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Structural Civil Engineering

Scope and Objectives

The Master of Science, Master of Engineering and Doctor of Philosophy degrees are offered in the area of structural engineering and structural mechanics. Prerequisites for graduate study are a B.S. degree in engineering or a related area and basic courses in structural analysis and design. All graduate students should have taken the following undergraduate courses or their equivalents: MTH 251, 252, 254, 256, 306; ST 314; ENGR 211, 213; CE 381, 382, 383, 481/581, 372 and 373. If not taken before entering graduate school, the undergraduate courses need to be taken in addition to the graduate coursework. 

Program of Study

The program for the M.S. or M. Eng. degree candidate consists of a minimum of 45 quarter hours, of which approximately two-thirds of the work may be in a major area and one-third in a minor area. An M.S. student may, with major professor approval, elect either a thesis or a non-thesis (technical report) option. A maximum of 9 term hours is allowed for a thesis and 6 for a non-thesis. Some samples of recent M.S. technical report and thesis topics are listed below.

Requirements for the Ph.D. degree

Specific information for a Ph.D. in Structural Engineering is found at Ph.D. Program Requirements (word)

The graduate course offerings in structural engineering cover three primary emphases: design (D), analysis (A) and structural dynamics (S). All graduate students are expected to take courses in each of these three areas. Graduate courses generally offered each year include the following:

CE 532 – Finite Element Analysis (A)
CE 534 – Structural Dynamics (S)
CE 537 – Nonlinear Structural Analysis (A)
CE 580 – Advanced Seismic Design (A,D)
CE 581 – Reinforced Concrete I (D)
CE 582 – Masonry Design (D)
CE 583 – Bridge Design (D)
CE 584 - Wood Design (D)
CE 585 – Matrix Structural Analysis (A)
CE 586 – Prestressed Concrete Design (D)
CE 589 – Seismic Design (D,S)
CCE 522 – Green Building Materials (D)


In addition, there are graduate courses in structural engineering and mechanics offered each year by other departments, including:

ME 520 – Applied Stress Analysis (A)
ME 523 – Advanced Stress Analysis (A)
ME 584 – Fracture of Materials (A,D)

Structural engineering courses are also offered by the CCE School every 2-3 years, including:

CE 530 – Selected Topics in Structural Analysis and Mechanics (A)
CE 531 – Structural Mechanics (A)
CE 533 – Structural Stability (A,D)
CE 535 – Introduction to Random Vibrations (S)
CE 536 – Nonlinear Dynamics (S)
CE 588 – Probability-Based Analysis and Design (A,D)
CE 580 – Selected Topics in Structural Design (Advanced Steel and Advanced Reinforced Concrete) (D)

Finally, structural engineering graduate students often minor in geotechnical engineering, construction engineering management or other areas, and many have pursued a dual major program in structural engineering and wood science and engineering. Courses in geotechnical engineering that are particularly appropriate for structures students include: CE 571 Foundations for Structures, CE 578 Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering and CE 575 Earth Retention and Support.

Other subject areas are available, and programs can be patterned to suit the interests of students.