Civil engineers are responsible for the planning, designing, maintenance and management of projects to do with the construction of roads, buildings, airports, tunnels, dams, bridges, and water supply and sewage systems. Civil engineering may be the oldest of the all the engineering disciplines and today, civil engineering encompasses a range of specialized fields which include structural design, marine, environmental, construction, hydraulic engineering, transportation, and geotechnical engineering.
They study, explore, implement and maintain the modern environment of road access, reservoirs of accessible and hygienic water, as well as other facilities. Many technological conveniences, so taken for granted in modern society, are maintained, implemented and designed by those trained in civil engineering.
Many civil engineers hold supervisory or administrative positions, from supervisor of a construction site to a city engineer. They may supervise the work of surveyors, draughtsmen, technicians and other workers and may also carry out research, lecture or serve as consultants for engineering, construction or architectural firms. Others may work in design, construction, research and teaching. The work environment, therefore, ranges from quiet modern offices to remote areas in rugged terrain. They may have to travel or move from place to place to work on different projects. The actual work setting depends on the speciality chosen and on the size, location and financial resources of the employer.
Engineering graduates usually begin work under the supervision of experienced engineers and are gradually given more responsibilities as they gain experience. Some engineers with experience and additional education move into administration or management. Many high-level executives in industry began their careers in engineering.
Civil Engineering Technicians and Technologists
For civil engineering technicians and technologists, see Engineering Technicians and Technologists.
Schooling & School Subjects
Degree: Civil Engineering is offered at many universities, e.g. UCT, UP, UNISA, US, UKZN, Wits. The engineering degree requires a minimum of 4 years of study at a recognised university.
BTech degrees and Diploma Courses in Civil Engineering are also offered at CPUT, CUT, TUT, DUT and SW Gauteng FET.
A person who has obtained a recognised BSc (Eng) or BEng degree is then eligible for registration as an Candidate Engineer. After gaining at least 3 years of appropriate practical experience, a civil engineer may register as a Professional Engineer under the auspices of the Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA).
South African Institution of Civil Engineering
SAICE House, Block 19
Thornhill Office Park,
94 Bekker Road
Tel: (011) 805-5947/8/5953
Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA)
1st Floor, Waterview Corner Building
2 Ernest Oppenheimer Avenue
Bruma Lake Office Park, Bruma
Tel: (011) 607-9500