Decide on a Program
The Civil and Environmental Engineering department offers graduate programs in the following sub-disciplines: – Civil Engineering Materials (M.S., Ph.D.) – Environmental and Water Resources Engineering (M.S.) – Environmental Engineering (Ph.D.) – Geotechnical Engineering (M.S., Ph.D.) – Hydrology and Water Resources (Ph.D.) – Structures and Civil Engineering Materials (M.S.) – Structural/Earthquake Engineering (M.S., Ph.D.) – Structural Mechanics (M.S., Ph.D.) Please take a moment to explore these areas before applying. To view program details and requisite information please visit the Civil and Environmental Engineering Program Requirements. Course descriptions may be found in the General Catalog. University regulations do not permit an applicant to apply to more than one major field or more than one degree program. Please decide which of our programs is most appropriate for you prior to submitting an application.
The M.S. and Ph.D. application deadline is December 15th for the following fall quarter. All required application materials must be received by the application deadline including the online application, transcripts, test scores, and letters of recommendation requests sent to recommenders. Applications received after the deadline may not be considered for financial aid and may only be considered for admission on a space-available basis. Application materials received after the deadline will delay the processing of an application.
Tuition and Financial Aid
The online application for M.S. and Ph.D. programs for Fall are available in mid-September the year prior. Applicants should expect to receive an email acknowledgment from the UCLA Graduate Division within 72 hours of submitting the online application. If you do not receive an email acknowledgment within a reasonable amount of time (five to seven business days), please review your online application to be sure the submission process was completed. Please also be sure to check your “junk” email folder, in case UCLA’s email was diverted there by your spam filter. If you still have not received the acknowledgment email, please contact email@example.com in case there is a minor problem with your application data. Helpful Notes for the online application: -Be sure to select either M.S. in Civil Engineering or Ph.D. in Civil Engineering. Within these applications you will have the ability to select an area of specialization (e.g. Environmental, Hydrology and Water Resources, Geotechnical, Structures). – When filling out your application, fill out your grade-point-average in the scale that your institution uses. Do not attempt to translate your grades yourself, as we have a specialist in the department who will translate them. – Be sure to indicate your name as it appears on your passport. If your name on your passport does not match the name that appears on your transcripts, GRE, TOEFL/IELTS, etc. please be sure to use the “Other Name(s)” section provided to indicate how your name appears on these other documents. – The email address indicated on the online application will be the email address used to communicate with you throughout the application process.
$105.00: U.S. citizens and Permanent Residents $125.00: All other applicants UCLA accepts Visa, MasterCard, and Discover. Cash, checks, or money orders cannot be accepted at UCLA. The application fee is devoted to the administrative cost of processing all applications received, and is not refundable under any circumstances, regardless of the outcome, the date of filing, time of review, or if, for whatever the reason, the application is withdrawn. Fee waiver information may be found HERE.
The general requirement for admission for a U.S. student is a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, comparable in standard and content to a bachelor’s degree from the University of California. M.S. applicants are expected to hold a bachelor’s degree with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale or equivalent. Ph.D. applicants normally should have completed an master’s degree program with a grade point average of at least 3.25 on a 4.0 scale or equivalent as well as hold a bachelor’s degree with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale or equivalent. Normally the master’s degree is required for admission to the Ph.D. program. Exceptional students, however, may be admitted to the Ph.D. program directly. An international student whose post-secondary education is completed outside of the U.S. is expected to hold a degree representing completion of at least four years of study with above average scholarship from a university or university-level institution. Helpful Notes for transcripts: – International students: Please read the Graduate Division’s Required Academic Records information prior to submitting your transcripts. You may need to submit supplemental documents such as degree certificates and/or diplomas. Failure to submit the Required Academic Records will delay the processing of your application. – If you are a university/college senior, do not wait for senior-year grades before submitting your application and transcript. – UCLA undergraduates please note: You do not have to submit official copies of UCLA transcripts, but you should upload an unofficial copy to your online application. How to Submit Transcripts -Upload unofficial copies of your transcripts as part of your application. You may upload a copy of your official transcripts to the online application system. However, you will need to be sure to mail official copies of your transcripts to the department in order for your application to be considered complete. -Send official transcripts from all colleges and universities (post-secondary institutions) attended, with official English translations, if necessary, to the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department. -Official transcripts must be issued by the university. Your institution may directly send your official transcripts to UCLA, or you may mail them to UCLA. For International Applicants: Please read the Graduate Division’s Required Academic Records information prior to submitting your transcripts. Failure to submit the Required Academic Records will delay the processing of your application review. Please send to the following address: UCLA Civil & Environmental Engineering Attn: Admission 420 Westwood Plaza 5732 Boelter Hall Los Angeles, CA 90095 Some domestic institutions use an online system to send official transcripts. If your institution has this capability please use firstname.lastname@example.org as the email address to which your official transcripts are sent.
Statement of Purpose
A Statement of Purpose (SOP) should succinctly describe your reasons for applying to the proposed UCLA Civil and Environmental Engineering program, preparation for your intended field of study, areas of interest within your field, future plans, and other aspects of your background which may aid the admissions committee in evaluating your aptitude and motivation for graduate study. The SOP is also used to match admitted students with assigned advisors. All applicants are encouraged to be as specific as possible in their SOP. Please upload your statement of purpose using the online application. A hard copy is not required. There are no formatting requirements.
Personal History Statement
Three Letters of Recommendation
Letters of recommendation should be from faculty or individuals qualified to evaluate your potential for graduate study. Our department prefers that you use the online application system to submit your letters of recommendation. In the online application system you will be asked to enter the names and emails of your recommenders. Applicants will then be able to select when a notification is sent to their recommenders with instructions on how to proceed with the online recommendation. This can occur prior to application submission or after. Applicants are asked to follow-up with their recommenders directly to determine if letters have been submitted. While the application system allows for applicants to request four letters of recommendation, we request that you only submit three.
While a resume/CV is not required, the review committee finds it very beneficial to be included in an applicant’s application. If you would like to be considered for financial aid, be sure to submit your resume/CV. Upload your resume/CV using the online application. A hard copy is not required.
The online application has a section where applicants may upload a writing sample. A writing sample is not required for our department. Some applicants who are interested in pursing the thesis track for the M.S. degree or Ph.D. may use this section to upload selected publications. Applicants who do not have publications may skip this section.
Official and valid GRE scores
Official GRE scores must be sent electronically by ETS to UCLA. Valid GRE scores are dated within five years of the start of the intended application term. Official GRE scores must be sent electronically by ETS to UCLA institution code 4837 “U CA Los Angeles” and department code 1102 “Civil Engineering”. We will consider all scores submitted to the university. If the name that appears on your GRE score report does not exactly match the name that you provide on the graduate application, be sure to upload a copy of your score report (including name and scores) with your application as a supporting document.
Official and valid TOEFL iBT OR academic IELTS scores
Valid TOEFL and IELTS scores are dated within two years of your application submission date. More details regarding the TOEFL/IETLS may be found by clicking here. An IELTS overall band score of at least 7.0 is the minimum required. A TOEFL score of at least 560 on the paper and pencil test or at least 87 on the internet-based test is the minimum required for applicants to graduate programs at UCLA. Applicants are not required to meet minimum individual band scores for the TOEFL. We are unable to consider applications for applicants who do not meet the minimum standards listed above. Official TOEFL scores must be sent by ETS to UCLA institution code 4837 “U CA Los Angeles” department code 65 “Engineering, Civil”. Official IELTS scores must be sent to the below address: UCLA Civil & Environmental Engineering Attn: Admission 420 Westwood Plaza 5732 Boelter Hall Los Angeles, CA 90095 If the name that appears on your TOEFL score report does not exactly match the name that you provide on the graduate application, be sure to upload a copy of your score report (including name and scores) with your application as a supporting document.
All applications are considered for department funding. Applicants will be notified if they are selected to receive a funding package. In the online application there is a section titled “Fellowship Application” where students can select to be considered for University Graduate Division fellowships. BEFORE selecting these fellowships students should review the eligibility requirements. If you select the Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellowship (PhD) or Graduate Opportunity Fellowship (MS) additional questions will appear in the application that will allow you to complete the remainder of this section and upload your diversity statement. The department will review your application, diversity statement, CV/Resume, and Statement of Purpose to determine if you will be nominated to be considered for the award. If you select any other fellowship, be sure to upload any additional documents that may be required along with the additional fellowship application (please use an additional page for section C, if needed). Please also be sure to submit your Statement of Purpose and CV/Resume with your graduate application as these documents will be used in the fellowship review process.
Application Status Check
Please do not contact the department to verify if materials have been received. It is the applicant’s responsibility to submit all required application materials by the application deadline. Requesting an application status check will delay the review of all applications. Please note that there is a checklist you may view in the online application system. Currently, the test score section of the checklist is not accurately displaying the actual receipt of test scores (GRE, TOEFL). Please disregard this information and do not contact us to double check if we have received your test scores. We will contact you if we are missing materials.
While the department may send a courtesy email to the applicant notifying him/her of the department’s recommendation of admission, only official notification from the dean of the UCLA Graduate Division constitutes approval of admission. When a decision is made, applicants receive an email, directing them to the Graduate Division’s application site and the option Decision Status. Applicants sign in using the email address used to create their application account (not the User Name) and their application password to read the official decision letter. If admitted, the conditions of admission and information and instructions concerning registration (via a link to the Statement of Intent to Register and a Statement of Legal Residence) will be included as part of the offer of admission letter, which can be printed out from the Graduate Division site. Admission letters are only available electronically and are not mailed to applicants.
Submitting the Statement of Intent to Register We encourage applicants who have received an offer of admission to submit the Statement of Intent to Register as soon as they have decided on a graduate program. After a student accepts an offer of admission, the student will begin to receive information regarding registration, orientation, and his/her I-20 (for international students). We kindly ask that all admitted students inform us of their intention to attend UCLA (accept or decline). International Students: You may be prompted to enter dates of attendance when submitting the SIR/SLR. MS students should enter September 24, 2018 – June 11, 2021. PhD students should enter September 24, 2018 – June 14, 2024.
Receiving your I-20 (International Students) After an international student submits his/her Statement of Intent to Register, the student will receive communication from the UCLA Dashew Center for International Students & Scholars with information on how to request an I-20. When an I-20 is ready, the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering will be notified. The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering will then email the student to confirm personal information and mailing information as well as options for shipping the I-20.
Submitting Final Transcripts Students who apply while still enrolled in a degree program and submitted transcripts that were not final (did not show the conferral of the degree) will need to submit final versions of official transcripts, with official English translations, if necessary, to the address below. Official transcripts must be issued by the university in a sealed envelope. Your institution may directly send your official transcripts to UCLA, or you may mail them to UCLA. For International Applicants: Please read the Graduate Division’s Required Academic Records information prior to submitting your transcripts. Please note that degree certificates and diplomas must be submitted in original language and English translations. For UCLA Undergraduate Students: You do not need to submit a final transcript as we will have access to your records. Students may also drop off the final official transcripts (and degree certificates if required) in Boelter Hall 5732-A when they arrive on campus. However, it is preferred that final transcripts (and degree certificates/diplomas for international institutions) are mailed to our office as soon as the degree has been conferred. Please send to the following address: UCLA Civil & Environmental Engineering Attn: Admission; Final Transcripts 420 Westwood Plaza 5732 Boelter Hall Los Angeles, CA 90095
Reviewing Conditions of Admission Students may refer to the ‘Graduate Admission Checklist’ available through the communication students receive regarding their offer of admission. Conditions may include, but are not limited to: submitting final transcripts, provisional quarters, and UCLA English as a Second Language Placement Examination (ESLPE).
Updating your Application Admitted students can update their application for up to one year without having to pay the application fee again. To do so, students must submit an online application for the updated term. Be sure to select “renewal” as the application type instead of “new”. The student will also have to upload transcripts again. Students must apply by the application deadline for the new term. Please note that admission is not guaranteed and application will be reviewed for the new term in which it was submitted.
Registration and Orientation During the Summer prior to your Fall start term you will receive communication from the Civil and Environmental Engineering Student Affairs Officer (CEESAO@seas.ucla.edu). After you submit your SIR you should have access to update your contact information in MyUCLA. Please be sure that the email account we have on file will be valid through the summer and the email account does not filter emails received from CEESAO@seas.ucla.edu to junk/spam. You may also want to review the Student Checklists (https://www.cee.ucla.edu/graduate-programs/), including the New Student Checklist under the Graduate Student Forms section of our department website (https://www.cee.ucla.edu/graduate-student-forms/).
The admission committee conducts a comprehensive and thorough review of each application. We are unable to offer specific reasons for denial. While we do not want to deny applicants, admission to UCLA, particularly to our graduate programs in the Civil and Environmental Engineering department, is extremely competitive with generally more qualified applications received than allotted slots for new students.
Can I apply for a spring or winter term? Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for the fall term. Arriving in Winter or Spring may prevent a student from taking courses that have pre-requisites only offered in the fall term.
What are the minimum GPA and GRE requirements for admission? Our programs require a Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, comparable in standard to a Bachelor’s degree from the University of California. In general, successful applicants have demonstrated outstanding quantitative ability and proven success in previous academic endeavors, particularly coursework relevant to their intended major. Applicants to our M.S. programs are expected to hold a Bachelor’s degree with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 or equivalent. Applicants to our Ph.D. programs should have completed a Master’s degree program with a 3.25 minimum grade point average, and hold a Bachelor’s degree with a 3.0 minimum grade point average (or equivalent). We do not have a minimum GRE score requirement for admission. We conduct a comprehensive and thorough review of applications and consider many factors when issuing an admission decision.
Can I apply if I do not have an undergraduate degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering? In rare circumstances, applicants without an undergraduate degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering may be admitted to our graduate programs. Typically these applicants have related degrees who have completed requisite coursework. For example, an Environmental Science undergraduate major applying to our Environmental and Water Resources Engineering graduate program who has also completed requisites for the graduate degree. We encourage applicants to complete requisite coursework for their intended graduate degree program prior to applying. Requisite requirements may be found in our Program Requirements. Course descriptions may be found in the Catalog.
Can I apply for a M.S. program if I already have a M.S. degree? The University of California, in general discourages the duplication of advanced degrees. All applicants for a second academic graduate degree at the same level as, or at a lower level than the graduate degree they already hold, will be required to show compelling cause to the department before it reviews and recommends admission to the Dean of the Graduate Division. If admitted for a second graduate degree, students will be held to all the usual degree requirements and University regulations pertaining to fees, registrations, examinations, advancement to candidacy, residency, etc. Courses already applied to any earlier graduate degree cannot be applied to the second degree.
I am a current M.S./Ph.D. student. Can I transfer to your institution? We do not have a separate transfer admission process at the graduate level. All applicants submit the same graduate application. M.S. applicants should also refer to the M.S. transfer coursework policy by reviewing the Standards and Procedures for Graduate Study at UCLA.
I have already taken some graduate level coursework. Will I be able to transfer the coursework if admitted to the M.S. program? M.S. applicants should refer to the M.S. transfer coursework policy by reviewing the Standards and Procedures for Graduate Study at UCLA. Through petition, courses completed in graduate status on other UC campuses may apply to master’s programs at UCLA, provided they were not used toward a previous degree. Such courses may fulfill up to one-half of the total course requirement, one-half of the graduate course requirement, and one-third of the academic residence requirement. A maximum of two courses completed with a minimum grade of ‘B’ in graduate status at institutions other than UC may apply to UCLA master’s programs. Two courses would be the equivalent of eight quarter units or five semester units. They may not fulfill the minimum five-graduate-course requirement or the academic residence requirement. The approval of the Graduate Division and the student’s major department is required on a petition for transfer of credit. Courses taken for any other degree previously awarded at UCLA or another institution, and courses taken before the award of the bachelor’s degree may not be applied toward a graduate degree at UCLA.
What if my GRE or TOEFL/IELTS scores arrive after the application deadline? Official test scores must be received by the deadline. If materials are received after the deadline your application will be considered late. Late application may experience a delay in processing and you may not be considered for university and/or departmental funding opportunities. We will do our best to review late applications, but cannot guarantee we will be able to review for the intended application term. It is recommended that you submit all other materials prior the application deadline and your test scores will be added to your application when they are received.
Can I submit test scores (GRE and/or TOEFL/IELTS) prior to the application deadline and submit new scores after the application deadline? What about submitting other updated application materials after the deadline?
We will consider all scores submitted to the university. However, we cannot guarantee that a decision will not be made prior to the receipt of materials, including test scores, received after the application deadline.
Am I eligible for a TOEFL/IELTS waiver? The UCLA Graduate Division English Requirement website provides an extensive explanation of who is required to submit a TOEFL/IELTS as well as exemptions.
How do I apply for departmental funding? The Civil and Environmental Engineering department does not have a separate application process to be considered for funding. All applicants are automatically considered for departmental funding including Teaching Assistantships, Research Assistantships, and departmental fellowships. In addition, the online application has a section labeled “Fellowship Application” where you may select to be considered for UCLA Graduate Division Fellowships. Please be sure to visit the Graduate Division website to learn more about those fellowship opportunities. Applicants are also strongly encouraged to apply for University and external funding opportunities. More information on funding is located on the UCLA Graduate Division’s funding website. While all applicants are considered for funding, most funding opportunities are awarded to PhD applicants.
How long does it take to earn a MS degree? Most of our students complete the MS Civil and Environmental Engineering program in one year. The Civil and Environmental Engineering MS program of study consists of at least nine graduate and upper division courses completed while in graduate status. Typically, students take three of the nine required courses every quarter.
How long does it take to earn a PhD degree? Most students complete the Ph.D. Civil and Environmental Engineering program in 4 – 6 years. Applicants who are admitted into the PhD and do not hold a MS are required to complete and earn a MS degree within the first two years (6 quarters) of enrollment with UCLA. These students would then be expected to complete and earn the PhD within 5 years (15 quarters) of earning the MS. Applicants who are admitted into the PhD and hold a MS are expected to complete and earn the PhD within 5 years (15 quarters) of earning the MS.
- You may begin your application, save, and return to make updates before submitting.
- Application deadline is in December for the fall term.
- University application requirements and criteria for admission
- Application fee information
- International Applicant Information
- Civil and Environmental Engineering department overview
- Civil and Environmental Engineering course descriptions
- Tuition and Fee information
- Academic calendar
- Detailed information about required academic records
- English language requirements
- M.S. and Ph.D. program overview
- Requisite information
Mailing Address for Application Documents:
UCLA Civil & Environmental Engineering
420 Westwood Plaza – 5732 Boelter Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095
UCLA Exceptional Student Admissions Program (ESAP)
ESAP recognizes outstanding UCLA School of Engineering and Applied Sciences undergraduate students who wish to enter the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences graduate program upon completion of the Bachelor’s degree. ESAP students are genuine graduate students who are eligible for graduate fellowships and funding.
Please refer to the UCLA Engineering Office of Academic and Student Affairs website for ESAP eligibility. Students who meet the eligibility requirements will receive a formal notice via email informing them of their eligibility. The Civil and Environmental Engineering department will also receive notification. To maintain eligibility, students must continue to achieve the specified GPA and successfully complete the Bachelor’s degree. All ESAP students must complete the regular graduate admission application and meet the application deadline.
Admission is guaranteed to the graduate program in the department in which the student earned a Bachelor’s degree for the time period specified in the ESAP letter. Civil and Environmental Engineering undergraduate students are guaranteed admission to the M.S. Civil Engineering program for three academic quarters after earning the undergraduate degree. Because our M.S. program only offers a fall intake, students should plan to apply to the graduate program during their final year of undergraduate enrollment in order to begin the program during the fall quarter following the completion of their undergraduate degree. ESAP students are not required to take the GRE. ESAP students are required to provide 2 letters of recommendation. For the 3rd letter of recommendation, please enter the name as “ESAP ESAP”, email as your own email address, CEEAPPLY@seas.ucla.edu, or email@example.com, and type as “Graduate Division Recommendation”. Students must meet ESAP requirements and the department must receive ESAP notification in order to receive the benefits of the ESAP program.
Refer to the ESAP website. ESAP eligibility questions should be directed to Jan LaBuda (firstname.lastname@example.org). Civil Engineering application questions should be directed to the CEE SAO (CEEAPPLY@seas.ucla.edu).