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Federal Highway Administration > Publications > Focus > November 2013 > FHWA to Introduce New Highway Materials Engineering Course

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Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-14-008
Date: November 2013

FHWA to Introduce New Highway Materials Engineering Course

Get ready for a new Highway Materials Engineering course.

Presented by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) over the last 20 years as the Highway Materials Engineering Academy, the course offered an opportunity for transportation agency personnel to gain the knowledge needed to develop materials specifications and guidance; make effective project acceptance decisions; and design, construct, and maintain assets to achieve a long service life. FHWA is now extensively revising the course to update the technical content and add new content areas.

“The new training will meet the changing needs of highway agencies by offering the best practices in highway materials engineering, while using today’s diverse platforms for adult learning,” said Michael Rafalowski of FHWA.

Highway Materials Engineering will feature an orientation session and eight modules:

  • Quality assurance.
  • Soils and foundations.
  • Steel, welding, and coatings.
  • Aggregates for transportation construction.
  • Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide.
  • Asphalt materials and paving.
  • Portland cement concrete.
  • Evaluating recycled materials for beneficial uses in transportation.

Approximately 6 weeks of training will be delivered through a combination of instructor-led, classroom sessions; Web-based training; independent study; Web conferences; and laboratory and field experiences. Instructor-led training will account for 4 weeks of the total. The course will be held at the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Materials Reference Library in Frederick, Maryland.

Working with a team of national experts, Harpers Enterprise Incorporated is redeveloping the course under an FHWA contract. The pilot session for the revised course will be held in the first quarter of 2015. No tuition will be charged for the pilot course. FHWA will announce the schedule for accepting applications for the pilot session in summer 2014.

For more information on the Highway Materials Engineering Course, contact Michael Rafalowski at FHWA, 202-366-1571 (email:

A view of an aspalt road being paved. Four workers wearing safety vests and hard hats are visible. In the foreground is a roller. A dump truck is behind the roller. Three traffic cones are placed on the edge of the road being paved.
FHWA’s new Highway Materials Engineering Course will meet the changing needs of highway agencies by offering updated technical content and best practices. (Photo Credit: ©

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Updated: 02/20/2015

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