Students who wish to pursue special academic topics or individual research programs endorsed by a faculty member may register in most departments for a credit-bearing course of independent study.

Normally, no more than one independent study course may be taken in a semester.

CE 390, 391, 392, 393, 394 — Independent Study or Research. Independent study or research projects selected based on the background and interests of the student. An outline of the proposed work is submitted for approval by the department head and the faculty member who serves as adviser. A final paper presented the results of the work is required.  390 offered in fall semester, 391 in spring semester.

Department requirements:

Any student may request to work with a faculty member on an independent study project. An independent study may take a variety of forms, including but not limited to laboratory research, steel bridge competition design work, case studies, and tutorials on advanced topics.  If the faculty member is willing to supervise the student project, the student, in collaboration with the faculty supervisor, must prepare a proposal for the project and submit the proposal to the department head by the first Friday of the semester (one week before the drop/add deadline). The department head will review the proposal, and will notify the student and faculty supervisor of approval by the second Wednesday of the semester.

The independent study proposal should include a statement of the problem to be addressed or topic to be investigated in the independent study, an overview of the proposed research plan or a syllabus, any deliverables, and a timeline for the project. All students who take an independent study are encouraged to present their work to faculty and students (e.g., through participation in a poster session or by giving a seminar talk.)