Jul 17, 2024  
2009-2011 Graduate Catalog 

Engineering Ph.D.


Admission Requirements

Admission to the program leading to the Ph.D. in Engineering in the field of Civil and Environmental Engineering is open to those students completing the following requirements:

  1. Application must be made to the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Applications must include all documentation as required by the Graduate College. The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering will admit the student and supervise the student’s Ph.D. program.
  2. The applicant must have a Master of Science in Engineering degree or equivalent with a major in civil engineering or a closely allied field. Students with nonengineering backgrounds will be required to complete a set of course work  requirements that will assure successful completion of the Ph.D. specialization and qualify the student to sit for the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam. Special cases will be decided upon by the Graduate Program Committee (GPC).
  3. The applicant must submit a written statement of purpose indicating interests and objectives in working toward a Ph.D. degree. In addition, three letters of recommendation for Ph.D.-level study must be submitted.
  4. Applicants from countries where English is not the native language must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language, earn scores of at least 213 (computerized) or 550 (written), and submit an official report of the score to the Graduate College.
  5. The GPC will examine the applicant’s academic record and will make the final determination of the applicant’s admissibility to the Ph.D. program. In general, a minimum post-baccalaureate GPA of 3.20 on a 4.00 scale or equivalent is required for admission.
  6. All applicants are required to take the verbal, quantitative, and analytical writing portions of the GRE General Test and submit the scores to the Civil and Environmental Engineering department. Successful applicants generally have a combined verbal and quantitative GRE score of at least 1000 and GRE analytical writing score of at least 3.
  7. The applicant must be formally admitted by UNLV’s Graduate College.

Degree Requirements

The degree requirements for the Ph.D. in Engineering in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering include the following:

  1. A Doctoral Advisory Committee composed of at least five members of the UNLV graduate faculty is to be formed for the student. At least three of the committee members must be from tenured or tenure-track members of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, the fourth from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering or a related field, and the fifth must be appointed by the Graduate College.
  2. The program of study must be submitted by the second semester of study. The program of study is to be prepared by the student and his/her doctoral advisor, and must be approved by the student’s Doctoral Advisory Committee and the GPC.
  3. A minimum of 27 credit hours of course work beyond the degree of Master of Science in Engineering or equivalent is required. A minimum of 18 of these credits must be 700-level courses. Doctoral students must complete CEE 700 prior to taking the Qualifying Examination. For students who have completed  , or equivalent, during their Master of Science studies, CEE 700 may be waived and replaced by another 700- level course. The student’s Doctoral Advisory committee may add additional requirements in accordance with the individual’s background and area of study.
  4. In addition to these course requirements, a dissertation consisting of at least 18 credits ( ) is required.
  5. Students whose mother tongue is not English must demonstrate a satisfactory command of the English language by passing the advanced level on the Michigan test during the first year of study.
  6. In order to show breadth and depth of knowledge in his/her discipline, the doctoral student must pass either a written qualifying exam, an oral qualifying exam, or both as determined by the student’s Doctoral Advisory Committee. These examinations are prepared by the faculty and supervised by the GPC. These qualifying exams must be scheduled after the completion of one year of study but not before the completion of at least 12 credits of course work.
  7. The doctoral student must pass a preliminary exam consisting of the preparation of a written proposal for the dissertation research followed by an oral defense of the proposal. The dissertation must be approved by the student’s Doctoral Advisory Committee. Students are advanced to candidacy for the Ph.D. upon the completion of all course work and approval of the dissertation research proposal.
  8. All requirements for the Ph.D. are met upon the satisfactory completion of the proposed research, the submission of a satisfactory dissertation, and the successful oral defense of the dissertation before the Doctoral Advisory Committee.