meloj
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I'm looking into a civil engineering degree and after reading the content and modules it seems to be really interesting to me. I'm new to engineering as I'd never really considered it before so I have a few queries.

The only worry I have is the difficulty. I'm doing A-level maths but not physics, which I see isn't an essential requirement for most courses anyway. However, despite enjoying it, I'm not naturally good at maths - my grades are okay because I work hard but I never understand the concepts straight off. Would this be a problem in a civil engineering course? As obviously, there's a lot of maths involved I'm worried about being overwhelmed with having so much to learn, and it taking me longer to learn it.

I got a B in AS maths and I'm predicted AAB for A2. Thanks for any help in advance!
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Smack
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(Original post by meloj)
The only worry I have is the difficulty. I'm doing A-level maths but not physics, which I see isn't an essential requirement for most courses anyway. However, despite enjoying it, I'm not naturally good at maths - my grades are okay because I work hard but I never understand the concepts straight off. Would this be a problem in a civil engineering course? As obviously, there's a lot of maths involved I'm worried about being overwhelmed with having so much to learn, and it taking me longer to learn it.
Could you elaborate on this? The maths in engineering isn't as difficult as many make it out to be, and you don't need to be a natural mathematician to complete an engineering degree or become a competent engineer. The maths you'll encounter in an engineering degree is not as varied as it is during A-level maths, so if there are certain areas you are more competent that align with what is required in an engineering degree, or are willing to work hard at, you should be fine.
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meloj
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(Original post by Smack)
Could you elaborate on this? The maths in engineering isn't as difficult as many make it out to be, and you don't need to be a natural mathematician to complete an engineering degree or become a competent engineer. The maths you'll encounter in an engineering degree is not as varied as it is during A-level maths, so if there are certain areas you are more competent that align with what is required in an engineering degree, or are willing to work hard at, you should be fine.
After some practice with the content we're learning, I'm absolutely fine with it. My worry was when researching the degree, the description always said something like "If you have a good grasp of maths". I've never been great at tackling unfamiliar questions and A-level maths is so repetitive with exam questions and methods, I was worried that maybe I don't have a natural grasp of maths. I've also read some things like a module in an engineering degree is equal to the amount of content in a year of A-level maths, how true this is I don't know. If so, with having to work so much harder for the content, I was wary that I may fall behind on the course.

What sort of maths is common in an engineering degree? I know mechanics is important but I'm not so sure of what else.
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University of Glasgow
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(Original post by meloj)
What sort of maths is common in an engineering degree? I know mechanics is important but I'm not so sure of what else.
Hey there,

I completely agree with Smack - whilst maths is an essential and fundamental skill in engineering, it's not entirely daunting or impossible. It doesn't matter at all if you don't have a natural grasp of maths, it's there to help you work through problems or understand engineering concepts. You'll be taught a lot of maths during first and probably second year, calculus/algebra will be very common, which will set you up for the majority of future classes. The maths isn't hugely broad, I'm incredibly thankful that in aeronautical we've needed close to no statistics/probability knowledge.

You'll be studying for an engineering degree, not a maths degree. If you're new to engineering, be sure to read up as much as you can on the different disciplines and understand what you'll be doing, or could be doing.

Hope this helps!

Scott
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Smack
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(Original post by meloj)
What sort of maths is common in an engineering degree? I know mechanics is important but I'm not so sure of what else.
Mechanics isn't really maths, but rather a subject that utilises maths. The actual maths you'll study will largely be based around calculus and trigonometry. Matrices and complex numbers will make an appearance too. But it's nothing too hard. You'll likely only have one actual maths module per semester and only for a few semesters. It's nothing to worry about if you're willing to put the work in, and it sounds like you are.
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meloj
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(Original post by Smack)
Mechanics isn't really maths, but rather a subject that utilises maths. The actual maths you'll study will largely be based around calculus and trigonometry. Matrices and complex numbers will make an appearance too. But it's nothing too hard. You'll likely only have one actual maths module per semester and only for a few semesters. It's nothing to worry about if you're willing to put the work in, and it sounds like you are.
Thanks for your help! The maths you mentioned doesn't seem too bad. I'm glad you've cleared that up for me as I was under the impression that almost all of the course was maths. Of course there's still mechanics too, which you're right, isn't technically maths - my mistake!

Thanks again, all the best


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meloj
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(Original post by Glasgow Uni)
Hey there,

I completely agree with Smack - whilst maths is an essential and fundamental skill in engineering, it's not entirely daunting or impossible. It doesn't matter at all if you don't have a natural grasp of maths, it's there to help you work through problems or understand engineering concepts. You'll be taught a lot of maths during first and probably second year, calculus/algebra will be very common, which will set you up for the majority of future classes. The maths isn't hugely broad, I'm incredibly thankful that in aeronautical we've needed close to no statistics/probability knowledge.

You'll be studying for an engineering degree, not a maths degree. If you're new to engineering, be sure to read up as much as you can on the different disciplines and understand what you'll be doing, or could be doing.

Hope this helps!

Scott
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School of Engineering
Thank you for the reply ! I'm really glad you did as I was starting to worry a lot about the maths content, so it's good to hear that it seems to be manageable providing you're willing to put in the work. I'm definitely going to read into the different branches of engineering available and find out some more information.

Thanks again, all the best!


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danl88
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(Original post by meloj)
Thank you for the reply ! I'm really glad you did as I was starting to worry a lot about the maths content, so it's good to hear that it seems to be manageable providing you're willing to put in the work. I'm definitely going to read into the different branches of engineering available and find out some more information.

Thanks again, all the best!


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Just to give you some more assurance: I got a C in maths at school and am currently on track for a first in civil engineering.

Everything you need to know you'll be taught. It is understandable mathematics, none of the overly theoretical stuff that you may have struggled with at school.

Go and apply!
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EngineerInTime
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You'll be fine. I scraped through A level maths with a B (and no physics either), and did fine on a MEng course at a top 5 uni. As long as you're prepared to put the effort in, you've no need to worry!

Also, if the uni is prepared to make you an offer without a Physics A-Level they should bring you up to speed on what you need to know in the first year - you'll just have to work a bit harder than people with Physics!

Also (and without wishing to offend anyone) I found the maths associated with civil engineering easier than mechanical/electrical (at least in the first few years). This is probably because most of the calcs you will do will be static (you don't worry about time, if that makes sense).
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kelvin_pangg
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(Original post by EngineerInTime)
You'll be fine. I scraped through A level maths with a B (and no physics either), and did fine on a MEng course at a top 5 uni. As long as you're prepared to put the effort in, you've no need to worry!

Also, if the uni is prepared to make you an offer without a Physics A-Level they should bring you up to speed on what you need to know in the first year - you'll just have to work a bit harder than people with Physics!

Also (and without wishing to offend anyone) I found the maths associated with civil engineering easier than mechanical/electrical (at least in the first few years). This is probably because most of the calcs you will do will be static (you don't worry about time, if that makes sense).
Any ideas the sorts of maths units you do at uni in your first year? *bump*
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Vikingninja
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(Original post by kelvin_pangg)
Any ideas the sorts of maths units you do at uni in your first year? *bump*
I had: 3D vectors with vector product, matrices, ODE/PDE's, complex numbers, some horrible nonsense about radius of gyration, partial differentiation etc. As far as I'm aware it was pretty much further maths a level.
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Zlar Vixen
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If you're going into engineering just so you can **** on arts degrees, you're going to have a bad time.
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