2020-21 University Catalog 
    Apr 22, 2024  
2020-21 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Civil Engineering

Roger Lindgren, Department Chair
C.J. Riley, Program Director, Master of Science in Civil Engineering
Sean St.Clair, Curriculum Coordinator
Professors: R. Lindgren, C. Riley, S. St.Clair
Associate Professors: M. Sleep
Assistant Professors: E. Cox, A Greer

Civil engineers design infrastructure—transportation networks, bridges, buildings, dams, communities, and water and waste management systems—for the enhancement of human welfare and protection of our environment. Oregon Tech’s freshman-to-master’s Civil Engineering degree program, the first such program in the Pacific Northwest, equips students to meet industry needs identified by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).

Degrees Offered

  • Master of Science in Civil Engineering
  • Master of Science and Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering (concurrent degree)
  • Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering

Career Opportunities

Upon completing the core curriculum, civil engineering students have a solid foundation in structural, transportation, water resources/ environmental, and geotechnical engineering. In their fourth and fifth years of study, students can then target specific careers with specialized technical electives. Graduates have career opportunities with consulting firms, government agencies, heavy construction contractors and industry.

Geotechnical engineering involves the design and construction of projects built on and of the earth. These projects include foundations for structures, earth embankments of soil and rock, dams, levees, and tunnels. In addition, geotechnical engineers predict reactions of the earth due to changes imposed by other engineered systems.

Structural engineering involves the planning, analysis and design of buildings and other structures using the principal construction materials of wood, steel, concrete and masonry. Graduates are familiar with current codes and standards, and are aware of trends in high-performance structures.

Transportation engineering is concerned with the planning, design, construction, operation, performance, evaluation and rehabilitation of transportation systems and facilities, such as streets, highways, bicycle and pedestrian facilities, railroads, mass transit, and air transportation systems.

Water resources and environmental engineering address the spectrum of water from supply to transport to use to discharge, and are at the junction of efforts to provide sustainable human and natural environments, in compliance with regulatory mandates. Graduates have opportunities in planning, design, and operation of hydraulic and water resource projects, floodplain management, or resource management issues.

Civil engineering graduates may consider a concurrent degree in environmental sciences to expand career opportunities with a broad spectrum of government agencies, consulting firms, and industry.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Oregon Tech Civil Engineering program is to prepare students for professional practice. To be prepared to practice as professionals, engineers must be able to act responsibly and ethically, understand their limits and the limits of the tools they use, communicate effectively, work well in teams, and, amid the changing landscape of the field of civil engineering, be able to pursue graduate-level education.


Civil engineering graduates will be able to:

  1. Practice as a professional civil engineer.
  2. Pursue advanced education in civil engineering or related fields.
  3. Act as responsible, effective and ethical citizens.
  4. Understand and effectively communicate the realistic constraints of civil engineering.
  5. Perform effectively in a multi-disciplinary environment.

Students enjoy a close relationship with full-time faculty with advanced engineering degrees who are also licensed professionals with many years of practical experience. Course offerings promote education in theory relevant to our civil engineering technical areas, engineering design and principles of sustainable development. These concepts are emphasized and integrated throughout the curriculum in a sequential manner.

Early in the curriculum, elements of the creative design process are introduced as students complete first-year design projects. While most freshman and sophomore courses are intended to provide a solid background in mathematics, communications, basic sciences, and engineering mechanics, certain courses provide additional concepts and methodologies supporting more advanced topics in engineering and professional practice.

At the junior level, students develop a broad civil engineering base. Junior courses include core topics in geotechnical, structural, transportation, and water resources engineering.

In the fourth year, students are required to complete an intensive engineering design project. This effort is focused on a professional-quality civil engineering design and includes essential elements of technical communications and group dynamics. The design project also involves realistic constraints including cost and sustainability considerations, socioeconomic concerns, aesthetic choices and ethical deliberations. Fourth-year students prepare for the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination as a first step toward licensure as professional engineers. In this year, concurrent (BS/MS) degree-seeking students also begin their selected program of graduate-level coursework leading to selection of their graduate project.

Finally, in the fifth year, concurrent students complete coursework and individual graduate projects leading to the concurrent bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

To ensure graduates become responsible, effective citizens and begin building a foundation for lifelong learning, students are required to satisfy Oregon Tech general education requirements in communication, humanities, social sciences, and science/mathematics.

Student Preparation

Students interested in the field of civil engineering should emphasize mathematics and science in high school. Two years of algebra and one year each of geometry, trigonometry, chemistry and physics are preferred. Additional courses in mathematics and computer-aided drafting are desirable.


The Civil Engineering Program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET, Inc., 111 Market Place, Suite 1050, Baltimore, MD 21202-4012, telephone: (410) 347-7700. ABET is a specialized accrediting board recognized by the Council for Higher Education and/or the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

Graduation Requirements

All courses listed in the curriculum for the current catalog year must be completed to be eligible for graduation, unless a student has already completed the requirements for a category that has changed. When changes are made to the curriculum, students who entered the program under a previous catalog will work with their academic advisors to transition to meet the requirements of the current catalog.

For the concurrent bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Civil Engineering, a minimum of 225 credits must be completed. Students must earn a 3.0 GPA by the end of the third year for progression to the fourth and fifth years of study. In addition, a final grade of “C” or better must be earned in all math and science courses and those with CE, ENGR, GIS, and GME prefixes, as well as all courses listed as prerequisites for these courses. At least 45 credits of graduate work must be completed. Students must maintain a 3.0 graduate-level GPA with a final grade of “C” or better in all graduate courses.

For the bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering, a minimum of 180 credits must be completed and students must maintain a 2.0 GPA to be eligible for graduation. In addition, a final grade of “C” or better must be earned in all math and science courses and those with CE, ENGR, GIS, and GME prefixes as well as all listed prerequisites for these courses.

The Master of Science in Civil Engineering requires completing 45 credits of approved graduate work. Students must maintain a 3.0 graduate-level GPA with a final grade of “C” or better in all graduate courses.