Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering

Civil engineering is the oldest engineering program at KU. The University's first graduating class of four students in 1873 included a civil engineer. Civil engineers design roads, water systems, bridges, dams, and the other infrastructure needed by modern society. Today, civil engineers were the first engineers to address environmental issues and are the lead engineering discipline in treating water supplies to protect public health. In recognition of the significant issues concerning the environment, the department name was changed in 1992 to civil and environmental engineering. In 2001, architectural engineering merged with CEE to form the current Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering Department (CEAE).


CEAE’s mission is to provide students with an outstanding engineering education and be a leader in research and service. This mission is supported by the following 3 goals:

  1. Prepare students for productive engineering careers.
  2. Maintain and grow strong research programs.
  3. Serve the profession.

Graduate Admission

The department admits for all semesters. Students may pursue degrees full or part time. An ABET-accredited baccalaureate degree in engineering is required for admission to the Ph.D. degree programs in civil engineering and environmental engineering. Applicants are expected to have undergraduate grade-point averages of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale for regular admission. Graduate Record Examination scores are required and are used in the evaluation process, but minimum scores for admission have not been established. The GRE engineering and other subject examinations are not required. The Test of English as a Foreign Language is required for international applicants. Applicants should take the GRE and TOEFL examinations as early as possible to expedite the admission process.

Graduate applications should be submitted online

Application Deadlines - Domestic

Fall Admission:  December 15 (priority deadline). Applications accepted through July 31.

Spring Admission: September 15 (priority deadline). Applications accepted through December 30.

Application Deadlines - International

Fall Admission: December 15 (priority deadline). Applications accepted through May 15.

Spring Admission: September 15 (priority deadline). Applications accepted through October 15

The priority deadline is for full consideration for fellowships, scholarships and research/teaching assistantship.  Applications submitted after these deadlines will be considered on a case by case basis.

International students and students who indicated English as a second language, are required to show proof of English proficiency for admission purposes and must check-in at the Applied English Center (AEC) upon arrival on campus for orientation. This process serves to confirm each student's level of English proficiency and determine whether English courses will be included as a requirement of the student’s academic program. Note: Students who demonstrate English proficiency at the waiver level or who have earned a degree from one of the specified English-speaking countries listed in the policy are not required to check in at the AEC (see eligibility requirements on the Graduate Studies website).

Application Fees

Domestic: $65

International: $85

Visiting Us

The graduate program staff is happy to work with all prospective students in determining the fit between the student and the program.  We feel that visiting our campus in Lawrence is a very important step. In order to facilitate your visit to KU, there are two main options:

The first, and most preferred, option entails simply applying for admission to the program. All prospective students are welcome to attend our Graduate Open House in mid-October or mid-March. Eligible admitted students may be invited to participate in Campus Visit Days in late February (prior to the fall semester of your intended matriculation). These organized campus visit opportunities will allow you to gather a great deal of first-hand information which we hope will help you in making a final decision about whether to attend KU.

The second option is making arrangements to visit us on your own, outside of organized events. With early notification, we will do our best to work with you to provide information and schedule appointments with faculty when possible. Please contact us if you feel that this is the best option for you.

Contact Information:

 Please contact the CEAE Graduate Program Coordinator at or (785) 864-3826, to schedule a visit or with questions about the application process.

The University of Kansas
Department of Civil, Environmental, and Architectural Engineering
Graduate Administrative Assistant
Learned Hall
1530 W. 15th St., Room 2150
Lawrence, KS 66045

Ph.D. Degree Requirements

Candidates for the must satisfy the University's general requirements for the degree.  A Plan of Study must be approved by the student’s major professor, examining committee, and departmental graduate studies committee.

An aspirant for the Ph.D. degree must pass a qualifying examination. The department normally gives this examination upon completion of the aspirant’s M.S. work or at a comparable level for non-M.S. students.

Before being admitted to the comprehensive examination, the aspirant must satisfy the research skill, residency, and responsible scholarship requirements for the degree.  The research skill requirement provides the aspirant with a research skill distinct from, but strongly supportive of, the dissertation research. One research skill is required. Possible research skills include foreign language, computer science, mathematics, statistics, specific laboratory skills, and specific skills in the physical or biological sciences. The foreign language skill can be obtained by taking a 2-course sequence in the selected language or demonstrated by passing an examination. The selected research skill must be listed on the Plan of Study form. A separate statement attached to the Plan of Study must list the work to be completed to obtain the research skill. The responsible scholarship requirement serves to ensure that students are trained in responsible research practices and is fulfilled by attending a Responsible Scholarship Training Seminar offered each fall semester.

All graduate students must have an approved Plan of Study on file by the beginning of their second semester of study.