Petroleum Engineering


As the only petroleum engineering undergraduate and graduate program in Alaska, a special emphasis is placed on arctic oil and gas development. Application of the basic sciences of chemistry, geology and physics are combined with engineering sciences to promote the development and production of conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon resources. The Petroleum Engineering program is a modern and challenging degree and offers a unique look at the problems confronting the petroleum industry. The petroleum engineering curriculum is accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).

General Interest Area:

The primary areas of petroleum engineering are drilling engineering, well completion, production engineering, reservoir evaluation and reservoir engineering. Research conducted in the Petroleum Development Laboratory includes basic and advanced studies of oil displacement, reservoir rock and fluid properties of Alaskan oil fields, thermal recovery, miscible flooding, improved water flooding, gas hydrates, gas-to-liquids (GTL) conversion and transportation, coalbed methane, drilling and production.

High School Background:

Mathematics, physics and chemistry are recommended to high school students interested in pursuing studies in petroleum engineering.

Plan of Study:

This program offers B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees with a Petroleum Engineering concentration. Expect to take mathematics, physics, chemistry, geology, engineering science and petroleum engineering courses.

How to get Involved:

The Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) is a very active student chapter at UAF. The American Association of Drilling Engineers (AADE) is also very active in professional development of petroleum engineers and offers a strong focus on drilling-related issues. Both groups organize technical seminars, field trips and social events.

Career and Graduate Possibilites:

Petroleum engineers are in high demand worldwide, and UAF graduates are immediately employable for high-paying positions by oil and oilfield service companies in Alaska and worldwide.

Related Websites:

UAF Petroleum Engineering Department
Petroleum Engineeing catalog description
Petroleum Engineering degree worksheet (PDF)

Society of Petroleum Engineers
American Association of Drilling Engineers

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