Types of Civil Engineering: Everything You Need to Know

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Types of Civil Engineering: Courses, Salary, and More

Civil Engineering is a branch of engineering which deals with the physical environment. It involves designing, maintaining, analysing and developing the physical environment. The physical environment can include roads, dams, bridges, canals, apartments, sewerage systems, hyperloop structures, railway bridges, caves, tunnels, and pipelines. There are other types of civil engineering as well. You can choose the right field based on your interest. In this blog, we will take a look at civil engineering as a career option as well as the different types of civil engineering to help you gain clarity if you are looking for study in abroad

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Types of Civil Engineering

After exploring the beneficial aspects of a career in civil engineering, let’s take a look at different types of civil engineering branches:

Types of Civil Engineering

Management and Construction Engineering

This type of Civil Engineering includes constructing structures and the management of all tasks related to Construction engineering. This field has an increased business risk than other fields as civil engineers take up huge contracts that can give rewards and losses in the end. The management of moving materials from one place to another also comes under this field.

Structural Engineering

This type of Civil Engineering is related to analyzing and designing the structures of physical infrastructures like bridges, overpasses, complex platforms for railway lines, offshore structures like oil, and gas fields in the sea, etc. In analyzing and designing aspects of Structural Engineering, a civil engineer has to make measurements and assumptions about the pressures and loads that the structures will have in their lifetime, their future impacts and how they can be safe for long-term use.

Transportation Engineering

Transportation Engineering is concerned with designing transportation systems that are efficient in functioning and sustainable. The transportation system can be public or private. It includes transportation structures for streets, air transportation, tunnels, overpasses, railways, etc. It consists of fields like transportation planning, pavement engineering and infrastructure management.

Water Engineering

Water engineering is about understanding how natural water bodies react to human intervention. This can lead to the conservation of potable water which is depleting rapidly. Nowadays, it is focused on the prevention of floods, and drought, and understanding the nature of coastal waters.

Geotechnical Engineering

Amongst the varied types of Civil Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering is concerned with exploring the ground properties on which a construction project is to be made. Checking the soil quality, the quality of the stones and will the construction be able to hold the project safely. It is the job of a geotechnical engineer to detect any vulnerabilities. After understanding all these aspects, a Geotechnical Engineering assesses the feasibility of a project.

Environmental Engineering

Environmental Engineering involves nature conservation and protection-related activities like green engineering, pollution elimination, solid waste treatment, handling hazardous waste materials, and protection of densely populated areas, and natural resources situated in densely populated areas, amongst others.

Coastal Engineering

Coastal engineering is concerned with the management and protection of coastal areas from floods, erosion and other environmental factors. A coastal engineer is expected to apply certain techniques that help in the protection of the area.

Earthquake Engineering

It involves producing and designing an infrastructure or a project in such a way that it can withstand the hazardous effects of an earthquake. Civil engineers are in huge demand in earthquake-prone areas like Japan.

Forensic Engineering 

This field comprises the inspection of different types of materials that are used while constructing a physical infrastructure. It also involves retracing the process of construction to know what went wrong and where it went wrong so that it can be improved and avoided in the future.

Highway Engineering

The importance of roads, highways and tunnels is quite evident in our lives. Thus, a dedicated branch of Civil Engineering is created altogether to specialize in the making of these structures. Highway Engineering majorly deals with the construction of roads, highways and tunnels using basic techniques like planning, designing, constructing and operating. Roadways are one of the major means of transportation, thus, the safety and commutes of people and goods are in the hands of the constructors.

Types of Civil Engineering Projects

There are five branches in the projects of civil engineering. They include construction and management, structural, geotechnical, water, and architecture. All these projects require different expertise, and extensive knowledge of maths, and physics to make the overall projects a success.

Average Salary of Different Civil Engineering Fields

Each Civil Engineering field has a different concentration of work and hence a different package that professionals receive. Here is a table that shows the average salary of each Civil Engineering type for you:

JobAverage Salary in India(INR)
Management and Construction Engineering7 LPA
Structural Engineering4.8 LPA
Transportation Engineering4.2 LPA
Water Engineering6.6 LPA
Geotechnical Engineering5.6 LPA
Environmental Engineering4.6 LPA
Coastal Engineering6.7 LPA
Earthquake Engineering5.18 LPA
Forensic Engineering4.8 LPA
Highway Engineering4.3 LPA

Types of Civil Engineering Courses

A wide array of programs are offered in different types of Civil Engineering for those who want to explore this field in detail. Here are the different types of Civil Engineering courses for building a rewarding career in this field:

Civil Engineering as a Career

Civil engineering as a career has many benefits, some of which are as follows-

  • Civil engineering is a rewarding career in terms of pay and other metrics. Engineers working on critical projects earn well and handsomely. As there are many types of civil engineering fields, you have a variety of choices to choose from.
  • If you are inclined towards creative pursuits, then this field is an interesting one to pursue. You can make your contributions in the way of creative infrastructure. You will also get appreciation from the people who will see your work.
  • Civil engineering gives you a great chance to contribute to society. Civil engineers play an important role in building the infrastructure of a community which leads to its development. Skilled civil engineers can change the scenario of a city by building amazing infrastructure.
  • Civil engineers are always in high demand as infrastructure needs to be maintained and updated from time to time. They are required more in developing countries, as these countries intend to build infrastructure to facilitate development.
  • You will also get various travel opportunities to explore the world as a civil engineer. Your work will be difficult to replicate and can even find a chief place in world history.

Top Universities for Civil Engineering Courses

The table below shows the top Civil Engineering colleges and universities in the world as per the QS University Rankings for Civil and Structural Engineering 2023. Please note that as of now, the Civil and Structural Engineering rankings are available for the year 2023. We will update this article with the 2024 rankings once they are available.

UniversitiesQS University Rankings 2023 for Civil and Structural Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 1
Delft University of Technology2
University of Cambridge6
University of California, Berkeley3
Imperial College London 7
Stanford University8
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore)9
ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology5
Politecnico di Milano12
National University of Singapore (NUS) 4
Tsinghua University11

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Q1. Which type of civil engineering job is the best?

Ans. Here are the top 10 highest-paying jobs for Civil Engineers:

– Engineering Project Managers
– Senior Civil Engineer
– Engineering Managers
– Civil Engineer
– Architect
– Engineering Inspectors and Regulatory Officers
– Civil Engineering Drafter

Q2. What are the different branches of civil engineering?

Ans. Civil Engineering is a vast field which can further be divided into many branches. Here are some of the popular divisions in the field:

1. Construction Engineering
2. Structural Engineering
3. Transportation Engineering
4. Geotechnical Engineering
5. Water Resources Engineering
6. Environmental Engineering

Q3. What are the 4 types of engineers?

Ans. The 4 main types of engineering disciplines are Civil, Mechanical, Electrical and Computer Science.

Q4. Which country has the highest salary for civil engineers?

Ans. These are the popular countries offering the highest salaries to Civil Engineers:

1) Switzerland
2) Denmark
3) Norway
4) U.S
5) Australia
6) Canada
7) Germany
8) France

Civil engineering has a wider scope because of the sheer number of types of civil engineering fields you can explore. If you are still confused about which field of civil engineering is right for you, the Leverage Edu experts can assist you in finding a suitable field. Many Indian students dream of pursuing education in foreign nations due to the exposure and career growth they offer. Consider joining a free counselling session with Leverage Edu if you plan to study abroad. 

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  1. Nice informative, It is a field that deals with the application of mathematics, science, and technology to build projects which makes life easy and enjoyable.

    1. Well said Prashant, Civil Engineering definitely is an application of science, technology, mathematics and other related disciplines.

  2. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS ARTICLE. I HOPE IT WILL WORK FOR ME TOO.I WILL EXECUTE THIS.this is very useful tips.thank you so much for your suggestions.Very good content for students, keep sharing

    1. Hi!

      Thank you for your comment! Please subscribe to our newsletter if you want updates on our latest blogs, quizzes and news articles! Best of Luck!

  3. Thank you for sharing such a great article. It was completely worth reading it. I had a great experience at NIET, It provides the needed learning atmosphere to its students so that they grasp the best-desired experience and create a bright future for themselves and excel in their fields.

  4. Clearify pls , building of apartments, homes, markets and estates ,etc. which branch did it fall under in civil engineering….??

    1. Hi, J.C!
      It comes under Construction and Management Engineering.
      Contact us at 1800 57 2000 and we will help you further.

  5. Am studying Civil engineering but am confused,base on the branch of civil engineering am going for

    1. Hello,

      Civil Engineering is a difficult field within Engineering but it is also rewarding in the long run. Therefore, you can first narrow down your choices to civil engineering and then pick which one will be beneficial and suit your skills in the future.

  6. This is so awesome, you guys are doing Great by sharing this knowledge and the great ideas.
    I have a passion for Civil Engineering.

  1. Nice informative, It is a field that deals with the application of mathematics, science, and technology to build projects which makes life easy and enjoyable.

    1. Well said Prashant, Civil Engineering definitely is an application of science, technology, mathematics and other related disciplines.