Construction and Engineering

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The construction and engineering industries have been among the most significant contributors to the growth in the Irish economy in recent years through employment, export and output. These sectors have undergone a massive transformation and have played a huge part in transforming Ireland into an advanced nation at the cutting-edge of technological, engineering and manufacturing developments and change.

Construction and Engineering in Ireland

Ireland’s manufacturing industries have adapted well to globalisation. While Ireland accounts for just 1 percent of the EU’s population, it receives 25 percent of US investment in the manufacturing industry in Europe. The development of high-value, knowledge-intensive jobs in areas such as software, medical devices, engineering, food, and biotechnology have helped fuel the growth in our economy in recent years. With government investment pouring in to improve Ireland’s infrastructure, the construction industry is enjoying a period of unprecedented growth.

With new technologies and techniques constantly evolving in the engineering and construction industries, it is important that Ireland stays ahead by keeping up-to-date with changes and advances in these industries. It is, therefore, welcome news that there has been a parallel expansion in the number of postgraduate courses available in these subjects.

Entry Requirements

Most postgraduate courses in the construction and engineering fields require at least a second-class honours primary degree. Relevant professional experience can help. There are concerns within the construction and engineering sectors that not enough people are pursuing studies in the areas for the economy to continue its present rate of development. Therefore, attractive incentives and schemes are in place to persuade graduates to remain within these areas.

Courses Available

Postgraduate programmes are available in all of the traditional areas such as the various engineering, manufacturing and architectural disciplines, as well as in subjects like technology safety and ergonomics. Architecture is a prime area for postgraduate study. Course options range from specific professional practice areas to more general planning and landscape management disciplines.

Mechanical engineering and other physical manufacturing topics are traditionally a strong area of postgraduate specialisation and are no less important today. The biological and chemical engineering fields are also major areas for postgraduate study, bringing together the worlds of engineering and science. Course options include bioengineering, chemical engineering, and pharmaceutical manufacturing technology.

Computing and IT developments have also played a key role in the recent growth of the engineering and manufacturing sector – postgraduate programmes which reflect this include computer integrated manufacturing, computer-aided engineering product design, and engineering computation.

Research Areas

There is a wide range of subject options available to potential postgraduate research students of construction and engineering disciplines. Many third-level institutions have developed expertise in different areas, and there are dedicated research centres at colleges throughout the country. Prospective students may also be able to take advantage of scholarship and graduate-training opportunities through collaborations with locally based companies.

Architecture, planning and urban development are very important areas for postgraduate research. Postgraduate research opportunities also appear in the civil engineering and construction management areas as well as bioengineering and chemical engineering. Electronic and electrical engineering fields provide rich pickings for postgraduate researchers.

Irish third-level institutions host a wide range of postgraduate research in the areas of mechanical and materials engineering, as well as related manufacturing subjects. Potential projects can be drawn from the areas of aeronautical engineering, automation & control, materials science, and thermofluids. Industrial and computer design programmes also open up postgraduate research opportunities.

Career Paths

There is a diverse range of career paths possible for those with postgraduate qualifications in construction and engineering-related subjects. The construction industry is presently booming and there remain plenty of openings for qualified engineers of all specialities, quantity surveyors and architects. Graduates with postgraduate qualifications can move quickly into senior project management positions. There are also plenty of openings in bioengineering, chemical engineering and electronic and mechanical engineering.

Close links have been built up between university research departments and indigenous and multinational companies, which can aid the career prospects of those with postgraduate qualifications. There have been recent development in the environmental science, urban planning and conservation areas. Graduates in architecture and engineering areas can find employment in these areas with both public and private organisations. Education and research provide well-established career options.

Also, as the construction and engineering industries in Ireland become more specialised, a corresponding demand for researchers, experienced engineers and technologists has arisen in academia.


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