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About the course

Currently employed in the construction industry? Want to further your career in civil engineering? Solent’s practical civil engineering HNC programme will help prepare you for a range of higher technician roles. The programme is delivered with flexibility at its core, making it easy to fit around your current employment.

Solent’s industry-focused civil engineering HNC helps build upon existing skills to prepare students for a higher technician role within the civil engineering sector.

During the course, students will be introduced to key principles in the fields of numeracy, materials, mechanics, construction technology, and health and safety. As the course progresses, learning will focus on the more specialised areas of surveying, geotechnics, and structural analysis.

To aid learning and help build essential hands-on skills, some modules of the course are supported by practical work and field exercises. This strong emphasis on practical learning has meant the course has been able to maintain a high graduate success rate and offer enhanced career development. This course will develop your vocational skills, including research, analysis, planning and organisation, to supplement your proficiency.

For students looking to take their academic qualifications further, the HNC programme provides a platform for entering on to a number of post-HNC courses, including full- and part-time degrees.

This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities
You can apply direct to Solent University for this course.
Apply direct
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies
You can study this course part-time.
Part time option

The course is approved by the Joint Board of Moderators (through the Institution of Civil Engineers). This means that it satisfies the base academic requirements for the professional grade of 'engineering technician'.

What does this course lead to?

The nature of this course means that the majority of students are already in employment. Completion of the course holds the potential for future career advancement.

Who is this course for?

Solent’s civil engineering HNC is perfect for those already in the construction industry who are looking to study part-time whilst continuing to work.

The course content is ideal for those wishing to further their career and work towards higher technician roles.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The 2021/22 fees are not yet available. For guidance, the 2020/21 fees were:
UK, EU and Channel Island part-time fees: £4,250 per year
International part-time fees: Students from outside the EU are usually unable to obtain a visa for part-time study. Please visit our  visas and immigration page for more information.

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact

The 2021/22 other costs are not yet available. For guidance, previous other costs have been:

Compulsory costs:
An Edexcel registration fee will be payable in the first year: £175.20
Field trip travel: £30 (approx)

Students will be required to have the following personal protective equipment for construction site visits:

  • Safety boots that conform to EN ISO 20345:2011.  S3 category - protective toecap and midsole and a water repellent upper (approximately £60*).
  • Construction hard hat that conform to BS EN 397 (approximately £6*).
  • Builders working gloves suitable for general handling (approximately £3*).
  • High visibility vest with reflective tape on body and shoulders (approximately £4*).
  • Outdoor lens safety glasses that conforms to BS EN166.  Grade F impact lens and optical class 1.  (approximately £7*).

* Prices accurate June 2020.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

For graduates in 2020, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket was £15 in 2019, but this fee is subject to change for future years. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

16 points minimum from either 6-unit or 3-unit awards

  • plus GCSE/O Level grade 4 (previously grade C) or above to include English and Maths
  • or BTEC/Edexcel Advanced GNVQ
  • or National Certificate Diploma in a Building/Construction related discipline
  • or relevant Access course
  • or other qualifications which are considered to be equivalent of the above.
  • Applications from mature students and non-standard applicants may also be considered - contact admissions for further information by emailing
  • For further information about UK, EU and international qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 20 in each individual component
  • Duolingo English Language Test - 100 overall with minimum of 90 in each component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

Pre-Sessional English programme

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Solent team:

If you are a UK, EU or EEA applicant please contact 023 8201 5066 If you are an international applicant please contact 023 8201 5066

How to apply


Applications for part-time courses are made directly to the University and can be made at any time prior to the start of the course. If you have any questions about applying for this course, please contact the admissions office by emailing

Please use the link below to apply online:


Starts on 27 September 2021

Attendance (as of 2018)

  • Year one: Thursdays 9am-5pm
  • Year two: Tuesdays 9am-5pm

These times are subject to change, please check back for the latest times, or contact us for more information.

Important note about progression routes:

Progression to a Pearson Higher National Diploma (HND) qualification is not automatically available after completion of this Higher National Certificate (HNC) course.

Solent’s HNC is awarded under a Trademark Licence and the final award from this course, although mapped closely to Pearson’s programmes, is not a Pearson BTEC Higher National award.

Candidates wishing to progress onto a course at another provider may need to complete additional modules or check with the provider if acceptance to the progression course will be available with the HNC award. Many providers offer recognition of prior learning, but this will be on a case by case basis.

Students graduating from Solent do have progression routes at Solent University to degrees or to other professional qualifications.

What you'll study

Year one

Core modules
  • Mathematics for Civil Engineering
    This module will introduce numerical processes and procedures that are commonly used in the Civil Engineering industry. Learners are to identify appropriate numerical techniques as well as methods for checking solutions for appropriate accuracy, suitability and presentation for commercial use.
  • Civil Engineering Materials and Soil Mechanics
    This module covers three broad inter-related areas namely: common Civil Engineering materials; laboratory measurement of material physical properties; properties and particulate nature of soils.  
  • Civil Engineering Construction Technology 
    This module introduces students to the legal framework required for the production of Civil Engineering works and also the methods and techniques used in Civil Engineering Projects.

Year two

Core modules
  • Civil Engineering Surveying
    The civil engineering surveying module provides an introduction to the discipline of geomatics. Geomatics integrates the collection, processing, analysis, presentation and management of spatial information. This module will focus on land surveying and setting-out collectively referred to as engineering surveying. 
  • Structural Analysis and Design
    This module builds on the behaviour of different structural materials examined in Civil Engineering Materials and considers the designer’s role and responsibilities in terms of Health and Safety, buildability and sustainable construction
  • Management of Civil Engineering Projects 
    The aim of this module is to introduce management principles, practices and standards relating to Civil Engineering projects throughout their project life cycle.


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Kenny Tew academic profile Kenny Tew Technician Instructor View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


We provide a stimulating learning environment and access to state-of-the-art resources to help you make the most of your time with us. Flexible spaces, Wi-Fi facilities and learning zones all contribute to our lively and contemporary study environment at Solent.

Learning is supported by two construction-specific laboratories. The course team has strong links to the industry and has built close relationships with employers and the Institution of Civil Engineers.

Your future

As a part-time student you are generally expected to already be employed within the construction industry. The course's industry focus and practical emphasis is intended to develop your professionalism and maximise your employment opportunities. Upon completion of this course, students can go onto our Developing the Skills and Preparing for ICE Technician Membership professional short course.
  • I enrolled in the HNC Civil Engineering course at Solent Uni as a part time student having completed my ONC in London. I learnt so much during the course, due to the straightforward, clear and concise teaching style. I have trouble learning in a formal academic way however, mathematics and geology, which are two of my weaker subjects were clearly explained and simplified. This made the subject more accessible to someone who learns like I do.

    Angela Anderson

Industry links

The built environment group has a long history of close relationships with employers and the Institution of Civil Engineers.

The programme also benefits from an annual visit by the Regional Membership Development Officer from the Institution of Civil Engineers. This helps to fosters close links between the professional body and local employers.

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

Get ready to find your place

You can still experience life at Solent at a virtual open day! Hear from course tutors, take virtual campus and accommodation tours, and chat to us live.

Register for a virtual open day