The Department of Civil Engineering offers graduate programs leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Within these degrees, there are six primary emphasis areas: Applied Fluid Mechanics, Construction Materials, Geotechnical Engineering, Project Management, Structural Engineering and Transportation Systems.
Master of Science
The Master of Science degree program is open to all individuals who have a four-year baccalaureate degree. A degree in engineering is not required for admission, but most entering students have an undergraduate Civil Engineering degree.
There are two options available for students pursuing a Master of Science degree. The student may prepare a research thesis or may take additional courses in lieu of completing a thesis.
The thesis option requires the preparation of a research thesis that is a part of the total credit hours required for the degree. Students intending to pursue a doctoral degree usually choose the thesis option. Completion of a research thesis is excellent preparation for the research necessary for a doctorate if a student is inclined to pursue that degree in the future.
The non-thesis option does not require the preparation of a research thesis but does require completion of additional coursework. This degree option provides the student with additional directed study through coursework. Normally students pursuing the non-thesis option will not pursue a doctorate.
Except for the core courses required by different disciplines, there are no formal course requirements for students pursuing a Master of Science degree. The program normally contains some engineering design and a minimum of ten credits of engineering science, advanced mathematics and basic science. In addition, each student in the thesis option must complete an advanced research project. The final program of study must contain at least 30 hours of graduate credit including the core curriculum requirements. Of these 30 credits, no more than six hours may be thesis research (CE 8910 ) for those students pursuing the thesis option. At least half of the remaining hours must be from courses numbered 8000 or above.
The final examination for the MS non-thesis option is an oral or written exam (or a combination of the two) consisting of questions related to fundamental knowledge in a student’s chosen area of concentration (i.e., applied fluid mechanics, construction materials, geotechnical engineering, project management, structural engineering, or transportation systems).
The final examination for the MS thesis option is an oral exam consisting of a student’s MS thesis defense and questions related to fundamental knowledge in a student’s chosen area of concentration (i.e. applied fluid mechanics, construction materials, geotechnical engineering, project management, structural engineering, or transportation systems).
Combined BS/MS in Civil Engineering
Civil Engineering undergraduates at Clemson may begin a Master of Science degree program while completing the Bachelor of Science degree and use a limited number of courses to satisfy the requirements of both their undergraduate and graduate degrees. The following requirements apply:
- Undergraduate students must have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.4 and must have completed the junior year prior to taking graduate courses. Students are required to maintain this minimum grade-point average to continue enrollment in combined degree program.
- Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores are not required to be submitted as part of their Graduate School application; however, applicants are encouraged to submit GRE scores to receive full consideration for graduate fellowships and assistantships upon completion of the BS degree.
- Up to six semester hours from any 6000- or 8000-level civil engineering courses may be used to satisfy the requirements of the BS degree. These courses may be counted as technical requirements or electives. Undergraduate students are required to have selected one of their technical requirements from the area of transportation systems, geotechnical engineering, or environmental engineering.
- Since approval of the graduate program of study is required by the student’s graduate advisory committee, students should consult with their academic advisors before selecting courses to be included in the graduate program.
- Students in a combined degree program are conditionally accepted to the graduate program until completion of the BS degree requirements. Students are not eligible for graduate assistantships until full acceptance is granted.
Students interested in this combined degree program should consult the Civil Engineering Graduate Program Coordinator, the undergraduate advisor and the Civil Engineering Honors Coordinator (if applicable). Students pursuing an optional emphasis area in their undergraduate degree program may substitute 6000-level courses for any 4000-level counterpart taken to meet the requirements of an emphasis area. Application for this program should be made by the end of the junior year, but no later than one semester prior to expected BS graduation. Application details are available in the Undergraduate Announcements.