Energy Conscious Construction

Washington State University’s Online Undergraduate Certificate in Energy Conscious Construction is designed for individuals who want to advance their professional credentials in the design and construction of high-performing, energy-efficient, residential buildings. The coursework is comprised of 15 credit hours that address:

  • Energy modeling and simulation: Analyzing design performance prior to construction.
  • Environmental control systems: Integrating energy-efficient environmental control systems into residential building designs.
  • Performance benchmarks: Meeting and exceeding state energy code requirements.
  • Assemblies & Structural Systems: Understanding state of the art and emerging construction systems for high-performing, energy-efficient, residential building designs.

Courses are rooted in the fundamentals of building science coupled with the latest industry standards in codes, systems, assemblies, and performance evaluation. Students take five courses – two from the School of Design and Construction in energy modeling and energy codes, two from the Architecture program in residential construction and passive environmental control systems, and one from Mechanical Engineering in fundamentals of building science.

Zero Energy Design Designation (ZEDD) Logo

The School of Design and Construction’s programs in Energy Conscious Construction (ECC) is nationally recognized by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Zero Energy Design Designation. This recognition ensures that the ECC provides students with a solid foundation in building science and the opportunity to apply that knowledge in the design process through its various assessment methods.

This certificate is ideal for individuals in the following fields:

Design and ConstructionEngineeringInspection and Maintenance
  • Architects
  • Envelope Specialists
  • Interior Designers
  • Landscape Architects
  • Construction Managers
  • Mechanical Engineers
  • Civil Engineers
  • Structural Engineers
  • Environmental Engineers

  • Energy Auditors
  • Building Inspectors
  • Building Officials
  • Energy Raters

Program of Study—15 semester credits

All courses are available online through WSU Global Campus. The certificate requires five 3-credit courses (15 credits total). It is recommended that students take nine credits during the summer, three credits in the fall, and three in the spring. Students can complete the undergraduate certificate within one academic year but may take more time as needed.

Required Courses

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 throughout the duration of the certificate.

Students must complete these courses:

  • ARCH 493 – Environmental Control Systems I
  • Choose one of the following:
    • ARCH 464 Advanced Residential Construction
    • ARCH 495 Modular Off-Site Construction
  • SDC 451 – Energy Modelling I
  • SDC 441 – Building Energy Codes, Standards, and Rating Systems
  • ME 483 – Topics in Mechanical Engineering (Fundamentals of Building Science)

If you have questions about the curriculum, please contact Omar Al-Hassawi at If you have admission and recruitment questions, please contact Jaime Rice at

Awarding of the Certificate

At the beginning of the student’s final semester of coursework, the student should apply for the certificate through myWSU. This will notify the Registrar’s Office to confer the certificate. Here’s how: From the myWSU Student Homepage, select Academic Advising, then Apply to Graduate. The certificate should display as an option to select to Apply for Graduation. Certificates require a separate graduation application and are mailed separately from diplomas.