The Department of Structural Engineering was the first of its kind in this country to offer a Bachelor’s Degree programme in Structural Engineering. The decision of starting a B.E Degree programme in Structural Engineering was approved in January 1977 (Syndicate Resolution No.30 dated 24.1.1977). The nomenclature of the degree was changed to B.E (Civil and Structural Engineering) in December 1977 (Syndicate Resolution No.3 dated 18.11.1977) and given effect from the academic year 1977-78 (on 27.07.1978).
In addition, two Posts Graduate Programmes namely M.E (Structural Engineering) and M.E (Soil Mechanics & Foundation Engineering) offered through the Department of Engineering were attached to the Department of Structural Engineering. Annamalai University was the first institution to start a P.G programme in Structural Engineering way back in 1953. The nomenclature of the programme M.E. (Soil Mechanics & Foundation Engineering) was changed to M.E. (Geotechnical Engineering) in the year 1987- 88. Another P.G programme M.E. (Construction Engineering and Management) was started in the Silver Jubilee year (2003-2004) of the Department. One more P.G. Programme, M.E. (Disaster Management and Engineering) has been started from the academic year 2007- 2008 with UGC funding under Innovative Programme first of its kind in the country. The Department was renamed as the Department of Civil & Structural Engineering in the year 2002. Recently the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India has sponsored the Department of Civil and Structural Engineering under FIST Programme.
In addition to the on campus programmes, the Department is offering job oriented diploma and P.G diploma programmes through the Directorate of Distance Education. Grants offered by various funding agencies are being accessed by the faculty and a number of projects are in progress. At present there are nearly 754 students pursuing their studies and research in the Department. 37 members of teaching staff and 44 members of laboratory and supporting staff support these students. The Department is also actively involved in consultancy activities in the areas of material testing, soil investigation, design and detailing of structures, destructive, semi- destructive and Non-destructive testing and damage assessment, health monitoring of structures and repair and rehabilitation of structures.
The Department is also engaged in service oriented activities. The students of the Department are encouraged to participate in National Cadet Corps (NCC), National Service Scheme (NSS) and Youth Red Cross (YRC) activities in order to mould their character positively to evolve as model citizens of Nation. Special facilities are provided in the Department to promote students’ interest in sports and cultural activities. STRuctural Engineering Students Symposium (STRESS), an intercollegiate technical event is organized every year as a co-curricular activity. STRUPORTS an interdepartmental sports tournament and FESTURAL a cultural event are also conducted every year. Students of the Department have also participated and received prizes in similar activities conducted by other institutions.
The Department also frequently organizes invited lectures from eminent Scientists, Engineers and Technocrats. Annual lecture series, namely Foundation Day Lecture (27th July every year) and Engineers’ Day Lecture on Engineers’ Day (15th September) every year are regular events of the Department.