Civil Engineering

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Civil Engineers build and shape the world. It’s everything you see around us – from the roads and railways, to the schools, offices, hospitals and water supply.

Civil engineering covers a huge range of jobs, like: civil engineer, civil engineering technician, quantity surveyor, town planner, structural engineer, construction manager and land surveyor.

The industry’s workforce is ageing and there is a demand for new, young engineers to fill the skills gap.

If you’re a practical thinker and a problem-solver with a knack for science and maths, this could be the career for you.

What's the qualification?

You’ll gain a Foundation Apprenticeship in Civil Engineering, which is the same level of learning as an SQA Higher (SCQF level 6).

This includes:

  • A National Certificate (NC) in Civil Engineering at SCQF level 6
  • A minimum of one core SVQ unit from Site Technical Support or Built Environment Design at SCQF level 6
  • Registration with the Institute of Civil Engineering/professional institution
  • Work placement experience

As part of your Foundation Apprenticeship, you’ll achieve parts of the Civil Engineering Modern Apprenticeship in either contracting or consultancy.

SQA qualifications explained

What will I learn?

As part of your National Certificate, your mandatory topics will include:

  • Civil Engineering Materials
  • Civil Engineering Project
  • Computer Aided Drafting: An Introduction
  • Construction Site Surveying: An Introduction
  • Health and Safety in the Construction Industry
  • Mechanics for Construction: An Introduction
  • Construction Engineering Mathematics

Your SVQ will be assessed as part of your work placement. You’ll achieve one of the following:

  • Develop and maintain working relationships and personal development in construction
  • Maintain professional relationships and practice in built environmental design

Your Foundation Apprenticeship will also help you to develop core skills valued by employers, particularly:

  • Communication
  • Problem solving
  • Working with others
  • Time management

These transferable skills are necessary and highly desirable for working in a range of other related jobs.

SQA qualifications explained

Where could it take me?

Your Foundation Apprenticeship gives you lots of options: it’s up to you where you go next.

  • A Modern Apprenticeship: On completing your Foundation Apprenticeship, you’ll have already achieved core units of the Modern Apprenticeship in Civil Engineering. You could then progress onto a Technical or Professional Apprenticeship.

  • Further Education: Continue your studies at college, with an HNC or HND in an engineering related subject. Your workplace experience will support your college application.

  • University: Foundation Apprenticeships are recognised as equivalent to SQA Highers by all Scottish universities. You’ll already have quality experience in the industry – this will make your UCAS stand out from the crowd.

  • Straight to a job: Use your qualification and work experience to find a job in civil engineering or construction.

SQA qualifications explained

How will it work?

You'll complete your Foundation Apprenticeship at school, alongside your other subjects. You'll spend time learning at a learning provider, such as a college, and with an employer on a practical work placement. It'll give your career a head-start, and look great on your CV.

How to apply

If you're staying on at school, you can apply for a Foundation Apprenticeship.

First, use the search tool at the bottom of the page to find out if this subject is available at your school. Next, fill out the form to let us know you're interested, and we'll get back to you with more information.

Find out if this subject is available at your school