Geological Engineering

Earn your master’s in geological engineering working in the natural classroom of Alaska, in a hands-on program that focuses on issues specific to the Arctic.

With its cold climate and permafrost, Alaska presents unique challenges for engineers. Everywhere you look, a geological engineering problem is waiting to be solved. Our program takes full advantage of this unique location, offering opportunities for field-based research you won’t find anywhere else in the world — from mapping landslides in areas with recent LiDAR coverage to produce landslide inventory maps, to conducting rockfall analyses for hazardous slopes adjacent to major highways.

Alumni of our master’s in geological engineering are highly sought after by employers around the globe, and 100% of our graduates are employed within three months of degree completion.

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Why Earn Your Geological Engineering Degree at the University of Alaska Fairbanks?

Field-based research and experiential learning in the unique geological landscape of the Arctic. Award-winning faculty with diverse research experience. Small classes in which you interact one-on-one with your instructors. Affordable tuition and a proven track record of return on investment. The University of Alaska Fairbanks offers all of this and more for students interested in geological engineering.  

Engage in field-based research

  • If you enjoy conducting field-based research in the outdoors, the master’s in geological engineering at UAF is the place to be. All of our students conduct research projects, most of which involve field work. A recent project involved drilling and instrumenting a slow-moving landslide in permafrost to determine its mechanism of movement and movement rate. Some of these research projects are in collaboration with state agencies, such as the Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, who also offer internship opportunities. Some of our graduate students also work as teaching assistants within the program, teaching undergraduates in laboratory section.

Participate in field trips and lab experiences that connect classroom lessons to the real world

  • Several courses, like Slope Stability, and Geohazard Analysis, include field trips in which you’ll collect data and use that information to solve a real-world problem, or design a mitigation plan. In the Thermal Geotechnics class, you can learn how to conduct 2D modeling of natural ground and engineered structures to solve problems related to frozen ground. Our facilities also include labs with specialized equipment and computer software programs, including our Frozen Soil Testing Laboratory (FROST Lab).

Work closely with award-winning faculty

  • At UAF, you’ll learn from and work side-by-side with faculty who are energetic, caring, outgoing and highly experienced. They are the recipients of nationally competitive research grants, conference paper awards and teaching awards. They also bring diverse research interests to the program, in areas such as slope stability in permafrost; behavior of unfrozen water in frozen soils; engineering and environmental geophysics; GIS and remote sensing applications in geohazard analysis; and GIS-based multivariate geospatial analysis.



What Can You Do With a Geological Engineering Degree?

With a master’s in geological engineering from UAF, you can count on finding a career in your field: 100% of our program alumni are employed within three months of graduating.

Our graduates work for state agencies such as the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities, Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, and Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation. Many students also go on to careers with federal agencies, private consulting companies, and resource development companies.

Alaska has one of the highest concentrations of geological engineering jobs in the nation, and our advisors work closely with each and every student to identify career opportunities after graduation.



Get Started on Your Master’s in Geological Engineering

Take the next step toward earning your geological engineering degree. We have the resources to help you get started.