What is the Difference Between a Civil Engineer and a Chemical Engineer?

Do you want to contribute to society and develop innovative solutions to real-world problems? You can pursue many career paths like civil and chemical engineering with an engineering degree. So, what do civil and chemical engineers do?

What Does a Civil Engineer Do?

Civil Engineers solve infrastructure problems by designing, planning, and supervising construction for infrastructure like roads, buildings, bridges, dams, and airports. Civil engineers work closely with architects, city planners, and environmental scientists. Civil engineers typically do the following:

  • Analyze plans, survey reports, blueprints, maps, and other data
  • Consider laws, regulations, site selection, and other factors
  • Analyze the results of tests on soil and building materials to determine the strength of foundations
  • Prepare cost estimates for equipment, materials, and labor to determine economic feasibility
  • Use design software to plan transportation, hydraulic systems, and other structures
  • Submit permit applications to local, state, and federal agencies and confirm that projects comply with regulations
  • Perform or oversee surveying to establish building locations, site layouts, grades, and elevations

What Does a Chemical Engineer Do?

Chemical engineers use their knowledge of the sciences like chemistry, physics, and math to design, develop, and transform raw materials into valuable products. Chemical engineers typically do the following:

  • Conduct research to develop manufacturing processes
  • Design and plan the layout of engineering equipment
  • Establish safety procedures for working with dangerous chemicals
  • Conduct tests and monitor engineering production processes
  • Troubleshoot problems in manufacturing
  • Evaluate engineering equipment and techniques to ensure compliance with safety and environmental regulations
  • Estimate production costs for management

What is the Difference Between a Civil Engineer and a Chemical Engineer?

Civil and chemical engineering are two different branches of engineering that focus on various societal problems. Both work on vital projects; however, each has its specialty. Civil engineers focus on construction and infrastructure, while chemical engineers focus on producing, processing, and utilizing chemicals and other materials.

What are the Similarities of Civil and Chemical Engineers?

There are some similarities between a civil and chemical engineer and an Engineering Associate Degree. They include:


  • A focus on Math, science, and engineering to solve problems.
  • The need for critical thinking, problem-solving, and a strong work ethic.
  • Expertise using computer-aided design (CAD) software.
  • Both contribute to the advancement of society.

How Can You Contribute to the Advancement of Society?

Making a difference in society starts with an investment in your education. You can also protect the environment through your engineering expertise. Community processes are always more effective when people get involved.

As a civil or chemical engineer, you can help create new materials and chemical compounds or improve the lives of community members through infrastructure. This can include housing for Section 8 residents, better ways to reduce food deserts, and creating medicines that eradicate harmful diseases and viruses. The options are endless.

Why Contribute to the Advancement of Society?

In addition to the benefits that society will gain, you will also improve your physical and mental health in the process. Getting involved can help improve overall life satisfaction, lower stress, and improve mental health. Plus, integrating with your community can strengthen your social connection.

How Do you Become a Civil or Chemical Engineer?

Attending Florida National University’s Engineer Associate of Science Degree program is a great way to become a civil or chemical engineer. During this program, you will take the following classes:

Introduction to Construction – this class focuses on basic construction terminology, the processes of land acquisition to finish projects, and an introduction to ethical issues in the construction industry.

Introduction to Chemical Engineering – this class is an introduction to chemical engineering, calculations, unit equations, process stoichiometry, material and energy balances, states of matter, and engineering case studies.

Electrical Circuits and Electronics – a class that focuses on electronic theory and the use of electronic devices. Taking a deep dive into fundamental concepts of electricity and magnetism, electronic circuits, and digital electronics.

Introduction to Engineering – an introduction to engineering ethics, analysis, and economics. This class also includes an overview of chemical, civil, electrical, and manufacturing engineering.

Engineering Economy – a class focusing on basic economic models used to evaluate engineering projects in terms of ethical and environmental applications.

Introduction to Material Science and Engineering – a class in materials, their behaviors, and their relationships with the biosphere. This class also focuses on materials selection and application, including electronics, mechanics, and construction.

Technical Drawing I – an understanding of the principles of drawing instruments, lettering, lines, isometric drawing, orthographic projection, sectioning, and dimensioning.

Introduction to CAD – how to use computer-aided design drawing software. This class focuses on command structure, setting units of measurement, dimensioning, drafting primitives, layering, and editing tools.

Statistics for Engineering – a class that focuses on elementary probability and descriptive and inferential statistics.

Introduction to Quality Assurance – a review of concepts and tools for Total Quality Management.

Measurements and Instruments – a review of the main principles of measurement using instruments and sensors. The instruments are used to measure length, force, pressure, temperature, electric current, and electric potential.

Introduction to Environmental Science – a class about the study of the physical environment and its relationship with the biosphere, with a focus on the impact of human activity on natural systems.

Final Thoughts

Whether you want to become a civil or chemical engineer, the path is clear. You can prepare for a career in engineering by completing Florida National University’s Engineering Associate of Science Degree program. Take the first step toward an opportunity to contribute to society’s advancement, and FNU will be with you every step of the way.

Engineering, Associate of Science

The Engineering, A.S. Program is designed for students seeking an A.S. degree and preparing for a career in the engineering technology field. The skill set and knowledge acquired in the program apply to chemical, manufacturing, and construction engineering. The students receive a strong formation in the basic sciences, which allows them to gain a global perspective on Science and Technology.

If you are interested in engineering, let Florida National University answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to learn more about our Engineering Degree program.