This MS is designed for students who have completed a bachelor's degree in civil engineering, although students with related undergraduate degrees may be considered for provisional admission. The MS educates students in the theory and practice of civil engineering science and design, with a technical concentration. The master's degree is increasingly expected for high level practice in civil engineering, and prepares graduates to practice in civil engineering for: federal, state, or local government; engineering design firms; construction firms; public utilities; non-governmental organizations; and local and regional planning firms, among others. The MS degree serves as a foundation for subsequent study in a doctoral program in civil engineering, as well as for graduate studies in architecture, law, business, economics, finance, and public policy and administration.

Full-time students typically complete the degree in one and a half, to two years.

Admissions

To be considered for admission to the program, a candidate must:

  • Satisfy general University and Volgenau School requirements for admission to a graduate program,
  • Have earned a baccalaureate degree in engineering or a related science,
  • Provide two letters of reference, submitted by former professors or supervisors,
  • Provide a goals statement and professional résumé.

Acceptance to the degree program is based on an assessment of the applicant's capacity to pursue graduate studies successfully. Consideration is given to the undergraduate record, any previous graduate work, professional work experience, and reference letters. Students with minor admission deficiencies may be provisionally admitted subject to completing an articulation program. Prescribed courses taken in the articulation program are not creditable toward the MS degree.

Banner Code: VS-MS-CEIE

Degree Requirements

Total credits: 30

All MS students must develop a faculty-approved plan of study with a minimum of 30 graduate credits. These credits include two core courses (CEIE 601 Infrastructure Modeling and CEIE 605 Risk and Uncertainty in Civil Engineering), specific requirements of a concentration declared by the student, and seminar requirement (CEIE 795 Civil and Infrastructure Engineering Seminar).

Plan of Study

Students are responsible for developing and receiving advisor approval on a plan of study no later than the end of their second semester of study. Courses taken without prior approval by the faculty advisor may not be accepted for credit toward the degree. No more than three courses used for credit toward the MS may be cross-listed as undergraduate courses. None may repeat material completed as part of the student’s previous studies. Most MS courses are offered on a three-semester rotation.

Core Courses

All MS students must complete the following two core courses within the first 12 credit hours of their MS studies. These courses provide a common background for understanding the breadth and complexity of civil and infrastructure engineering and for analyzing and solving engineering problems.

CEIE 601Infrastructure Modeling3
CEIE 605Risk and Uncertainty in Civil Engineering3
Total Credits6

Concentration in Construction Project Management (CPM)

Select at least three from the following five construction project management core courses:9
Construction Administration 1
Building Information Modeling 1
Legal Aspects of the Construction Process
Design for Constructability
Construction Cost Estimating
Total Credits9
1

Cross-listed as undergraduate course

Electives

The remaining elective credits depend on whether the student is pursuing research credits or not.

Select one from the following options (also outlined in the Notes section below):15
Option 1: Thesis:
Master's Thesis (6 credits)
At least 9 credits of electives
Option 2: Project:
Research Project in Civil Engineering (3 credits)
At least 12 credits of electives
Option 3: All Coursework:
At least 15 credits of electives
Total Credits15

A list of approved electives for the construction project management concentration is provided below. Note that the remaining construction project management core courses can also be selected as electives.

CEIE 524Introduction to Bridge Engineering3
CEIE 525Structural Evaluation and Rehabilitation3
CEIE 531Earth Retaining Structures and Slope Stability3
CEIE 532Foundation Design 13
CEIE 607Public Infrastructure Management and Finance3
GBUS 510Engineering Marketing and Financial Analysis3
CEIE 636Sources of Geotechnical Data3
CEIE 679Special Topics in Construction Management3
GGS 553Geographic Information Systems3
1

Cross-listed as undergraduate course

Concentration in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering (EWRE)

Select at least three from the following five environmental and water resources engineering core courses:9
Water Resources Engineering I: Principles and Practice
Environmental Engineering Microbiology
Water Quality
Water Resources Engineering II: Water Resource Systems
Risk Communication
Total Credits9

Electives

The remaining elective credits depend on whether the student is pursuing research credits or not.

Select one from the following options (also outlined in the Notes section below):15
Option 1: Thesis:
Master's Thesis (6 credits)
At least 9 credits of electives
Option 2: Project:
Research Project in Civil Engineering (3 credits)
At least 12 credits of electives
Option 3: All Coursework:
At least 15 credits of electives
Total Credits15

A list of approved electives for the environmental and water resources engineering concentration is provided below. Note that the remaining environmental and water resources engineering core courses can also be selected as electives.

CEIE 540Water Supply and Distribution 13
CEIE 542Open Channel Flow 13
CEIE 550Environmental Engineering Systems 13
CEIE 553Water and Wastewater Treatment Processes 13
CEIE 607Public Infrastructure Management and Finance3
or GBUS 510 Engineering Marketing and Financial Analysis
CEIE 634Groundwater and Geoenvironmental Design3
CEIE 642Flood Hazards Engineering3
CEIE 643Coastal Flood Hazards3
CEIE 649Special Topics in Water Resources Engineering3
CEIE 659Hazardous Waste3
CEIE 664Transportation Engineering and the Environment3
CEIE 683Water and Wastewater Systems Security3
CHEM 627Aquatic Environmental Chemistry3
CHEM 651Environmental Chemistry of Organic Substances3
CLIM 714Land-Climate Interactions3
CSI 501Introduction to Scientific Programming3
CSI 690Numerical Methods3
CSI 720Fluid Mechanics3
CSI 721Computational Fluid Dynamics I3
EVPP 524Introduction to Environmental and Resource Economics3
EVPP 670Environmental Law3
GGS 553Geographic Information Systems3
GGS 656The Hydrosphere3
GGS 671Algorithms and Modeling in GIS3
GGS 787Scientific Data Mining for Geoinformatics3
STAT 554Applied Statistics I3
1

Cross-listed as undergraduate courses

Concentration in Geotechnical Engineering (GEOE)

Select at least three from the following five geotechnical engineering core courses:9
Earth Retaining Structures and Slope Stability
Groundwater and Geoenvironmental Design
Advanced Soil Mechanics
Sources of Geotechnical Data
Advanced Foundation Design
Total Credits9

Electives

The remaining elective credits depend on whether the student is pursuing research credits or not.

Select one from the following options (also outlined in the Notes section below):15
Option 1: Thesis:
Master's Thesis (6 credits)
At least 9 credits of electives
Option 2: Project:
Research Project in Civil Engineering (3 credits)
At least 12 credits of electives
Option 3: All Coursework:
At least 15 credits of electives
Total Credits15

A list of approved electives for the geotechnical engineering concentration is provided below. Note that the remaining geotechnical engineering core courses can also be selected as electives.

CEIE 524Introduction to Bridge Engineering3
CEIE 532Foundation Design 13
CEIE 535Engineering Geology 13
CEIE 573Legal Aspects of the Construction Process3
CEIE 575Design for Constructability3
CEIE 607Public Infrastructure Management and Finance3
or GBUS 510 Engineering Marketing and Financial Analysis
CEIE 639Special Topics in Geotechnical Engineering1-3
CEIE 659Hazardous Waste3
GGS 553Geographic Information Systems3
1

Cross-listed as undergraduate courses

Concentration in Structural Engineering (STRE)

Select at least three of the following five structural engineering core courses:9
Advanced Steel Design
Pre-stressed Concrete
Advanced Structural Analysis
Structural Mechanics
Structural Dynamics
Total Credits9

Electives

The remaining elective credits depend on whether the student is pursuing research credits or not.

Select one from the following options (also outlined in the Notes section below):15
Option 1: Thesis:
Master's Thesis (6 credits)
At least 9 credits of electives
Option 2: Project:
Research Project in Civil Engineering (3 credits)
At least 12 credits of electives
Option 3: All Coursework:
At least 15 credits of electives
Total Credits15

A list of approved electives for the structural engineering concentration is provided below. Note that the remaining structural engineering core courses can also be selected as electives.

CEIE 512Structural Steel Design 13
CEIE 513Reinforced Concrete Design 13
CEIE 524Introduction to Bridge Engineering3
CEIE 525Structural Evaluation and Rehabilitation3
CEIE 532Foundation Design 13
CEIE 575Design for Constructability3
CEIE 607Public Infrastructure Management and Finance3
or GBUS 510 Engineering Marketing and Financial Analysis
CEIE 619Special Topics in Structural Engineering3
CEIE 620Intelligent Structural Systems3
CEIE 623Advanced Reinforced Concrete Design3
CSI 690Numerical Methods3
CSI 742The Mathematics of the Finite Element Method3
1

Cross-listed as undergraduate courses

Concentration in Transportation Engineering (TRNE)

Select at least three of the following five transportation engineering core courses:9
Travel Demand Modeling
Intelligent Transportation Systems
Transportation Engineering and the Environment
Traffic Engineering Modeling and Analysis
Applied Statistics I
Total Credits9

Electives

The remaining elective credits depend on whether the student is pursuing research credits or not.

Select one from the following options (also outlined in the Notes section below):15
Option 1: Thesis:
Master's Thesis (6 credits)
At least 9 credits of electives
Option 2: Project:
Research Project in Civil Engineering (3 credits)
At least 12 credits of electives
Option 3: All Coursework:
At least 15 credits of electives
Total Credits15

A list of approved electives for the transportation engineering concentration is provided below. Note that the remaining transportation engineering core courses can also be selected as electives.

CEIE 560Public Transportation Systems3
CEIE 561Traffic Engineering 13
CEIE 562Urban Transportation Planning 13
CEIE 607Public Infrastructure Management and Finance3
or GBUS 510 Engineering Marketing and Financial Analysis
CEIE 665Travel Survey Methods and Data Analysis3
CEIE 667Multi-modal Transportation Systems3
CEIE 668Transportation Economics3
CEIE 669Special Topics in Transportation Engineering3
CEIE 762Network Models for Transportation Planning3
CEIE 763Discrete Choice Analysis in Transportation3
CS 504Principles of Data Management and Mining3
GGS 553Geographic Information Systems3
1

Cross-listed as undergraduate courses

Note:

Electives outside of the chosen concentration can only be taken or substituted with the approval of the faculty advisor.

Project or Thesis Option

As part of the plan of study, students may elect to pursue research credits. 

Research Project

Students complete CEIE 798 Research Project in Civil Engineering, during which they prepare and present a scholarly paper. The scholarly paper is a technical report on an independent study, laboratory or computer experimentation, or literature search on a current civil and infrastructure engineering topic selected under the guidance of a faculty advisor. CEIE 798 Research Project in Civil Engineering credits count toward the 30 credit hours required for the MS degree.

CEIE 798Research Project in Civil Engineering3
Total Credits3

Master's Thesis

Students complete CEIE 799 Master's Thesis which counts toward the 30 credit hours required for the MS degree. The MS thesis should reflect a significant, independent research effort that advances engineering science, and is worthy of publication. The work is conducted under the guidance of a faculty thesis advisor, and the final written thesis and oral defense are defended before a three-member faculty committee. In addition, students must make a satisfactory presentation of the thesis in the CEIE graduate seminar. The thesis is recommended for those students who wish to develop and document their research skills, or contemplate subsequent enrollment in a PhD program. Students are advised of the university's continuous registration requirement for thesis and dissertation research credits. Upon first enrolling in CEIE 799 Master's Thesis, the student must continue registration for each fall and spring semester until the thesis is successfully completed. CEIE 799 Master's Thesis credits count toward the 30 credit hours required for the MS degree.

CEIE 799Master's Thesis (must complete 6 credits)1-6
Total Credits1-6

Seminar Requirement

All degree candidates must attend a minimum of five graduate seminars approved by the CEIE Department for the degree program. Students must enroll in CEIE 795 Civil and Infrastructure Engineering Seminar each semester (fall and spring) for the duration of their MS studies until they receive a satisfactory (S) grade. This course is used to verify the seminar attendance requirement and is repeatable.

CEIE 795Civil and Infrastructure Engineering Seminar0
Total Credits0

Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, BS/Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, Accelerated MS

Overview

Highly-qualified students in the Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, BS have the option of obtaining an accelerated Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, MS.

For more detailed information, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies.

Admission Requirements

Students in the Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, BS program may apply to this option if they have earned 90 undergraduate credits with an overall GPA of at least 3.30. All other criteria for admission are identical to criteria for admission into the Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, MS program.

Accelerated Option Requirements

Students must complete all credits that satisfy requirements for both the BS and MS programs. Students register for 6 credits of overlapping graduate level courses in place of undergraduate technical elective courses. The courses selected for this purpose must be approved by the academic advisor.

Degree Requirements

Students must apply the semester before they expect to complete the BS requirements to have the BS degree conferred. In addition, at the beginning of the student's final undergraduate semester, students must complete a Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Transition form that is submitted to the Office of the University Registrar and the VSE Graduate Admissions Office. At the completion of MS requirements, a master's degree is conferred.