Bachelor's Degree Programs in Civil Engineering

Civil engineers design bridges, roads, water treatment facilities, airports and other large structures. Learn about bachelor's degree programs in civil engineering, including common coursework and online availability. Get more career info about the civil engineering field. Schools offering Civil Engineering degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Will I Learn in a Bachelor's Degree Program in Civil Engineering?

In a civil engineering bachelor's degree program, you'll learn the theoretical principles that influence how cities are built. This includes advanced study of the process of designing and building roads, buildings, dams, bridges and airports. You'll also learn about wastewater and sewage systems. Most programs will also teach you how to estimate construction costs, determine how much and what types of materials will be used for each project, negotiate governmental regulations and protect against environmental disasters.

Many programs allow you to specialize in areas like construction, water management, geotechnical engineering or transportation. You may also learn about the cultural, historical and sociological influences that affect the design and construction of cities. A general knowledge of math, physics, contracts, construction and environmental science will likely support more specialized training.

Specializations Water management, transportation, geotechnical engineering and construction
Learning Environment Traditional classroom and hybrid degree programs are available
Common Courses Physics, surveying, mathematics, structural analysis, steel design
Median Salary (2018)$86,640* (for civil engineer)
Job Outlook (2016-26)11% growth* (for all civil engineers)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Can I Earn This Degree Online?

There are no fully online bachelor's degree programs in civil engineering, but hybrid programs are available to enroll in. These programs should be accredited by ABET, Inc., just like on-campus programs. Distance-learning engineering courses may take advantage of recorded lectures, and you may be required to purchase necessary engineering software for your home computer to complete the program.

What Kinds of Classes Will I Take?

Bachelor degrees can usually be completed in four years to complete. In an on-campus program, coursework is largely didactic and takes place mostly in the classroom. Here are some course topics likely to appear in the curriculum:

  • Calculus
  • Computer-aided drafting
  • Surveying
  • Technical physics
  • Hydraulics
  • Structural analysis
  • Highway elements
  • Steel design

What Can I Do When I Graduate?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expected the employment rate for civil engineers to increase 11% between 2016 and 2026 (, which is considered faster than average rate of growth in comparison to all other occupations. Growth in this profession will be driven mostly by population growth and increased urbanization. The average annual salary for civil engineers was $86,640 as of May 2018.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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