Graduate Program Civil and Environmental Engineering

PSU graduate mathematics students working in a lab

Civil and Environmental Engineering Master's Degree and Doctorate Overview

PSU Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science

A master’s or doctorate degree in civil and environmental engineering at Portland State University is your first step toward furthering your career as a professional engineer. Break the mold and improve the lives of others with an advanced degree and modern technical training in civil and environmental engineering.

Our graduate programs offer research specializations that lead to real-world impacts in structural, geotechnical, environmental and water resources, and transportation. Our flexible curriculum allows students to select courses outside the major to tailor a degree to their interests, and our robust research activities fund many graduate research and teaching assistants in support of our mission. Graduates may count their degree towards the professional experience requirements for licensure (typically up to 1-year credit).

We also offer a coursework-only Master of Engineering degree for working professional students who are less invested in a research experience.

Expert faculty in our program bring the best research and real-life perspectives into the classroom and challenge your curiosity to go beyond it. Graduates of our program form a strong alumni network, with many of them in leadership positions in the Oregon engineering community. Take your first step toward building a better future for yourself and your community.

About the Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science

The Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science includes five departments, 84 full-time faculty and more than 3,000 students. We offer academic programs that provide transformative opportunities within the classroom and beyond. If you join our college, you'll be connected to Portland's leading tech companies providing opportunities for internships, mentoring, networking, and long term careers. Our faculty offer research opportunities that allow for collaborative or individual study, culturing creativity and innovation. If you want to push what’s possible, in Portland and far beyond, accelerate your career with a graduate degree from the Maseeh College of Engineering and Computer Science.

Degree Details

Civil and Environmental Engineering Master's Degree or Doctorate: Why PSU?

Our program has a tradition and culture of success and our students benefit from working closely with faculty who are highly engaged in research and dedicated to teaching. For our graduate students, our high research activity (over $3 million annually) means access to funded graduate research assistantships and faculty that are leaders in their fields. Our master’s graduates are in high demand for their technical and professional skills. Recent graduates of the Ph.D. program have obtained tenure-track faculty positions at Utah State University, the University of Arizona, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, and post-doctoral research positions at Penn State University, University of Alabama, and others.

Our four core research strengths include multimodal urban transportation, resilient and innovative urban infrastructure, water resources and management, and environmental chemistry. Our highly active research groups and centers include the Fluvial, Oceanic, and Water-level Sciences (FLOWS) Laboratory; Water Quality Research Group Laboratory infrastructure Testing and Applied Research (iSTAR) Laboratory; Sustainable Urban Planning & Engineering Research Lab (SuperLab); and Transportation, Technology and People (TTP) Lab.

Our urban location places us within one of the most innovative and exciting cities in the U.S. Cutting-edge building, structure, transportation and environmental projects are all within walking, biking, or transit distance to campus. Most major engineering employers are in the Portland area and we have strong connections to them and the regional governments who hire our students for internships and full-time positions.

What can I do with a master's degree or doctorate in Civil and Environmental Engineering?

Civil and environmental engineers are in high demand. Civil and environmental engineers plan, design, manage and construct all of the public and private infrastructure that is the foundation of our modern society, including multimodal streets and highways, public transportation systems, water, and wastewater distribution systems, energy systems, buildings, bridges, and dams.

With a graduate degree, you will be grounded with the real-world knowledge and skills you need to succeed. You will be prepared to enter the field with significant technical credentials that are highly valued by employers.

Most of our alumni are working for consulting engineering firms or governmental agencies. Our bachelor’s degree also prepares students for graduate engineering programs and many have pursued advanced degrees in our program as well as the University of Washington, University of California, Berkeley, and many others.

Featured Courses

  • CE 574 Unit Operations of Environmental Engineering
  • CE 580 Chemistry of Environmental Toxins
  • CE 541 Advanced Soil Mechanics
  • CE 542 In Situ Behavior & Testing of Soils
  • CE 523 Vibration Analysis in Structural Engineering
  • CE 524 Matrix & Computer Methods in Structural Analysis
  • CE 563 Transportation & Logistics Modeling & Optimization
  • CE 559 Transportation Operations


  • CE 589 Advanced Fluid Mechanics
  • CE 570 Groundwater Modeling
  • CE 543 Intro to Seismology & Site Evaluation
  • CE 544 Advanced Shallow Foundation Design
  • CE 518 Prestressed Concrete Design
  • CE 537 Earthquake Engineering
  • CE 593 Bicycle & Pedestrian Engineering
  • CE 558 Public Transportation Systems

Accreditation & Ranking

Portland State University is fully accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).