Best Master’s in Construction Management

Are you ready to find your fit?

Develop business acumen and gain frontline experience in the construction industry with a Master’s in Construction Management.

If you’re reading this page, you probably know that the construction industry has a growing need for professionals with advanced technical, management and applied research skills. And while it’s common for many construction professionals to learn many of their skills on the job, on-site training will only take you so far.

If you want to succeed in the higher levels of the hospitality industry, formal training for management positions is essential. Do you want to improve your current job performance and advance into management? Or are you thinking of launching your own entrepreneurial venture? Either way, a Master’s in Construction Management will help you navigate the complexities of the industry.

What kind of construction management degree should you get?

There are many Construction Management programs to choose from as well as modes of delivery. Traditionally when we think of going to college we think of a brick and mortar campus. But today there are many options for those whose life commitments don’t allow them to pursue a traditional on-campus degree program.

Online programs have come a long way from their early days of dubious respectability. You can now complete many academic programs either on campus, online, or through a hybrid of both. You will achieve the same degree online as your campus-based counterparts—sometimes at a significantly lower tuition. If you’re interested, check out our list of the Best Online Colleges and Universities.   

How much money do people make with a construction management degree?

The income outlook for Construction Managers is looking promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Construction Managers make a median salary of $89,300 per year.[footnote]https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/construction-managers.htm[/footnote] Education and experience will, of course, dramatically influence your pay— in 2015, the highest-paid individuals in the profession made $155,200. So there’s a lot of room for growth. And salaries are on the rise.

Not surprisingly, where you live also makes a significant difference. U.S. News and World Report list the top-paying metropolitan areas for Construction Management as Atlantic City, New Jersey; Winchester, Virginia; and Newark, New Jersey. [footnote]https://money.usnews.com/careers/best-jobs/construction-manager/salary[/footnote]  

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What can you do with a degree in construction management?

Construction management is a complex job which encompasses multiple overlapping roles. As a construction manager, you’ll need to be familiar with all aspects of construction—from financing and construction methods to legal requirements. Generally speaking, it’s not a nine to five job. And while you may have a main office, you’ll spend a lot of time in the field.

Just a few jobs you’ll be responsible for as a Construction Manager include:

  • Cost estimating and project financing
  • Construction techniques
  • Human and material resources
  • Construction law
  • Conflict resolution
  • Environmental safety and conservation

Whatever program you choose, make sure it covers the bases!

 
 

What are the requirements for a degree in construction management ?

Admission requirements vary widely from program to program, but there are a few constants that you will notice. Here are some common requirements:

  • You’ll need an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution. Many programs are open to candidates with degrees in any area, but there may be bridging requirements (extra courses) to ensure readiness for the program.
  • Many, but not all, schools require good GRE or GMAT scores.
  • Most programs want their students to have professional experience. This can be either from a full- or part-time job in the industry or relevant internship(s).

If you are missing or lacking in a component, it is always worth getting in touch with the school to see if there is some way you can compensate. Many schools take a holistic approach to admissions, and you may be able to make up in one area what you lack in another.

 

What are the best construction management degrees?

Best Construction Management Degrees Badge

At College Choice, we’ve done extensive research to find the best Construction Management degrees. Below you’ll find the best 25 master’s programs, laid out for you in an easy-to-read ranking. Our methodology takes into account the academic trifecta: institutional reputation, return on investment, and student satisfaction.

We weigh criteria like reputation scores, tuition costs, early career earnings, and peer assessments from a variety of sources to come up with a composite score that reflects academic excellence and the return on your tuition dollar.

We hope this ranking will help you find the perfect Construction Management program!

Best Master’s Programs in Construction Management

See our rankings methodology page.

  1. Columbia University in the City of New York
    Location

    New York, NY

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    One of the nine colonial colleges founded before the Declaration of Independence, Columbia University is an elite private research university in New York City. The school consistently ranks among the top ten national universities in the U.S. and now offers high-quality professional and interdisciplinary education through its School of Professional Studies.

    Program Features

    The School of Professional Studies at Columbia University offers a Master of Science in Construction Administration which will equip you with a broad understanding of the complexities of the industry. The program features a focus on commercial and residential building sectors, equipping students with essential skills for bringing projects to completion safely and within budget. Key topics include:

    • Cost estimating and project financing
    • Construction techniques
    • Human and material resources
    • Construction law

    Notables

    Columbia’s M.S. in Construction Administration is available both part-time and full-time and is geared to individuals with two to three years of industry experience. The program is comprised of 36 credits of coursework and a capstone project. You’ll be able to complete Columbia’s program in 3-4 terms of full-time study or 6-10 terms of part-time study.

  2. Clemson University
    Location

    Clemson, SC

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Situated in the foothills of South Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Clemson University is a large public research university that ranks among the top 100 national universities in the country. The school stresses interdisciplinary learning and, in addition to their many undergraduate programs, offers high quality and top-ranked graduate and professional degree programs.

    Program Features

    Clemson University’s Graduate School offers a Master of Construction Science and Management (MCSM) that has received accolades since its inception in 1986. Clemson’s MCSM program has received wide recognition and is promoted by the Associated General Contractors of America as a means to attain a graduate-level education and to teach in the discipline. Courses include:

    • Construction Management Research
    • Financial Planning and Analysis
    • Construction Control Systems

    Notables

    Clemson’s MCSM program aims to be uniquely flexible for students. The program is comprised of a minimum of 36 credit hours, 21 of which are dedicated to core coursework. Students then have the option of choosing a thesis or a non-thesis option, a directed study option, as well as the option of distance learning.

  3. New York University
    Location

    New York, NY

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    A private research university located in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City, New York University ranks among the top national universities in the country. The school is a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities and is the largest private university in the country. The School of Professional studies continues the tradition of excellence, offering a range of highly lauded professionally oriented degrees and certificates.

    Program Features

    The School of Professional Studies at NYU offers a Master of Science in Construction Management that will equip you with the expertise to lead a construction project or business. The curriculum provides technical proficiency, financial knowledge, entrepreneurial skills, and business acumen for success in the construction industry. Courses include:

    • Construction Methods and Technology
    • Construction Financial and Cost Control
    • Legal Principles and Practice

    Notables

    NYU’s M.S. in Construction Management is a 36-credit program comprised of three tiers of core coursework, electives, and a capstone project. Students can complete this program in one year of full-time study, or in up to five years of part-time study. You’ll need some professional experience in the industry to be admitted to NYU’s program.

  4. University of Southern California
    Location

    Los Angeles, CA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Located in Los Angeles, the University of Southern California is the oldest private research university in California. Historically, the school has educated a large percentage of the region’s business and professional leaders. And the top-ranked Viterbi School of Engineering—which provides the school’s Construction Management programs—is one of the best Engineering Schools in the country.

    Program Features

    The Viterbi School of Engineering offers a Master of Construction Management geared for young professionals with diverse undergraduate degrees. The program covers most of the current theories and practice in construction management, with special attention to the function of the constructor in real estate development. Students choose from one of three tracks:

    • Finance Track
    • Real Estate Development Track
    • Architecture, Engineering and Construction Technology Track

    Notables

    USC’s M.S. in Construction Management is a 33-credit program comprised of core courses, required track courses, and electives. This interdisciplinary program combines courses from five different schools: Viterbi School of Engineering, School of Architecture, Marshall School of Business, Gould School of Law, and School of Policy, Planning and Development. Most students complete the program in three semesters.

  5. Stevens Institute of Technology
    Location

    Hoboken, NJ

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Located just minutes from downtown Manhattan, the Stevens Institute of Technology is a highly-ranked, private research university and one of the oldest technological universities in the country. Originally dedicated to Mechanical Engineering, the Schaefer School of Engineering and Science ranks among the top 100 in the country.

    Program Features

    The Schaefer School of Engineering offers a Master of Science in Construction Management that will prepare you for an executive-track career within a major construction corporation. The program focuses on mega projects, equipping students with the latest knowledge, skills, and technology to lead the largest projects in the world. Core courses include:

    • Computer Applications in the Construction Process
    • Advanced Project Controls in the Built Environment
    • Construction Safety Management

    Notables

    SIT’s M.S. in Construction Management is a 30-credit program comprised of three core courses and 21 credits of electives. The program has been designed to be uniquely flexible so that students can tailor the curriculum to their own professional interests. As a student, you’ll also be encouraged to complement your studies with full- or part-time work in the industry.

  6. Arizona State University-Tempe
    Location

    Tempe, AZ

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Arizona State University’s Tempe campus—located just east of downtown Phoenix—is the largest of ASU’s four campuses. ASU Tempe ranks at #129 among national universities (US News and World Report), and their School of Engineering and the Built Environment (SSEBE) offers some of the top-ranked engineering programs in the country.

    Program Features

    ASU’s Del E. Webb School of Construction (part of the SSEBE) offers a Master of Science in Construction Management that will prepare you to organize, lead and manage the building process. The curriculum combines knowledge of innovative technologies, construction principles, and business management, equipping students to lead a wide variety of construction projects. Courses include:

    • Construction Productivity
    • Advanced Procurement Systems
    • Construction Company Financial Control

    Notables

    ASU’s M.S. in Construction Management is a 30-credit program comprised of core coursework, electives, or research and a culminating experience (either a thesis or applied project). Graduates from ASU’s Construction Management program have a wide variety of careers in construction companies such as project managers, estimators, planners, schedulers and project engineers. They also work for owners and developers such as facility or project managers.

  7. Brigham Young University-Provo
    Location

    Provo, UT

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Located in Provo, Utah, Brigham Young University is a private research university that ranks among the top 100 national universities in the U.S. BYU is home to the Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology (not to be confused with ASU’s Fulton School of Engineering) which ranks at #102 among engineering schools nationally. The school is owned and operated by the LDS Church, but students do not have to be a member of the church to attend BYU.

    Program Features

    BYU’s Fulton College of Engineering and Technology offers a Master of Science in Technology specializing in Construction Management. The program is designed for experienced construction managers (or CM graduates) who want to expand their opportunities in the industry. It is equally applicable to those who want to work at the academic level (in research and teaching). Courses include:

    • Construction Company Financial Management
    • Trends and Issues in Managing Construction
    • Construction Company Human Resources

    Notables

    BYU’s Construction Management program is comprised of 30 credits total—24 credits of coursework and a six-credit thesis. Full-time students can complete this degree in as little as one calendar year (3 semesters); however, part-time students must complete the program in three years from enrollment.

  8. Louisiana State University and Agricultural & Mechanical College
    Location

    Baton Rouge, LA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Situated on the banks of the Mississippi in Baton Rouge, LA, Louisiana State University is a nationally-ranked, public research university. The school is the flagship of the Louisiana State University System and its Professional M.S. in Construction Management program was recently ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best online engineering programs in the country.

    Program Features

    LSU’s College of Engineering offers a Master of Science in Construction Management which blends engineering, business, and construction management concepts together. The program equips students to manage construction processes effectively while also providing a pathway for those interested in research and academic careers. Courses include:

    • Project Delivery
    • Decision-Making Tools for Construction Management
    • Special Topics in Construction Management

    Notables

    Students in LSU’s M.S. in Construction Management choose from three degree pathways. The Professional pathway is a 36 credit program with several integrated projects, but no thesis. The Executive pathway is a 36-credit, non-thesis master’s with a major project. The Research pathway is a 30-credit program which includes a thesis. Students also have the option to complete this program online.

  9. Drexel University
    Location

    Philadelphia, PA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Located in in Philadelphia, PA, Drexel University is a highly innovative, private technological university. The first university to have a completely wireless campus, Drexel is home to one of the largest and oldest cooperative education programs in the country, which allows students to graduate with extensive work experience. Drexel’s School of Engineering ranks at #75 nationally (U.S. News and World Report).

    Program Features

    Drexel University’s College of Engineering offers a Master of Science in Construction Management that provides the technical competence and business acumen essential for success in the industry. The curriculum develops multidisciplinary skills that effective construction managers must master. Drexel’s program offers three concentrations:

    • Construction Project Management
    • Real Estate
    • Sustainability and Green Construction

    Notables

    Drexel’s M.S. in Construction Management is a 45-credit degree program consisting of a required five-course core curriculum, eight courses in an area of concentration, and a capstone course. Graduates work in a variety of construction organizations such as construction management, general and specialty contractors, architectural and real estate firms, and as project owners, suppliers, regulators, and lenders.

  10. Central Connecticut State University
    Location

    New Britain, CT

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Overview

    Founded in 1849 in the city of New Britain, Connecticut, Central Connecticut State University is a public regional university. The school ranks among the top 100 regional universities in the North and is home to the Manufacturing and Construction Management Department. The MCMD offers programs designed to prepare students for technology-oriented management positions.

    Program Features

    CCSU’s School of Engineering, Science, and Technology offers a Master of Science in Construction Management that will deliver the skills to run construction and construction-related companies. The curriculum covers all essential facets of the job including financial operations, construction law, risk management and the different methods of project delivery. Courses include:

    • Construction Project Development
    • Construction Law
    • Construction Risk Management

    Notables

    CCSU’s M.S. in Construction Management is a 33-credit program comprised of core courses (15 credits), electives (15-18 credits), and a capstone project. Students can choose between a comprehensive final exam or a special project for their capstone—and the number of electives makes the program highly customizable. The program stresses student and industry interaction, experiential learning and industry-related research.

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