Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate Programs

Updated: May 29, 2024

For those who already have degrees in engineering or a general science field, the graduate Nuclear Engineering Certificate can fill the gap with specialization in nuclear engineering that a student might not have had a chance to be exposed to previously but requires for a career position or promotion in practice. The online graduate certificate program hits two major goals that are instrumental for specialization: first, it provides a grouping of technical electives specific to nuclear engineering versus general topics that barely cover the area, and second, it gives the student a solid channel through which to network for career advancement and peer help in the field, sharing resources and contacts with fellow students looking for the same. And for those already in an entry-level but needing additional training to promote, the graduate certificate also helps students transfer from general engineering into nuclear-specific engineering roles they would otherwise be barred from.

What Are the Online Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate Requirements?

Admission requirements for an online graduate certificate in nuclear engineering will vary based on the school chosen. Most programs, however, have similar requirements. These may include:

  • Successful completion of a bachelor’s and master’s degree in engineering, physics, or a related science field.
  • Official transcripts from all colleges/universities attended
  • Minimum GPA (typically 3.0 or above)
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Professional resume or CV

What Type of Classes Are Included in the Online Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate Curriculum?

Students with a science or general engineering background coming into the program can expect that an online nuclear engineering grad certificate will provide them a foundational understanding of nuclear reactor-related physics. This includes detailed training in multiple areas of nuclear system management such as:

  • Handling or management of nuclear materials
  • Nuclear fuel lifecycle management
  • Nuclear power plant operations
  • Nuclear reactor physics
  • Radiation management and measurement
  • Thermal hydraulics

The typical workload expectation for a graduate Nuclear Engineering Certificate program typically involves four courses lasting 3 credit hours each. Most programs are class-based only and do not have field requirements or internship components. The certificate is ideal for students who have a general master’s degree but need specialization in nuclear management or do not have immediate plans to pursue a master’s degree in a science field but know they need additional technical training related to nuclear systems management in their current field or targeted career path.

Coursework typically includes:

  • Design principles and theory of reactor systems
  • Reactor engineering
  • Introduction to statistical thermodynamics
  • Nuclear fuel cycles and fuel management
  • Nuclear materials and radiation safety
  • Thermodynamic management, heat transfer and thermohydraulic management
  • Nuclear waste management
  • Power plant management

What Type of Career Can I Pursue with an Online Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate?

Professionals who regularly operate in the nuclear field are constantly re-evaluating current systems and looking for additional efficiencies in power management based on heavy academic and experimental research applied in practice. The graduate certificate opens the door for careers dedicated to specific roles in nuclear plant management, nuclear equipment operation and medical equipment management that relies on radiation for solutioning and imaging. Career paths one can expect to have access to on graduation include:

  • Health and Safety Engineer, $71,000
  • Nuclear Analyst, $71,000
  • Nuclear Engineer, $106,000
  • Nuclear Scientist, $80,000
  • Nuclear Safety Specialist, $77,000
  • Physicist, $90,000

Nuclear Engineering Graduate Certificate Programs List

Interested in a nuclear engineering graduate certificate program? Check out our listings below to find a traditional, online, or hybrid program near you.


Arizona State UniversityTempe, AZOnline - Nuclear Power Generation


University of IdahoMoscow, IDNuclear Criticality Safety


Worcester Polytechnic InstituteWorcester, MAOnline - Nuclear Science & Engineering


Missouri University of Science and TechnologyRolla, MOOnline - Nuclear Engineering
University of MissouriColumbia, MONuclear Safeguards Science and Technology

North Carolina

North Carolina University at RaleighRaleigh, NCOnline - Nuclear Nonproliferation Science and Policy


University of Nevada RenoReno, NV Nuclear Packaging
University of Nevada-Las VegasLas Vegas, NVNuclear Criticality Safety

New York

Rensselaer Polytechnic InstituteTroy, NYControl Systems


University of AkronAkron, OHNuclear Engineering


Washington State UniversityPullman, WANuclear Materials, Science, & Engineering


University of Wisconsin-MadisonMadison, WINuclear Engineering Materials

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