PhD in Civil Engineering

5 minute read
PhD in Civil Engineering

Amongst the sought-after engineering branches, Civil engineering corresponds to the study of design, development as well as maintenance of physical and natural infrastructure. It encompasses everything from the development and construction of countrywide railway networks or dams for big power projects. It can also be a work to construct highways or projects of small scale. For those planning to pursue higher studies in this field and aim to explore a career in research, then a doctoral degree in civil engineering is the best one to opt for. Through this blog, we have collated a comprehensive guide on PhD in Civil Engineering, its course details, top universities, career scope and much more. 

Full-FormDoctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering
Average Course FeeINR 19,000 to INR 73,000
Duration4-5 years
Average SalaryINR 2,00,000 to INR 9,00,000
Best Institute in IndiaIndian Institute of Technology Madras (IITM)

Check Out: Civil Engineering vs Architecture

What is a PhD in Civil Engineering?

Commonly offered as a three to five-year doctoral degree program, a PhD in Civil Engineering is a research-oriented course which explores the advanced level concepts of Civil Engineering and encourages scholars to actively take part in research projects. Further, students are needed to opt for a specialization in Civil Engineering which they will be exploring in detail through research projects. Some of the popular types of Civil Engineering specialisations offered under the doctorate course include Geotechnical Engineering, Structural Engineering, Water Resource Engineering, Environmental Engineering, etc.

PhD Programs in Civil Engineering

There are numerous course variants available for PhD in Civil Engineering as there are several specialisations under this domain which you can choose from. Here are some of the major PhD programs in Civil Engineering offered around the world:

Doctor of Philosophy in Geotechnical Engineering

Doctor of Philosophy in Ground Engineering and Engineering GeosciencesDoctor of Philosophy in Geotechnical and Engineering Geology
Doctor of Philosophy in Structural Engineering

Doctor of Philosophy in Geosensing Systems Engineering and SciencesBuilding Designs, Buildings and Constructions – the Theory of Buildings and Structures.
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil and Environmental Engineering
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering – Computing and SystemsDoctor of Philosophy in Urban Planning
Doctor of Philosophy in Biomechanical Engineering

Doctor of Philosophy in Built EnvironmentDoctor of Philosophy in City and Regional Planning
Doctor of Philosophy in Civil and Environmental Engineering – Construction Engineering and ManagementDoctor of Philosophy in Civil Engineering and SurveyingLandscape Architecture and Environmental Planning, PhD
Doctor of Philosophy in Intelligent Infrastructure

Doctor of Philosophy in Territorial EngineeringNumerical study of complex fluid-structure interaction, PhD

PhD in Civil Engineering Syllabus

While the actual course offerings might vary as per your chosen specialization for a PhD in Civil Engineering, here are some of the commonly covered subjects you will come across while studying this course:

MechanicsSteel StructuresHydrology and Irrigation
Structural AnalysisConcrete StructuresFundamentals of Ecology, Wastewater Techniques, Ecosystem and Environment
Soil MechanicsFluid Mechanics and HydraulicsPresenting and Defending Research Thesis

PhD in Civil Engineering Syllabus UCL
PhD in Civil Engineering Syllabus University of Lincoln

PhD in Civil Engineering Specializations

Students to wish to pursue their PhD in civil engineering can choose from various specifications offered abroad and in India.

  • Construction Management
  • Environmental Engineer
  • Geotechnical Engineering
  • Structural Engineering
  • Transportation Engineering
  • Water Resources Engineering

Top Colleges for PhD in Civil Engineering in India

There are many colleges in India that offer specializations for PhD in civil engineering. Here are a few of the top colleges in India.

  1. Amity University, Lucknow
  2. Chandigarh University (CU)
  3. IIT Kanpur – Indian Institute of Technology
  4. Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati
  5. Indian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad
  6. National Institute of Technology Karnataka, Surathkal
  7. LPU – Lovely Professional University
  8. IIT Bombay
  9. IIEST
  10. JMI

Top Universities for PhD in Civil Engineering Abroad

Numerous universities across the globe offer PhD degrees in Civil Engineering with a host of specialisations on offer. Below we have enlisted the top universities providing sought-after doctorate degrees in Civil Engineering with best research opportunities on offer:

  1. University College London (UCL)
  2. University of Lincoln
  3. The University of New Mexico
  4. University of California, Berkeley
  5. University of Houston
  6. The Ohio State University
  7. Texas A and M University
  8. Budapest University of Technology and Economics
  9. The University of New South Wales
  10. University of Strathclyde

PhD in Civil Engineering Eligibility

In order to apply for a PhD in Civil Engineering, there are certain prerequisites you need to keep in mind to be eligible for this course. The actual course requirements are bound to differ as per the program and university so below is a rundown of the common eligibility criteria you must know about:

  • While applying for a PhD degree in Civil Engineering at a particular university, the student needs to provide details pertaining to their research project as well as the professor or scholar you wish to work with.
  • The candidate must have completed a master’s degree in Civil Engineering or any of its specialisations with the minimum marks specified by their chosen university.
  • In India, many universities require students to appear for entrance exams like GATE, UGC NET, AISECT, UEE, etc. to apply for PhD courses in Engineering.
  • If you are planning to study this doctoral program, you need to provide GRE scores along with language proficiency scores of IELTS/TOEFL/PTE, etc.

PhD in Civil Engineering Entrance Exams

If you are planning to pursue PhD in civil engineering, some universities require students to clear entrance exams. Some of the popular entrance exams are as follows:

  1. GATE
  2. UGC NET

PhD in Civil Engineering Scholarships

Here are a few scholarships for students who wish to pursue their PhD in Civil Engineering.

  • NCERT Doctoral Fellowship
  • Prime Minister Fellowship for Doctoral Research
  • Fulbright-Nehru Doctoral Research Fellowships
  • PMRF- Prime Ministers Research Fellowship

PhD in Civil Engineering Jobs and Salary

PhD in civil engineering is a career-oriented course and opens many job opportunities for those who are inclined to research and related fields. The average salary of a civil engineer with a PhD is INR 2 to 9 lakh and can increase if the person is more skilled and experienced than other prospective employees.

PhD in Civil Engineering Salary
Credits: PayScale


How long does a PhD in civil engineering take?

The duration of PhD in civil engineering is 4-5 years

Which university is best for PhD in civil engineering?

In India, IIT Bombay, JMI are among the top-ranked colleges while UCL and the University of Lincoln are the best for PhD in civil engineering abroad.

Can I do PhD after BTech?

Yes, you can study PhD after BTech from India as well as abroad.

What is the salary after doing PhD?

It depends upon your skills and knowledge. However, it ranges between 4,00,000 – 11,00,000 per annum.

What is the entrance exam for PhD?

Some of the popular entrance exams are NET, GATE.

Thus, we hope that this blog helped you explore the key course details of a PhD in Civil Engineering. Are you aiming to pursue your PhD in Engineering abroad? Our Leverage Edu experts are here to assist you in selecting the best course and university as per your interests and aspirations! Sign up for a free career counselling session today!

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