Civil Engineering (MS)

Civil Engineering (MS)

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The MS in Civil Engineering supports the mission of The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley by preparing students who are globally competitive to effectively practice engineering with professionalism and a commitment to ethnical responsibilities. Students will be afforded opportunities to meet and interact with practicing engineers, businesses, and governmental agencies as well as to participate in professional engineering organizations and in research. The program prepares students for local, regional, or worldwide employment in the engineering profession with either a 30‐hour degree program if the student completes a thesis or a 36‐hour degree program without a thesis. Students will select one of four tracks: Construction and Structures, Geotechnical and Transportation, Energy and Utility Infrastructure, and Environmental and Water Resources.

The Thesis Track is designed to provide depth in one of the areas of concentration, and to promote cross‐cutting, inquiry‐based research. Students in the Thesis option are required to take a minimum of four elective courses from one selected concentration area. Students are required develop and successfully defend a thesis proposal, and subsequently execute, document and defend the proposed research to meet graduation requirements.

The Non‐Thesis Track is designed to provide advanced knowledge and technical capacity across all four areas of concentration. Students are required to take at least unique two electives from each concentration area.

  • Why UTRGV?

    • Ranked #79 among 300+ national universities by Washington Monthly in 2018
    • Accredited, cutting edge degree program
    • Experienced, dedicated faculty
    • Affordable tuition (ranked #1 in net price among national universities by Washington Monthly in 2018 and #3 most affordable university in America 2018 by BestValueSchools.com)
    • Demonstrated student success in research, professional certification and career advancement
  • Admission Requirements

    Step #1: Submit a UTRGV Graduate Application at www.utrgv.edu/gradapply. There is no application fee.

    Step #2: Request your official transcripts to be sent electronically to gradapps@utrgv.edu or mailed to:

    The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley
    The Graduate College
    Marialice Shary Shivers Bldg. 1.158
    1201 W. University Drive
    Edinburg, TX 78539-2999

     
    *Please Note: If you are a graduate of UTPA, UTB/TSC, or UTRGV you do not need to request an official transcript to be sent to the Graduate College.

    Review and submit all Program Requirements:

    • Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering or a bachelor’s degree in another field and courses and/or experience that prepare the applicant for graduate work in civil engineering.
    • Undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0. Students with an undergraduate GPA between 2.75 and 3.0 may be considered for conditional admission.
    • Official transcripts from each institution attended (must be submitted directly to UTRGV).
    • Submission of 3 letters of recommendation from professional or academic sources
    • Letter of Intent detailing professional goals and reasons for pursuing the graduate degree.
    • Resume.
    • GRE General Test. GRE test scores are valid for 5 years. A waiver of the GRE requirement will be granted to applicants who show proof of completing a graduate degree (master’s or doctoral).

    Additional requirements for domestic applicants who attended foreign universities:

    • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. TOEFL and IELTS scores are valid for 2 years. For additional information, visit the Additional Documents for Domestic Applicants who Attend Foreign Universities section of our website.
    • Certified English translation of educational records.

    Additional requirements for international applicants:

    • TOEFL or IELTS Language Proficiency Test with minimum scores: 550 on paper-based, 213 on computer based, or 79 on Internet-based for the TOEFL; 6.5 for the IELTS. For additional information, visit the English Proficiency Exam section of our website.
    • Certified English translation of educational records.
    • Financial   Documentation  showing sufficient funds to cover all expenses (living and academic) for the first year of study. For additional information, visit the Financial Documentation section of our website.
    • Immigration  documents, including a current copy of your valid passport. For additional information, visit the Immigration Documents section of our website.

    UPDATE ON INTERNATIONAL ADMISSIONS FROM U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT:

    • SEVP regulations prohibit the issuance of a Form I-20 based on conditional admission, effective July 13, 2016. University officials can only issue a Form I-20 when students have met all standards for admission for the program of study listed on the Form I-20. These standards for admission include any English proficiency requirements.

  • Program Contact

    Program Coordinator: Dr. Philip Park

    Office: Brownsville Campus, BSETB 2.554A

    E-Mail: philip.park@utrgv.edu

  • Deadlines

    Deadlines:

    Applications will be accepted year round and prospective students are encouraged to apply at least 2 months before classes start to ensure a timely application review.  Applying early will also give prospective students the best opportunity to be considered for scholarships and other possible funding opportunities.

    *Notes:

    • This program only admits applicants during Fall and Spring semesters.
  • Tuition Estimate

    Civil Engineering (MS) Thesis Option
    Residency Per 3-Credit Hour Course Semester (9-Credit Hours) Total Estimated Cost
    Texas Resident $1,359.29 $3,563.87 $16,311.48
    Non-Resident/International $2,625.29 $7,361.87 $31,503.48
    Civil Engineering (MS) Non Thesis
    Residency Per 3-Credit Hour Course Semester (9-Credit Hours) Total Estimated Cost
    Texas Resident $1,359.29 $3,563.87 $13,592.90
    Non-Resident/International $2,625.29 $7,361.87 $26,252.90


    *We estimate that tuition and fees will closely approximate the rates shown above; however, rates are subject to change. Please note that the rates above are estimated for on-campus students and those enrolled in 16-week online programs. The rate is different for Accelerated Online Programs (AOP). Visit the tuition and fees page for detailed information.

  • Course Requirements

     
    Required Courses 12
    CIVE 6359: Advanced Construction Scheduling 3
    CIVE 6331: Infrastructure Engineering 3
    CIVE 6341: Advanced Water Resources Engineering 3
    CIVE 6351: Advanced Pavement Design and Analysis 3
     
    Choose One of the Following options:
     
    Thesis Option:
    Prescribed Electives 12
    (at least three courses must have the CIVE prefix):
    Construction and Structures
    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering 3
    CIVE 6323: Building Information Modeling 3
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6353: Slope Stability and Retaining Walls 3
    CIVE 6361: Theory of Structures 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
     
    Energy and Utility Infrastructure
    CIVE 6323: Building Information Modeling 3
    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering 3
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
     
    Environmental and Water Resources
    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering 3
    CIVE 6343: Water Quality Engineering 3
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6345: Geo-Environmental Engineering 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
    MECE 6362: Finite Element Analysis 3
     
    Geotechnical and Transportation
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6352: Advanced Geotechnical Engineering 3
    CIVE 6353: Slope Stability and Retaining Walls 3
    CIVE 6354: Advanced Transportation Engineering 3
    CIVE 6355: Advanced Traffic Engineering 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
    MECE 6360: Advanced Mechanics of Materials 3
    MECE 6362: Finite Element Analysis 3
     
    Capstone Requirement 6
    CIVE 7300: Master’s Thesis I 3
    CIVE 7301: Master’s Thesis II 3
     
    Total graduate hours for degree: 30
     
    Non-Thesis Option
    Prescribed Electives 24
    Choose TWO courses from EACH concentration
    (at least one course must have the CIVE prefix):
     
    Construction and Structures
    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering 3
    CIVE 6323: Building Information Modeling 3
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6353: Slope Stability and Retaining Walls 3
    CIVE 6361: Theory of Structures 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
     
    Energy and Utility Infrastructure
    CIVE 6323: Building Information Modeling 3
    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering 3
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
     
    Environmental and Water Resources
    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering 3
    CIVE 6343: Water Quality Engineering 3
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6345: Geo-Environmental Engineering 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
    MECE 6362: Finite Element Analysis 3
     
    Geotechnical and Transportation
    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure 3
    CIVE 6352: Advanced Geotechnical Engineering 3
    CIVE 6353: Slope Stability and Retaining Walls 3
    CIVE 6354: Advanced Transportation Engineering 3
    CIVE 6355: Advanced Traffic Engineering 3
    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering 3
    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis 3
    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods 3
    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis 3
    MECE 6360: Advanced Mechanics of Materials 3
    MECE 6362: Finite Element Analysis 3
     
    Capstone Requirement
    Course or extra‐curricular project report
     
    Total graduate hours for degree: 36
     

    Course Descriptions:

    CIVE 6359: Advanced Construction Scheduling              

    Advanced planning, managing, development and control of construction project schedules. Topics include networks, bar charts, critical path method, program evaluation and review technique, graphical evaluation and review technique, linear scheduling, Monte Carlo simulation, schedule update and compression, time cost tradeoff, resource allocation, cash flow analysis, time control and projection, lean construction, and construction productivity.


    CIVE 6322: Construction Estimating              

    Conceptual and detailed estimating in construction projects: quantity take‐off, cost estimating of material, labor, equipment, overhead, and profit, bidding practices and strategies, traditional and computerized estimating techniques.


    CIVE 6323: Building Information Modeling              

    This is a comprehensive course that focuses on the practical application of BIM in building construction projects. Topics include fundamentals of BIM, common terminology, BIM communication and collaboration, federated model process, BIM assessment, structure of a BIM Project, tools, applications, selection of tools, contracts liability for BIM, BIM addendum, limitation of coverage in bonds and insurance, risk management for BIM, process for BIM adoption, introduction to Autodesk Revit software.


    CIVE 6331: Infrastructure Engineering              

    The course presents unified approach to the design and management of civil infrastructure systems. Civil infrastructure comprises the physical systems for six critical sectors ‐ transportation, water, environment, energy, built environment, and telecommunications. Topics include analytical methods, development of data collection technologies, life cycle cost, prioritization, and optimization. Software tools for infrastructure management decision making introduced and critical infrastructure protection addressed. Types of infrastructure considered include pavements (roads and airports), bridges, drainage and sewer systems, water supply systems, and power supply facilities.


    CIVE 6332: Geothermal Engineering               

    The course is designed to support the development of advanced knowledge and skills involved with geothermal heating and cooling technologies. This course will provide technical knowledge, and practical training in the design of geothermal heating/cooling systems. Topics include: introduction and overview, economics, marketing and demand reduction, soil and rock classification, selecting, sizing and designing the heat pump system, designing the ground heat exchanger, energy piles and other thermoactive structures.


    CIVE 6341: Advanced Water Resources Engineering               

    This is an advanced course of Water Resources Engineering in formation of three credit hours online lecture. The course covers topics of general fluid mechanics regarding internal and external incompressible viscous flow including pipe flow and boundary layer, water distributions and control, watershed hydrologic analysis, stormwater drainage systems using river analysis system.


    CIVE 6343: Water Quality Engineering              

    This course will involve detailed study of the factors and processes the affect the physical, chemical and biological quality of water in streams, lakes and reservoirs. These processes will be described using mathematical formulations for simulation and prediction to support environmental management decisions. With an understanding of the mathematical basis for representing environmental processes, students will then develop simple numerical models and apply existing software applications to simulate the transport, transformation and fate of substances in the environment.


    CIVE 6344: Risk, Sustainability and Resilience in Civil Infrastructure              

    This course introduces the inter‐connected concepts of sustainability, risk and resilience in Civil Infrastructure. Emphasizes sustainability as an extension of current practices and standards. Introduces deterministic hazard analysis and probabilistic risk analysis as mechanisms for supporting risk management and decision making for resiliency. Application examples include water planning and treatment, building design and construction, community design and construction and more.


    CIVE 6351: Advanced Pavement Design and Analysis              

    This course provides an overview of the design and maintenance of rigid and flexible pavements for sidewalks, trails, urban streets, highways, taxiways, and runways using a variety of modern design standards and techniques. It further covers quality control/quality assurance of pavement mix designs. This course also focuses on asset management of pavements, including data collection and condition evaluation, degradation curves, database management, and project prioritization techniques.


    CIVE 6352: Advanced Geotechnical Engineering               

    This course focuses on the research areas of site characterization and geotechnical aspects of the design and construction of foundation systems. The topics include the site investigation, shallow and deep (piles and caissons) foundation designs, excavation support systems, groundwater control, slope stability, soil improvement methods (compaction, soil reinforcement, etc.), and construction monitoring.


    CIVE 6353: Slope Stability and Retaining Walls               

    This course focuses on the research areas of methods used for slope stability analysis both at the static and seismic loading conditions and methods used for earth pressure calculations in earth and water retaining structures. The topics include review of geotechnical properties of soil, static and seismic stability analysis of slopes, slope stabilization methods, calculation of earth pressures in retaining structures, design of retaining wall, sheet pile, and braced excavation system for static and seismic loading.


    CIVE 6354: Advanced Transportation Engineering              

    Advanced Transportation Engineering is a course to prepare students for a career in transportation engineering design and operations. The course covers topics such as multi‐regime traffic flow models, traffic simulation, non‐motorized facilities, fundamentals of signal timing, trip generation, and traffic forecasting. The course will also explore transportation data collection, cleaning, and analysis techniques for modern problems in the field.


    CIVE 6355: Advanced Traffic Engineering               

    Advanced Traffic Engineering focuses on traffic operations and management, covering actuated signal control, signal coordination, adaptive timing systems, transit signal priority, emergency and railroad preemption, signal communication, and multimodal traffic signals. The course will also explore freeway related topics, including interchange operations and managed motorway strategies.


    CIVE 6356: Advanced Characterization of Highway Materials              

    The course covers various constituent materials in highway pavement structures with emphasis on asphalt concrete, aggregate‐soil mixtures, geotextiles, and bituminous liquids. Materials properties, design, quality control and methods of construction will be described. Forensic studies, distress surveys, non‐destructive and accelerated pavement testing are also discussed.

    CIVE 6361: Theory of Structures               

    Theoretical background of matrix structural analysis and the applications to framed structure. The topics include energy concept, construction of member stiffness matrix, direct stiffness method, computational solution technique, and introduction to nonlinear structural analysis.

    CIVE 6399: Topics in Civil Engineering               

    Preparation of a thesis proposal to fulfill the requirement for the master's degree under the thesis option.


    CIVE 7300: Master's Thesis I               

    Preparation of a thesis proposal to fulfill the requirement for the master's degree under the thesis option.


    CIVE 7301: Master's Thesis II               

    Preparation of a thesis to fulfill the requirement for the master's degree under the thesis option.


    MANE 6340: Operations Research and Analysis                [3-0]

    Concepts in mathematical modeling, stochastic processes, queuing theory, linear programming, integer programming, dynamic programming, non‐linear programming, and inventory models.

    Prerequisite:Consent of instructor


    MATH 6364: Statistical Methods               [3-0]

    This is a course in the concepts, methods and usage of statistical data analysis. Topics include test of hypotheses and confidence intervals; linear and multiple regression analysis; concepts of experimental design, randomized blocks and factorial analysis; a brief introduction to non‐parametric methods; and the use of statistical software.

    Prerequisite:Department approval


    MATH 6375: Numerical Analysis                [3-0]

    This course provides a fundamental introduction to numerical techniques used in mathematics, computer science, physical sciences and engineering. The course covers basic theory on classical fundamental topics in numerical analysis such as: computer arithmetic, approximation theory, numerical differentiation and integrations, solution of linear and nonlinear algebraic systems, numerical solution of ordinary differential equations and error analysis of the abovementioned topics. Connections are made to contemporary research in mathematics and its applications to the real world.

    Prerequisite:MATH 2318 Linear Algebra and 2415 Calculus III with grades of “C” or better; and computer programming; or consent of instructor.


    MECE 6360: Advanced Mechanics of Materials                [3-0]

    The topics covered in this course include: theory of elasticity, principles of stress and strain, inelastic material behavior, applications of energy methods, bending and torsion of general cross‐sections, curved beams, elastic and inelastic stability of columns and flat plates.

    Prerequisite:Graduate standing in engineering.


    MECE 6362: Finite Element Analysis                [3-0]

    An introduction to the theory of finite element methods, with application to stress analysis, natural frequency extraction and heat transfer. Strategies for meshing and applying boundary conditions are also examined. Existing codes are used for determining finite element solutions.

    Prerequisite:Graduate standing in engineering.

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