Master’s in Civil Engineering

Master of Science
Civil engineering MS students

WPI’s master’s in Civil Engineering prepares you to build a better future for people and the planet. Your experience at WPI combines team-based collaboration, immersive research, and state-of-the-art equipment and lab space, positioning you alongside your peers and faculty who are working on solutions to critical societal problems.

To fit your personal and career goals, you can pursue a thesis or non-thesis degree part- or full-time—and all classes are held at night.


Studies on the fire safety challenges of green buildings.

Curriculum for Master’s in Civil Engineering

Small classes, one-on-one faculty mentoring, and applied learning are hallmarks of the WPI experience. In the master’s in Civil Engineering program you’ll be part of a collaborative culture that supports interdisciplinary thinking and innovation.

Rigorous studies in core principles can be augmented with more specialized courses, such as Advanced Design of Steel Structures, Structural Design for Fire Conditions, Hazardous Waste: Containment, Treatment and Prevention, and Open Channel Hydraulics.


Civil engineering graduate students are at the forefront of cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research exploring areas like sustainability, natural resource preservation, design, construction, architecture, and energy.

Our pioneering faculty are currently engaged in globally recognized research and scholarship, including pavement engineering and highway materials, analysis and design of structural systems and smart structures, construction and sustainable building design, and physical and chemical treatment processes.

Small class sizes, state-of-the-art laboratory facilities, and close interaction with faculty means you don’t get lost in the crowd here.

Our grad students work on problems with a multidisciplinary approach, so collaborations with other departments gives your work even greater potential impact.

Research at WPI solves real-world problems—from using innovative materials to provide more efficient heating and cooling in buildings to protecting water resources to designing bioinspired structural materials.

At WPI, we consider the big picture and our students leave with that valuable approach. That means you’ll see an immediate problem like wastewater treatment and will consider how the solution might have additional environmental, societal, or technological impacts.

Working in state-of-the-art laboratory facilities on campus,  you’ll have access to advanced instrumentation,  including a loading device that lets researchers in the pavement laboratory measure the impact of real-world traffic—one of only about a dozen such devices in the world.


Graduate Studies Series

Learn from our enrollment team members and other guests by attending quick and convenient 30-minute webinars we designed to highlight popular topics when starting grad school. Take a deep dive into specific areas of interest such as how to funding, how to ace your application, student services, and more!

Faculty Profiles

Jeanine Denu Dudle
Associate Professor- Civil & Environmental Engineering, Civil, Environmental, & Architectural Engineering

My teaching and research interests focus on water quality and the safety of drinking waters. I study water from source to tap: where do contaminants originate from, what is their fate in the environment, and how do we engineer treatment processes to protect public health? I am particularly interested in preventing the transmission of pathogens through water. In source waters, I aim to identify sources of pollution and understand the fate, transport, and survival of those pollutants in the environment.

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Shichao Liu

Prof. Liu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). His research focuses on built and urban environment, occupant-building-environment interaction, and integrated design for sustainable and healthy buildings. Prof. Liu envisions his research promoting built sustainability and occupant well-being through the interface among building science, information science, public health, and social science.

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Rajib B. Mallick

Rajib Basu Mallick is currently the Ralph White Family Distinguished Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at WPI. He graduated from Jadavpur University, India, in 1989 and received his master’s degree and PhD from Auburn University, USA. He also worked as a senior research associate at the National Center for Asphalt Technology, USA. Rajib’s main research interests are in the optimum utilization of natural resources and sustainable construction, specifically related to the pavement industry.

Nima Rahbar

My research and teaching activities in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering are in the area of the mechanics of materials and structures. At WPI, my favorite aspect of teaching is working one on one with graduate and undergraduate students on research projects. I like to excite students’ curiosity towards discoveries and creative scientific advancements. In our research group, we focus on the fundamental principles that control the behavior of materials in engineering and biology at multiple scales.

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Aaron R. Sakulich
Associate Professor-Engineering, Civil, Environmental, & Architectural Engineering

Replacing our crumbling national infrastructure with conventional materials would be only a temporary solution to a critical problem. My research focuses on developing new, more durable materials for use in infrastructure, which will lead to a lowered maintenance burden, improved user safety, and a reduced environmental impact. Personally, the part that I like most about this subject is the chemistry.

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Mingjiang Tao

I teach geotechnical and pavement engineering courses at WPI. My favorite teaching activities are helping students develop critical thinking skills and become independent learners and problem solvers for their future career in civil engineering.

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Steven Van Dessel
Associate Professor & Director Architectural Engineering Program, Civil, Environmental, & Architectural Engineering

My research and teaching activities are in the area of sustainable building design and building technology, with a special focus on the study of adaptive building enclosure systems. One of the goals of this research is to develop smart materials that can alter their thermal properties in response to changing outdoor conditions, in order to conserve energy and optimize building thermal comfort. This research entails the use of energy modeling tools, experimental investigations including synthesis of new materials, and the study of practical applications.

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Harold W. Walker

Harold Walker is the Schwaber Professor of Environmental Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at WPI. Prior to his appointment at WPI, Professor Walker was the Founding Chair of the Department of Civil Engineering at Stony Brook University. Professor Walker also served as the co-Director of the New York State Center for Clean Water Technology at Stony Brook and was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo to the New York State Drinking Water Quality Council. Prior to Stony Brook, Dr.

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Become a Global Steward of the Planet Now

Are you ready to work toward building a more sustainable tomorrow? If you’re on the search for universities offering a masters in civil engineering, WPI is the perfect choice. Work alongside WPI’s pioneering faculty from our world-class civil and environmental department as you master interdisciplinary thinking and innovation. Do you have questions about what life after graduate school looks like? Maybe you’re asking yourself how much do civil engineers make with a master’s degree or what does master’s in civil engineering salary look like? Check out your career outlook with a master’s in civil engineering and find information on companies, job titles, salary data, and related degrees. A master’s in civil engineering salary reflects the additional educational achievement of an advanced degree. This career path offers varied options in work locations and projects you’ll have opportunities to lead while delivering meaningful career satisfaction.

Immerse in World-Changing Research with a PhD

Do you already have your masters and are looking to have the expertise to address complex civil engineering problems? Consider earning a PhD in civil engineering which will challenge you to push the boundaries as you immerse in rigorous, in-depth research. Work alongside our pioneering faculty as you dive into areas like sustainability, construction, energy, and more. Our small class sizes enable students to connect closely with expert faculty as they pave the way toward solving important global challenges.

Our Flexible Course Delivery Options Offer Choices that Fit Your Schedule

Whether you prefer to earn a master’s in civil engineering on campus or are looking for a more flexible delivery option online, WPI students have the option to tailor their schedule to fit their individual career goals. Are you interested in the flexibility of learning online at your convenience? Consider our two online graduate programs under the Civil & Environmental Engineering department, a master’s in construction project management online or master’s in environmental engineering online. Whether you prefer the in-person interaction that an on campus master’s in construction management provides or like the flexibility of studying online, you’ll learn how to manage complex construction projects at every stage. Dive into advanced project management, building information modeling, sustainable construction practices, and more as you conduct groundbreaking research. Do you have an interest in protecting public health and our environment? A master’s in environmental engineering covers effective solutions to solve issues related to human health, water quality, sustainability, and even resource preservation. All of our civil engineering master’s programs are offered on campus and online, providing students the same rigorous, yet practical curriculum by our expert faculty.

Gain an Industry-Edge with a Specialized Graduate-Level Certificate

Are you interested in gaining graduate-level knowledge in a specialized civil field that most interests you? If you have a passion for managing construction project at every stage and learning about sustainable practices, explore our construction project management graduate certificate online. Maybe you enjoy learning in-person? Our graduate certificate in construction project management is also offered on campus, with the same rigorous curriculum as online. If you’re intrigued by working toward making the world’s water safe and more sustainable, consider a graduate certificate in water quality systems. You’ll work closely with an advisor to choose five classes related to advanced water-quality topics. Are you interested in exploring hazardous contaminants and spearheading sustainability, a graduate certificate in water resources may be for you.

Earn a Professional Degree, Apply New Skills Immediately with a Civil Engineering MEng

If you’re already working in the industry and looking for a degree that will boost your skills and advance your career, WPI’s MEng in Civil Engineering might be just what you’re looking for. This degree offers two concentrations so you’re sure to align your educational path with your career path. Choose from a Master Builder concentration, designed for engineering and construction professionals who want to become more effective team leaders, or an Environmental concentration, which focuses on water resources, pollution prevention, and municipal and industrial treatment processes. You’ll gain hands-on knowledge that you can bring to your work as you earn your degree.

Find the Bachelor’s Degree that Meets Your Interests

Are you excited by the possibilities of making the world a better place through improving and protecting the earth’s climate, air, and water? A career as a civil and environmental engineer has many specialties and finding the right bachelor’s degree so you can fulfill your dreams is important. Our hands-on project-based curriculum means that when you graduate with a bachelor’s from WPI you have applicable and sought-after experience to jump into engineering work. WPI’s bachelor’s in civil engineering immerses you in the all the ways you can protect the earth, practice complex construction practices, or improve the infrastructure that helps move people and goods around the planet. If your interests lean more toward sustainable building and design, our bachelor’s in architectural engineering brings engineering principles to design. You’ll focus on four areas to give you a foundation for a career as an architectural engineer including structural systems, mechanical systems, electrical systems, and construction/construction management. If your career goals focus on environmental interests such as safe water supplies or mitigating and reducing the impact of industrial waste, explore WPI’s bachelor’s in environmental engineering. This degree program blends civil engineering and chemical engineering courses for a program that advances your understanding in both areas so you can apply that knowledge to the complex environmental issues in the world.