College of Engineering, Informatics, and Applied Sciences2021-2022

Department of Civil Engineering, Construction Management, and Environmental Engineering

Civil and Environmental Engineering, Doctor of Philosophy

Learning Outcomes

Purpose Statement

The Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering trains students to develop and solve high level, complex research problems under the umbrella of Infrastructure Resilience within a specific emphasis area of Civil and Environmental Engineering: Transportation, Water Resources, Structures, or Environmental. Students will learn the set of analytical, experimental and computational tools necessary to identify, elucidate, and propose and carry out solutions to problems within these emphasis areas focused on current topics related Integrated Infrastructure Systems, Smart Infrastructure Systems, Infrastructure Planning, Infrastructure Finance and Investment, Infrastructure Security, Infrastructure Management, and the impact of Infrastructure on the Environment. 
 
The Transportation emphasis will focus on safety, efficiency, and sustainability within the context of infrastructure resilience and smart system technologies.  The Water Resources emphasis will focus on the evaluation, planning, design, and rehabilitation of new and existing sustainable and resilient water resources infrastructure. The Environmental emphasis will focus on the responsible use of resources to minimize human impacts on the natural environment and create a sustainable built environment.  The Structures emphasis will focus on robustness of infrastructure design and use within a wider operational context to address changing life-cycle costs due to security and climate fragility concerns. 
 
Problems within Civil and Environmental Engineering and specifically Infrastructure are inherently interdisciplinary, and students will learn the skill set necessary to work with diverse groups to solve multifaceted problems which span multiple disciplines.  This training will occur through close collaboration and mentoring with faculty who are experts within the various specialties and traditional graduate level coursework.  Those graduating with a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering have a broad range of employment opportunities, including traditional academic positions; research and development careers within industry (infrastructure technology, engineering consulting, and infrastructure management), and engineering and/or research positions in National Laboratories.
 
This program is designed for students with a strong preparation in the engineering sciences, including a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil or Environmental Engineering or related field, with research interests aligned with those identified above, who have the desire to excel within the fields of Infrastructure and Civil and Environmental Engineering.


Student Learning Outcomes
  • Explain the major theories, research methods, and technical approaches within Civil and Environmental Engineering (CENE) and its effect on infrastructure, as well as the impact of these elements on society. 
  • Identify, explain, synthesize, and apply the fundamental concepts of infrastructure and CENE, including the inter-relationships between various infrastructure systems, the impact of changing environmental conditions on infrastructure resilience, the relationship between infrastructure management and public policy, and the interdisciplinary nature of infrastructure itself.
  • Identify, explain, synthesize, and apply expertise within one of the following CENE technical focus areas: water resources, environmental, transportation, structures, or others as identified.
    • The Transportation emphasis will focus on safety, efficiency, and sustainability within the context of infrastructure resilience and smart system technologies.  Students will apply fundamental principles of transportation engineering through state of the art transportation analysis techniques including advanced sensing systems, connected infrastructure, and exploitation of large and emerging data sets.
    • The Water Resources emphasis will focus on the evaluation, planning, design, and rehabilitation of new and existing infrastructure. Students will explore current topics, learn modern techniques, and critically evaluate alternative methods and materials to construct sustainable and resilient water resources infrastructure using creative thinking to meet societal and ecosystem water allocation needs.
    • The Environmental emphasis will focus on the responsible use of resources to minimize human impacts on the natural environment and create a sustainable built environment. Students will explore design, construction and management strategies that achieve the goals of the sustainable built environment and demonstrate the ability to collaborate with the various professional disciplines required to deliver performance-based engineering solutions with minimal environmental footprint.
    • The Structures emphasis will focus on robustness of infrastructure design and use within a wider operational context to address changing life-cycle costs due to security and climate fragility concerns.  Students will apply fundamental principles of structural engineering using emerging technologies, state-of-the-art materials, performance monitoring systems, and forensic data sets to develop solutions to identified concerns.
  • Identify, survey, analyze, organize, and critically distill information from the scientific literature within a CENE emphasis area and creatively identify open research questions.
  • Independently apply appropriate expertise, methods, and tools to the creative design, execution, and assessment of an investigation that addresses original CENE  research questions.
  • Compose and engage in highly-effective written and oral communication in CENE areas; demonstrate clear argumentation and logical cohesion in a variety of written and oral communications, including scholarly dissemination, funding requests, industry, and lay-communication.

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