The graduate programs stress conceptual and quantitative approaches to the analysis of transportation and related systems.The graduate programs stress conceptual and quantitative approaches to the analysis of transportation and related systems.

Graduate Study
Transportation Systems Analysis & Planning

Transportation is a dynamic field: technological, economic, social, political, and regulatory changes continually alter the environment in which transportation services are demanded and provided. The design, operation, and effectiveness of transportation services are closely connected to other social and economic systems. 

Rapid changes in the transportation environment and the interrelationships between transportation, urban systems, information services, and production planning require transportation professionals to be well-trained in fundamental disciplines, to be able to adapt to change, and to have the vision and insight needed to implement creative options in a dynamic world.

Our objective is to prepare our students to identify, analyze, and solve complex transportation problems, and to communicate those solutions toward their successful implementation. We are particularly proud of the close and supportive relationships between our faculty and students, which help make the Northwestern transportation program an effective community environment for research and professional and personal development.

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Master’s and PhD programs

The graduate programs in transportation systems analysis and planning stress conceptual and quantitative approaches to the analysis of transportation and related systems. Our goal is to develop our students' analytic, quantitative, and communication skills so that graduates are well prepared to face the exciting and challenging transportation environment of today and tomorrow. Our courses and research integrate theory, methods, and applications. The strong quantitative focus of our program provides students with skills for analyzing all modes of transportation used for the movement of people and goods, within and between cities, under both public and private operation.

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Career Paths

The master of science degree prepares the student to identify, analyze and solve transportation problems. Educational components develop the students' knowledge of transportation systems, modes, and institutions, and enhance their quantitative skills in operations research, economics, and statistics.

The PhD program represents a significant advance beyond the training achieved in the master of science program, preparing students for careers in teaching, research, and advanced applications in transportation by engaging them with in-depth study and research in collaboration with faculty members.