Civil and Geological Engineering is particularly suited to international experiences. The American Society of Civil Engineering includes “Global Sustainability” in its canon of practice and many goals of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) are met with study abroad. An international experience will provide you with the necessary skills to work effectively in industry, academia, and the public sector. Every CSE student should consider gaining international experience through study abroad.
This is the basic process you'll complete in order to study abroad. The order in which you do things is somewhat flexible.
Review the following suggestions from the Department of Civil Engineering before beginning your study abroad research.
Civil and geological engineering students planning on studying abroad will need to start working on their Academic Planning Study Abroad (APSA) form as soon as they have chosen a program.
- To get started visit Adam Pagel the Study Abroad adviser for CSE students in 106 Lind Hall.
- Once you have chosen the courses that you want to take abroad (always choose more courses than you intend to take), have descriptions for those courses, and have begun filling out the APSA, you will meet with the Director of Undergraduate Studies in civil and geological engineering.
- Be sure to meet with Director of Undergraduate Studies at least three months prior to departing for your program. He must approve any civil and geological engineering courses or technical elective courses you wish to take to ensure that they will be counted toward your degree requirements. Bring your transcripts, APSA, and the course descriptions to the meeting.
- If you are planning to take courses in other majors in CSE, such as chemistry or mechanical engineering, you will need approval from those departments. The Director of Undergraduate Studies will let you know who to see for approval.
Guidelines for Choosing Courses:
Best time to go abroad:
- Sophomore or junior year
- Any summer or May session
- Fifth year if students finish all core requirements and have liberal education or technical electives left to complete.
Liberal Education Requirements
- May take any liberal education requirements through study abroad.
Major Pre-requisites and Courses Outside the Civil and Geological Engineering Department
- May take all with the approval of those departments.
Core Major Courses
- Students can take three courses, (up to 12 credits) but they must be pre-approved.
Major Emphasis and Technical Electives
- Students may take any technical elective abroad—up to 12 credits—if pre-approved.
- All courses that will be used for major requirements must be taken for a grade, not pass/fail.
Learning Abroad Minor
- The Learning Abroad minor is an individualized, interdisciplinary College of Liberal Arts (CLA) minor that integrates a study abroad experience with related University of Minnesota coursework. The minor is an excellent way to highlight your study abroad experience, as all of the coursework is directly relevant to your international experience. You can get more information at the Learning Abroad Center.
Africa and the Middle East
University of Cape Town (available through Arcadia South Africa)
- Located on the slopes of Devil’s Peak, UCT is home of the faculties of Science, Engineering, Commerce, and Humanities
- UCT is dedicated to educating for life and addressing the challenges that face society. All courses are in English
- Courses available are Mechanics of Materials, Structural Engineering, Civil Engineering Camp, fundamentals of Water Treatment, Methods and Statistics, Fluid Mechanics and Pipe Flow, Materials Science, Structural Engineering, and Geotechnical Engineering
Asia and Oceania
University of Melbourne
- Melbourne was recently named the “world’s most livable city” because of its culture and arts, parks, and climate
- Engineering classes include Solid and Fluid Mechanics, Material Behavior, Surveying, Hydraulics and Water Resources, Geomechanics and Foundations, Structures and Transport, Management, Construction, Field and Laboratory Techniques Relating to Natural Resources, Environmental Geomorphology, Hydrology, Water and Land Management and others
- Some courses offer a significant fieldwork component
University of Western Australia, Perth (available through Arcadia Australia, GlobaLinks Australia or IFSA-Butler Australia)
- Research areas are structural engineering, geomechanics, rock mechanics, resource engineering and hydraulics
- The university also hosts the Centre for Offshore Foundation Systems and the Australian Centre for Geomechanics
- Courses include Expert Systems, Environmental, Geomechanics, Foundation and Offshore Engineering, Soil-structure Interaction, Hydraulics, and many areas within Structural and Environmental Engineering
Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (CSE)
- This is a special exchange program open to CSE students.
- A wide range of courses include; Structures, Geotechnical Engineering, Water Resources, Environmental, Systems and Engineering Management, Construction, and Materials
- All courses are in English
Pohang University of Science & Technology (CSE)
- This is a special exchange program open to CSE students.
- Asia’s premier research and teaching institution for science and engineering. POSTECH offers research opportunities for undergraduates
- Research disciplines include civil, transportation, environmental, structural and architectural engineering, and many more
- Yonsei University is the most prestigious private university in Korea
- Seoul, South Korea is filled with museums, palaces, advertisements, and companies, making it a modern, yet traditional way of life.
- Courses offered are Basic Surveying and Practice, Structural Mechanics, Dynamics, and Photogrammetry.
University of Auckland
- Located on the top of North Island with a large, diverse campus and an excellent reputation for sciences, engineering, and research
- Classes offered are Land Information Systems, Structures and Design, Geomechanics, Fluid Mechanics, Civil Engineering Materials and Design, Structural Dynamics, and Hydraulic Engineering.
Queens University, Belfast (available through Arcadia Northern Ireland)
- Belfast, the capital of Northern Ireland, is a clean and vibrant city with an excellent cultural atmosphere. Queen Victoria founded queen’s College Belfast in 1845
- Students may take courses including Solids and Structures, Engineering Drawing, Mathematics, and Geotechnics
Norwegian University of Science & Technology, Trondheim (CSE)
- The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) was established in 1996, and is an innovation in the Norwegian academic world
- It is a national center for technological education and research within the natural sciences
Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg (CSE)
- Available for CSE students with junior or senior class standing
- Located on the beautiful west coast of Sweden, Chalmers University was founded in 1829
- Approximately 40% of Sweden’s graduate engineers and architects were educated at Chalmers
University College-London (available through Arcadia England or IFSA-Butler England)
- University College-London (UCL) is a leader in many disciplines
- Located in the Bloomsbury section of London, UCL offers a comprehensive social and academic experience
- Courses in engineering and energy management and media communication systems, as well as master’s courses in air transport management and technology, economics, and strategy
University of Nottingham (available through Arcadia England or IFSA-Butler England)
- International research reputation in the areas of engineering surveying and geodesy, pavement and geotechnical engineering, environmental fluid mechanics, structural engineering and construction management with a large portfolio of research contracts
- Courses in a variety of areas including construction management, engineering materials, mathematics and surveying, geotechnical, hydraulic and structural engineering, concrete structures and technology, soil mechanics, ridge engineering, earthquake and civil engineering dynamics, geodesy, earthworks engineering, information technology in engineering, traffic engineering, and wind engineering
University of Leeds(available through IFSA-Butler England)
- Excellent reputation for high standards in teaching and research, offering academic year and semester programs
- Courses such as Mass and Energy Balances, Transfer Processes, Managing Aqueous Effluents, Plant Engineering, Applied Catalysis, Applied Rheology, Engineering Thermodynamics, and Reaction Engineering
Additional Options to Consider
College of Science and Engineering Learn Abroad
- AEM students should also look at the study abroad exchanges and programs approved for other CSE departments on which you may be able to take general requirements as well as mechanical and electrical engineering courses. For information on exchanges, contact Adam Pagel, 106 Lind Hall or email.
Work, Intern, and Volunteer Abroad Programs (non-credit)
- An alternative or compliment to study abroad
- Explore new interests or gain experience related to your field of study
- Consider paid and unpaid opportunities offered throughout the year at locations around the globe
- 3-week, 3-credit programs at the 3000-level led by University of Minnesota faculty and staff over Winter Break or May Session.
- Fulfill Liberal Education requirements, or earn major/minor credit.
- Explore an exciting location and topic! Check out this year's offerings!
- Freshman Seminars Abroad combine on-campus instruction during spring semester with a study abroad component during spring break.
- Seminars are 3 credits at the 19xx level and most fulfill a liberal education requirement.
- Seminars are designed specifically for first year students as an introduction to study abroad.
International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience (IAESTE)
- An organization dedicated to developing global skills in tomorrow’s technical leaders. IAESTE coordinates on-the-job training for students
- The University of Minnesota is one of twenty educational institutions in the U.S. with a local IAESTE committee. Visit their website for more information.
Engineers Without Borders
- EWB partners with disadvantaged communities to improve their quality of life through implementation of environmentally and sustainable engineering projects.
Visit the Learning Abroad Center's Student Experiences web page for details on other students' experiences studying abroad.