Graduate Certificate Programs

Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering

Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Program Description:

This certificate program is designed to provide formalized education in the area of Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering.



  • CIV ENG 5716: Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering
  • CIV ENG 6713: Dynamics of Earth Materials                                                                               

Choose two courses from the following three: 

  • CIV ENG 5715: Intermediate Soil Mechanics
  • CIV ENG 5729: Foundation Engineering II
  • CIV ENG 6712: Computer Modeling in Geotechnical Engineering 

*Other courses approved by the geotechnical engineering faculty may be substituted for any of the above listed courses on a case-by-case basis.  The Vice Provost of Graduate Studies must approve the substitution prior to enrolling in the course.

Please check the Schedule of Classes for a current listing of the courses available for distance students.

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CIV ENG 5715 Intermediate Soil Mechanics (LEC 3.0)
General principles of soil mechanics and their applications, including mineralogy, soil structure, flow through porous media, shear strength, slope stability and consolidation. Prerequisites: Civ Eng 3715 with grade of "C" or better.

CIV ENG 5716 Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering (LEC 3.0)
Geotechnical earthquake hazards and mitigations, damage to structures, plate tectonics, seismicity, wave propagation, characterization of ground motions, theory of vibrations (1-DOF), effect of local soil conditions on ground response, development of design ground motions, liquefaction, dynamic lateral earth pressures and slope stability/deformation. Prerequisites: Civ Eng 3715 with a grade of "C" or better.

CIV ENG 5729 Foundation Engineering II (LEC 3.0)
Classical earth pressure theories. Analysis of shallow and deep foundations to include bearing capacity and settlement of footings, rafts, piles, and drilled piers. Analysis of stability and design of retaining walls and anchored bulkheads. Prerequisites: Civ Eng 4729 with a grade of "C" or better. (Co-listed with Arch Eng 5729).

CIV ENG 6712 Computer Modeling in Geotechnical Engineering (LEC 3.0)
Survey of computer methods of analyzing and modeling complex geotechnical engineering problems. Computer applications, data analysis, and result interpretations. Topics include constitutive modeling, foundation engineering, seepage, unsaturated flow problem, slope stability analysis, consolidation, excavation, tunneling, and dynamic soil-structure interaction. Prerequisite: Civ Eng 3715 and graduate standing.

CIV ENG 6713 Dynamics of Earth Materials (LEC 3.0)
Theory of vibration, spectral response, site-specific response spectra, detailed design of retaining structures, pile and machine foundations, soil structure interaction. Dynamic soil properties, including degradation of soil properties and liquefaction, seismic slope stability analysis problem solving. Select research topics and use of computer codes. Prerequisite: Preceded or accompanied by Civ Eng 5715.

Complete course descriptions are provided online in the Graduate Course Catalog

*Curriculum is subject to change. Please contact the department for up-to-date information on courses. Other courses approved by the Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering faculty may be substituted for any of the above listed courses on a case-by-case basis. The assistant chair for distance education must approve the substitution prior to enrolling in the course.

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This certificate program is open to all individuals who hold a bachelor's, master's or PhD degree and who have a minimum of 12 months of post-BS professional employment experience. Once admitted to the program, you must take four designated courses. In order to receive a graduate certificate, you must have an average cumulative grade of 3.0 or better in the certificate courses.

Students are admitted to the certificate program on a non-matriculated basis; however, if you complete the four-course sequence with a grade of B or better in each of the courses taken, you can enroll in the master's program, if you so choose. The certificate credits you've taken will count toward your master’s degree. If you do not have all of the prerequisite courses necessary to take the course in the certificate program, you can take “bridge” courses at either the graduate or undergraduate level to prepare for the formal certificate courses.

Once admitted to the program, you are given three years to complete the program so long as you maintain a B average in the courses taken.

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Students applying for a business project management graduate certificate will need the following:

Complete the Online Application. When you start your application select "Graduate Online/Distance" and then select which certificate you are applying for. Don't forget to list your current employer and company location on the application.

More Details

Gainful Employment Program Disclosure

Effective July 1, 2011, the Department of Education requires that all certificate programs must disclose particular Gainful Employment information to current and prospective students. The information that is provided in the disclosure includes the estimated cost of the certificate program as well as on-time graduation and job placement rates for this particular certificate program. The disclosure information is based on data from the 2017-18 school year(defined as the period between July 1, 2017, and June 30, 2018)


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Graduate certificates were designed as a gateway to a master’s degree. If a student earns a B or better in each certificate course they may continue for the graduate degree (in the corresponding department), without needing to submit GRE/GMAT scores, or letters of recommendation*. A student does not need to continue on for the graduate degree, however most do. Graduate certificates were designed for working professionals who have real life work experience and may not have time to take the GRE/GMAT. Admission requirements for the graduate certificate program are also more relaxed than the graduate degree. This graduate certificate may act as a gateway to the following master’s programs:

Civil Engineering (MS)
Environmental Engineering (MS)

(Applicants must indicate which program they wish to use the certificate as a gateway for when initially applying for the certificate).

*Completion of a graduate certificate program does not automatically guarantee admission into a corresponding graduate degree program. To continue in a master’s degree program, you must apply. Click here for details and check with academic department for program specific details and requirements.

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Classes are offered over the internet via live-streaming video. There will be a PowerPoint presentation available on the Internet to enhance the class lecture so that you can view the PowerPoint slides and watch the video simultaneously. Tests and reports are arranged by the course instructor. If you view the video online in real time, a technician can help resolve any communication problems, and when you need to ask a lecture-related question, you can call the instructor. If you view the lecture video offline, you can communicate with the instructor through email.

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Contact Us

Civil, Architectural and
Environmental Engineering

Dr. William Schonberg
230 Butler-Carlton Hall
Rolla, MO 65409-6549
Phone: 573-341-4787

Civil, Architectural and
Environmental Engineering

Jeannie Werner
Office Support Assistant
Phone: 573-341-4470

Global Learning - Distance Education
Student Support Services

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Rolla, MO 65409-1560
Phone: 573-341-6591
Toll Free: 1-877-678-1870
Fax: 573-202-2396