Earthquake Engineering is the study of a multi-phased process from finding out the earthquake source to portraying the site effects, structural response, and concluding the measures of seismic protection. The objective of Earthquake Engineering is to help policy-makers in reducing seismic hazards. Decision or policymakers can be the organizations, agencies, or engineers who work to aware and protect against seismic hazards through earthquake-resistant design.

This particular field analyzes structures like buildings, bridges, etc with keeping earthquakes in mind. It is a scientific field concerned with protecting the whole community, natural environment, society, etc from earthquake uncertainties by limiting the seismic risk.

In this course, students learn about earthquake-resistant structure that is designed to withstand seismic effects while sustaining an acceptable level of damage. This particular course is a subset of geotechnical engineering, civil engineering, and structural engineering, etc. Students study advanced computational tools such as GIS and DBMS that capture, analyze, and display seismic or tectonic data in seismic hazard assessment.

Why is Studying Earthquake Engineering Important?

Almost every country in the world has faced the worst earthquakes that have impacted the many lives of people in many ways like people have become homeless across the globe. Before knowing the importance of earthquake engineering we should try to answer questions like: How is it possible for civil or architect engineers to construct a building without taking into account earthquake effects in seismic regions?

An earthquake is a natural disaster that can occur anywhere in the world due to the movement of tectonic plates. To decrease the loss, the government in many countries started enlightening people of precautions from earthquakes by starting to promote earthquake engineering more among students to produce expert civil engineers.

The study of earthquake engineering is important in every country because it can reduce the impacts of earthquakes like soil liquefaction, tsunami, structural damage to buildings, bridges, highways, and landslides, etc.  

Earthquake engineering field proposes the unification of special seismic courses so that undergraduate engineers learn the basics of seismic codes, and apply structural design principles correctly.

It is important to note that if architectural and engineering students learn these concepts clearly then in the future they can build structures that can minimize the damage through which they can save many lives and negative effects when an earthquake strikes.

Topics Covered Under Earthquake Engineering

Earthquake engineering is a sub-branch of civil engineering and the course aspirant is taught engineers to plan, design, construct and manage earthquake resistant structures. The earthquake engineering graduates work in the field to collect information from residents and also work in the research and development sector.

This course is divided into 4 semesters and in the last semester, students go for industrial training.

The Themes that are Covered in this are:

  • Ground Shaking Hazard
  • Seismic Evaluation and Retrofitting of Structures
  • Vulnerability and Risk Analysis
  • Instrumentation and Model Testing Techniques
  • The Vibration of the Elastic Method
  • Earthquake Precursors and Early Warning Systems
  • Seismic Disaster Mitigation and Management
  • Design Response Spectrum
  • Seismic Protection with Base Isolation
  • Measurements of Earthquakes
  • Seismic Code Provisions
  • Seismic Hzard Assessment

Universities that offer Earthquake Engineering Course

Almost every country provides quality civil engineering in their universities as a part of their curriculum. Universities provide undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in earthquake engineering with a focus on structural engineering and constructive orientation. Most popular universities that offer engineering are in countries such as the USA, New Zealand, UK, Canada, Australia, etc.

Universities that are known for their Top-Quality Earthquake Engineering Course are:

  • Stanford University California
  • Imperial College London London, United Kingdom
  • The University of Auckland Auckland, New Zealand
  • The Pennsylvania State University Pennsylvania, United States
  • Princeton University New Jersey, United States
  • The University of Sydney Sydney, Australia
  • Osaka University Osaka, Japan
  • University of Cambridge Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • University of Canterbury Christchurch, New Zealand
  • Berkeley University of California California, United States
  • University of Toronto Ontario, Canada
  • Princeton University New Jersey

Challenges Faced by Earthquake Engineering Students

The approach of learning seismic engineering or earthquake engineering is through the application of seismic code requirements that may represent various problems for undergrad students.

Universities input various exams, dissertations, assignments, and projects to make students understand the seismic codes in a better way and use correct application of them in the future. But this course contains complicated themes or concepts that are difficult for students to understand like the seismic origin of code requirements that lead to wrong interpretations because of which they generate ill structures and design solutions.

Most of the students drop out from the graduate level because they struggle to get proper training and understanding of seismic matters within a short period of time of bachelor’s degree. These students lack in analyzing the dynamic structures, concepts, and seismic behaviors.


Earthquake Engineering reduces the risk more in towns and cities, especially in high seismic countries. This field has a great number of subjects that focus on every aspect (structural, mechanical, architectural, etc.) and helps students to be aware of the seismic effects and seismic principles.

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