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Civil Engineering Technician Level 3 Standard


Approx. duration: 36 months

Start Date: September

Attendance: One day a week at the Ipswich Campus

Entry requirements: Individual employers will set the selection criteria for their Apprenticeships. Entry into the Apprenticeship is subject to a thorough initial assessment to clarify course suitability. You may be required to come for an interview and assessment. Entry onto the Apprenticeship is subject to holding at least 5 GCSEs including Maths, English and Science 9-4/A*-C or equivalent. Apprentices need to be employed for a minimum of 30 hours a week and have a contract of employment.

On-programme learning:

  • Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma in Civil Engineering

End-point assessment: Delivered by ICE (Institution of Civil Engineers)

Progression: Career within Civil Engineering, or possible progression onto the Civil Engineer Degree or higher education.

This standard aligns with the following professional recognition:

  • Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) for Engineering Technician
  • Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation (CIHT) for Engineering Technician
  • Institute of Highways Engineers (IHE) for Engineering Technician
  • Institution of Structural Engineers (IStructE) for Engineering Technician
  • Permanent Way Institution (PWI) for Engineering Technician

Course Summary: Apprenticeships are work-based training programmes designed around the need of both the Apprentice and their employer.

This occupation is found in the construction and engineering sectors, with civil engineering technicians employed in a variety of organisation types and sizes.  Civil engineering technicians will typically work for:

  • Clients, for whom construction projects are carried out, with technicians supporting with the preparation and production of civil engineering information, project plans and resourcing, for consultants and contractors
  • Consultancies, typically appointed by the client, to design, prepare or modify civil engineering designs, with technicians supporting the planning, design, coordination, management and monitoring of civil engineering projects, often in the pre-build phase, providing information for the client and contractor
  • Contractors, typically appointed by the client, to coordinate the construction phase of a civil engineering project, with technicians supporting the planning, management, monitoring and coordination of the build phase of civil engineering projects, complying with and providing information on the directions provided by the client or consultant

Civil engineering technicians support in the design, creation and connecting up of the world around us, making the villages, towns and cities work for the people that live in them, and are playing an ever increasing role in safeguarding and improving the environment into our future.

The broad purpose of the occupation is to support the planning, design, building, management, maintenance or dismantling of the built environment (such as buildings, structures, parks and public spaces, schools, offices, museums, hospitals) and infrastructure, such as transportation (road, rail, bridges, tunnels, ports and airports), water and waste management, marine and coastal engineering (irrigation systems, sustainable drainage systems (SuDS), flood, river and coastal defences), water and power supplies (utilities, hydropower, power stations, nuclear plants, on and offshore wind farms).

Civil engineering technicians assist in the preparation and production of plans, designs and documentation to relevant codes of practice and industry standards, such as Construction Design and Management (CDM) or the Design Manual for Roads and Bridges (DMRB), to statutory and regulatory requirements, and in compliance with health, safety and wellbeing requirements.

They will use and apply engineering principles and techniques, carry out calculations and data analysis, prepare and produce sketches, diagrams, and models, to support technical problem solving and in the delivery of civil engineering designs and technical solutions.  They use a range of tools and techniques, including digital techniques (such as CAD or BIM) to aid the visualisation, communication, measurement and assessment of civil engineering projects.

Civil engineering technicians will also be challenged to consider how they will support improvements to, or mitigate the effects of their work, on the environment, with civil engineering projects having to respond to United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, climate change acts, and environmental policies and legislation, including net-zero emissions, and an increasing drive for sustainability.

Civil engineering technicians will contribute to the planning, design, programming, and delivery of engineering activities to agreed timescales and budgets, using quality systems and risk assessment procedures to monitor and manage projects and their risks. Technicians may also assist in site inspections or surveys, report progress against project plans, or check specified technical aspects of site activities.

In their daily work, employees interact with their line manager, typically a senior civil engineer or site manager, to confirm programmes of work and agree individual responsibilities, which in turn support the delivery of wider plans across civil engineering teams; these teams could include engineers across a range of disciplines, from various employer types (e.g. clients, consultancies, contractors), and project managers, where their collective outputs will be used to produce civil engineering solutions that are fit for purpose, safe, secure, environmentally sustainable, and meet customer and industry specifications.

Technicians shall also have a mentor who will support them in the development of their career plans, maintenance of their personal and professional development, and in some cases, progression into more advanced roles, such as civil engineers or technical specialists.

Technicians may also be exposed to other professional disciplines, such as surveyors, environmental practitioners, architects, planners or legal teams. As well as liaising with internal colleagues across a variety of multidisciplinary areas, some technicians will also be responsible for working with customers, suppliers, and stakeholders or with representatives from appropriate regulatory bodies.

Civil engineering technicians, depending on their employer, will spend their time in an office environment, working on site, working remotely or a combination of these. There is also potential for visiting customers or suppliers.

Employees are responsible for assisting in the delivery of accurate and quality civil engineering solutions, ensuring they are within agreed time and resource limits, compliant with industry and regulatory standards, such as the Common Safety Method (CSM), and to specification. Civil engineering technicians must also comply with health and safety regulations, welfare, wellbeing, and environmental and sustainability policies. They will typically report to an engineer or project manager, normally as part of a cross functional team, the size of this team and responsibilities varying with the scope of the project and size of the employer.

Technicians are able to use their own judgement when undertaking the occupational duties and applying their technical knowledge, skills and behaviours in a range of contexts and environments.  They also have a responsibility to plan and organise their own work and contribute to the management of projects using a variety of business processes, procedures, and methods of working. They are also responsible for their own continuing professional development and recognising their own obligations to society.

Institute for Apprenticeships