The Roman aqueducts, the London Bridge, the Hoover Dam, JFK airport — civil projects are found worldwide and throughout history. Civil engineers had a hand in the construction of each, and with quickly growing populations straining today’s infrastructures, they’re sure to spend time improving and building upon our built environment now and into the future.

Join the School of Engineering's BS program in Civil Engineering and be a part of their ranks. You’ll train for a broad and exciting field with major impacts on society and its infrastructure. Our program is strongly practice-oriented, heavily emphasizing design, to prepare you for entry-level positions in any civil engineering sub-discipline or for graduate study.

The Civil Engineering Department expects that within 3 to 5 years of graduating, its graduates will:

  • Be working in a responsible position in civil engineering or a closely-related profession (not including those who are engaged in full-time graduate study);
  • Have advanced in their careers to a position of higher responsibility; and/or
  • Be engaged in some form of continuing education, including, but not limited to, graduate education, professional development programs, relevant short courses and seminars, in-house training programs, or similar activities.

The BS in Civil Engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET (www.abet.org).

Student Outcomes

Program outcomes are those abilities and skills that graduates are expected to have upon graduation with a BS in Civil Engineering degree. For these, the Department has adopted the 11 fundamental outcomes specified by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). They cover the full breadth and depth of the abilities and skills needed by modern engineering professionals. They are listed below with brief discussions of how each relates to the civil engineering profession.

(a)  An ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science and engineering. Virtually all of civil engineering involves the application of mathematics and basic sciences to the solution of real-world infrastructure problems. Fundamental engineering skills evolve directly from science and mathematics. Students are immersed in these applications across all subdisciplines of civil engineering.

(b) An ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data. Civil engineers must engage in a number of basic experiments, and be aware of how to collect, organize, report and interpret the results of basic experiments and direct field observations of infrastructure operations. In the program, students are exposed to a wide range of laboratory experiments, including experiments in fluid mechanics, material behavior under loading, soil properties and behavior, and others. They also are exposed to the collection of field data related to environmental conditions and problems, highway and street traffic, and the monitoring of structures.

(c) An ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints, such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability and sustainability. The program is heavily design-oriented. Several courses include full design-project laboratories, including Steel Sesign Project, Transportation Engineering, Foundation Design, Senior Design I & II, and others. Many additional courses have design components, and all students finish their academic programs with a comprehensive civil engineering capstone project. As the student progresses, the complexity of design applications increases, as do the number and breadth of practical constraints on potential solutions.

(d) An ability to function on multidisciplinary teams. Modern engineering is not done by stand-alone engineers. Any significant project involves several engineers, perhaps with different engineering backgrounds, as well as non-engineers (planners, architects, financiers, managers, etc). Students have the opportunity to work in teams in several courses, but particularly in the capstone design project.

(e) An ability to identify, formulate and solve engineering problems. Engineers do not just solve problems brought to them by others. Engineers must spot problems before they become evident and describe them in terms that expedite their solution. As students progress through the program, they increase their participation in identifying and framing problems, as well as in developing comprehensive solutions.

(f) An understanding of professional and ethical responsibility. All professionals must be keenly aware of their general and professional ethical responsibilities to society in general, and to others who require and pay for their services. Like many professions, engineers, and civil engineers in particular, have specific ethical codes issued by professional societies with which they must comply. General ethical considerations are discussed throughout the curriculum, and several courses have a strong focus on the basis for, and application of, professional ethical code.

(g) The ability to communicate effectively. To be an effective professional in the modern world, one must be an effective communicator. Engineers must explain their views and solutions to problems in ways that can be understood clearly by other professionals and by the public. Modern communication involves written and oral forms, and a wide variety of electronic media. NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering students are exposed to, and are required to use, all of these methods to prepare for their careers.

(h) The broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, environmental and societal context. Engineers do not solve problems in a vacuum. Everything engineering professionals do affects the world around them. In the modern world economy, the “world” includes local neighborhoods, regions, states, nations and, indeed, the world. Solutions must be couched in a firm understanding of the impacts they will have on the environment, the economy and society.

(i) A recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in, lifelong learning. The engineering profession changes rapidly with the technological world. While general principles tend to change slowly, the specific materials, analysis techniques and approaches to engineering change quite rapidly. The body of knowledge graduates leaves with must be updated constantly and expanded during their professional lives. The program provides opportunities for students to appreciate this need, and develop useful skills for self-learning, now and in the future.

(j) Knowledge of contemporary issues. Engineering students study in a context in which local, regional and national infrastructure issues are in the forefront. Current issues and problems are discussed in virtually all courses, and students’ attention is called to immediate issues as they arise.

(k) An ability to use the techniques, skills and modern engineering tools necessary for professional practice. The program is frequently updated to incorporate the latest approaches to engineering solutions, and to include the use of modern engineering tools. Important “tools” include a variety of computer programs for data analysis, simulation and design. Many course laboratories use the most up-to-date techniques and software packages available to engineering professionals.

Transfer Students and Credits

The Department of Civil Engineering has established additional requirements and interpreted the Institute guidelines (found on this page; additional information can be found in the catalog).

The 128-credit curriculum is fulfilled by combining transfer credits, credits by examination and courses taken at the School of Engineering. Transfer credits in mathematics, chemistry, physics, humanities and social sciences are evaluated by the Office of Academic Affairs with faculty guidance from specific departments. Transfer credits in civil engineering and other technical areas are evaluated by the faculty of the Department of Civil Engineering. The length of time for a transfer student to complete the BS in Civil Engineering depends upon 3 factors:

  • The total number of transfer credits awarded;
  • The particular courses required to complete degree requirements; and
  • Enrollment status (part-time or full-time).

Transfer students should understand that they can be awarded transfer credits for courses with a C grade or better and then only for courses that are applicable toward the BS in Civil Engineering curriculum.

A residency requirement also must be fulfilled. To earn a BS, a student must complete a minimum of 30 credits at the School of Engineering at the junior or senior level (courses numbered CE 3XXX or CE 4XXX). These credits must include the design project, CE 4814.

Part-Time Students

You may register as a part-time student (fewer than 12 credits a semester), though the department does not offer many undergraduate courses in the evening If you are enrolled as a part-time student, you should maintain close contact with your academic advisers to work out the details of course sequencing efficiently and effectively.

Department