Triangle

Course overview

On completion of this programme, you will be able to conceive, model, design and analyse a wide range of innovative structures and apply advanced concepts in structural engineering.

The distinguishing features of this programme are the integration of theory, design and application, and the response of structures to loading. Integration is achieved by exploiting a computer modelling thread. This provides you with the opportunity to apply advanced structural analysis (finite elements, non-linear analysis, structural dynamics) using state of the art software. Using this platform, these techniques are applied within a practical context (steel structures, concrete structures, bridge engineering) which is developed further in a major design project.

Why choose this course?

Accredited

This degree is accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer for candidates who have already acquired a partial CEng accredited undergraduate degree.

3rd

in the UK for research power

REF 2014

2nd

highest in the UK for female engineering graduate earnings, five years after graduation.

2nd

highest in the Midlands for male engineering graduate earnings, 5 years after graduation

Course content

The course integrates theory, application and design. Theory will be introduced alongside its application using in advanced software and computer modelling, in structural engineering and in BIM, so that you can see how it relates to real-world problems.

Structural design is a core element of the course, providing you with the opportunity to extend your knowledge of steel and concrete structures. Tall buildings and bridges provide further opportunities for you to integrate advanced analysis with design in a practical context.

Modules

Dynamics and Wind Engineering (autumn) 20 credits

For efficiency and clarity, the module will have complementary themes running in parallel at times, as shown below:

Wind Engineering Theme

Dynamics Theme

Basic meteorology

Global circulation; subtropical cyclones; gradient winds

Single degree of freedom (SDOF) systems

Equation of motion; damping cases; free and forced vibration

Wind characteristics

Wind spectra; parent winds; turbulence; atmospheric boundary layer

Multiple degrees of freedom (MDOF) systems

 

Bluff body aerodynamics

Flow around cylinders and buildings; pressure coefficients

Continuous systems

 

Wind Engineering Tools

Eurocode; wind tunnel modelling; computational wind engineering

Wind-structure interaction

Buffeting; vortex-induced vibration; galloping; flutter

The module will involve two pieces of individual courseworks in wind loading and buffeting.

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 3 week 2 hours

 Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 1 15.00 Individual project using Eurocde to predict forces on a low-rise structure.
Coursework 2 15.00 Individual project using Matlab coding to model the dynamic response of a building to wind excitation.
Exam 70.00 Three hour examination.
Advanced Structural Analysis (autumn) 20 credits

The module will introduce concepts of linear and nonlinear finite element theory for structural engineering.

Content will involve finite element formulation, i.e. bar, beam, plane stress, plane strain and plate/ shell elements as well as their implementation within the direct stiffness method. Aspects of material and geometrical nonlinearities will be examined and the particular cases of concentrated and distributed plasticity beam element formulations for skeletal structures will introduced.

Load, displacement, and general control nonlinear static analysis schemes will also be examined and implemented for the solution of finite element problems. Concepts will be practiced through two individual pieces of coursework on linear and non-linear finite element theory respectively. Coursework will involve both a theory implementation and an analysis aspect using software.

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 2 week 2 hours
Workshop 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 1 - Finite Element 15.00  
Coursework 2- Non-linear analysis 15.00  
3 hr exam 70.00
Advanced Structural Design (autumn) 20 credits

This module will look into the design of specialised structural systems such as composite beams and floors, portal frames, tubular trusses, and pre-stressed concrete beams and slabs.

It will also look into connection behaviour, the design of steel moment connections and sway stability of buildings. A major group design exercise will illustrate the approach to the design of complete structures.

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 2 weeks 3 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 1 35.00 Group Design Coursework: 60 pages max plus drawings and group presentation
Exam 1 65.00  3 hour exam
Bridge Engineering (spring) 20 credits

The module will look into the analysis and design of bridge structures, including definition of loading, structural analysis methods for deck and piers, and design of deck, piers and foundations of steel and concrete bridges.

A group project consists of the conceptual design of a bridge and the detailed design of key structural elements.

Method and Frequency of Class: 

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 2 week 3 hours

Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 1 35.00 Group design project
Exam 1 - 3 hr exam 65.00  
Research methods and project proposal (spring) 10 credits

This is a compulsory module for all students studying an MSc in the Department of Civil Engineering. The module facilitates the development of skills that can be applied within a research project, including a literature review and writing skills, development of technical research skills, initiating a review of literature generally relating to the design/research project which they will undertake in the summer research project, and developing a proposal for the activities to be conducted in the summer research project.

The module will incorporate a mixture of learning environments/resources, including a Nottingham Open Online Course (NOOC) relating to technical writing and literature review techniques, formative feedback provided by academic staff and other students, 2-week technical workshops organised within the Department of Civil Engineering which will provide technical training in areas of interest to the student or of specific benefit to the proposed project (two workshops to be completed, selected from a number of options), and interaction with an individual supervisor who will be a member of staff specialising in an area related to the student’s project.

  1. The form of assessment includes a report containing a literature review related to the subject area chosen by the student and a reflective commentary on how formative feedback was used in developing their writing
  2. submissions required as part of the technical workshops
  3. a presentation and viva which details the preliminary aims, objectives, methodology, programme of activities, resource plan, and project-level risk assessment for their summer project
Tall Building Group Design Project (spring) 10 credits

This module will use the design of a tall building as a platform for students to practise and apply the skills that they have developed through the modules in the Autumn Semester. Students will work in groups to tackle a tall building design problem based on an architect’s brief and an identified site.

Detailed models of the proposed solution will be developed and evaluated using design and analysis software.

The scope of the project will cover:

  • the social and engineering context of the proposed tall building
  • the principal structural system
  • evaluation of loading
  • outline design of foundations, and
  • presentation of the design.

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 1 week 2 week 2 hours
Workshop 11 weeks 2 week 4 hours

Lectures are only held at the start of the project and will not continue throughout the semester.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 1 - Group Interim design submission 20.00 Written report (1500 words)
Coursework 2 - Group Final Design Submission 30.00 Written report (3000 words)
VIVA 50.00 Individual VIVA on project and individual diary of activities throughout the semester.15 min VIVA and diary (1000 words)
Civil Engineering Research Project (summer) 60 credits

This is the major research project element for selected MSc plans in the Department of Civil Engineering. It will normally take the form of a scientific investigation, whether it involves experimentation or an extensive review of work already completed by others. Typically, but not exclusively, it will include the following:

  • Project definition and aim
  • Literature review
  • Practical experimentation / investigation
  • Presentation of results
  • Critical analysis of findings

The detailed technical content of the module will depend on the specific area under examination.

The project area is flexible and will be supervised by an academic member of staff.

Previous research projects have included:

  • Weather impact on construction schedules
  • Predicted future climate change trends
  • The use and abuse of GPS in current UK survey practices
  • The utilization of laser scanning system for examination and monitoring of tunnel deformation and structural integrity
  • Life cycle assessment of the M25 highway widening scheme

Delivery

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 3 weeks 1 week 1 hour

Assessment method

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Dissertation 100.00 10,000-20,000 words
The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.
Computational Fluid Dynamics 20 credits

In this module you’ll develop an advanced understanding of fluid mechanics. You’ll use computational methods in fluid mechanics to further understand how techniques are applied to real fluid engineering problems. For example, you’ll study fluid/structure interactions, air flow, channel flow and water wave propagation. You’ll spend between two and four hours in lectures and two hours in computing sessions each week.

Infrastructure Asset Management (Spring) 10 credits

This module considers the use of system reliability assessment techniques to support asset management decision making. It covers the analysis of asset failure data, how to construct and analyse asset degradation models and how to use optimisation techniques to enable the selection of optimal maintenance strategies.

The techniques will be discussed in the context of their application to asset infrastructures.

Assessment method

This module will be assessed by a class test (20%) and an exam (80%).

Delivery

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 1 hour
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 2 hours

Assessment method

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 20.00 Class test
Exam 80.00  
Engineering and Deformation Surveying and Practical (spring) 20 credits

This module is a combination of theoretical and practical aspects of selected areas of advanced engineering and deformation surveying and their applications.

For the practical aspects the students work in small groups on three projects, which are related on surveying by using advanced geodetic instrumentation and deformation monitoring projects.

The projects involves the design, planning and carrying out of measurements, processing and analysis of surveying/monitoring sensors data and finally topographic map for the surveying project and the determination of deformation for the monitoring projects. Subjects covered include:

  • Analysis of errors of geodetic measurements
  • Metrology and industrial measurement.
  • Terrestrial laser scanning
  • Surveying and techniques for deformation monitoring
  • Analysis of geodetic time-series
  • Monitoring of civil engineering structures (tall-buildings, bridges)
  • Monitoring of underground structures
  • Engineering and crustal deformation monitoring
  • Applications of deformation monitoring of geohazards

Method and Frequency of Class:

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 12 weeks 1 week 3 hours
Practicum 12 weeks 1 week 3 hours

3 hour morning block and 3 hour afternoon block.

Method of Assessment:

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
coursework 1 15.00 Individual submission of poster of the topographic map (size A0)
coursework 2 15.00 Individual submission of report for the deformation monitoring problems (1000-1500 words)
coursework 3 20.00 Two group presentations (20 and 35 minutes, respectively)
Exam 1 50.00 written examination (unseen)
Sustainable Construction and Life Cycle Assessment (Spring) 10 credits

This module is designed to deliver an understanding of sustainability principles and how, in particular, transport infrastructure engineering as well as the wider construction industry can contribute to sustainable development.

The module will include the following themes:

  • Sustainability: an introduction to sustainability, sustainable development; sustainable construction; and how transport infrastructure engineering can contribute to sustainable construction.
  • Environmental impacts of infrastructure construction: a review of the positive and negative environmental impacts of construction including resources and waste and energy and climate change.
  • Social impacts of infrastructure construction: a review of the positive and negative social impacts of construction including; corporate social responsibility, responsible sourcing, poverty reduction and sustainable development goals.
  • Assessment: indicators, assessment systems, environmental life-cycle assessment, life-cycle cost analysis.

Delivery

Activity Number of Weeks Number of sessions Duration of a session
Lecture 11 weeks 1 week 2 hours
Workshop 11 weeks 1 week 1 hour

Assessment method

Assessment Type Weight Requirements
Coursework 100.00 2 hour exam
Managing Infrastructure and Systems (Spring) 10 credits

This module considers some of the most commonly-used system reliability assessment techniques applied to support system management.

It covers the construction of reliability models that use basic component failure information to describe specific system failure modes, the qualitative and quantitative analyses of these models, and the critical evaluation of systems using the analytical results. The models will be discussed in the context of their application to engineering systems and infrastructure assets.

The module aims to provide students with:

  • an understanding of the basic statistical, probabilistic and mathematical concepts required to predict the reliability of components and systems.
  • a detailed knowledge of the most commonly used system reliability assessment techniques.
  • the ability to critically evaluate systems and assets using mathematical models.

Assessment method

This module will be assessed by an in-class test (20%) and an exam (80%).

The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. Please refer to the module catalogue for information on available modules. This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021.

Learning and assessment

How you will learn

  • Lectures
  • Computer labs
  • Workshops

This programme will allow you to develop a detailed theoretical understanding of structural engineering, and how to apply that understanding to practical design situations and the response of structures to various loads, such as winds.

How you will be assessed

  • Written exam
  • Group coursework
  • Group project
  • Presentation
  • Dissertation

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2022 entry.

Undergraduate degree2:1 in relevant subject. Applicants need to have studied structural analysis and structural design in each year of their undergraduate programme.

Applying

Our step-by-step guide covers everything you need to know about applying.

How to apply

Fees

UK fees are set in line with the national UKRI maximum fee limit. We expect fees for 2022 entry to be confirmed in August 2021.

Additional information for international students

If you are a student from the EU, EEA or Switzerland, you will pay international tuition fees in most cases. If you are resident in the UK and have 'settled' or 'pre-settled' status under the EU Settlement Scheme, you will be entitled to 'home' fee status.

Irish students will be charged tuition fees at the same rate as UK students. UK nationals living in the EU, EEA and Switzerland will also continue to be eligible for ‘home’ fee status at UK universities until 31 December 2027.

For further guidance, check our information for applicants from the EU.

These fees are for full-time study. If you are studying part-time, you will be charged a proportion of this fee each year (subject to inflation).

Additional costs

As a student on this course, you should factor some additional costs into your budget, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses.

You should be able to access most of the books you’ll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies or more specific titles.

Funding

There are many ways to fund your postgraduate course, from scholarships to government loans.

We also offer a range of international masters scholarships for high-achieving international scholars who can put their Nottingham degree to great use in their careers.

Check our guide to find out more about funding your postgraduate degree.

Postgraduate funding

Careers

We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students.

Expert staff can help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.

Each year 1,100 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.

International students who complete an eligible degree programme in the UK on a student visa can apply to stay and work in the UK after their course under the Graduate immigration route. Eligible courses at the University of Nottingham include bachelors, masters and research degrees, and PGCE courses.

Graduate destinations

The blend of academic study and development of practical and professional skills that the course provides is an ideal preparation for the future challenges of working in a multidisciplinary environment. Graduates of this course will be highly sought after and will be suitable to enter into a professional career related to the field of structural and civil engineering.

Joint Board of Moderators

This degree is accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired a partial CEng accredited undergraduate first degree.

Institution of Structural Engineers

  • This degree is accredited by the Joint Board of Moderators of the ICEIStructECIHT and IHE.

Institution of Civil Engineers

This degree is accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired a partial CEng accredited undergraduate first degree. See www.jbm.org.uk for further information.

The Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT)

Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE)

Chartered Engineer (CEng)

This degree is accredited by the Joint Board of Moderators of the ICEIStructECIHT and IHE.

It is accredited as meeting the requirements for Further Learning for a Chartered Engineer (CEng) for candidates who have already acquired a partial CEng accredited undergraduate first degree. See www.jbm.org.uk for further information.

Two masters graduates proudly holding their certificates

Related courses

This content was last updated on Thursday 01 July 2021. Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, but changes are likely to occur given the interval between the date of publishing and course start date. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply.