1) Civil Engineering is the oldest branch of engineering centers about the provision of various aspects of human needs. It can be broadly classified into two engineering fields; structural engineering and infrastructure & service engineering. Structural engineering specifically deal with conception, design and construction of structural systems that are needed in support of human activities.
A beginning point for structural engineering would be at about 500B.C. where human began to plan and construct structural systems using stones, masonry, trees, and bamboo to form lintel and post structures. During the Roman until about 500 A.D. the new structural forms such as arches, vaults, domes and wooden trusses were introduced.
However, it is only in the 1900s saw a host of new materials, techniques and structural forms introduced. Material developments brought forth aluminum, high strength steels, lightweight concrete, special cements, plastics, laminated and composites. New advances in structural forms include the long span bridges, tall buildings, membrane, floating structures and shells.
Structural engineers today are capable of planning, design and construct various configurations and record-breaking height structures, either to fulfill the aesthetical emotional sensitivities of humans or to meet the demand of basic needs of society. KLCC, Sear Tower, Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Tatara Bridge are the unique structures built to meet the functional requirements whilst Jefferson National Gateway Arch St Louis, Millennium Dome London, Eiffel Tower Paris were built to fulfill the emotional demand of humans.
Infrastructure and service engineering include geotechnical, highway and transportation, water resources, environmental and geomatics. The technological development in these areas make a better human living conditions possible.
2) Civil engineering is arguably the oldest professional engineering discipline that deals with the planning, design, construction, operation and maintenance of the built environment. Civil engineering is a challenging and exciting profession. Civil engineers are creative and innovative professionals who solve problem of people and shape the world for a better and sustainable future. They design and construct buildings, bridges, roads, railways, ports, airports, dams, power plants, underground structures, water treatment plants and so on. Civil engineers work in a task force from multi-disciplinary background.
Civil engineering is the broadest engineering discipline that covers
- structural engineering,
- geotechnical engineering,
- water resources engineering,
- highway, traffic and transportation engineering,
- geomatic engineering, and
- environmental engineering.