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DEGREE Environmental Engineering, BS

Major in environmental engineering

As an environmental engineer, you’ll directly influence areas that include lakes and rivers, clean drinking water, environmental pollution, alternative energy, climate change and more. And you’ll learn how to design, construct and operate the sustainable systems and smart infrastructure that will help make these things a reality.

At a glance

Civil and environmental engineering department

Professors of practice who mentor our students
civil engineering undergraduate ranking among public universities
Undergraduates placed in a job or post-graduate studies within a year of graduation

Program and degree information

View the Undergraduate Guide for information on requirements, four-year plans and more.

Determine what kind of student you will be and learn more about what information you need to apply.

Freshman A freshman includes anyone who is currently a student in high school or who has not taken college coursework since graduating from high school.
Transfer Student A transfer student is anyone who has attended another college or university after graduating from high school and wishes to enroll in an undergraduate degree program at UW–Madison.
Cross-campus Student Cross-campus transfer students are students who are currently enrolled in another school or college at UW-Madison who wish to transfer into the College of Engineering.
Reentry Student Students who previously attended the University of Wisconsin–Madison as an undergraduate and would like to complete their first undergraduate degree will need to apply for reentry admission. Reentry students are those who have not been enrolled in courses for a semester or more.

Tuition and segregated fee rates are always listed per semester (not for Fall and Spring combined).


The College of Engineering is committed to recognizing the potential and accomplishments of incoming and enrolled students by supporting their education through a variety of scholarships at the college and departmental level.


This new program will seek accreditation from the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, 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.

Program Educational Objectives for the Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering 

We recognize that our graduates will choose to use the knowledge and skills that they have acquired during their undergraduate years to pursue a wide variety of career and life goals, and we encourage this diversity of paths. Whatever path our graduates may choose, we expect them to be meeting the following objectives at least three to five years after graduation: 

  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. 


Learning Outcomes

  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


  • Conferred, 2023-2024
    Bachelor of Science, Environmental Engineering: 10
  • Enrolled, Fall 2023
    Bachelor of Science, Environmental Engineering: 156

View the UW-Madison Guide for information on all civil and environmental engineering courses.


Research opportunities

You’re an undergrad at a university known for its world-changing research. As an undergrad, you can be part of that—whether in a lab in our department, elsewhere in engineering, or even in other schools or colleges across UW-Madison! And if you discover a passion for research, want to further specialize in your field, or simply enjoy the process of learning in an academic setting, you can get any of those through our advanced master’s and PhD degree programs, too!

Civil and Environmental Engineering: Research, MS

As a student in our research-based two-year master’s program, you’ll be able to advance your education in one of several areas of specialization, including construction engineering and management, environmental engineering, geo and pavement engineering, structural engineering, transportation engineering, and water resources/environmental fluid mechanics.

Environmental Chemistry and Technology Research, MS

If you have a strong background in chemistry and want to apply your interest and expertise to challenges in environmental systems, our interdisciplinary Environmental Chemistry and Technology program will provide you the experience you need to make a difference.

Geological Engineering, MS

As a master’s student in geological engineering, you’ll work with faculty mentors on challenges related to using earth’s resources while protecting the environment.

Research experience

As an undergrad, you can help pioneer new knowledge or technologies on your own or as a researcher in a professor’s lab.  It’s a great opportunity to apply what you’re learning in class, explore a field or topic that interests you, and gain insight into what it’s like to be a graduate student.

Civil and environmental engineering news

Our research is making a global impact, especially in mobility, water and building, and energy, infrastructure and environmental considerations thread through everything we do.

Become a Badger Engineer