly meet, collaborate and manage, consisting of surveyors, construction managers, architects, landscape architects, and urban planners.  In addition, they will spend a considerable amount of time designing and planning projects and presenting proposals, needs assessments, budgets, and amendments to customers.


Those who work in civil engineering deal with the infrastructure we live in, from the roads we walk on to how the waste is disposed of.  If you want to leave your mark on the world, but you are not sure which educational path to follow, we have seven reasons why civil engineering may be right for you:

1. Work In An Exciting Environment

Civil engineers play a key role in the entire process, from designing a project to bringing it to life and maintaining it.  Therefore, if you study this topic and you will be part of its fast and challenging nature.

2. Acquire A Lot Of Practical Experience

Most Civil Engineering courses currently include at least the option of a placement in the industry during the degree.  Therefore, many students even receive payment for the work they do.

3. Choose From Many Graduate Options

Interested in more studies?  Many undergraduate courses offer a master’s year, and graduate options are abundant.  In addition, the courses include Maritime Civil Engineering, Environmental Engineering, and Water Management.

4. Enter An Effective Postgraduate Scheme

There are many structured programs offered to recent Civil Engineering graduates.  These provide invaluable experience, transform graduates into highly employable individuals and potentially even offer permanent roles.

5. Get A Good Starting Salary For Graduates

Having a degree in Civil Engineering will definitely help students on their way to becoming well-paid professionals in the sector.

6. Have A Lot Of Work Options

If you think a degree in Civil Engineering takes you on a narrow path, you can think again.  There are many different functions to perform, such as nuclear engineering, the study of quantities, or even functions that combine consulting or law.

7. Learn Valuable Transferable Skills

IF after studying the subject you find that a career directly related to Civil Engineering is not suitable for you, do not be afraid, because, through the university process, students learn skills that can be used in many other professions.  These include problem-solving, decision-making, analysis, and IT.  In addition, students’ knowledge of science, math, and technology is strongly refined.


Civil engineers need a degree in civil engineering, in one of their specialties, or in civil engineering technology.  Programs in civil engineering and civil engineering technology include courses in mathematics, statistics, mechanics and engineering systems, and fluid dynamics, depending on the specialty.  Additionally, the courses include a combination of traditional classroom learning, laboratory work, and fieldwork.  Programs may include cooperative programs, also known as cooperatives, in which students gain work experience while pursuing a degree.

Furthermore, in America, a degree from an ABET-accredited program is required to obtain a professional engineer (PE) license.  In many states, a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering technology also meets the academic requirement to obtain a license.

Additional education after the bachelor’s degree, along with the physical education license and previous experience, is useful for obtaining a job as a manager.

Lastly, the American Society of Civil Engineers offers certifications in coastal engineering, geotechnical engineering, port engineering, water resources engineering, and other fields.  In addition, civil engineers can obtain certification in building safety and sustainability.


As mentioned in the introduction, civil engineering is a collective term that can be subdivided. Basically, there are up to 6 types of civil engineering which include:

1. Structural Engineering

Structural engineers focus mainly on analysis and design of structures like buildings, and bridges. They analyze how such structures can hold up to environmental factors like floods, winds, and earthquakes. A structural engineer is also supposed to understand the properties of materials that are used in construction. This is the reason why they are resorted to as consultants when it comes to the selection of building and construction materials.

2. Geotechnical Engineering

A geotechnical engineer is trained to incorporate science and technology in the creation of projects and find solutions to problems that relate to geology. They focus on construction projects such as tunnels, mines, embankments as well as structural foundations. Such engineers are expected to have vast knowledge of the soils in the construction sites.

3. Environmental Engineering

An environmental engineer analyses environmental problems and goes ahead to develop and create solutions to such problems. This field combines the study of disciplines such as science mathematics, hydrology, and atmospheric sciences. The core tasks of an environmental engineer include:

4. Solid Waste Management

  1. Treatment of water sources
  2. Improvement of air and water quality

5. Water Resources Engineering

A water resources engineer seeks to improve the quantity and quality of water resources and water. He/she should have sufficient knowledge of meteorology, environmental science, and fluid dynamics. Therefore, these engineers concentrate primarily on flood and stormwater analysis, groundwater remediation, water supply and planning, and wastewater treatment procedures. They also focus on the control of soil erosion.

6. Construction Engineering

Basically, construction engineers are entrusted with management tasks. To begin with, every civil engineering project involves construction. For instance, a building needs to be erected, a road needs to be laid. All such projects are managed by construction engineers.

7. Transportation Engineering

A transportation engineer is responsible for the design, construction, and maintenance of railways, highways, ports, airfields, and several other structures that facilitate transportation. Apart from that, they also help in improving the control of traffic by coming up with new methods and ways of controlling traffic. The engineers are also vested with the duty of developing new methods of transportation as well as ways of improving mass transportation.

From the explanations given above, it is clear that civil engineering cannot be generalized to mean one thing. It comprises various fields with persons who carry out distinct functions.


The online civil engineering degree or one of the best civil engineering schools provides a breadth of experience as well as choices, including concentrations, minors, certificates, or alternate engineering courses.

However, this allows students to supplement civil engineering degree online courses with other engineering knowledge, they desire. Therefore, an online civil engineering degree can be earned at the associate, bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral, and certificate levels.

The days when an online degree meant dubious respectability are well in the past, and online civil engineering degrees could provide a path to a high quality.

Also, with an affordable education that employers would take seriously. But there are a lot of options out there for online engineering degrees and finding the right program.

So this forum has done the legwork for you. See some of the best civil engineering Programs online.

1. Mississippi State University

Mississippi State University (MSU) ranks first in this list, with the most grad-level options, offering both online Masters’s and Doctorate options for Civil /Environmental Engineering (CEE).

Additionally, each of the MS and Ph.D. programs has seven CE-related specializations (Construction Engineering and Management, Construction Materials Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering, Structural Engineering, Transportation Engineering, and Water Resources Engineering) from which to choose, for a total of 14 online CEE options.

This arrangement not only provides graduate students with a breadth of focus but also the option of continuing to doctorate studies to supplement a master’s degree. This is also one of the best civil engineering schools.

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2. Villanova University

The online civil engineering degree has a fifth interdisciplinary option that allows the graduate student to combine two of the aforementioned concentrations, amounting to nine graduate-level Civil Engineering (CE/ CivEng) options in total. Villanova states that the majority of courses are available online, so some students may need to attend on-campus classes.

The school has tuition worth about $1,395/ credit plus fees. This is one of the best schools for civil engineering which offers a civil engineer degree.

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3. Missouri University Of Science And Technology

MST has many notable alumni including entrepreneurs, educators, athletes, entertainers, politicians and government officials, military personnel, astronauts, researchers, scientists, and others.

The school is a public university based in Rolla, Missouri, and is part of the University of Missouri System. It offers bachelor’s to doctorate programs, as well as pre-and post-baccalaureate certificate programs.

This is also one of the cheapest online civil engineering degrees, with tuition worth about $1,200/credit hour (except Systems Engineering @ $1,500/c.h. and U.S. Military rate @ $734.94/c.h.).

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4. North Carolina State University At Raleigh

NCSU is another university with an extensive list of eminent graduates, from all kinds of professions that include politics, sports, IT, business, education, entertainment, military, etc. This is also one of the best civil engineering schools.

This civil engineering degree online offers an online Master of Civil Engineering (MCE) program with 5 concentrations: Construction Engineering and Management; Geotechnical; Structures and Mechanics; Transportation Systems; Water Resources.

This online civil engineering degree is also among the cheapest online civil engineering degree with tuition of $416/credit hour.

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5. Ohio University

This is a public university based in Athens, Ohio. It offers a range of certificate programs and associate’s through doctorate-level degree programs.

Ohio University (OU) also offers a 100% online Master of Science in Civil Engineering (MSCE), with four focus choices: Construction Engineering and Management, Environmental Engineering, Structural Engineering, or Transportation Engineering.

This is among the best schools for civil engineering with tuition worth $24,504.

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The average annual salary for entry-level civil engineers varies across sources, with the US average at $55,827 per year and ZipRecruiter reporting an average of $49,833. Junior civil engineers in the US earn an average of $64,177 per year, while Glassdoor reports an even higher annual salary of $87,353 per year. While In the UK, civil engineers starting their careers make 23,070 BRP or $28,705.

Furthermore, a bachelor’s degree is typically required for entry-level positions, and ABET-accredited schools are preferred by companies worldwide. Professional licenses can also be beneficial for career advancement and increased earnings.


If you want a sense of what to expect from a civil engineering salary in a country you’re considering working in, it’s worth comparing salaries for civil engineering jobs around the world. Here are some common annual salaries for civil engineers worldwide, according to ERI:

  • Australia. $116,161 AUD ($80,778 USD)
  • Brazil. $102.581 BRL ($27,081 USD)
  • Canada. $94,620 CAD ($71,987 USD)
  • China. 223,685 CNY ($32,547 USD)
  • Croatia. 193.178 kn HRK ($29,179 USD)
  • Denmark. 614.262 kr. DKK ($91,752 USD)
  • Germany. 69.754 EUR ($77, 647 USD)
  • Greece. 40.842 EUR ($45,463 USD)
  • Japan. 9,039,271 JPY ($88,155 USD)
  • Mexico. $349,196 MXN ($18,294 USD)
  • Portugal. 30 262 EUR ($33,748 USD)
  • Singapore. $93,337 SGD ($68,279 USD)
  • South Africa. R364,708 ZAR ($25,876 USD)
  • Spain. 37.713 EUR ($42,034 USD)
  • Sweden. 514.776 kr SEK ($54,520 USD)
  • Switzerland. 98’026 CHF ($98,952 USD)
  • Turkey. 86.400 TRY ($15,165 USD)
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE). 269,209 AED ($73,294 USD)
  • United Kingdom. 50,965 GBP ($63,454 USD)
  • United States of America. $87,951 USD


1. University Of Oxford

The University of Oxford is consistently ranked as one of the world’s best academic institutions, having produced more than 30 world leaders, including 26 UK prime ministers. Its engineering science undergraduate course is ranked as the top civil engineering degree in the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 list. Spanning four years, the course prepares students for a career in the future of engineering innovation with a course that integrates every civil discipline for a fundamental understanding of the profession.

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2. Stanford University

With a history that stretches back to 1885, Stanford University is one of the bastions of American academia. Prospective students have to complete a minor in either civil or engineering systems engineering, both of which are designed to provide an introduction to the fundamental laws of engineering. The civil course, includes architectural design, construction, and geotechnical engineering, while the engineering systems course covers environmental fluid mechanics and hydrology.

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3. Massachusetts Institute Of Technology (MIT)

MIT was founded in 1861, more than two decades before Stanford University, and is home to around 11,000 students. The university offers a general engineering course with tailored pathways that allow students to specialize in civil, environmental, or systems engineering. It also prepares students for the era of smart cities, shedding light on the proliferation of data, and the need for building more efficient and sustainable infrastructure.

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4. California Institute Of Technology

The US university commonly referred to as Caltech has a postgraduate course in civil engineering that has been listed as one of the top in the world by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 list. Only one in 10 students that apply for the course secure a spot, with the programme promising to prepare students for research and professional expertise in an age of fast-moving technology and interdisciplinary design.

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5. Princeton University

Located in New Jersey, Princeton University offers students one of five engineering-related undergraduate courses called ‘tracks’, which cover architecture, environmental engineering, geological engineering, structural engineering, and liberal arts. The course’s aim is to prepare students for leadership roles in the civil and environmental engineering fields by ensuring they can solve complex problems, communicate effectively, and uphold ethical standards.

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6. Imperial College London

Regarded as one of the UK’s top institutions that taught India’s Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, as well as Sir Alexander Flemming – the inventor of penicillin – Imperial College London has a civil engineering undergraduate course ranked among the best in the country. Its broad syllabus aims to create civil engineers that can build sustainability, protect the environment, and create structures that solve major social and infrastructural problems.

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7. ETH Zurich

Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, also known as ETH Zurich, offers a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering that is predominantly taught in the German language. It offers direct access to ETH Zurich’s postgraduate course, equipping students with an understanding of competencies such as physics, hydraulics, hydrology, structural engineering, material science, geotechnical engineering, and transport infrastructure.

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8. Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins University is another US institution that makes the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 list. Undergraduates studying within the programme focus on chemical, mathematical, and physical principles, and the economic, environmental, and societal impact of large-scale projects, such as Saudi Arabia’s Riyadh Metro. The curriculum is broad enough to allow students to explore other courses outside the Department of Civil Engineering, such as programmes in water supply and systems analysis.

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9. University College London (UCL)

London’s UCL was founded in 1826 and boasts an undergraduate engineering degree covering civil engineering, structures, geotechnical work, fluids, design, transport analysis, surveying, and materials. Taught by industry-renowned researchers and practitioners, the course is accredited by the UK’s Joint Board of Moderators and paves the way to start the process of securing charters. It costs $12,039 for UK students and $34,804 for international students.

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10. University Of California, Berkeley

Located in San Francisco’s Bay Area, the University of California, Berkeley offers a four-year civil engineering programme providing students with a comprehensive understanding of engineering science, design, and practice. The course is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of the US-based Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (Abet).

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11. Columbia University

Ranked one of the top civil engineering degrees in the US is Columbia University, which has undergraduate courses in civil and mechanical engineering. Both are designed as gateways to enter the profession with a sufficient understanding of real-world scenarios. Nanomechanics and biochemical engineering are explored in the mechanical course, whilst a broad spectrum of theory and design is covered in the civil engineering programme.

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12. University Of California, Los Angeles

University of California, Los Angeles, offers a broad range of educational courses for engineering. Its three-year syllabus includes civil and environmental engineering, materials science, biochemistry, soil mechanics, structural analysis, and elementary fluid mechanics. The programme aims to prepare students to take charge of the infrastructure that provides clean water to drink, unpolluted air to breathe, and safe and secure buildings to live and work in.

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13. Cornell University

Cornell University is part of the Ivy League academic institutions in the US and boasts one of the most highly-regarded civil engineering courses in North America, according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 list. Accredited by Abet, the course has paved the way for Cornell University graduates to assume leadership positions at construction and engineering companies at the forefront of the industry. Many others have gone on to create their own companies as well, data shows.

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14. University Of Michigan

As well as grooming former US President Gerald Ford and the co-founder of Google, Larry Page, the University of Michigan schooled the voice actor behind Star Wars villain Darth Vader, Earl Jones. Its civil engineering course covers construction management and specializes in areas such as environmental, geotechnical, hydraulics and hydrological, materials, and structural engineering.

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15. University Of Toronto

With a campus featuring ornate architecture and open green spaces, Canada’s University of Toronto is a fitting place to study futuristic civil engineering. At its St George Campus, students are taught how to devise plans to regenerate deteriorating urban landscapes and build infrastructure strong enough to withstand natural disasters. After two years of study, there is an option to specialize in urban engineering, sustainable infrastructure, or environmental engineering.

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16. Tsinghua University

Located in northwest Beijing, China, Tsinghua University is the most highly-ranked university in Asia for civil engineering, according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 list. The degree aims to educate undergraduates in advanced mechanics and mathematics to effectively prepare them to build the infrastructure in China – and farther afield – that cements the country’s position as a global superpower. Students are also equipped with foreign language skills so they are able to support the construction of global projects.

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17. National University Of Singapore

The top-ranked institute in Singapore for civil engineering by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 list is the city-state’s flagship National University of Singapore. At the heart of the course is a focus on interdisciplinary design and construction of infrastructure that focuses on the need to preserve the environment in light of rapid urbanization and rising energy costs. Students are also taught how to analyze data and extract insights that can help solve complex challenges.

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18. Carnegie Mellon University

Located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Carnegie Mellon University is named after notable industrialist Andrew Carnegie, who established the research-heavy institute in 1900. The curriculum of its Abet-accredited civil engineering undergraduate degree focuses on design and teamwork, encouraging students to study or work abroad and participate in research projects.

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19. Northwestern University

McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University in Illinois, US, has an Abet-accredited course that acts as a bridge between science and society, according to the university. As well as learning the basic laws of engineering, students are trained to develop computer models and carry out analytical experiments to stress-test infrastructure systems.

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Civil engineering is considered the broadest of all engineering fields. It is important that one does good research and consideration before delving into it.

Studying civil engineering in one of the best civil engineering schools in the world is one of the fundamental things a prospective civil engineer needs. Studying in an institution that is not or yet to be accredited by the responsible bodies will delay or mar your dreams. This content will serve as a guide for you to make the best choice. Do well to visit it again if you have to.

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