Job type

Structural engineer

£22k - £70k

Typical salary

40 – 42

Hours per week

Structural engineers help to design and build large structures and buildings, like hospitals, sports stadiums and bridges.

More info

  • Help design and build large structures and buildings
  • You'll need excellent skills in maths, IT and science & creativity
  • You could move into construction design & project management


  • Developing engineering plans using computer software
  • Investigating the properties of building materials like glass, steel and concrete
  • Advising on which material is best for the job
  • Working out the loads and stresses on different parts of a building
  • Using computer models to predict how structures will react to the weather
  • Working out ways to improve energy efficiency
  • Inspecting unsafe buildings and deciding whether they should be demolished
  • Preparing bids for contract tenders
  • Supervising project teams
  • Giving progress reports to clients and senior managers
  • Working out why and how buildings have collapsed, like after an earthquake


Your working environment may be cramped, dusty, at height, outdoors some of the time and noisy and you may need to wear safety clothing.

You could work on a construction site, on a demolition site, in a commercial building, on commercial land or in an office.

You'll need

This role would be ideal for someone with excellent skills in maths, IT and science, creativity, project management, and the ability to manage a budget.

You'll usually need a degree or postgraduate qualification in structural engineering, architectural engineering or civil and structural engineering. You'll usually need 2 to 3 A levels, including maths and a science to do these degrees.

You could also start as a civil or construction engineering technician and study for a degree qualification while you're working or you could take a Level 5 Higher National Diploma in Civil Engineering at college, which may help you to find work as a trainee engineer. You'll do more training on the job to qualify.

Alternatively, you could complete a civil engineer degree apprenticeship and take professional training afterwards to qualify in structural engineering.

If you're aged between 11 and 18, you can do 'taster' days and short residential courses with the Engineering Development Trust to get an idea of what it's like to study and work in engineering.


You could move into construction design, project management, research and lecturing. You could also move into consultancy work, like providing services to building insurers, or work overseas on construction and engineering projects with disaster relief agencies like RedR UK.