Graduate Programs

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering offers five graduate degrees, one dual degree, and one certificate program:

Civil Engineering:

  • Master of Civil Engineering (MCE)
  • Master of Applied Science  (MAS)
  • Master of Civil Engineering/Master of Business Administration (MCE/MBA)
  • Ph.D. in Civil Engineering

Ocean Engineering:

  • Master of Science in Ocean Engineering (M.S.)
  • Ph.D. in Ocean Engineering

Graduate Certificate in Railroad Engineering

Civil Engineering Graduate Programs

Admission Requirements

Admissions Requirements

The minimum requirements for admission to a master’s or doctoral program in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering are an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.0 (out of a possible 4.0) for master’s applicants or 3.5 (out of a possible 4.0) for Ph.D. applicants; GRE scores (verbal and quantitative combined) of at least 300; and a TOEFL score (for international students) of at least 550 -or- TOEFL IBT: Minimum score 79. The minimum IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score is a 6.5 overall with no individual subscore below 6.0. Current UD students applying to the 4+1 dual degree program are not required to submit GRE scores.

Although it is possible for students to study toward a Ph.D. directly upon entering graduate school, most students choose to obtain the MCE or MAS first. Students considering doctoral study typically must have completed any previous graduate study with at least a 3.5 grade point average and have clearly demonstrated a capacity for independent work. If an M.S. thesis or other comprehensive work was written at another institution, a copy must be provided to the advisor soon after the student enrolls at the University of Delaware.

The minimum requirements for admission to a master’s or doctoral program for a Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Ocean Engineering are as follows: a Bachelor of Science in Engineering, an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.0 (out of a possible 4.0) for Masters applicants or 3.5 (out of a possible 4.0) for Ph.D. applicants, GRE scores (verbal and quantitative combined) of at least 308, and a TOEFL score (for international students) of at least 600. The POSE Graduate committee may increase these minimum requirements. The minimum IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score is a 6.5 overall with no individual subscore below 6.0.

Application Availability and Admission Deadlines

The online application is found at Graduate Application.

Note the following important deadlines.

February 1 : Deadline for fall admissions and consideration for graduate assistantship/fellowship..
July 1 : Final Deadline for Fall admissions
October 1 : Deadline for spring admission only.

Master of Civil Engineering (MCE)

The Master of Civil Engineering (MCE) degree is awarded only to individuals who, upon admission, have an undergraduate degree in engineering, preferably in civil or environmental engineering. The student pursuing the MCE degree may choose a traditional thesis program or a non-thesis option. The courses for the non-thesis option correspond to the course requirements for the traditional thesis master’s degree program. The core requirements for both master’s degrees are the same. Look at our concentrations page here.

Master’s Degrees – Thesis Option

The master’s program with thesis requires 30 credit hours including 24 graduate course credits and 6 credits for the master’s thesis. The Department Graduate Committee must approve each student’s program.

The 24-credit course program of each student must include the following:

  • At least one course each in mathematics and in engineering sciences.
  • At least 9 credits of courses in the chosen concentration (see the concentration list for details on  core courses and suggested electives)).

The student should consult his/her advisor in selecting courses to fit fulfill these requirements. Petitions for required course substitutions may be made via the advisor to the Department Graduate Committee.

Seminars

All thesis graduate students are required to attend departmental or college seminars (CIEG 865, 0 credits) each semester in their fields of study. Students are expected to make presentations at these seminars.

Master’s Degrees – Non-Thesis Option

The objective of the non-thesis master’s program is to provide an opportunity for students, who do not have the need to develop research skills, to obtain a master’s degree with a quality and depth of study comparable to the master’s degree with thesis. Through coursework (30 credits), students develop their engineering skills and obtain a state-of-the-art background within the chosen area of study. Students electing the non-thesis option are not eligible for financial support from the University.

Master of Applied Science (MAS)

Students who, upon admission, have a non-engineering degree are awarded the Master of Applied Science (MAS) degree. The MAS degree is also an option for students who choose to utilize the elective graduate courses in the degree program to study other engineering or physical science disciplines (even if they were admitted with an undergraduate degree in engineering). The student pursuing the MAS degree may choose a traditional thesis program or a non-thesis option. The courses for the non-thesis option correspond to the course requirements for the traditional master’s degree program. Look at our concentrations page here.

Master’s Degrees – Thesis Option

The master’s program with thesis requires 30 credit hours including 24 graduate course credits and 6 credits for the master’s thesis. The Department Graduate Committee must approve each student’s program.

The 24-credit course program of each student must include the following:

  • At least one course each in mathematics and in engineering sciences.
  • At least 9 credits of courses in the chosen concentration (see the concentration list for details on  core courses and suggested electives)).

The student should consult his/her advisor in selecting courses to fit fulfill these requirements. Petitions for required course substitutions may be made via the advisor to the Department Graduate Committee.

Seminars

All thesis graduate students are required to attend departmental or college seminars (CIEG 865, 0 credits) each semester in their fields of study. Students are expected to make presentations at these seminars.

Master’s Degrees – Non-Thesis Option

The objective of the non-thesis master’s program is to provide an opportunity for students, who do not have the need to develop research skills, to obtain a master’s degree with a quality and depth of study comparable to the master’s degree with thesis. Through coursework (30 credits), students develop their engineering skills and obtain a state-of-the-art background within the chosen area of study. Students electing the non-thesis option are not eligible for financial support from the University.

Master of Civil Engineering/Master of Business Administration (MCE/MBA)

The dual MCE/MBA program (63 credits) will provide students with the necessary skills to broaden their engineering knowledge while gaining a detailed understanding of the business environment.  Although it does not preclude the possibility of engineering research (when the student chooses to pursue the engineering master’s degree with thesis), the dual degree can be achieved with a non-thesis master’s degree in engineering. The MCE/MBA program is a joint degree program. As such, both programs must be completed and the dual degree is conferred, simultaneously recognizing completion of both graduate programs. Look at our concentrations page here.

Master’s Degrees – Thesis Option

The master’s program with thesis requires 30 credit hours including 24 graduate course credits and 6 credits for the master’s thesis. The Department Graduate Committee must approve each student’s program.

The 24-credit course program of each student must include the following:

  • At least one course each in mathematics and in engineering sciences.
  • At least 9 credits of courses in the chosen concentration (see the concentration list for details on  core courses and suggested electives)).

The student should consult his/her advisor in selecting courses to fit fulfill these requirements. Petitions for required course substitutions may be made via the advisor to the Department Graduate Committee.

Seminars

All thesis graduate students are required to attend departmental or college seminars (CIEG 865, 0 credits) each semester in their fields of study. Students are expected to make presentations at these seminars.

Master’s Degrees – Non-Thesis Option

The objective of the non-thesis master’s program is to provide an opportunity for students, who do not have the need to develop research skills, to obtain a master’s degree with a quality and depth of study comparable to the master’s degree with thesis. Through coursework (30 credits), students develop their engineering skills and obtain a state-of-the-art background within the chosen area of study. Students electing the non-thesis option are not eligible for financial support from the University.

Degree Requirements (MCE/MBA Dual Degree)

The MCE/MBA program combines the courses required by the chosen Civil Engineering program (30 cr.) with the core and required courses of the MBA program (33 cr.) for a total of 63 credits. (View in Catalog)

Ph.D. in Civil Engineering

This degree is offered in the major areas of Civil Infrastructure Systems, Coastal Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Structural Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering, Transportation Engineering, and Water Resources Engineering. Look at our concentrations page here.

  • Residency Requirement
    • The student must meet a campus residency requirement of at least one continuous academic year devoted exclusively to full-time study in the major field at the University of Delaware. The residency requirement may be fulfilled in the fall and spring semesters but not in the summer or winter sessions. If a student has earned a master’s degree at the University of Delaware, this can be used to fulfill the residency requirement.
  • Course Requirements
    • A student’s doctoral program, comprising 72 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree (including doctoral dissertation), is planned around a central objective in applied science and mathematics. If a student who already holds a master’s degree in the specific field of study is accepted directly into the Ph.D. program, the coursework from the master’s degree will be taken into account in the design of the doctoral program. All courses in the program are selected with the approval of the student’s dissertation advisor. The Ph.D. coursework typically include at least 3 credits at the 800 level. The program requirements are shown in the following table.
      Beyond the Bachelor of Science Degree

      TOTAL COURSE REQUIREMENTS CREDITS
      Graduate Program Courses 36
      Ph.D. DISSERTATION 9
      RESEARCH (minimum) 9
      Additional research and/or course credits 18
      TOTAL Ph.D. PROGRAM 72

      Beyond the Master’s Degree

      TOTAL COURSE REQUIREMENTS CREDITS
      MASTER’S DEGREE 30
      Graduate Program Courses 12
      Ph.D. DISSERTATION 9
      RESEARCH (minimum) 9
      Additional research and/or course credits 12
      TOTAL Ph.D. PROGRAM 72
    • Mathematics and Engineering Sciences: The purpose is to provide an adequate basis for original work in the field of study and, within the limits of available time, to extend the student’s knowledge outside that field. Typically one course must be taken from each of the Mathematics and Engineering Sciences course lists.
  • Seminars
    • All doctoral students are required to attend departmental or college seminars in their fields of study. Students are expected to register for CIEG865 (0 credits) each semester. Students will also make presentations at these seminars.
  • Resume and Dissertation Proposal
    • A student who has completed about 30 credits of coursework should consult his/her advisor for assistance in the preparation of a written resume that is to include the dissertation proposal. The resume should provide information about the student’s background: publications authored; the concentration contemplated; and a proposal describing the doctoral research to be undertaken. The resume can enable the advisor and the committee to assess progress and plans for the future. It is also useful to advisor and student in determining the composition of the student’s Doctoral Committee and the most appropriate character for the Qualifying Exam. The student will provide a copy of the resume to each committee member and the Department Chairperson for approval.
  • Doctoral Committee
    • The Ph.D. committee must consist of at least four individuals. The committee is chaired by the student’s research advisor and must include at least one additional faculty member from the Department that represents the major field of interest. Moreover, the committee must have an external examiner from a different academic unit or from outside the University. The selection of prospective members of the Doctoral Committee is discussed by the student and their advisor, who then forwards a recommendation for the composition of the committee via the Department Chairperson to the Office of Graduate and Professional Education. Changes in the composition of the committee to reflect the student’s interests may be made following the same procedure.
  • Qualifying Exam
    • The Qualifying Examination is usually taken near the completion of 36 credits of course work beyond the bachelor’s degree. The Qualifying Exam consists of a comprehensive written and oral exam. It is usually administered in two sections, a week or so apart, to test the student’s preparation and the aptness of the proposed research. It is not open to the public. The advisor, as the Examination Committee Chairperson, administers the written exam and chairs the oral exam. In general, the Doctoral Committee should strive to achieve consensus concerning the student’s performance and quality of work. In case of dissenting votes, the majority opinion rules and a majority vote in favor is needed for successful completion of the Exam. At the conclusion of the Qualifying Exam, the committee members signify agreement by signing the Recommendation for Candidacy Form.The Qualifying Exam (written and oral) may result in one of the following actions for a student:
      1. Passed; candidacy form signed by all committee members.
      2. Passed, but additional work required (self study or formal course); form signed by all committee members. If the Qualifying Exam Committee recommends passing but with additional study or course work, the Committee Chairperson will ensure that the student meets these recommendations promptly.
      3. Failed, but to be offered a second complete exam after, in most cases, one semester of additional preparation; memo of record from advisor via the Department Chairperson to the Office of Graduate Studies. If unsuccessful a second time, the student will not be permitted a third attempt, and matriculation in the program will be ended. The form signed by all committee members
      4. Failed, no re-examination; form signed by all committee members and matriculation in the program will be ended.
  • Dissertation Defense
    • The procedure for departmental presentation of the Ph.D. dissertation is as follows: After the student has obtained the approval of the advisor regarding the contents of the dissertation, it must be prepared in accordance with the rules of the Office of Graduate and Professional Education. The written dissertation must be distributed to the committee members for review no less than two weeks prior to the scheduled final oral examination. University policy requires that “all Ph.D. dissertation defenses be open and that an announcement of the time, place, subject, candidate’s name, and the title of the dissertation be made available to the University community at least one week prior to the defense.”In the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering, the procedure for the Final Oral Examination is as follows:
      1. The candidate gives a presentation of approximately 30 minutes on the dissertation research and findings.
      2. An intensive questioning by the Doctoral Committee and all others present takes place after the presentation. The examination is not merely a defense by the student of the dissertation but may also include a review of the student’s competence and comprehension in related fields. After the questioning is completed, the meeting is closed to everyone except the committee members, who render their vote.
      3. Upon successful completion of this examination and compliance with any necessary revisions of the dissertation, the candidate will be certified by the Doctoral Committee for conferral of the degree by completion of the Certification of Doctoral Dissertation Defense form.
      4. In the case where the Final Oral Examination is not passed by the student, the applicant will be allowed to appear for a second trial after the lapse of at least six months. If unsuccessful in a second trial, the student will not be permitted to take a further examination and will be terminated from the program.

Ocean Engineering Graduate Programs

Admission Requirements

The minimum requirements for admission to a master’s or doctoral program for a Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Ocean Engineering are as follows: a Bachelor of Science in Engineering, an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.0 (out of a possible 4.0) for Masters applicants or 3.5 (out of a possible 4.0) for Ph.D. applicants, GRE scores (verbal and quantitative combined) of at least 308, and a TOEFL IBT score (for international students) of at least 79 600. The POSE Graduate committee in the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment may increase these minimum requirements. The minimum IELTS (International English Language Testing System) score is a 6.5 overall with no individual sub-score below 6.0.

The online application is found at Graduate Application.

  • February 1 : Deadline for fall admissions and consideration for graduate assistantship/fellowship.
  • July 1 : Final Deadline for Fall admissions
  • October 1 : Deadline for spring admission only.
Master of Science in Ocean Engineering

The Master of Science in Ocean Engineering is offered jointly with the Physical Ocean Science and Engineering Program (POSE) in the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment and Earth Studies. Students may matriculate through either the College of Engineering or the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment and Earth Studies and may choose a thesis advisor from either program.

The Master of Science in Ocean Engineering degree program is aimed at providing graduate students with advanced technical training in ocean science and engineering for positions in the public and private sectors and for matriculating into PhD programs. The program requires a minimum of 30 credit hours, which includes 6 thesis credits and dependent research. Students shall defend their thesis in an open oral examination chaired by the advisor.

Ph.D. in Ocean Engineering

The Ph.D. in Ocean Engineering is offered jointly with the Physical Ocean Science and Engineering Program (POSE) in the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment and Earth Studies. Students may matriculate through either the College of Engineering or the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment and Earth Studies and may choose a thesis advisor from either program.

The Ph.D. in Ocean Engineering program is aimed at training graduate students to achieve the highest level of proficiency in research. Mathematics, fundamental sciences, ocean sciences and engineering sciences are combined to provide a personalized program of study and research. All graduate students work in close cooperation with the faculty on their dissertation area.

Residency Requirement

The student must meet a campus residency requirement of at least one continuous academic year devoted exclusively to full-time study in the major field at the University of Delaware. The residency requirement may be fulfilled in the fall and spring semesters but not in the summer or winter sessions. If a student has earned a master’s degree at the University of Delaware, this can be used to fulfill the residency requirement.

Course Requirements

A student’s doctoral program, comprising 72 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree (including doctoral dissertation), is planned around a central objective in applied science and mathematics. If a student who already holds a master’s degree in the specific field of study is accepted directly into the Ph.D. program, the coursework from the master’s degree will be taken into account in the design of the doctoral program. All courses in the program are selected with the approval of the student’s dissertation advisor. The program requirements are shown in the following table.

TOTAL COURSE REQUIREMENTS CREDITS
Graduate Courses Beyond the Bachelor of Science Degree 36
The purpose of the course work is to provide a solid foundation for original research in the field of study and, within the limits of available time, to extend the student’s knowledge outside that field. At least 6 of the required credits should be taken outside of the Program of Ocean Science and Engineering and may include significant components from other departments.
Ph.D. DISSERTATION 9
RESEARCH (minimum) 9
MASTER’S THESIS (if applicable) 6
TOTAL Ph.D. PROGRAM 72

Required courses include courses in mathematics and engineering sciences designed to insure that Ph.D. candidates have the basic skills in Physical Ocean Science and Engineering needed to conduct dissertation research.

Required courses beyond the Bachelor of Science:

  • CIEG639/MAST691 Ocean Fluid Dynamics
  • CIEG672 Water Wave Mechanics
  • MEEG690 Intermediate Engineering Mathematics
  • MEEG691 Advanced Engineering Mathematics
  • MAST693 Waves in the Marine Environment
  • MAST882 Physical Ocean Science and Engineering Seminar
  • CIEG865 Civil Engineering Seminar

Students matriculating from other universities may petition to have these courses waived if their course of study included equivalent courses.

Doctoral Committee

Each Doctoral Committee shall consist of no fewer than four or more than six members. The selection of members of the Doctoral Committee is made by the student and advisor. This is forwarded via the Department Chairperson or a program director and respective college deans to the University Coordinator of Graduate Studies. A Doctoral Committee in the Ocean Engineering program is required to have at least four members. This is composed of the student’s advisor, who is also the chair of the committee, at least one member each from CMES and CIEG faculties, and one member from an outside academic unit. At least two committee members, one of whom is the committee chairperson, represent the major field of interest.

Qualifying Exam

Doctoral students must demonstrate to their advisory committee that they have acquired a comprehensive grasp of their field of study through a Qualifying Examination (written and oral) before they are admitted to formal candidacy.

The examination process begins when the student submits a dissertation proposal to his/her committee at least six weeks before the written and oral examination. Then the student consults each member of the Doctoral Committee for advice on any specific preparation that the committee members suggest. Any committee member who is not fully satisfied with a student’s preparation for the formal exam will advise the Doctoral Committee chairperson promptly.

The Qualifying Exam is a comprehensive written and oral exam. It is administered in two sections approximately a week apart. This examination is designed to test the student’s preparation and the aptness of the proposed research. It measures the student’s preparation, including knowledge about the area of Physical Ocean Science and Engineering, the student’s capability to apply knowledge gained in courses, and the student’s qualifications in written and oral communication. Qualifying exams are not open to the public. The advisor, as Exam Committee Chairperson, administers the written exam and chairs the oral. The written exam usually consists of one independent exam of at least two hours duration set by each of the committee members and administered over two or more consecutive days. At the oral exam, the student gives a brief review of the research plan and then answers questions from each committee member related to the dissertation proposal or to the student’s coursework. In general, the Doctoral Committee should strive to achieve consensus concerning the student’s performance and quality of work. In the case of dissenting votes, the majority opinion rules and a majority vote in favor is needed for a successful defense. Upon successful completion of the Qualifying Exam, the committee members signify agreement by signing the appropriate graduate office form.

  1. Passed; candidacy form signed by all committee members.
  2. Passed, but additional work required (self study or formal course); form signed by all committee members. If the Qualifying Exam Committee recommends passing but with additional study or course work, the Committee Chairperson will ensure that the student meets these recommendations promptly.
  3. Failed, but to be offered a second complete exam after, in most cases, one semester of additional preparation; memo of record from advisor via the Department Chairperson to the Office of Graduate Studies. If unsuccessful a second time, the student will not be permitted a third attempt, and matriculation in the program will be ended. The form signed by all committee members
  4. Failed, no re-examination; form signed by all committee members and matriculation in the program will be ended.

Dissertation Defense

Upon completion of the dissertation, a final oral examination must be passed, consisting of a defense of the dissertation and a test of the candidate’s mastery of the fields covered in the program. The final oral examination is open. It is conducted by the student’s Doctoral Committee and chaired by the student’s advisor. To permit adequate time for the committee to review the dissertation, all copies of the tentatively completed dissertation (subject to revisions required by the examining committee) must be deposited with the program director and the respective college offices at least two weeks before the date of the final oral examination. The advisor shall submit certification of a successful defense to the Office of Graduate Studies through the respective college deans.

Seminars

All full-time graduate students are required to attend departmental or college seminars in their fields of study (CIEG865 or MAST882), registering as a “Listener” in subsequent semesters. Students will also make presentations at these seminars. Students are also encouraged to attend other University seminars that may be of interest to them.

Graduate Certificate Program

Graduate Certificate in Railroad and Transit Engineering

Railway engineering is a discipline within Civil Engineering that looks at the design, maintenance, and behavior of the railroad track infrastructure. The railway infrastructure includes track, bridges, and other infrastructure elements for passenger and freight railway and transit systems (both heavy and light rail). Railway engineering includes the short and long term behavior of the track structure and its major components under traffic and environmental loading, both static and dynamic. It also includes the dynamic interaction between the vehicles and the track structure, the localized interaction between the wheel and the rail, the interaction between each of the elements of the track structure and the long term behavior of the infrastructure under railroad and/or transit operations.

To be successful, students should have broad exposure to Civil Engineering to include knowledge of structures and structural mechanics, dynamics, geotechnical engineering, and transportation engineering.

Railroads and transit systems are an important element in our overall transportation infrastructure with an ongoing need for engineers in all aspects of railway engineering. Opportunities exist for engineers in the public and private sectors to include freight railroads, passenger rail (commuter, interurban and new generation high speed rail), transit systems, and consulting firms.

Read more about the future of the railroad industry in Forbes

FACULTY

  • Allan M. Zarembski – Railroad and transit engineering, risk management, track component failure and degradation analysis, track inspection technology, safety and derailment prevention
  • Nii Attoh-Okine – Risk analysis, transportation systems analysis
  • Tripp Shenton – bridges, rail track structure, structural mechanics and dynamics
  • Chris Meehan – Geotechnical engineering; soil mechanics and soil shear behavior; slope stability; foundation engineering

COURSES

Core Courses:

  • CIEG414/614 – Railroad Geotechnical Engineering
  • CIEG417/617 – Introduction to Railroad Safety and Derailment Engineering
  • CIEG418/618 – Railroad Engineering

Suggested electives

  • CIEG320 – Soil Mechanics
  • CIEG321 – Geotechnical Engineering
  • CIEG351 – Transportation Engineering
  • CIEG401 – Introduction to the Finite Element Method
  • CIEG454 – Urban Transportation Planning
  • CIEG458 – Pavement Analysis and Design
  • CIEG601 – Introduction to the Finite Element Method
  • CIEG608 – Introduction to Bridge Design
  • CIEG611 – Structural Dynamics Design
  • CIEG612 – Advanced Mechanics of Materials
  • CIEG626 – Soil Behavior
  • CIEG641 – Risk Analysis
  • CIEG654 – Urban Transportation Planning
  • CIEG658 – Pavement Analysis and Design
  • CIEG811 – Advanced Structural Dynamics Design
  • CIEG 817 – Stability of Structures

Recruitment Coordinators

Christine Reoli
E: creoli@udel.edu
P: 302-831-6570

Professor Kaliakin
E: kaliakin@udel.edu
P: 302-831-2409

UD Admissions Office
E: admissions@udel.edu
P: 302-831-8123

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