Ph.D. in Construction Science
The Ph.D. in Construction Science program at Texas A&M uses scientific methods, emerging technologies, and advanced management theories to address complex construction problems. Your discoveries can improve the safety, productivity, and efficiency of the construction industry.
You’ll develop expertise in the research process and its application to construction, project management, and sustainability issues that occur throughout the life cycle of construction projects. Using creativity and rigorous quantitative and qualitative methodologies, you’ll conduct high-impact, transformative research that will benefit the construction industry and ultimately human civilization.
About the Program
Our Ph.D. in Construction Science is the first program of its kind in the state of Texas and one of the largest in the country, with the most diverse range of research topics available. Approximately 6–8 students are admitted per year.
Our program prepares interdisciplinary scientists ready to solve complex construction problems. Through high-impact research, our program creates new knowledge to advance the industry.
- Construction management
- Smart construction
- Sustainability in construction
Our Ph.D. program meets the growing demand for doctoral-level construction professionals in industry and academia. Our graduates are poised to become:
- Construction Scientists who carry out effective research in science and technology
- Project Managers with advanced business skills needed to be practical leaders in construction and related industries
- Construction Educators with interdisciplinary knowledge prepared to educate the constructors of tomorrow
The Ph.D. requires 60 credit hours for a M.S. degree holder. Students entering the Ph.D. program with only a baccalaureate degree will take an additional 30 hours of coursework.
- 14 credits of fundamental courses
- 6 credits of research methods courses
- 9 credits of courses in a concentration area
- 9 credits of free electives that support the student’s research activities (18 credits for students entering with a baccalaureate degree)
- 18+ credits in variable research courses while working on your dissertation
- Up to 3 credits for an industry internship
Students will be allowed to transfer up to 12 credit hours from other institutions. A maximum of nine undergraduate credit hours from 300 and 400 level courses may be allowed to count toward the coursework requirements with the approval of your Ph.D. committee.
FAQ about the Ph.D. program
Which faculty can I work with?
You will work with our tenured or tenure-track faculty members in the construction science department. We encourage you to learn more about our faculty’s research activities that may be aligned with your research interest and career goals by reviewing their biographies.
Who can chair doctoral committees?
A tenured or tenure-track faculty member in the Department of Construction Science can serve as the chair of your doctoral committee. Your committee chair should have closely aligned research experience to your research interests.
Who can serve on doctoral committees?
Texas A&M University requires four members to form a doctoral committee. At least one of them should be from outside of the department you belong to. All four committee members are expected to be familiar with your Ph.D. research topic and have some expertise to provide you with useful guidance to help you complete your Ph.D. research.
Do you provide funding for your Ph.D. students?
All admitted students to our Ph.D. program will receive full financial support that covers tuition for 9 credit hours a semester, health insurance, and a monthly stipend. Some also cover fees. Assistantships may continue until the student completes his/her Ph.D. program, contingent upon satisfactory performance.
Supported from the Start
You’ll be mentored by a faculty member from the start of your program. Paired based on similar research interests, you’ll often work alongside each other on research that our faculty are engaged in. Most of our faculty are internationally recognized scholars and researchers with a strong track record of high impact research. Most research projects are externally funded and they are used to financially support you from the start of your Ph.D. program along with other assistantships and scholarships available.
Preparing for the Ph.D. Program
Students must have a master’s degree or a bachelor’s degree before beginning the Ph.D. program. Students with only a bachelor’s degree will have to take an additional 30 credit hours.
FAQ about preparing for the program
What do we look for in an applicant?
Our Ph.D. program is highly competitive with a large number of applications from all around the world every year. Successful Ph.D. applicants typically show:
- Strong self-motivation to pursue a Ph.D. degree in our department
- Strong academic achievement record and/or industry experience
- Critical thinking skills
- Ability to take independent initiative and action to complete tasks
- Ability to logically articulate work processes involved and results
Some faculty members may require specific education background, experience, and/or skill sets of applicants to be considered for financial assistantships.
How does the admissions process work?
- Ph.D. applicants go through a two-tiered acceptance process.
In the first tier, prospective students demonstrate that they have the relevant credentials. To do this, you should submit your application and all supporting documents by the application deadline.
Applicants who have the relevant experience then must attract a mentor. Faculty review the applications and look for good matches based on research interests.
Six to eight individuals are chosen and admitted into the program.
Do I need to contact individual faculty members in advance prior to submitting the application?
It is not a requirement but it is generally recommended that you contact individual faculty members by email to see whether they would be interested in your academic background, experience, skill sets, research interest, and career goals before and/or after submitting your application. Individual faculty play a significant role in determining which students are accepted into our Ph.D. program.
What do I need to include in my application?
Submit your application at Texas A&M GradCas along with a non-refundable application fee. The fee may be waived only in exceptional cases for low-income applicants and McNair Scholars.
Your application should include the following:
- Official transcripts from all colleges or universities you have attended
- Required test scores (GRE or GMAT)
- 3 letters of recommendation (academic references preferred)
- Statement of Purpose essay
- Résumé or Curriculum Vitae
What are the admissions deadlines?
The application deadline is December 1st. Complete application packages received after December 1st cannot be assured full consideration.
Applications received prior to April 15th may be considered as openings permit.
No applications will be considered after April 15th.
What kinds of financial aid does the program offer?
Doctoral students are typically funded either through externally funded grants (from National Science Foundation, Construction Industry Institute, etc.) or through departmental assistantships. University fellowships are also available for exceptional candidates.
Assistantships typically provide tuition for 9 credit hours, health insurance, and a monthly stipend. Some also cover fees. Assistantships may continue until you complete your Ph.D. program contingent upon satisfactory performance. Work assignments include both research and teaching opportunities. International and domestic students receiving financial assistance are eligible for in-state tuition.
Who can I go to for questions?
Innovations in Construction
Our department’s diverse research portfolio tackles real-world problems through convergent research and scholarly activity. Our work is at the intersection of the built environment, enabling technologies and stakeholder needs.