The Graduate Program in Civil Engineering (PPGEC) at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS) was created in August 1970. Structural Engineering was the first research area of the Program. Later, the areas of Construction, Geotechnics and Environmental Engineering were added. Nowadays the program offers Master and Doctorate degrees in these four fields.
PPGEC is sponsored by several agencies, such as CAPES (Brazilian Agency of Graduate Education from Ministry of Education), CNPq (National Council of Technological and Scientific Development of Ministry of Science and Technology), FINEP (Agency for Funding of Projects of Ministry of Science and Technology) and FAPERGS (Foundation of the State of Rio Grande do Sul). The financial support received in the last 40 years has allowed the progressive enhancement of experimental and computational resources in the Program. This infra-structure is spread in several laboratories of research and development.
Currently the program has a 28 lecturers involved in teaching and supervision, all with PhD or DSc titles. The program is currently evaluated as one of the leading groups in Brazil in relation to teaching, research and development in the field of Civil Engineeringe. Due to the high qualification of its research members and infrastructure, PPGEC is able to provide excellence in graduate education and training. Nowadays PPGEC is graded as 7 (maximum, September 2010) by CAPES, which qualifies it as Program of Academic Excellency and International Insertion.
Along the years, over 840 dissertations and theses were concluded. Currently more than 200 students are enrolled in the different areas of researc, with students coming from different states of Brazil and other countries (Argentina, Portugal, Colombia, Bolivia, Paraguai among others).
The acivities of the Graduate Course on Civil Engineering can be classified in three groups:
* Tuition at Master and PhD levels;
* Research and Development;
* Consultancy and industry support.
The major emphasis is on human resources formation in order to prepare them for other research institutions public or private. Regular admission is open to students holding a degree in Civil Engineering and Architecture, however other engineering or non-engineering students may be admitted if they have taken correlated courses during undergraduate courses.
Doctorate Program requires 36 credits on class (one credit corresponds to 15 hours). For students with Master’s degree, up to 24 credits may be accepted for the Doctorate degree program. In this case the student is required to take another 12 credits at PPGEC. Students can also take courses in other graduate programs at UFRGS, limited to 25% of the total credits taken.
Major steps toward the doctorate degree include a qualifying examination, usually taken until the completion of 24 months of coursework. This examination consists on the presentation of the research project, including a comprehensive literature review. This project must be presented to a three examiners. At least one of the examiners must be from outside UFRGS.
The final step towards the doctorate degree is the completion of the writen material and its oral presentation. The work must also be presented to a three examiners. At least one of the committee’s members must be from outside UFRGS and only one may can be from de same department of UFRGS. The maximum period for presentation is five years.
Academic Master Degree
The Master Program is a two years course. During the first year 24 credits of graduate coursework (one credit corresponds to 15 hours of class) must be taken. The dissertation phase is only open to students with average grade better than B (A to C being approved).
Students can also take courses in other graduate programs at UFRGS, but no more than 25% of the credits can be taken. Final step towards master’s degree consists on the presentation of the research project to a committee of three examiners. At least one member of the committee must be from other recognized Institute of Education.
CAPES and CNPq fellowships are available to support master’s candidates.