Civil Engineers: Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

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Job description

Civil Engineers perform engineering duties in planning, designing, and overseeing construction and maintenance of building structures, and facilities, such as roads, railroads, airports, bridges, harbors, channels, dams, irrigation projects, pipelines, power plants, and water and sewage systems.

  • Inspect project sites to monitor progress and ensure conformance to design specifications and safety or sanitation standards.
  • Design or engineer systems to efficiently dispose of chemical, biological, or other toxic wastes.
  • Compute load and grade requirements, water flow rates, or material stress factors to determine design specifications.
  • Provide technical advice to industrial or managerial personnel regarding design, construction, program modifications, or structural repairs.
Read more about what does a Civil Engineer really do at work and what is it like being and working as one.



Become one

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Civil Engineering PE Practice Exams: 2 Full Breadth Exams

Contains 80 problems that are representative of the actual Civil Engineering PE Exam. Each question has been designed in accordance with the latest NCEES specifications. These questions were created by real, practicing civil engineers that are familiar with the actual exam. Each question comes with a detailed solution to help you study efficiently and effectively.

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Salary

Average salary
$93720 per year

Average hourly wage
$45 per hour


Civil Engineers with little to no experience tend to make between $54780 and $67430 while the more experienced ones can earn over $112850 per year.

Top 5 paying statesHourlyAnnual
AK$60$125,470
CA$53$109,680
NJ$50$103,760
TX$50$102,990
NY$49$102,250

One of the easiest ways to increase your salary as a Civil Engineer is to move to a higher paying state like AK. Right now, the highest paying states for Civil Engineers are AK, CA, NJ, TX and NY.

However, a higher pay at AK doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the living expenses at AK might be twice as high than where you are currently at now.

Three other factors that can increase your salary as a Civil Engineer is the degree you hold, the industry you work in, and lastly the company you work for.


Requirements

Recommended degree level
Bachelor’s Degree

We asked other Civil Engineers what degree they had when they got the job and most of them said they had a Bachelor’s Degree followed by a Master’s Degree.

Other than that, we also asked them what did they major in and here are the most popular majors that came up.

Civil Engineering, General
Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering
Structural Engineering
Transportation and Highway Engineering
Water Resources Engineering
Read more about how to become a Civil Engineer and the degree, training and education you need.

Pros and Cons

Here are some of the pros and cons of being a Civil Engineer.

PROS
Suitable for people who likes practical and hands-on work
Suitable for people who wants independence and likes to work on their own and make decisions
This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.
Very high salary (top 25% highest paid careers)
CONS
Not suitable for people who likes to help and teach others
It is hard to get into this career. A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.
Long working hours (More than 40 hours per week)

What is the job like

Job satisfaction
71%

Is this job meaningful
68%


71% of Civil Engineers said they were satisfied with their job and 68% said they feel like their job is making other people’s lives better.


Is this right for me

Best personality for this career
The Builders and The Thinkers

You can read more about these career personality types here.

People who are suitable for this job tends to like work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery..

They also like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.




Learn more about Civil Engineers

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Related career information

Civil Engineers job description, Civil Engineers salary, Civil Engineers information, what is the job of a Civil Engineer like, pros and cons about Civil Engineers, colleges and universities for Civil Engineers, is Civil Engineers the right career for me, careers in Architecture and Engineering

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