Graduate Catalog
Policies, Procedures, Academic Programs
Nuclear Engineering
Department of Mechanical Engineering Nuclear Engineering Program 455 Goodwin Hall (MC 0238) 635 Prices Fork Road
Blacksburg, VA 24061
Contact this Certificate
Email Contact(s):
Web Resource(s):
Phone Number(s):
Cathy Hill:
Allison Jones:

Certificate Overview

The Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate provides a purposeful, cohesive set of technical electives in nuclear engineering and facilitates networking among faculty, students, and employers in nuclear engineering applications. Coursework is available online, hybrid on the DC-area campus, and in-person on the Blacksburg campus. The certificate is useful in transitioning from a non-nuclear engineering-related job to a nuclear engineering-related job, and the credit hours earned may be applied to a graduate degree in Nuclear Engineering at VT. 

The Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate provides experience to students who do not have a nuclear engineering degree but are seeking engineering positions in the nuclear industry.  The certificate provides a solid foundation in nuclear reactor physics, with additional specialization in reactor physics, nuclear fuel cycle, radiation measurements, reactor thermal hydraulics, nuclear materials, or nuclear power plant operations.  The certificate requires completion of 9 credit hours of graduate course work.  

How to Apply:
Fill out the online application for participation in the certificate program.
Upon processing of the application, you will be contacted
with information about the submission of additional
required materials. Thank you for your interest.

Admission Requirements

Applicants that are not currently enrolled at VT may apply at Please use this form to create your proposed plan of study.
Current VT students may submit this application for the certificate to

Requirements: Recommended:
  • B.S. degree in an engineering or science-related discipline
  • 3.2 or higher GPA on the most recent 60 course credit hours
  • Understanding of the following mathematical concepts: trigonometry, exponentials, natural logarithms, derivatives, the chain rule for derivatives, integrals, vector operations, and some ordinary differential equations
No GRE test scores or recommendation letters are required for the certificate application.

Course Requirements

1. Complete a minimum of 9 credit-hours of nuclear engineering-related coursework through Virginia Tech – 3 credit-hours of required courses and 6 credit-hours of elective courses from the approved list below.  The approved elective list will be updated each year.  Only a maximum of 3 credit-hours total may be taken for NSEG 5974. Up to 6 credit-hours of NSEG 5984 may be taken if two different course titles are involved.

2. All courses must be taken for a letter grade with a grade of B- or better.  Pass/Fail grades will only be permitted for the NSEG 5974 course.  A final average GPA of 3.00 or better must be achieved in the 9 hours of coursework accepted for the certificate.


Course No.    Title (Credit-hours)

NSEG 5114     Nuclear Engineering Fundamentals (3)*

*  Completion of NSEG 3145 & 3146 at the undergraduate level will satisfy completion of this NSEG 5114 required course.  However, another course from the Elective list below must replace it such that the student completes 9 graduate course credits total.

2.  ELECTIVE COURSES (select two):

Course No.    Title (Credit-hours)

NSEG 5104     Applied Mathematics for Nuclear Engineers (3)

NSEG 5124     Nuclear Reactor Analysis (3)

NSEG 5134     Monte Carlo Methods for Particle Transport (3)

NSEG 5204     Nuclear Fuel Cycle (3)

NSEG 5214     Nuclear Power Plant Operations & Systems (3)

NSEG 5284     Nuclear Nonproliferation, Safeguards and Security (3)

MSE 5384G     Advanced Nuclear Materials (3)

NSEG 5424     Reactor Thermal Hydraulics (3)

NSEG 5504     Radiation Effects on Metals and Alloys (3)

NSEG 5514     Structural Materials Degradation in Nuclear Power Systems (3)

PHYS 5514      Advanced Introduction to Nuclear Physics (3)

NSEG 5604     Radiation Detection & Shielding (3)

NSEG 5974     Independent Study (Nuclear Engineering) (3)**

NSEG 5984     Special Study (Nuclear Engineering) (3)**

NSEG 6124      Advanced Nuclear Reactor Analysis (3)

NSEG 6204      Advanced Nuclear Fuel Cycle (3)

NSEG 6334      Nuclear Reactor Safety Analysis (3)

NSEG 6984      Advanced Special Study (Nuclear Engineering) (3)

** A total of 3 hours maximum for NSEG 5974 or 6 hours maximum for NSEG 5984 (two different course titles) w/ approval of program coordinator


The Nuclear Engineering Program is located at:

Department of Mechanical Engineering (MC 0238)
455 Goodwin Hall
635 Prices Fork Road
Blacksburg, VA 24061


Virginia Tech
Northern Virginia Center
7054 Haycock Road
Falls Church, VA 22043