The Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (BSCE) program is a five-year program that educates students with basic principles of Science in conjunction with mathematical and computational tools used in engineering.
The BSCE program provides technical skills and knowledge in planning, design, construction, supervision, and maintenance of civil engineering works. Examples of civil engineering works include infrastructures for transportation (roads, railroads, bridges, ports, airports), commerce (shopping malls), education (schools, universities), human settlements (large scale housing projects, water supply, sewage disposal), energy development (power stations, power lines) and agriculture (irrigation, farm drainage).
Civil engineers collaborate with architects with regards to the design of infrastructures; they also coordinate and supervise construction, working with other engineers and contractors. They make decisions on the best materials and methods, review and approve project drawings, manage budgets, schedule equipment and materials purchases and delivery, and make necessary changes when the situation warrants or when clients change their minds about something.
The program covers the five essential fields of civil engineering: structural engineering, transportation engineering, water resources engineering, Geotechnical engineering and construction engineering and management.
Is Civil Engineering a profession?
Civil Engineering is a profession.
A graduate of BSCE who passes the board exam obtains a license to be a professional Civil Engineer.
What are the admission requirements for BSCE?
Requirements at each school may differ, but these are the common requirements:
- Must be a high school graduate.
- Must have a college entrance examination of above average or depending on the specified rating set by the school.
- Aside from the college entrance examination, some schools will require you to take an aptitude test or a pre engineering test (PET).
- Must pass the interview conducted by the college admission officer.
- Some schools require an 85% grade or higher in Mathematics and Science as well as a QPA of the same rating.
- There are schools who require students to have an 85% or higher average rating in the National Secondary Assessment Test (NSAT).
- Some schools require the result of the National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE).
- Admission for Philippine Educational Placement Test (PEPT) passers mainly depends on the school's discretion since some colleges and universities only offer selected courses.
What skills are required to succeed in this course?
There are many skills that will help you succeed in this course. The following are the most important ones:
- Mathematical skills – the ability to compute and use different computational methods to solve a problem
- Critical thinking skills – the use of logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions
- Analytical skills – the identification and analysis of product requirements to create a design
- Complex problem solving skills – identification of complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions
- Graphical skills – the ability to transform a design into an image
- Judgement and decision making skills – considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Communication skills – the ability to effectively relay information both orally and in written form
How difficult is BS in Civil Engineering?
BSCE is one of the most difficult courses. Many students end up shifting to other programs or they are advised to transfer because of the inability to meet cut off grades. Because of this, only a few students graduate every year. BSCE is even made more difficult because of the board examination.
How long does it take to complete BS in Civil Engineering?
Normally, the BSCE program takes 5 years to complete. Some schools who apply the trimesteral system do the program in 4 years.
A combination of classroom instruction and on the job trainings make up the duration. The estimated total number of hours for on the job trainings is 480 hours.
Review classes in preparation for the Civil Engineering Licensure Examination can take an additional 6 to 12 months, depending whether or not you pass the exam on your first try.
Fields of Specialization
- Structural Engineering:
scope of practice includes the calculation of loads and stresses on structures , strength of foundations and beams and determining whether or not a structure can function safely
- Construction Engineering and Management:
field of civil engineering that deals with the effective planning and implementation of construction projects
- Transportation Engineering:
the design and maintenance of transportation facilities such as highways and streets, ports and harbors, airfields, railroads and mass transit systems
- Water Resources Engineering:
the design of water treatment plants, pump systems and stations, distribution systems for drinking and non-drinking water, pipelines for collecting waste water and analysis of the floodplain or storm water drain systems to prevent and control water damage
- Geotechnical Engineering:
a specialized field of civil engineering that involves soil evaluation to determine the suitability of a particular area for construction
- Civil Environmental Engineering:
the design of systems and solutions to protect the environment
The Board Exam
A graduate of BS in Civil Engineering needs to take the Civil Engineering Licensure Examination
before he/she can practice the profession. The Board of Civil Engineering
facilitates the exam under the supervision of the Professional Regulations Commission
(PRC). It is scheduled twice a year in the months of May and November.
The three main subjects included are Mathematics, Surveying and Transportation which comprises 35% of the exam, Hydraulics and Geotechnical Engineering with 30% and Structural Engineering and Construction with 35%. To pass the examination you should obtain a general weighted average of 75% with no rating belong 60% in all the subjects.
Those who passed the Civil Engineering Licensure examination are exempted from taking the Civil Service Examination. They can work in government offices without a civil service eligibility.
National Passing Rates for the Civil Engineering Licensure Exam
||Passing Rate, First Timers Only
Career Opportunities for BSCE graduates
Jobs for licensed Civil Engineers (board passers)
- Structural Engineer – design and supervise the construction of many structures, including buildings, bridges and railways
- Project Engineer – performs work that crosses the boundaries between engineering and project management, leading the technical workers who contribute to the building of structures or products
- Staff Engineer – build or set up equipment, conduct experiments, assist in prototype development, and design work that utilizes computer-aided design and drafting equipment
- Inspectors – employed by the city or government to ensure structures are safely constructed
- Associate Engineer – works under the supervising or senior engineer; these professionals can work in a variety of engineering industries and provide assistance to engineers working on large-scale projects that require a large team of engineers to complete a project
- Engineering Educator – a civil engineer who teaches at a University or College
- Owner/Partner in an engineering firm – a civil engineer who engages in private practice/teaming up with fellow civil engineers in managing a personally owned engineering firm
- Environmental Engineer – assess the impact of engineering projects on water, soil, air and noise levels, and advise and design ways to minimize this impact. They also plan and design systems to treat and remove waste, such as waste water systems
- City Planner – helps determine the best use of geographical areas for the placement of homes, parks and commercial areas, as well as relieving traffic congestion and solving pollution problems
- Traffic Engineer – hired by governmental transportation boards or by city governments, they analyze traffic situations, taking into account roads, exits, highways, the number of vehicles traveling all times of the day and those vehicles' destinations
Jobs for non board passers
- Surveyors – measures and maps land, collect data on precise land boundaries; their land descriptions are used in leases and deeds
- Drafters – engineers hand their notes and other information to drafters so they can make visual guidelines for the engineers or construction crews
- Technicians – assist engineers or researchers with the development and handling of the technical aspects of civil engineering; they set up equipment, perform experiments and collect information for scientists and engineers
Jobs not related to the BSCE program
- Call center agent – answers phone calls and inquiries of clients and provides customer support, usually to people from other countries
- Administrative Staff – personnel responsible for the organization and management of office duties and tasks; positions that include office secretary, personal assistant and office clerk
- Freelancer working online – doing online jobs for clients abroad, such as data entry, article writing, SEO, customer support , administrative support etc., which mainly depends on your skills
Career Opportunities AbroadEngineers are in demand in most developed countries. However, different countries have their own licensure examinations, which you need to pass in order to practice as a civil engineer aboroad.
Salary LevelsIn the Philippines, the salary for inexperienced Civil Engineers is between P15,000 – P20,000 per month, while experienced engineers can earn P30,000 per month.
In most industrialized countries, pay and benefits are much higher than local rates. In the US, civil engineers receive a salary of $60,000 to $120,000 per year.