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Master of Engineering in Civil Engineering

This course is available


Level of Study

Master's Degree


120 credit hours

Next start date



Boost your abilities to perform rigorous intellectual analysis and solve complex problems in an engineering field of your choice with this research qualification.

Programme overview

Gain access to our advanced facilities and establish contact with world-class experts. Join us to innovate, improve and push forward the frontiers of knowledge. This research programme allows you to choose from a variety of specializations and contribute to your preferred field, allowing the potential to apply your in-depth expertise to further study.

The ME is structured to help you develop a sense of independence and confidence in your ability to think critically and conduct fundamental or applied research. Regardless of your specialization, you will engage with a stimulating mix of theory and analysis, setting you apart in your pursuit of higher-level opportunities.

Civil Engineering:

We strongly value advanced research; this is reflected in the range of facilities and specialised expertise we offer, all potentially tailored to suit individual interests. Some areas of in-depth study include:

  • Advanced structural dynamics
  • Earthquake engineering
  • Excavation engineering
  • Experimental and computational geotechnical engineering
  • Fire engineering
  • Highway and pavement engineering
  • Infrastructure asset management
  • Rock mechanics
  • Seismic structural design

We are also involved in many real-world projects, with some students contributing to projects around the country, including: the Christchurch rebuild, improving transportation systems in Auckland and the rest of the country, building dams and reservoirs, and responding to natural disasters. They’re also part of the decision-making process in local and regional councils.

Programme structure

You may pursue either a 120 point or 180 point ME in one of our approved specializations. This is generally dependent on your prior study. Both options require the completion of a 120 point research thesis.

Your thesis topic, which will involve discussions with your supervisor, is determined by your chosen specialization.

The 180 point ME is intended for students with a relevant three-year bachelor’s degree, such as engineering, science or architecture. This requires the selection of an additional 60 points of courses from a list of taught classes relevant to your chosen research specialization.

Where could this programme take you?

An engineering master’s degree confirms your ability to investigate an important issue with research expertise, work with initiative, make sound judgments, draw conclusions and write a thesis to explain your arguments. These are extremely marketable qualities that can be used to widen your career options and general employability, both immediately after you finish your masters, and later on in your career.

Further study options

Doctor of Philosophy

1 December start available for 120-point research masters only, subject to supervisor availability.

Entry criteria

Research 120 points: You must have completed a four-year bachelors degree in engineering at a recognised university (or similar institution) that includes:

Broad coverage in your first year of the foundational science topics that underpin engineering disciplines: mathematical modelling, chemical and materials science, electrical engineering theory, mechanics, programming, and engineering design.
One year of postgraduate-level study
A research project or dissertation comprising at least one-quarter of the final year

Research 180 points: You must have completed an undergraduate degree in engineering at a recognised university (or similar institution), in a field related to your intended specialisation.

You will need a GPE of 5.0.

IELTS (Academic): Overall score of 6.5 and no bands less than 6.0; Internet-based TOEFL (iBT): Overall score of 90 and written score of 21; Paper-based TOEFL: Overall score of 68 and a writing score of 21; Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) or Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE): Overall score of 176 and no bands below 169; Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic: Overall score of 58 and no PTE Communicative score below 50; Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP): Grade of B-; Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB): 85.

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