Ph.D. in Civil Engineering

From wastewater treatment to emerging construction materials, multiscale modeling to probabilistic mechanics, the vanguard of civil engineering is evolving at a rapid pace—and Stevens continues to evolve with it. Here, Ph.D. candidates pursue their studies in a wide selection of testbeds and laboratories, while collaborating with renowned experts and award-winning young investigators. In the process, they enjoy the opportunity to advance the state of the art in civil engineering—and greatly enhance their prospects for a productive career.

Faculty Distinctions

  • The co-author of 25 refereed articles and conference reports, Associate Professor Sophia Hassiotis has reviewed articles for the National Science Foundation and won numerous grants from the New Jersey Department of Transportation. She is a recognized expert in several topics related to bridges, including integral abutments, soil-pile interactions, and mechanics of materials, among others.
  • The winner of several awards for research and education, Associate Professor Khondokar Billah focuses his research on structural mechanics, stochastic processes, chaos and encryption, and flow-induced vibration.
  • As a longtime consulting engineer, Lecturer Leslie Brunell has designed drainage and sewage systems for a wide range of sites throughout New Jersey, including the proposed transit light rail line. Her clients have included the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the New Jersey Department of Transportation.

Research Areas

  • Structural engineering. Researchers focus on such areas as hazard mitigation, infrastructure rehabilitation, computational mechanics, solid and structural mechanics, structural dynamics, and probabilistic modeling.
  • Construction management. Stevens’ faculty and Ph.D. candidates alike carry out their research at several state-of-the-art facilities.
  • Water resources. Research continues on such topics as toxic pollutants in the Hudson-Raritan estuary, stochastic aspects of groundwater flow modeling, advanced oxidation of hazardous waste, statistical process control of wastewater treatment, and others.


  • The Keck Geotechnical/Geoenvironmental Structures Laboratories
  • The Geotechnical/Geoenvironmental Structures Laboratories
  • Materials/Structures Laboratory
  • The James C. Nicoll Environmental Laboratory
  • Davidson Laboratory
  • The New Jersey Marine Sciences Consortium
  • The Hazardous Substance Management Research Consortium

Degree Requirements

You must earn 84 graduate credits to complete the doctoral program. Of these credits, 15 to 30 must be earned through course work, and 30 to 45 via dissertation work. You may apply up to 30 credits from a master’s program toward your doctoral degree.

Within two years of your admission, you must take a written qualifying examination to test your comprehension of engineering fundamentals and mathematics. After passing the qualifying examination and completing the required course work, you must take an oral preliminary examination to evaluate your aptitude for advanced research and your understanding of the subjects associated with your dissertation topics. Upon satisfactory completion of this oral examination, you become a doctoral candidate and start your dissertation research.

Doctoral research must be based on an original investigation, and the results must make a significant, state-of-the-art contribution to the field, worthy of publication in current professional literature. At the completion of the research, you must defend your thesis in a public presentation.