When you consider your career choices in engineering, transportation engineering might be a good career option. With a master’s degree in transportation engineering, you can contribute to the economy, care for the environment, public safety, and many industries.

What is Transportation Engineering?

Transportation engineering is a branch of civil engineering that involves the planning, design, operation, and maintenance of transportation systems to move people and goods from one place to another.

Why Get a Master’s Degree in Transportation Engineering?

For those pursuing a master’s degree in transportation engineering, their career choice is not only about a great transportation engineering salary, but also about being a vital link between commerce and safety.

All countries have transportation needs for goods, services, and public safety. A transportation engineer helps to create effective transportation, so businesses can function, goods can be shipped, and public safety workers such as first responders can function to save lives. Any transportation problems can stop shipments, prevent people from getting to work, cause perishable goods to rot, cost billions in lost revenue, and endanger public health.

Not only are transportation engineers crucial to economies but, as importantly, they’re essential to caring for the environment. They work to make sure environments and transportation keep land and water clean while facilitating commerce.

How Much Does a Master’s in Transportation Engineering Degree Cost?

Costs for graduate programs in transportation engineering vary depending on the educational institution. Expenses include tuition, supplies, and other fees. According to a U.S. News and World Report, per-credit costs for an online civil engineering degree range from $450 to $1,100. This cost ranges between $14,000 and $33,000  in total tuition. Online degrees are often less expensive than attending brick-and-mortar universities because costs forego student activity fees, residency fees, and other additional fees to attend in person.

Master’s in Transportation Engineering Degree Salary and Job Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, transportation engineering occupations are expected to experience good growth with 8 percent growth. From 2020 to 2030, these occupations are projected to add 25,300 new jobs.  According to Payscale, a person with a Master of Science (MS), Transportation & Highway Engineering Degree can earn $73,000 per year.

Common Courses in Transportation Engineering Master’s Degree Programs

Earning a master’s degree in transportation engineering requires courses focused on math and technology. Students will study courses in:

  • Construction engineering
  • Engineering
  • Engineering economics
  • Environmental engineering
  • Fluid dynamics
  • Fluid mechanics
  • Geotechnical engineering
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanics
  • Statistics
  • Structural engineering
  • Surveying
  • Transportation engineering
  • Water resources

Other FAQs About Master’s in Transportation Engineering Degrees and Programs

What are some jobs that require a Master’s in Transportation Engineering degree?

Job opportunities you can pursue depending on your career choice. Transportation engineers find work in road projects, academic institutes, and railway projects. You can find work in the military as well as civilian projects Jobs you could have with a Master’s in Transportation Engineering degree include:

Transportation Design Engineer: A transportation design engineer prepares preliminary, detailed drawings for infrastructure projects. The design engineer makes estimates for costs and tender documents.

Transportation Executive: Transportation executives manage transportation operational activities. They help to implement agency policies and direction.

Senior Transportation Modeler: Senior transportation modelers work as project managers for projects. They do transportation model development, transportation modeling, and planning tasks for projects. As project managers, they handle regional transportation model development, maintenance, and use.

Technical Program Manager: Technical program managers support organizations with their goals. They work across organizations to manage transportation development. Technical program managers define requirements and evaluate finished projects.

Transportation Technician, Manager: Transportation managers direct and oversee transportation-related operations. They manage staff to make sure staff members follow safety rules and regulations.

How long does it take to get a master’s degree in transportation engineering?

Earning a Master’s in Transportation Engineering takes commitment. Full-time students in online master’s of engineering degree programs earn degrees in two to four years or, if you are in an accelerated program, as few as 18 months. The time you take to earn a master’s degree in transportation engineering depends on the type of engineering specialization, part-time or full-time enrollment, and accelerated or traditional classes. Single degrees require a shorter time commitment than dual-degree programs.

What licenses or certifications do I need to be a transportation engineer?

As an engineer, you need to pass the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) exam for those who have finished an undergraduate engineering degree from an EAC/ABET (Engineering Accreditation Commission/Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology)-accredited program. After reaching your master’s degree, you need to be certified in one of the six certifications offered by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). The available certifications are:

  • coastal engineering
  • geotechnical engineering
  • navigation engineering
  • ocean engineering
  • ports engineering
  • water resource engineering

Exam candidates need to have at least eight years of engineering work experience and have a Professional Engineering license.


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