Undergraduate Civil and Natural Resources

20 November 2023

Civil and Natural Resources Engineers are trusted by society to achieve a sustainable world and raise quality of life across the globe. They tackle the challenges of the 21st century by solving climate change issues and inequality, building resilient infrastructure, and more. Learn more about undergraduate Civil and Natural Resources at UC.


At UC you can study a Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) in:

  • Civil Engineering
    • Minor in water and environmental systems
    • Minor in structural engineering
  • Natural Resources Engineering

As a civil or natural resources engineer, you are responsible for the built environment—the spaces where people live and the infrastructure that we depend on—and how it interacts with the natural environment. As an engineering graduate from our department, you will lead the change you want to see in the world.

Why study Civil or Natural Resources Engineering at UC?

  • Two degree options, Civil Engineering and Natural Resources Engineering. (We are the only university in the world to offer Natural Resources Engineering)
  • Truly international lecturers sharing world trends
  • Graduates are in high demand
  • Salaries are amongst the best ($11.7t is the expected size of the global civil engineering market)* global market insights 2016
  • Ranked 9th in the world for Civil Engineering (by the Academic Ranking of World Universities), 54th by the QS ranking, and 24th world-wide based on QS reputation amongst employers.
  • Brand new purpose-built high-tech labs such as the NZ first Fire lab, the huge Structural lab and the VR lab (over 142million investment)
  • Strong work experience field trips such as the bridge building competition, field trips with industry
  • New Zealand’s most established civil engineering university
  • Close community of students and professors
  • Numerous opportunities for mentorship and professional development with our industry connections
  • New Zealand’s most modern city (with the largest population group being 20-30 year olds)

You will be taught by world-class experts and educators in:

  • Structural engineering
  • Fluid mechanics and hydrology
  • Civil systems engineering
  • Environmental engineering
  • Engineering management
  • Ecological engineering
  • Geotechnical engineering
  • Fire engineering
  • Transportation

We are society's engineers.

Civil and Natural Resources Engineers are responsible for creating and maintaining a sustainable world. We define and solve the problems of our communities, and provide the foundations for a healthy, vibrant, and resilient society.

As one of our students, you will become:

  • a master planner, designer, constructor, and operator of society’s economic and social engine - the built environment
  • kaitiaki: a steward of our natural environment and its resources
  • a manager of risk and uncertainty
  • a leader in discussions and decisions shaping environmental and infrastructure policy
  • a collaborator, engaging with interdisciplinary and culturally diverse teams
  • a creator and innovator of ideas and technology across the public, private and academic sectors

Study Civil and Natural Resources Engineering

The main skill we develop is to understand the basic physics and mathematics that govern everyday processes, allowing us to create models we use to design and optimise facilities and chemical plants. Students can further specialise, developing biological and chemical knowledge with minors including Bioprocess Engineering, Energy Processing Technologies, and Environmental Process Engineering.


Year 1

Full details of the First Year for Chemical & Process Engineering are available here.



Year 2


Details of the courses in the professional years are available here.

A typical programme consists of the following courses:


Semester 1

  • ENCH291 Mass and Energy Balances
  • ENCH293 Fluid Mechanics 1
  • ENCH298 Chemical Engineering Mathematics
  • ENCH199 Workshop Training Course
  • ENCH295 Chemical Engineering Professional Practice


Semester 2

  • ENCH292 Heat and Mass Transfer
  • ENCH241 Engineering Chemistry 2
  • ENCH282 Principles of Biology for Engineers
  • ENCH296 Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
  • ENCH295 Chemical Engineering Professional Practice



Year 3


Semester 1

  • ENCH390 Process Analysis
  • ENCH392 Thermodynamics and Chemical Reaction Engineering
  • ENCH393 Fluid Mechanics and Heat Transfer
  • ENCH396 Chemical Engineering Separations 1
  • ENCH395 Process Engineering Laboratories (whole year)


Semester 2

  • ENCH391 Process Systems and Control
  • ENCH394 Process Engineering Design 2
  • ENCHR404 Renewable Energy Tecnhologies and Management
    ENGR407 Bioprocess Engineering 1 (Electives)
  • ENCH395 Process Engineering Laboratories (whole year)



Year 4


Semester 1

  • ENCH497 Process Management
  • ENCH496 Advanced Separations
  • ENCH495 Research Project (whole year)
  • Schedule A or B Elective
  • Schedule B Elective


Semester 2

  • ENCH494 Process Engineering Design 3
  • ENCH495 Research Project (whole year)


Schedule A

  1. ENGR 404 Renewable Energy Technologies and Management
  2. ENCN 375 Sustainable Engineering for a Changing Climate
  3. ENGR 407 Bioprocess Engineering 1
  4. ENNR 405 Ecological and Bioresources Engineering  


Schedule B

  1. ENGR 401 Computational Fluid Dynamics
  2. ENGR 405 Industrial Pollution Control
  3. ENCH 482 Bioprocess Engineering 2
  4. ENCH 483 Advanced Energy Processing Technologies and Systems
  5. ENCH 484 Advanced Modelling and Simulation

In addition, any 400 level Engineering course may be taken with the approval of the Director of Studies.

Qualifications in Chemical and Process Engineering

Find out more about qualifications and required courses for Chemical and Process Engineering

Minors in Chemical Engineering

Students undertaking a Bachelor of Engineering in Chemical and Process Engineering can also work towards a minor in three specialist fields:

Practical work and workshop training requirements

Engineering students must complete the non-academic course components (practical work, workshop training and first aid).  The practical work and first aid requirements are now administrated and recorded through the course ENGR200.  All BE(Hons) students will automatically be enrolled into this course.

  • The required Workshop Training Course for Chemical and Process Engineering is ENCH199.
  • Full information is available on the College of Engineering Practical Work and First Aid page (This link takes you to the Learn site, students need to use their login to access information).
  • Find out more about industry and practical work experience requirements for BE(Hons).


Enrol online

Students can enrol on the Online Workshop Enrolment website. Classes will be finalised and students notified of their confirmed class groups shortly after the Semester starts.

For more information about workshop training contact:

Explore UC's career-planning services.

Graduates have good employment opportunities and starting salaries $50,000-70,000 in many stable industries essential to the New Zealand people and economy. Their work allows and optimises the production of pharmaceuticals, traditional and alternative fuels, exports such as dairy and timber, water-waste purification, and environmental management.

Recent graduates seeking to drive change in the world have found employment in start-up companies bringing new technology to life that directly improves our environment. Recent examples include: Leaft – high-quality plant protein, Nilo – upcycling of plastic waste, Zincovery – decarbonizing zinc production, and Aspiring Materials – capturing carbon dioxide.


Broad industry opportunities

Our graduates are employed in a range of jobs including production engineer, synthetic chemist and technical services engineer. Postgraduate study can increase your employability by extending your knowledge and skills, and showcasing your motivation and ability to persevere at a high level academically. Postgraduate study may be a prerequisite for certain jobs.


What sorts of jobs do Chemical and Process engineers get?

Broadly speaking, Chemical and Process Engineers can find themselves involved in:

  • project co-ordination
  • research
  • consulting
  • marketing
  • computing
  • management

The main Chemical and Process industries in New Zealand can be broken down into the following:

  • milk (dairy)
  • wool
  • meat
  • wood
  • metals
  • fertilisers

More and more Chemical and Process engineers find themselves involved in other cutting-edge industries these days, such as:

  • pharmaceuticals
  • environmental management
  • energy production and management
  • waste processing
  • alternative fuel production
  • nanotechnology

Contact us for more information

Meet our students

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