Contact InformationMaria Polak

Phone: 519-888-4567 x35325
Location: CPH 2373C

Biography Summary

Maria Anna Polak is a Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Waterloo. She was previously a visiting professor in Poland and Germany.

Professor Polak’s research interests surround the mechanics of reinforced concrete structures, constitutive modelling of engineering materials, the analysis and testing of polyethylene pipes installed underground, as well as trenchless technology methods. She is specifically interested in how building materials, from reinforced concrete to plastics such as polyethylene, behave under stress. Her current sources of funding for research comes from The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), ESTAC Institute of Construction & Engineering, and the Centre for Advancement of Trenchless Technologies (CATT).

In addition, Professor Polak has written several articles and journals for publications such as the Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering. She is affiliated with the American Concrete Institute, American Society of Civil Engineers/Canadian Society for Civil Engineering, Professional Engineer’s Ontario, and The International Federation for Structural Concrete, and is also a Humboldt Research Fellow.

Research Interests

  • Structures
  • Mechanics & Construction
  • shear in slabs
  • strengthening and rehabilitation
  • nonlinear finite element analysis
  • nondestructive testing techniques for structural evaluations
  • polyethylene pipes installed
  • Steel and concrete structures
  • directional drilling (HDD)
  • mechanics of reinforced concrete structure
  • trenchless technologies methods


  • 1992, Doctorate, PhD, University of Toronto
  • 1984, Master's, MSc, University of Cracow
  • 1978, Bachelor's, BSc, University of Cracow


  • CIVE 401 - Civil Engineering Design Project 2
    • Taught in 2015
  • CIVE 400 - Civil Engineering Design Project 1
    • Taught in 2016, 2018
  • CIVE 603 - Mechanics of Reinforced Concrete
    • Taught in 2016, 2017, 2018
  • CIVE 414 - Structural Concrete Design
    • Taught in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
* Only courses taught in the past 5 years are displayed.