If you like designing and modeling large systems, you may want to think about a career as a transportation engineer. Transportation engineering is a branch of civil engineering that develops and designs large transportation systems and infrastructure. Engineers may supervise a project until it is completed, or check a project to ensure it complies with safety regulations. Jobs for civil engineers in general are expected to grow nearly 20 percent through 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. While colleges that offer specialties in transportation engineering are a bit harder to find than civil engineering colleges, they can be located with a little research.
The University of Massachusetts at Amherst
The University of Massachusetts at Amherst's Master's in Transportation Engineering program is designed for students who already have a bachelor's degree in engineering. The university does admit a limited number of students without a bachelor's degree in engineering and they complete course work for both a bachelor's and a master's degree. Students also are allowed to specialize towards the end of their coursework in a specific area of transportation engineering they are interested in -- in planning or traffic flow operations. A thesis and a master's examination are required for graduation.
The University of Missouri
The University of Missouri at Columbia offers a Traffic and Transportation Engineering degree as part of its engineering department. The university has bachelor's and master's degree programs in traffic and transportation engineering. Graduate students must complete a thesis or project prior to graduation. Research areas of emphasis at the university include intelligent traffic information systems, traffic flow theory, and advancing computing application systems in transportation. The university maintains a Transportation and Infrastructure Center for student and faculty research.
Georgia Institute of Technology
The engineering department at Georgia Tech in Atlanta has a Transportation Systems Engineering program that is a dual degree program in city and regional planning and civil engineering. The program takes two years to complete. Georgia Tech master's degree candidates in engineering may complete a thesis or a special project in their area of interest. Georgia Tech runs a U.S. Department of Transportation University Transportation Center to study both urban and rural transportation systems and their financial, structural and technological implications.
University of California at Berkeley
The University of California at Berkeley's program in Transportation Engineering is offered as a full-time program, a one-year accelerated program or a part-time master's degree program. All Cal Berkeley, master's in engineering students begin their course work in a group, or cohort, and stay with their cohort throughout much of their course work. A thesis is required at Cal Berkeley for a Master of Science in engineering, but a capstone project is required for a master's of engineering degree. The university runs an Institute for Transportation Studies to study transportation engineering issues.
- Department of Labor: Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook: Civil Engineers
- University of Massachusetts at Amherst: Transportation Degree Programs
- University of Missouri: Traffic and Transportation Engineering
- Georgia Tech:Graduate Studies: Transportation Systems Engineering
- Georgia Tech: Transportation Planning and Civil Engineering Dual Degree Program
- University of California-Berkeley: Fung Institute for Engineering Leadership
- University of California-Berkeley: Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering: Resources for Research and Instruction
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