Master of Science Design Option

The MS Design Option provides the opportunity for you to earn a master’s degree in civil engineering, with an emphasis in design, in one academic year. The degree requires 30 credit-hours of graduate work, and the overall degree requirements are identical to those offered under MS Option B.

Students in the MS Design Option take four regular academic courses in the fall and spring semesters, plus CE 895 Design Special Problems for three credit-hours in the fall semester and two credit-hours in the spring semester, combined with a one credit-hour seminar.

Students in the Design Special Problems section of CE 895 operate as a consulting group. The consulting group is tasked with the design of a major civil engineering project – for example, a large bridge or industrial site. The scope of the work is focused on the enrolled students’ areas of specialization, which may include structural, geotechnical, construction, transportation, environmental and water resources engineering.  Practicing engineers help plan the project, provide guidance and review, and critique the students’ work. Students complete design documents and make oral presentations over the course of two semesters. Each student in the MSCE Design Option is advised by a professor in his or her area of technical interest.  Academic advisors are selected based on an individual’s area of technical interest.

The MS Design Option is directed by professor David Darwin ( He will be happy to discuss the program with you and answer any questions.