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College of Engineering and Applied Science

College of Engineering and Applied Sciences at UC Denver

Construction Engineering and Management Program

Master of Engineering degree

The interdisciplinary Master of Engineering in Construction Engineering and Management at the University of Colorado Denver prepares the next generation of construction engineers with the requisite set of skills to be effective leaders and managers within this ever-evolving industry.

The CU Denver Construction Engineering and Management (CEM) Program is the only cooperative, interdisciplinary CEM program in the state backed by industry and supported by accredited schools of architecture and business. 

Construction engineering and management concerns the design, planning and management of the construction of structures, infrastructure, transportation systems, site work and environmental projects (for example: highways, bridges, airports, buildings, dams, reservoirs, light and high-speed rail systems, utilities and environmental restoration projects). The program provides the necessary leadership for complex construction projects and subsequent management throughout their useful life.

Graduates of the program are prepared to engage in all responsibilities of construction engineers and construction managers, including building and site design, planning and leading construction schedules, construction quality assurance and control, construction cost estimating and project management.

The program is built around focused construction engineering and management courses to include construction engineering, project management, materials and methods, cost estimating, optimization, productivity, BIM, leadership, and ethics and safety. Advanced engineering courses are available in transportation, structures, soils, sustainability and more. Faculty in the Business School provide expertise in leadership, managing for sustainability, project management, legal and ethic environment of business, data analysis, decision analysis, financial management and quality and process improvement. Faculty in the College of Architecture and Planning add expertise in green building technology, sustainable systems, construction documents and managing quality and risks.

Contact civil engineering department chair and CEM program director Kevin Rens, or 303-556-2871 for more information.

The Master of Engineering in Construction Engineering and Management (CEM) provides students with rigorous scientific knowledge, business principles and the engineering tools necessary for lifelong careers in the ever-changing technical and managerial environment of the construction industry. Students who successfully complete the curriculum will be prepared for entry into the construction engineering/project management or related fields of study, such as business, law and other engineering disciplines. 

The courses for the CEM Master of Engineering degree are divided into four areas: 1) CEM general courses--three of these courses are required; 2) sustainability in construction engineering; 3) construction business and management; and 4) construction engineering. Students may focus their program in a specific area or choose courses to suit a particular requirement or interest. 

The program also requires three credit hours of master's report work that should be a culmination of study in their area of interest.

NOTE:Course descriptions may be found in the CU Denver catalog. Not all courses are offered each semester.

Fall 2014 course offerings (PDF)


Construction Engineering and Management general courses (*required course)

CVEN 5231 – Construction Engineering I*
CVEN 5800Project Management Systems
CVEN 5800Construction Materials and Methods
CVEN 5800Cost Estimating
CVEN 5800Advanced Project Management
CVEN 5800Construction Optimization
CVEN 5800Construction Productivity
CVEN 5800Construction Engineering II*
CVEN 5800Construction Safety
CVEN 5800Leadership and Ethics in Construction*
CVEN 5960Master's Report*

Sustainability in Construction Engineering

ACCT 6285 – Accounting and Finance for Sustainability
ARCH 5330 – Sustainable Systems I
ARCH 5340 – Sustainable Systems II
ARCH 6310 – Greenbuilding Tech
ARCH 6353 – Daylighting Design
CVEN 5405 – Systems Analysis for Environment and Sustainability
CVEN 5460 – Introduction to Sustainable Urban Infrastructure
CVEN 5461 – Defining and Measuring Sustainability
CVEN 5481 – Sustainable Water Systems Policy and Planning
CVEN 5462 – Theories of Sustainable Infrastructure Management
CVEN 5633 – Case Studies in Sustainable Transportation
CVEN 5800 – Daylighting Applications and Engineering
CVEN 5800 – Sustainable Construction
ENTP 6808 – Practicum in Sustainable Business Research
MGMT 6821 – Managing for Sustainability
MGMT 6823 – The Sustainable Business Opportunity
URBN 6644 – Sustainable Urbanism
URPL 6460 – Green Real Estate Development
URPL 6515 – Sustainable Planning & Design

Construction Business Management

ARCH 6370 – Introduction to Design Build
ARCH 6373 – Construction in Design Build
ARCH 6412 – Construction Documents
ARCH 6471 – Managing Quality and Risks
ARCH 6472 – Architecture in a Single Source Project Delivery
BANA 6610 – Statistics for Business Analytics
BANA 6640 – Decision Analysis
BANA 6720 – Simulation Modeling
BUSN 6520 – Leading Individuals and Teams
BUSN 6530 – Data Analysis for Managers
BUSN 6540 – Legal and Ethical Environment of Business
BUSN 6550 – Analyzing and Interpreting Accounting Information
BUSN 6640 – Financial Management
CVEN 5457 – Administration of Public Works
DSCI 6440 – Quality and Process Improvement
MGMT 6360 – Designing Effective Organizations
MGMT 6808 – Leadership Development
RISK 3809 – Introduction to Risk Management
RISK 6129 – Practical Enterprise Risk Management
RISK 6809 – Corporate Risk Management
URPL 6200 – Land Development Regulations
URPL 6249 – Project Management

Construction Engineering

CVEN 4575 – Structural Steel Design
CVEN 4585 – Reinforced Concrete Design
CVEN 5201 – Construction Dewatering
CVEN 5381 – Introduction to Geographic Information Systems
CVEN 5382 – GIS Spatial Database Development
CVEN 5388 – Site Engineering
CVEN 5456 – Engineering Practice
CVEN 5565 – Advanced Timber Structure Design
CVEN 5575 – Advanced Topics in Structural Steel Design
CVEN 5662 – Transportation System Safety
CVEN 5682 – Pavement Design
CVEN 5708 – Advanced Soils Engineering
CVEN 5718 – Engineering Properties of Soils
CVEN 5719 – Design and Construction of Geosynthetic-Reinforced Soil Structures
CVEN 5738 – Foundation Engineering

The Construction Engineering and Management (CEM) program is a professional master’s degree program created in partnership with Denver’s construction and engineering community. The CEM Advisory Board includes industry leaders that have strong knowledge of industry work force needs and have reinforced the pressing need for a strong pipeline of engineers from CU Denver to become the industry’s future leaders.

Advisory board members

  • David Bennetts, Manager, Urban Drainage and Flood Control District
  • Jeffrey Clevenger, Managing Principal, Jacobs
  • Dave Conover, Senior Vice President, HDR
  • Carlos deMoraes, retired transportation engineer
  • Taryn Edwards, Senior Vice President, Saunders Construction
  • David Frazier, Vice President, Merrick & Company
  • Richard Hepworth, Vice President, Hepworth-Pawlak Geotechnical, Inc.
  • Jim Johnson, President, GE Johnson Construction Company
  • Jeff Kullman, Vice President, Transportation Division Manager, Atkins
  • Gary Meggison, Senior Vice President, RJM Construction
  • J.J. O’Brien, Programmatic Closure Manager, Global Security Group, URS
  • Keith Platte, Project Manager, SAIC Energy, Environment and Infrastructure

The Master of Engineering requires 27 credit hours of course work, including the three required construction engineering and management courses (9 credit hours) and 3 credit hours of master’s report work, totaling 30 credit hours. All students must satisfactorily complete a written comprehensive exam and an oral defense of a master’s report to their program committee, which must include two or more graduate faculty members and one committee member from the construction industry.

Click here for Admission Requirements

Click here to apply online.