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Structural engineering is an exciting and vital discipline in the construction industry, responsible for ensuring the safety, stability, and durability of buildings, bridges, and other structures. In India, where rapid urbanisation and infrastructure development are underway, the role of structural engineers is significant. Moreover, structural engineering is undergoing continual innovation and advancement with computer-aided design and analysis tools.
So, if you want to become a structural engineer, pursue a bachelor of technology degree in this discipline. To know more about it, keep reading this blog, where we discuss Structural Engineering definitions, courses, entrance exams and more to widen our knowledge in this domain.
[Also read: Choosing an engineering stream]
What Is Structural Engineering?
Structural engineering is a branch of engineering that deals with designing and analysing structures that support or resist loads. Structural engineers are responsible for ensuring structures such as bridges, buildings, towers, etc., are safe, stable, and able to resist various types of loads and stress, such as wind, earthquakes, and gravity. They use mathematical and computational methods and a thorough understanding of materials and construction techniques to create designs that meet specific technical and aesthetic requirements.
Structural Engineering Courses
To pursue a career in Structural Engineering in India, several universities and institutions offer specialised structural engineering courses for undergraduate studies, such as the B.Tech Program and the post-graduate studies, such as the M.Tech and M.E Programs.
Here is a list of some of the most popular structural engineering courses that are available in India:
- B.Tech in Civil Engineering with a specialisation in Structural Engineering
- M.Tech in Structural Engineering
- Diploma in Structural Engineering
- Master of Engineering (M.E) in Structural Engineering
- PhD in Structural Engineering
In addition to traditional universities and colleges, online courses and distance learning programs offer education in structural engineering.
[Also Read - Top Private Engineering Colleges]
Undergraduate courses in structural engineering typically cover fundamentals of structural engineering such as mechanics, materials science, mathematics, and computer-aided design. In addition, students learn the principles of structural analysis and design and gain hands-on experience in laboratory work and fieldwork.
Postgraduate programs in Structural Engineering are advanced studies aimed at students who have completed a B.Tech degree in Civil Engineering or a related field. These programs are designed to provide students with specialised knowledge and skills in structural engineering and to prepare them for leadership positions in the field.
Structural Engineering: Eligibility Criteria
To pursue a career in Structural Engineering in India, students must meet certain eligibility criteria for both undergraduate and postgraduate courses.
For undergraduate courses such as B.Tech in Civil Engineering:
- The minimum eligibility criterion is 10+2, with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics (PCM) as the main subjects.
- Some institutions also conduct entrance exams to assess students' aptitude and knowledge in relevant subjects.
Course Fee - The course fee can range from ₹1 lakh - ₹12 lakhs. However, the fee can be even higher based on the educational institution offering the course.
For post-graduation courses such as M.Tech or M.E in Structural Engineering:
- The minimum eligibility criteria is a B.Tech degree in Civil Engineering or a related field.
- Some institutions also require a valid score in the relevant entrance examination conducted by the various educational institutions in India.
Entrance exams are a crucial part of the admission process for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Structural Engineering in India. These exams assess a candidate's engineering knowledge, skills, and aptitude.
Some of the most popular entrance exams are:
- JEE Main: JEE Main is a national-level entrance examination for admission to UG engineering courses.
- JEE Advance or IIT JEE: This is an advanced-level entrance examination conducted on a national level for admission to undergraduate engineering courses in IITs and other top engineering colleges. You need to qualify for JEE Main and make the cut-off mark for JEE Advanced.
- BITSAT: Birla Institute of Technology and Science Admission Test is a university-level entrance examination for admission to engineering courses in BITS Pilani and other institutions.
- VITEEE: Vellore Institute of Technology Engineering Entrance Examination is a university-level entrance examination for admission to engineering courses in VIT or Vellore Institute of Technology.
Post Graduation Level
- Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE): This is a national-level entrance test conducted for admission to PG-level engineering courses.
- Common Entrance Test (CET): This is a standardised test conducted to evaluate the aptitude, knowledge, and skills of students seeking admission to various educational institutions.
Structural Engineering Subjects And Specialisations
The syllabus for B.Tech in Civil Engineering with a specialisation in Structural Engineering in India typically covers the following topics.
Some of the common subjects that are included in the curriculum are:
- Engineering Mechanics
- Strength of Materials
- Reinforced Concrete Structures
- Steel Structures
- Advanced Engineering Mathematics
- Soil Mechanics and Foundation Engineering
- Structural Dynamics And Earthquake Engineering
- Theory Of Elasticity And Plasticity
- Concrete Technology
- Advanced Structural Analysis
- Repair And Rehabilitation Of Structure
- Pre - Stressed Concrete Structures
- Environmental Engineering
- Composite Material And Structures
- Structural Optimisation
These subjects provide a detailed understanding of the structural engineering basics, as well as hands-on experience in the design and analysis of structures. The curriculum may also include laboratory work, design projects, and field visits to help students develop practical skills and a better understanding of the industry. The basic structural engineering subjects may vary slightly between colleges and universities.
Some of the popular specialisations available for Structural Engineering are:
- Earthquake Engineering: A specialisation that focuses on designing and analysing structures and infrastructures to resist earthquakes and minimise damage.
- Geotechnical Engineering: A specialisation that deals with the engineering behaviour of earth materials and their applications in foundation design, slope stability, and underground construction.
- Environmental Engineering: A specialisation that focuses on designing and implementing engineering solutions to address environmental issues, such as pollution control and resource management.
- Aerospace Structures: A specialisation that deals with the design, analysis, and testing of structures used in aircraft and spacecraft.
- Nanoscale Structures: A specialisation that deals with the study and manipulation of materials at the nanoscale level for the development of new technologies and applications.
Structural Engineering Career Options
Structural Engineering is a dynamic and challenging field that offers a wide range of career options to individuals with a passion for building design and construction. Some of the most popular career options for Structural Engineers in India are:
- Consulting Structural Engineer - Provide expert advice and design services to clients, including private developers, government agencies, and construction companies. They ensure that buildings are structurally sound and safe and work closely with other engineers, architects, and contractors.
- Structural Designer - Responsible for creating detailed design drawings, models, and specifications for buildings, bridges, and other structures.
- Quality Analysts - Use technical knowledge and experience to assess the safety and reliability of structures and ensure that they comply with industry standards and building codes.
- Research and Development Engineer - Work in research and development departments of engineering firms, universities, and government agencies and responsible for developing new materials, technologies, and construction methods to improve buildings' structural integrity and sustainability.
- Construction Engineer - Responsible for overseeing the construction of buildings, roads, bridges, and other infrastructure projects. They use technical knowledge and project management skills to plan, design, and execute construction projects from start to finish.
- Offshore Design Engineer - Responsible for designing and analysing offshore structures, such as oil platforms, wind turbines, and pipelines.
Average Salary - The Structural Engineer's salary ranges between ₹3.5 lakh - ₹10 lakhs. However, it is subject to change based on the organisation and the type of job profile offered.
Structural Engineering: Top Recruiters
Many companies are involved in a wide range of infrastructure projects, including the construction of buildings, roads, bridges, and other structures, and they regularly recruit Structural Engineers for various roles. Some of the top recruiters for Structural Engineering in India are:
- L&T Construction
- Tata Projects
- Gammon India
- Afcons Infrastructure
- Hindustan Construction Company(HCC) Limited
- Nagarjuna Construction Company(NCC) Limited
- IRB Infrastructure Developers Limited
- National Buildings Construction Corporation(NBCC) India Limited
- Godrej Properties Limited
- Reliance Construction
Structural Engineering is a vast and dynamic field that plays a crucial role in the construction and development of infrastructure in India. The demand for skilled Structural Engineers is on the rise, providing ample career opportunities in the industry. With many UG and PG courses available in the field, aspirants have several options to choose from and specialise as a part of their education journey.
And, with the aid of renowned education service providers such as Sunstone, students can excel in their chosen field and ensure a career in Structural Engineering. Sunstone focuses on upskilling students to make them industry-ready from day one. Students who enrol in any of the 50 Sunstone-powered campuses in India get dedicated placement support after course completion.
FAQ - Structural Engineering
How to become a structural engineer?
To become a structural engineer, you must complete your 10+2 with at least 60% marks. Choose your preferred college that offers a degree in structural engineering. Almost all premier colleges of India accept candidature through various entrance exams. Enquire about the accepted entrance score in your preferred college. Once you clear the cut-off marks at the entrance, you shall be eligible for the following rounds of admission.
Are structural engineers in demand?
Structural engineers are always in demand because, in the entire world, something or the other is always getting built. So, as long as buildings, roads, and structures are built, structural engineers will be in demand.