Civil Engineering

The K-State department of civil engineering is a community of learners committed to providing outstanding educational opportunities to graduate students. We also conduct advanced research in civil infrastructure systems and environmental preservation.


Doctor of Philosophy

The doctorate degree program is a research-oriented curriculum designed to prepare students for advanced research and university-level academic positions in civil engineering as well as industry. This program requires a minimum of 90 credit hours or 60 credit hours, beyond the master’s degree, including at least 30 hours of research credit. A dissertation of original research of sufficient quality and importance to merit publication in refereed journals should be completed by all doctoral students.

Master of Science

The master’s program is a broad-based curriculum designed to prepare students for advanced positions in civil engineering industry, consulting and public agencies, as well as for further graduate studies.

The civil engineering master’s degree requires one of the following three options:

  • 24 hours of coursework and six hours of thesis; or
  • 8 hours of coursework and two hours of project; or
  • For distance students, 30 hours of coursework and a final exam.

Research areas

Environmental engineering

The focus of this research is planning, design and management of facilities and systems that protect public health and quality of the environment. This includes production and distribution of potable water, treatment and disposal of municipal and industrial wastewater, management of solid and hazardous wastes, remediation of contaminated soil and groundwater, and air pollution control.

Geotechnical engineering

This research is focused on design and construction of foundations for structures, bridges, earth embankments, retaining walls and bulkheads, pavements for highways and airports, and waste-containment structures.

Structural engineering

The focus of this research is design, construction and rehabilitation of a wide variety of buildings and bridges using concrete, steel and other composite materials.

Transportation and materials engineering

This research is focused on planning, design, materials, construction and operation of roadways, highways, railways, airports and urban mass-transit systems.

Water resources engineering

The focus of this research on the design, construction and management of structures and systems for flood control; and to provide water for drinking and household uses, irrigation, power production, recreation and wildlife.

Application process

Minimum admission requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering (other areas of engineering could be admitted with some deficiency courses at UG level)
  • Cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • GRE scores with a minimum of 80% in the quantitative section (unless the bachelor’s degree is from an ABET-accredited institution)

International student requirements

Test Minimum score
IBT TOEFL (interest-based) 79
Pearson Test of English (PTE) 58

Application deadlines

  • Jan. 8 for fall (August) enrollment
  • Aug. 1 for spring (January) enrollment
  • Dec. 1 for summer (June) enrollment

Financial assistance

The civil engineering graduate program offers competitive graduate research assistantships (GRAs) and graduate teaching assistantships (GTAs) to well-qualified applicants. Both GRA and GTA positions provide a stipend and tuition support. GRA support is provided through cutting-edge research projects funded by various federal and state agencies, and the private sector. In order to be appointed as a GTA, a candidate must have a minimum score of 50 on the TSE or SPEAK or a minimum speaking component score of 22 on the TOEFL iBT. A limited number of fellowships are also available at the college and university level.

English language program (ELP)

Kansas State University offers English language graduate support courses. ELP academic advisers help students admitted to study in a degree program make the transition from the ELP into their academic departments.