Graduate Program


The Civil Engineering Department offers graduate study leading to the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in Civil Engineering. We have four technical areas: Environmental Engineering, Engineering Mechanics, Geotechnical Egnineering, and Structural Engineering.


Incoming students are encouraged to apply for Departmental Research Assistant and Teaching Assistant positions, which offer full tuition and support to qualified students. In addition, research funds are used to provide assistantships that support the thesis research of graduate students. A fellowship providing partial support may also be available for students enrolled in the B.S./M.S. program dependent on enrollment and available funds.

Each M.S. student may select either Plan A Thesis-focused track, which requires a research thesis or Plan B Project-focused track, which requires coursework, an independent project, and a passing grade on a comprehensive exam (to be arranged by the student and his/her advisor), and Plan C Course-focused track, which requires coursework and a passing grade on a comprehensive exam (to be arranged by the student and his/her advisor).

Doctoral dissertations in all programs must be original contributions to the existing body of knowledge in engineering and science.

Academic requirements for graduate degrees in engineering are specified by The Case School of Engineering and the CWRU School of Graduate Studies. Additional information may be found in the Case General Bulletin under the heading “School of Graduate Studies” as well as in the Graduate Student Handbook.

Application Fee

A nonrefundable application fee of $50 is required for each online application submitted.

Application Guidelines

To maintain the high quality of our graduates, we require the GRE General exam and the TOEFL exam if the applicant does not have a degree in an English taught university. The admissions guidelines for the Department are given below. Please consider these guidelines to decide whether you should apply. Students not fitting within the guidelines but demonstrating they would be excellent students may also be admitted.

Applicants are expected to have their undergraduate or M.S. degrees in Civil Engineering, or related areas from a reputable university. The GRE is a departmental requirement which all incoming students must take. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Quantitative score should be at least in the 80th percentile or higher.

International students whose first language is not English must demonstrate English proficiency by taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and earn a minimum score of 90 on the internet based test for Ph.D. student and Master degree student with Plan A thesis-focused or Plan B project-focused options.  The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is also accepted. The minimum acceptable score is 7.0. The University Code is 1105.  The English proficiency for Plan C: Course-focused M.S. students is 80 on TOEFL. 

International applicants cannot be admitted without receipt of a TOEFL or IELTS score that meet the minimum requirements as mentioned above. The TOEFL is valid for two years after the test date. The GRE is valid for five years after the test date. All foreign applicants must take the TOEFL unless they received a higher education degree from a U.S. university or a Canadian university.


Application Deadlines

• Fall Semester:  February 1/May 1 (course-only M.S.)
• Spring Semester: October 1

Foreign applicants

To be eligible for a student visa you must be able to show that you have sufficient financial support. If you are awarded an Assistantship, this support comes from our department. Otherwise, you must submit an affidavit of financial support sufficient to cover your first year of studies which is tuition for the academic year plus $13,000 for living expenses. The financial affidavit should be submitted with the application for review. In the event of your admission to the University without an aid award, such certification is required in order to process an I-20 which is needed for your visa.

Please email  CEE_Student-Affairs@case.edu  for the amount for the academic year.


View the online application. Learn more about the Case School of Engineering.

Applications are reviewed twice a year; in February for the Fall semester, and in October for the Spring semester. However, other required supporting items may be submitted as hard copies (if necessary) including official transcripts in a sealed envelope, three letters of recommendations in sealed envelopes, an affidavit of financial support for non‐US citizens, and unofficial copies of GRE/TOEFL score reports). All hardcopy intems should be sent together in a single envelope to

Carla Wilson
ECIV Graduate Application Coordinator
Case Western Reserve University
The Department of Civil Engineering
10900 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44106-7201

Financial Aid

Financial aid is available in the form of research or teaching assistantships and are awarded competitively. To be considered for aid, your application should be received by the application deadline and indicate that you wish to be considered for aid in your application. The department faculty makes the final decisions concerning the award and type of aid offered to the student applicants. Decisions on awarding aid occur at various times during the application process, but generally are announced in March for fall semester and in November for spring semester enrollment.

Academic Records

On your application, you are required to identify all post‐secondary educational
Institutions you have attended. An official transcript should be sent directly to us from each of your school’s registrar’s office, or if its delivered to you, it must be submitted to us unopened with your schools’ seal across the back flap of the envelope.


It is suggested that recommendations come from those sufficiently familiar to assess your
academic preparation, abilities and accomplishments. At some point during the online application, you will be prompted to input email addresses of the three people you have chosen to write a recommendation letter for you. If for some reason this feature doesn’t work, you will find a recommendation form on the online instructions page, please send this to your recommenders to complete, they can also attach a separate letter. Each recommendation letter must be mailed to Carla Wilson in a sealed envelope with the recommender's initials written across the back seal of the envelope.

Other Documentation

Official score reports of all standardized tests (GRE, TOEFL, etc.) designated for receipt by the University (Code 1105) will be coordinated with your application by the Graduate Admission Officer. Pending our receipt of your scores from the testing agencies, you may also want to send a copy of your “candidate score report” when you receive it. The test scores are currently reported electronically. The School of Graduate Studies and the Department of Civil Engineering can view the official scores as needed. You are free to include with your application any supporting materials of your own selection, e.g., a list of your publications, or a summary of a paper. CD’s or full publications are rarely looked at in total so a synopsis is recommended.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Quick answers to some of the most common questions.

What is the deadline for completing an application?
A. Domestic application materials should be received in our office by: August 1st for the Fall semester admission and December 20th for the Spring semester admission. International application materials should be received in our office (not postmarked) by: February 1st for the Fall semester admission and October 1st for the Spring semester admission

Can I check the status of my application on-line?
A. Yes, you can use the same system you're applying on to check what documents we have received.

What is the minimum TOEFL score needed?

A. The University requires a minimum score of 90 for the internet based
test (IBT) for Ph.D. student and Master degree student with *Plan A
thesis-focused* or *Plan B project-focused options*. The English
proficiency for *Plan C: Course-focused M.S. *students is 80 on TOEFL. WE

What is the minimum GRE score needed?
A. The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Quantitative score should be at least in the 80th percentile or higher.

What is the minimum GPA score needed?
A. Each program has a slightly different minimum, but in general it is around 3.2.

My country does not use your standard for GPA, how can I convert it to receive fair consideration by the faculty?
A. If your country uses a percentage system please convert that score for the GPA. To convert your percentage score to a GPA using this formula:
4 x <your percent score> / 100 = GPA
It is still better to put in the percentage than leave the GPA blank.

Can I send a copy of my GRE or TOEFL scores after submission of application and still be considered for admission?
A. NO, in order to expedite admission decisions, we need to have the offiical test scores at the time of application. Therefore, please have all OFFICIAL TEST SCORES sent to Case via ETS.

What is your institutional number for ETS to send the official GRE and TOEFL test scores?
A. The institutional code for Case is 1105. You no longer need a dept. code.

Can I send my financial statement after I am admitted?
A. Yes. However, your I-20 will not be processed until the financial statement is received by International Student Services. If there is a problem with the information this will just further delay you papers. It is better to send them early.

Is there an official financial statement form that can be downloaded?
A. No. There is no official form. All you need is a bank statement stating the amount of support, who the support is from, and a verification from the bank that the money is there. This is a standard support statement.

I am confused about the letter of recommendation? Does this have to be submitted on-line or can it still be sent to you via regular mail?
A. You can submit the letters online which is what is preferred. If there was a problem submitting them online, then it can be sent via regular mail, it should be sent in a sealed envelope with the recommender’s initials written across the back seal.

I would like to get a TA position, how do I go about getting that?
A. Indicate that you wish to be considered for financial aid and financial support decisions will be made following review of all applications received by the deadline.

I sent my information to Graduate Studies instead of the listed address, will this speed the application process up?
A. No it will actually slow things down. Please send to the stated address or utilize the online system to expedite the application process.

If you should have any further questions, please contact:

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Case Western Reserve University
10900 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44106-7201
Phone: (216) 368-2950
Fax: (216) 368-5229