Why This Matters


    The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects civil engineer job opportunities to increase by 4% from 2019 to 2029. That equals 5,500 new positions, in addition to the 329,200 jobs that already exist.


    Civil engineers commonly specialize in a specific aspect of engineering. Become a construction engineer, geotechnical engineer, structural engineer, or transportation engineer with this degree.


    Construction project managers earn a median annual salary of $97,100, compared to a median salary of $87,060 for civil engineers. A master’s degree can open up project management positions like these.

Our Research

We reviewed many Master’s in Civil Engineering degree programs, including both Master of Science (MS) and Master of Engineering (MEng) degrees. Our list is comprised of online, on-campus, and hybrid programs.

All of the listed programs have regional accreditation, and many also have programmatic accreditation through the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). Accreditation is an important way to ensure the quality of degree programs.

We evaluated each program on the basis of flexibility, faculty, course strength, cost, and reputation. Then we calculated the Intelligent Score for each program on a scale from 0 to 100. For a more extensive explanation, check out Our Ranking Methodology.

  • 77 hours to write this article
  • 160 universities and colleges we assessed
  • 361 education programs we compared

The Top 44 Master’s in Civil Engineering Degree Programs

Best Master's in Civil Engineering Degree Programs
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What You Should Know About This Degree

Civil engineering is generally a bachelor-level entry field, and most entry-level positions don’t require a master’s degree. Having a Master’s in Civil Engineering may help you secure advanced certifications or senior positions.

Civil engineers must be licensed in all states, and licensing requirements are uniform. To become licensed, engineers must obtain a degree from an ABET-accredited school, work for four years under the supervision of a licensed engineer, and pass a pair of exams. Once licensed, engineers must meet ongoing continuing education requirements.

These programs are designed for students who have varying levels of engineering experience. Many programs will take students with only an academic background in engineering, but some programs are intended for students who are already licensed engineers or have worked in the field. Select a program that fits your previous experience.

A Master’s of Business Administration (MBA) is an alternative degree option if you want to move into managerial roles. An MBA degree covers business and leadership subjects, and many companies hire MBA graduates for management positions.

Some online programs have an in-person component, such as a brief orientation or seminar. Find out whether a program has any in-person requirements before applying, and make sure you can meet such a requirement if there is one.

What’s Next?

As you evaluate different Master’s in Civil Engineering degrees, consider these questions:

  • How long does it take to complete this online degree? These degrees are generally designed to be completed in two years of full-time study. Most are between 30 and 36 credits.
  • What licensing or certifications are required? Professional engineers must be licensed, and becoming licensed requires a degree from an ABET-accredited school. An ABET-accredited bachelor’s degree is sufficient for licensure, however. If you already have an ABET bachelor’s, a master’s is only needed for some voluntary certifications.

When you have a list of potential programs, find out what the application process for each one entails. You can learn what application materials are required and when the application deadline is by contacting programs or checking their websites.

Also give thought to how you’ll pay tuition for a program. Discuss financial aid and scholarship opportunities with admissions officers. If you’re already working in the engineering field, you may qualify for tuition reimbursement from your employer.