The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering offers a B.S. Environmental Engineering (BSEnvE) degree program, an excellent degree choice for students who are interested in the sustainable design, construction, and operation of systems and facilities that:

  • Treat and distribute safe and reliable drinking water
  • Recover material, nutrient, and energy resources from wastewater and solid waste
  • Protect and restore wetlands, streams, lakes, and groundwater
  • Allocate water resources for urban, rural, and recreational use
  • Protect and develop coastal shorelines and stream banks
  • Manage stormwater and minimize risk of flood events
  • Reduce, reuse, and recycle solid wastes
  • Minimize the production of and provide treatment of industrial and agricultural wastes
  • Minimize the production of and provide treatment of industrial air emissions
  • Protect society from the impacts of climate change, such as rising sea levels and increasing frequency and severity of severe weather events
  • Slow down or reverse climate change via
    • Alternative sources of energy such as solar, wind, geothermal and biofuels
    • Recovery of carbon and other greenhouse gases from industrial air emissions

The operation of these facilities is being rapidly integrated into the Internet of Things with real-time “big data” collection systems for automated control. This makes it possible for society to rely on smart infrastructure, including systems that will reduce water consumption, save energy, and improve community resiliency in the wake of natural and human-caused disasters.

All of the above items require a core knowledge in mathematics, statistics, physics, chemistry, biology, geology, computer science and computer design tools, as well as breadth in different environmental engineering disciplines. Environmental engineers perform their work in a multidisciplinary setting requiring strong written and verbal communication skills, understanding of professional and ethical obligations coupled with risk management and decision-making, and commitment to lifelong learning and professional licensure. Their daily work also requires a commitment to sustainability – the need to meet today’s needs while also allowing future generations to meet their environmental health, public health, and society’s economic health needs.

To meet accreditation policies, eligibility for the program is limited to those students who

  • matriculated into UW-Madison’s College of Engineering in the Fall 2020 semester or later, and
  • expect to graduate no sooner than December 2023.

Students not meeting the above criteria are encouraged to consider the Environmental Engineering Option of the BS Civil Engineering degree program. Additional options for these students include the BS Geological Engineering degree program and the Natural Resources and Environmental Engineering Option of the BS Biological Systems Engineering degree program.


Develop and maintain a learning community that pursues new knowledge and understanding, and provides innovative and sustainable solutions to human and ecological needs.


Create, integrate, and transfer environmental engineering knowledge and practice in the development of professionals, leaders, and citizens that help define and serve societal and environmental needs by applying this knowledge and practice in an effective and sustainable manner.


Prepare BSEnvE graduates to contribute to their communities through the following career and professional accomplishments:

  1. Design and construct both natural and built processes and systems to efficiently meet determined needs using technical knowledge; modern tools; design principles; ethical practice; and communication, leadership, and team skills.
  2. Utilize measurement and analysis tools along with experimental data in investigating natural and built systems.
  3. Understand and incorporate economic, environmental, political, social, safety and global considerations in design, investigation and construction of natural and built systems.
  4. Engage in lifelong learning to keep pace with the continuous evolution of policies, procedures, technologies and tools for engineering analysis, design, and decision making.
  5. Serve others through participation in professional and/or civic activities and responsibilities.

Admission to the College as a Freshman

Students applying to UW–Madison need to indicate an engineering major as their first choice in order to be considered for direct admission to the College of Engineering. Direct admission to a major means students will start in the program of their choice in the College of Engineering and will need to meet progression requirements at the end of the first year to guarantee advancement in that program.

Cross-Campus Transfer to Engineering

UW–Madison students in other schools and colleges on campus must meet minimum admission requirements for admission consideration to engineering degree granting classifications. Cross-campus admission is competitive and selective, and the grade point average expectations may increase as demand trends change. The student’s overall academic record at UW–Madison is also considered. Students apply to their intended engineering program by submitting the online application by stated deadlines for spring and fall. The College of Engineering offers an online information tutorial and drop-in advising for students to learn about the cross-campus transfer process.

Off-Campus Transfer to Engineering

With careful planning, students at other accredited institutions can transfer coursework that will apply toward engineering degree requirements at UW–Madison. Off-campus transfer applicants are considered for direct admission to the College of Engineering by applying to the Office of Admissions with an engineering major listed as their first choice. Those who are admitted to their intended engineering program must meet progression requirements at the point of transfer or within their first two semesters at UW–Madison to guarantee advancement in that program. A minimum of 30 credits in residence in the College of Engineering is required after transferring, and all students must meet all requirements for their major in the college. Transfer admission to the College of Engineering is competitive and selective, and students who have exceeded the 80 credit limit at the time of application are not eligible to apply.

The College of Engineering has dual degree programs with select four-year UW System campuses. Eligible dual degree applicants are not subject to the 80 credit limit.

Off-campus transfer students are encouraged to discuss their interests, academic background, and admission options with the Transfer Coordinator in the College of Engineering: ugtransfer@engr.wisc.edu or 608-262-2473.

Second Bachelor's Degree

The College of Engineering does not accept second undergraduate degree applications. Second degree students might explore the Biological Systems Engineering program at UW–Madison, an undergraduate engineering degree elsewhere, or a graduate program in the College of Engineering.

University General Education Requirements

All undergraduate students at the University of Wisconsin–Madison are required to fulfill a minimum set of common university general education requirements to ensure that every graduate acquires the essential core of an undergraduate education. This core establishes a foundation for living a productive life, being a citizen of the world, appreciating aesthetic values, and engaging in lifelong learning in a continually changing world. Various schools and colleges will have requirements in addition to the requirements listed below. Consult your advisor for assistance, as needed. For additional information, see the university Undergraduate General Education Requirements section of the Guide.

General Education
  • Breadth—Humanities/Literature/Arts: 6 credits
  • Breadth—Natural Science: 4 to 6 credits, consisting of one 4- or 5-credit course with a laboratory component; or two courses providing a total of 6 credits
  • Breadth—Social Studies: 3 credits
  • Communication Part A & Part B *
  • Ethnic Studies *
  • Quantitative Reasoning Part A & Part B *

* The mortarboard symbol appears before the title of any course that fulfills one of the Communication Part A or Part B, Ethnic Studies, or Quantitative Reasoning Part A or Part B requirements.

Summary of Requirements

The following curriculum applies to students who were admitted to the environmental engineering degree program (classification changed to BSEnvE) in Fall 2021 or later.

Introduction to Engineering3
Mathematics and Statistics19
Basic Science16
Engineering Mechanics9
Engineering Tools6
Fundamental Principles18
Advanced Principles and Practices33
Liberal Studies16
Total Credits128

Introduction to Engineering

INTEREGR 170 Design Practicum3
Total Credits3

Mathematics and Statistics

MATH 221 Calculus and Analytic Geometry 15
or MATH 217 Calculus with Algebra and Trigonometry II
or MATH 275
MATH 222 Calculus and Analytic Geometry 24
or MATH 276
MATH 234 Calculus--Functions of Several Variables4
MATH 319 Techniques in Ordinary Differential Equations3
One of the following:3
Introductory Applied Statistics for Engineers
Introduction to Theory and Methods of Mathematical Statistics I
and Introduction to Theory and Methods of Mathematical Statistics II
Total Credits19

Basic Science

One of the following:5
Advanced General Chemistry
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry II
One of the following:5
General Physics
General Physics
One of the following:3
Introductory Geology: How the Earth Works
Environmental Geology
One of the following:3
Introductory Biology
Introductory Biology
Introductory Ecology
General Microbiology
Total Credits16

Engineering Mechanics

E M A 201 Statics (with a grade of C or better)3
E M A 202 Dynamics3
CIV ENGR 310 Fluid Mechanics3
Total Credits9

Engineering Tools

CIV ENGR/​G L E  291 Problem Solving Using Computer Tools4
CIV ENGR 159 Civil Engineering Graphics (was ME 170 before Fall 2023)2
Total Credits6

Fundamental Environmental Engineering Principles

CIV ENGR 311 Hydroscience3
CIV ENGR 320 Environmental Engineering3
CIV ENGR 324 Environmental Engineering Thermodynamics3
CIV ENGR 325 Environmental Engineering Materials3
CIV ENGR 494 Civil and Environmental Engineering Decision Making3
CIV ENGR 498 Construction Project Management3
Total Credits18

Advanced Principles and Practices

Environmental Engineering Experiments

Note: Courses taken to meet this requirement may not be used to meet the environmental engineering breadth requirement. 

One of the following lab courses:3
Environmental Engineering Processes
Hydraulic Engineering
Measurements and Instrumentation for Biological Systems
Total Credits3

Senior Capstone Design

CIV ENGR 578 Senior Capstone Design 14
Total Credits4

At least one engineering design course as designated with an asterisk(*) must be completed before taking CIV ENGR 578 Senior Capstone Design.

Environmental Engineering Breadth Electives

At least one class in at least four of the following sub-disciplines. At least two of the courses must be designated as an engineering design course (*) and must be from different sub-disciplines. If more than one course is taken from a sub-discipline, then the additional course(s) will be counted towards the Technical and Professional Electives Requirement.12
Environmental Chemistry
Water Chemistry
Atmospheric Chemistry
Soil Chemistry
Health Hazards and Risk Assessment
Elements of Public Health Engineering
Introduction to Environmental Health
Air Pollution and Human Health
Hydraulic Engineering
Open Channel Hydraulics
Surface Water Resources and Hydrology
Water Management Systems
Small Watershed Engineering
Hydrologic Design *
Groundwater, Soils, and Sediments
Groundwater Hydraulics
Water and Wastewater
Design of Wastewater Treatment Plants *
Water Treatment Plant Design *
Air Quality and Control
Air Pollution Effects, Measurement and Control
Atmospheric Dispersion and Air Pollution
Solid and Hazardous Waste
Solid and Hazardous Wastes Engineering *
Hazardous Waste Management *
Energy and Environment
Renewable Energy Systems
Energy Technologies and Sustainability
Environmental Sustainability Engineering
Wind Energy Balance-of-Plant Design *
Energy Resources
Total Credits12

Professional Electives

Note: Courses taken to meet this requirement may not be used to meet the environmental engineering breadth requirement.

Select 14 credits of coursework that meets at least one of the following criteria:

  • Any engineering course numbered 300 or higher, excluding E P D and INTEREGR. Up to six credits of independent study (e.g. CIV ENGR 699 Independent Study and others) may be counted
  • Any intermediate or advanced-level course1 from atmospheric and oceanic sciences, botany, chemistry, geography, geoscience, mathematics2, microbiology, molecular and environmental toxicology, physics, population health sciences, soil science, statistics2, or zoology
  • Up to three credits of any intermediate or advanced-level course from agricultural and applied economics, economics, general business, management and human resources, or INTEREGR 303 Applied Leadership Competencies in Engineering
  • Up to three credits of CIV ENGR 1 Cooperative Education Program

Courses with social science, humanities, or literature breadth (H, L, S, W, X, Y, Z) cannot be used


Transfer/test math elective credits for calculus or STAT 301 Introduction to Statistical Methods may not be used to fulfill Professional Electives


Communications A (choose one)3
Introduction to College Composition
Science and Storytelling
Introduction to Speech Composition
Academic Writing II
Speech-Related Course (choose one)2
Technical Presentations 1
Public Speaking
Elements of Speech-Honors Course
Theory and Practice of Argumentation and Debate
Theory and Practice of Group Discussion
Writing-Related Course (choose one)3
Engineering Communication 1
Intermediate Composition
Total Credits8

E P D 275 Technical Presentations and INTEREGR 397 Engineering Communication are strongly recommended to satisfy these requirements.

Liberal Studies

College of Engineering Liberal Studies Requirements16
Requirements specific to Environmental Engineering:
An economics course must be selected from the following list:
Principles of Microeconomics
Principles of Macroeconomics
Principles of Economics-Accelerated Treatment
A minimum of three credits of environmental studies course that meets the breadth designations of Humanities, Literature, and/or Social Studies. Courses that also carry breadth designations of Biological Sciences, Natural Sciences, or Physical Sciences will not count towards this requirement.
Total Credits16

All liberal studies credits must be identified with the letter H, S, L, or Z. Language courses are acceptable without the letter and are considered humanities. An economics elective and an environmental studies elective are required.

Note: See an environmental engineering advisor for additional information.

Honors in Research

Students in environmental engineering that have completed at least two semesters on the Madison campus with a cumulative GPA of at least 3.5 may apply to participate in the Honors in Research program. Students may register for 1 to 3 credits per semester. A grade of P (Progress) will be assigned each semester until the student completes the honors in research program or drops out of the program, at which time a final grade is assigned (based on research progress and the written thesis, if completed). This becomes the grade for all credits taken in CIV ENGR 489 Honors in Research.

A senior thesis worth 3 credits of CIV ENGR 489 is required. The senior thesis is a written document reporting on a substantial piece of work that is prepared in the style of a graduate thesis. The thesis advisor determines the grade which the student receives for the thesis. A bound copy of the thesis must be submitted to the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering office to complete the program.

The designation “Honors in Research” will be recorded on the student’s transcript if the following criteria are met:

  1. Satisfaction of requirements for an undergraduate degree in Environmental Engineering.
  2. A cumulative grade-point average of at least 3.3.
  3. Completion of a total of at least 8 credits in CIV ENGR 489.
  4. Completion of a senior honors thesis with a final grade of B or better.

Students interested in the Honors in Research program should contact their advisor or the BSEnvE chair for more information. Applications to the program are to be submitted to the BSEnvE chair with a supporting letter from the student’s academic and thesis advisors. Decisions regarding acceptance are made by the BSEnvE chair.

University Degree Requirements

Total Degree To receive a bachelor's degree from UW–Madison, students must earn a minimum of 120 degree credits. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 degree credits. Students should consult with their college or department advisor for information on specific credit requirements.
Residency Degree candidates are required to earn a minimum of 30 credits in residence at UW–Madison. "In residence" means on the UW–Madison campus with an undergraduate degree classification. “In residence” credit also includes UW–Madison courses offered in distance or online formats and credits earned in UW–Madison Study Abroad/Study Away programs.
Quality of Work Undergraduate students must maintain the minimum grade point average specified by the school, college, or academic program to remain in good academic standing. Students whose academic performance drops below these minimum thresholds will be placed on academic probation.
  1. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics
  2. an ability to apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, and economic factors
  3. an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences
  4. an ability to recognize ethical and professional responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts
  5. an ability to function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives
  6. an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions
  7. an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies
First Year
MATH 2215MATH 2224
CHEM 1095E M A 20113
GEOSCI 100 or 1063INTEREGR 1703
Communications A3CIV ENGR 1592
 Environmental Studies3
 16 15
Second Year
MATH 2344MATH 3193
STAT 3243E M A 2023
Biology3CIV ENGR/​G L E  2914
Ethnic Studies3E P D 2752
 16 15
Third Year
PHYSICS 202 or 2085ECON 1014
INTEREGR 3973Lab Course3
Liberal Studies3Env Engr Breadth #13
 17 16
Fourth Year
Env Engr Breadth #23Env Engr Breadth #43
Env Engr Breadth #33Professional Elective3
Professional Elective3Professional Elective3
Professional Elective2Professional Elective3
Liberal Studies3 
 17 16
Total Credits 128

E M A 201 Statics requires a minimum grade of C.


Each College of Engineering program has academic advisors dedicated to serving its students. Program advisors can help current College of Engineering students with questions about accessing courses, navigating degree requirements, resolving academic issues and more. Students can find their assigned advisor on the homepage of their student center. 

Engineering Career Services

Engineering Career Services (ECS) assists students in identifying pre-professional work-based learning experiences such as co-ops and summer internships, considering and applying to graduate or professional school, and finding full-time professional employment during their graduation year.

ECS offers two major career fairs per year, assists with resume writing and interviewing skills, hosts workshops on the job search, and meets one-on-one with students to discuss offer negotiations.

Students are encouraged to utilize the ECS office early in their academic careers. For comprehensive information on ECS programs and workshops, see the ECS website or call 608-262-3471.

Greg Harrington (Director)
Robert Anex
Tracey Holloway
James Hurley
Krishnapuram Karthikeyan
William Likos
Steven Loheide
Katherine McMahon
Daniel Noguera
Jim Park
Doug Reinemann
Troy Runge
James Schauer
Anita Thompson
Chin Wu

Paul Block
Michael Cardiff
Dante Fratta
Matthew Ginder-Vogel
Andrea Hicks
Rebecca Larson
Christy Remucal
Paul Stoy
James Tinjum
Daniel Wright

Nimish Pujara
Mohan Qin
Haoran Wei
Christopher Zahasky

Licensure as a Professional Engineer is expected of environmental engineers.  Information on steps needed to obtain licensure is available from the National Council for the Examination of Engineers and Surveyors (NCEES) at https://ncees.org/engineering/ .


This new program will seek accreditation from the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org. Application for accreditation will be made at the earliest opportunity, in 2024, with an ABET decision in 2025. If accreditation is awarded, it may be retroactively applied to those who graduated in Academic Year 2023-24.

Note: Undergraduate Program Educational Objectives and Student Outcomes are made publicly available at the Departmental website. (In this Guide, the program's Student Outcomes are designated by our campus as "Learning Outcomes.")