PhD in Civil Engineering

Degree Requirements

PhD programs are committee administered and tailored to fit the needs of each individual student. A minimum of 72 credit hours, including the credit hours taken during the MS program beyond the bachelor’s degree, are required. Students who received the MS degree from other than MU may transfer up to 30 hours of credit from their MS degree. The candidate must pass a comprehensive examination and submit and defend a dissertation at a final oral examination.

Residency Requirement

A student must complete at least two nine-hour semesters or three six-hour semesters in an 18-month period at MU. All courses taken to satisfy the residency requirement must be approved by the student’s doctoral program committee. Correspondence and off-campus courses may not be counted toward the residency requirements.

Qualifying for Candidacy

Students are accepted for advisement upon CE Graduate Admissions Committee review. Formal acceptance to the PhD program is based on a qualifying examination during the first year of post-master’s work.

The Qualifying Examination is required to determine the formal acceptance to candidacy for the PhD. degree and is based on a written and/or oral examination administered by faculty members in the student’s area of concentration. The student, upon passing this examination, will be advised on the program of coursework that should be taken to prepare for the PhD. degree.

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Comprehensive Examination Process

Candidacy for a doctoral degree is established by passing the comprehensive examination. The comprehensive examination includes written and oral sections and is completed as the candidate is completing the prescribed coursework to determine if the PhD. candidate is adequately prepared to conduct the doctoral research. This examination will focus on the coursework and/or research/proposal writing. The student may be advised to take some additional coursework. A written proposal of the research must be distributed to the student’s doctoral committee for review after which an oral presentation and examination on the proposed work will be administrated.

Dissertation Requirements

The third examination, called the Defense of the Doctoral Dissertation, is required to determine if the PhD. degree should be awarded on the basis of the research that is presented. The student must submit the written dissertation to the committee members at least two weeks prior to the exam. This is an oral examination that is administered by the Doctoral Committee.

Graduate students are required to submit one copy of their dissertation or thesis to the Graduate School, 210 Jesse Hall.

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Application Deadlines

Priority admission and funding consideration are given to applications received by January 15th/October 1st. Applications submitted after January 15th/October 1st will be considered, with preference going to those received by May 1/December 1. Prospective students applying after May 1/December 1 will be considered for fall/spring admission on a case by case basis.

Admission Criteria

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 in last 2 years of coursework. Note: Lower than 3.0 GPA requires special action and substantiation such as good test scores on the GRE or other recognized examinations.
  • BS in engineering. Applicants with BS degrees in related fields may be considered for admission. If admitted, non-engineers are required to complete remedial courses as determined by their advisor and advisory committee.
  • GRE test is required but no minimum score set. Typical acceptance scores: around 300 for Verbal + Quantitative and 3.0 for Analytical.
  • Minimum TOEFL and IELTS scores for international students:  See language requirements set by the Graduate School.

Required Application Materials

Financial Aid from the Program

If you wish to be considered for financial aid, please complete the financial section of the departmental application.

Dr. Maria Fidalgo
Director of Graduate Studies