Civil Engineering Career Guide

What is Civil Engineering about?

The Civil Engineering programme prepares the student for the planning, designing, maintenance and management of projects associated with the construction of houses, roads, buildings, air ports, tunnels, dams, bridges, and water supply and sewage systems.


What vocational activities do Civil Engineering students perform at a TVET College?

  • Participate in the operation and maintenance of construction equipment and machinery;
  • Participate in the construction of roads, bridges, dams, railways and houses;
  • Participate in designing and construction of tunnels, roads, factories and reservoirs;
  • Participate in the erection of reinforced concrete, structural steel, timber and masonry structures, etc.

What skills and abilities are required to become a Civil Engineer?

  • Good analytical skills are a must for any civil engineer. Civil Engineers have to read and interpret many drawings, complex charts, diagrams, maps and reports;
  • Good communication skills. Civil Engineers need to correspond with an array of individuals throughout their profession from construction workers to CEOs of large corporations;
  • Excellent problem solving capabilities;
  • Advanced skills in mathematics are crucial to become a Civil Engineer, who must apply the appropriate mathematical formulas and principles in his design work as well as to problem solving.

What are the working conditions of a Civil Engineer?

Civil engineers sometimes work indoors in offices. However, many spend time outdoors at construction sites so they can monitor operations or solve problems onsite.

What are the minimum entry requirements to study Civil Engineering at a TVET College?

At a TVET College, the normal entrance requirements for the Civil Engineering course are:

  • NC(V) Programme:

A Grade 9 Certificate + college requirements set per programme.

  • NATED Programme:

Nl admission - Grade 9 Certificate + college requirements set per programme.

N4 admission - Grade 12 with a pass in Mathematics + college requirements set per programme OR an NC(V) Level 4 Certificate in Civil Engineering and Building Construction.

What should I do if I want to study Civil Engineering?

  • Visit or contact a TVET College nearest to you to enquire about the entrance requirements for the Civil Engineering course;
  • Visit Civil Engineering training centres or companies to gain more knowledge about the field and what it entails;
  • Contact DHET Career Development Services to provide you with free quality career information, advice and counselling services on 086 999 0123 or
  • Go for an aptitude test to help understand if a career in Civil Engineering is for you;
  • Attend Career Exhibitions in your area to liaise with higher learning institutions and obtain application forms.

Did you know: The Civil Engineering course at a TVET College has different specialisations?

The areas of specialisation are:

  • Bricklaying;
  • Carpentry;
  • Plastering;
  • Plumbing.
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