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Civil and Environmental Engineering

Civil and Environmental Engineering | Courses | Faculty

224 Marston Hall

Degree: Bachelor of Science in Civil

Contact: Richard Palmer
Office: 224 Marston
Phone: (413) 545-2508

Head of Department: Professor Richard Palmer. Professors Ahlfeld, Chang, Collura, DeGroot, Ergas, Highter, Lardner, Lutenegger, Ostendorf, Reckhow, Tobiason; Associate Professors Breña, Civjan, Ho; Assistant Professors Arwade, Brown, Gao, Knodler, Ni, C. Park, M. Park, Rosenfeldt.

The Field

The field of civil engineering is quite broad and encompasses a variety of interrelated disciplines: structural engineering, environmental engineering, hydraulics, transportation, water resources, geotechnical engineering, construction, and surveying.

Civil engineering originated as a field involved with civil works—the planning, design, construction, and operation of facilities that serve the general population. Today the field is still largely centered in the public arena, and is a profession dedicated to the needs and progress of humankind. Civil engineers design and construct facilities that we use every day—roadways, drinking water treatment plants, tunnels, subways, buildings, solid waste landfills, bridges, wastewater treatment plants, canals and waterways, water supply pipe networks, railroads, dams and reservoirs, and even ski lifts and amusement rides. They analyze and solve problems of water, land, and air pollution and oversee the operation of water supply, pollution control, and hazardous waste control facilities.

Civil engineers participate in city planning and in planning the uses of natural systems, river basins, and other public areas. They perform reliability and economic feasibility studies to ensure safe and economically efficient outcomes. Using satellite images and global positioning systems, they survey and monitor the environment and assist in overall resource planning and management.

The Major

The curriculum is designed to prepare graduates for the professional practice of civil engineering, and for graduate study in the field. Graduates are also prepared to maintain their state-of-the-art competency in the field throughout their careers. The curriculum provides graduates with an understanding of engineering principles and current engineering techniques; education in environmental, geotechnical, structural, and transportation engineering and an understanding of the interrelationship of these areas in the practice of civil engineering; an understanding of the civil engineer’s responsibility to society for public health, safety, and a high-quality environment; and an understanding of civil engineers’ personal responsibility to participate in and contribute to civil engineering professional and community activities throughout their careers.

In the first three semesters, students take several courses in mathematics and the basic sciences and engineering, which prepare them for subsequent classes in which fundamental engineering principles are learned. These principles are then applied to the design of civil and environmental engineering facilities starting in the sophomore year. All students are required to take the equivalent of at least 16 credit hours of design to qualify for graduation. The design experience culminates in the senior year with a Civil and Environmental Engineering Design Project course in which design fundamentals learned in earlier courses are integrated into a design project.

Oral and written communication skills and engineering ethics are integrated throughout the curriculum. College of Engineering students may be admitted to the Civil and Environmental Engineering major after having completed at least 12 college-level academic courses with a cumulative GPA of 2.000 or better.

Admission to the Major

College of Engineering students may be admitted to the Civil Engineering major if they are maintaining a cumulative GPA of 2.000 or better and grades of C or better in the following courses: MATH 131, ENGIN 111 (or equivalent), CHEM 111 and ENGLWRIT 112.


ENGIN 111 Introduction to Civil and Environmental Engineering
121CEE Measurements
CHEM 111/112 General Chemistry for Science and Engineering Majors
MATH 131/132 Calculus I, II
ENGLWRIT 112 College Writing
PHYSICS 151/153 General Physics I, General Physics Lab

240 Statics
241 Strength of Materials I
260 Probability and Statistics in Civil and Environmental Engineering
270 Systems Analysis and Economics for Civil Engineers
ECON 103 Introduction to Microeconomics
PHYSICS 152/154 General Physics II
MATH 233 Multivariable Calculus
MATH 331 Differential Equations
M&I-ENG 230 Thermodynamics

310 Transportation Systems
320 Soil Mechanics
331 Structural Analysis
357 Elementary Fluid Mechanics
370 Environmental Engineering Principles
371 Water and Wastewater Systems
433 Design of Reinforced Concrete Structures or
434 Design of Steel Structures
ENGIN 351 Writing in Engineering

486 CE-ENGIN Design Project
CE-ENGIN Senior Electives (4)
Additional Elective (1)
Biological Sciences Elective

The undergraduate program in Civil Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (EAC/ABET).

Civil and Environmental Engineering | Courses | Faculty