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Best Universities for Civil Engineering

Civil engineering is a popular branch of engineering that focuses on the design, construction and maintenance of structures such as bridges, roads, dams, utility systems and other structures of this kind. Postgraduate study is a great option for graduates of this subject, as it allows them to develop further expertise in the field, undertake professional placements, and build experience in niche areas of civil engineering. This will allow you to stand out to employers and command a higher salary, as well as work in the areas that interest you most. 

Studying at the best universities for civil engineering will help you achieve these goals. With this guide, you’ll be able to find out about the top civil engineering universities and what factors are worth considering. 

Best Universities for Civil Engineering 

The Complete University Guide 2023 league table ranks UK universities with a dedicated table for subject areas, allowing you to easily see which are the top-ranking civil engineering universities. While many universities offer excellent postgraduate study options in this subject area, there are three universities that top the table due to the quality of their course offerings and supporting infrastructure. They are: 

Top choice for Student Satisfaction 

Whatever your subject of study, student satisfaction will tell you whether a prospective university will provide a positive living and learning experience. This factor includes everything from the quality of teaching to the standard of facilities, the activity of the students’ union and societies, and how good the academic and personal support services. 

The best university for civil engineering, when it comes to student satisfaction, is the University of West London

Top choice for Graduate Prospects 

Like many other subjects at postgraduate level, civil engineering students will often pursue further study in order to sharpen their technical and professional skills ahead of launching—or refreshing—their career in the field. Graduate prospects indicates how successful students are after leaving a given university, summarising factors like the quality of professional placements and careers support, and how well the curriculum is designed to support career growth. As a result, it should be a top priority when choosing a course. 

The top civil engineering university, in terms of graduate prospects, is Imperial College London

Top choice for Research Quality 

Research quality focuses on the academic output of the university and its staff, as well as published research students. It’s a reflection of the expertise of a university’s civil engineering faculty, as well as the quality of its facilities and other resources. It indicates how likely it is that postgraduate students will be able to benefit from and get involved in impactful research. It’s an important consideration for all postgraduate civil engineering students, but is particularly relevant to research students or those who wish to pursue a research-heavy career path. 

The best civil engineering university for research quality is Loughborough University

Ranking Information Source   

The information and rankings for this article are sourced from the Compete University Guide League Tables, which gathered its data from various leading higher education sources such as the National Student Survey, the 2021 Research Excellence Framework, and the Higher Education Statistics Agency. This information was evaluated using Complete University Guide’s unique methodology, providing rankings that reflect the priorities and needs of prospective students. 

Go to: See the 2023 Complete University Guide civil engineering subject league table  

Student reviews 

The Complete University Guide 2023 civil engineering subject table is an invaluable resource, but it’s not the only one—you can also read real student reviews from current and recent learners on Whatuni. It’s a great way to learn more about the top civil engineering universities and get an insight into what it’s like to study there.  

One university with particularly strong reviews, including five-star ratings, is the University of Portsmouth. One review of the university said, “Equipment and buildings are very modern, lecturers are very helpful, the library is really great and the vibe of this place is something that really impressed me the most!” 

More universities for studying Civil Engineering 

With nearly 230 postgraduate degree programmes in civil engineering to choose from, on offer across nearly 60 UK universities, it can be challenging to know where to begin—or end—your search. However, with our university and course search tools, browsing courses and getting the essential information you need has never been easier. 

Next: Search for civil engineering courses


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