MS in Materials Science & Engineering

The Master of Science (MS) Program in Materials Science and Engineering is designed to provide advanced training in materials. The program requires students to establish the necessary foundation in solid-state materials, thermodynamics, and the kinetic processes of materials, in addition to advanced materials engineering coursework. All students are required to complete a practicum. Students may satisfy the practicum requirement by completing one of two courses or an approved project.  Alternatively, students may satisfy the practicum requirement by developing a research focus and carrying out original research that culminates in a written thesis.

The program is designed to be completed by full-time students in one calendar year; part-time study is also permitted.  Students choosing to complete a thesis should expect to complete the program in two years.   Students who excel in the MSE MS program are encouraged to continue in the MSE post-MS PhD program.

Master of Science (MS) and post-bachelor PhD students must take 32 credits.  Courses must be at the 500 level or higher.  Only one 400-level course may be taken, with advisor approval, if needed as a prerequisite for another course in the program.

The coursework requirements for the MS are as follows:

  • Four Core courses (16 credits)
  • Two Concentration Courses from one concentration area (8 credits)
  • Other Course(s), one of which must be a project-based Practicum Course (8 credits)

Practicum Requirement

MS and MEng students are required to fulfill a practicum requirement through satisfactory completion of MS 539 Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering, MS 782 Advanced Materials Characterization, MS 900 Research, MS 925 Graduate Project, or MS 951 Directed Study.  Alternatively, MS students may fulfill this requirement with MS 901 Thesis.

For students who wish to satisfy the practicum requirement with MS 901 Thesis, MS 900 Research, MS 925 Graduate Project, or MS 951 Directed Study, a suitable project must be identified and approved by the MSE Graduate Committee.  This requirement may be satisfied by a mentored project supervised by a MSE primary faculty member.

MS with Thesis

  • Four Core courses (16 credits)
  • Two Concentration courses from one concentration area (8 credits)
  • ENG MS 901 Thesis (4 to 8 credits)  (Post-bachelors PhD students will satisfy this requirement with MS 900 Research.)
  • Optional:  Other Course (4 credits)

MS Thesis

An MS thesis must be written and defended successfully to satisfy the requirements of the MS with Thesis degree. Thesis students enroll in ENG MS 901 for at least 4, but no more than 8, credits toward their MS. Thesis work is likely to entail several semesters of research; as a result, completion of the master’s degree usually requires more than one year. Students are therefore encouraged to discuss their research interests with faculty at the beginning of their master’s program.  The thesis committee should have at least two members, one of which must be an MSE appointed faculty member.

Grades

MS students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.00 to remain in good academic standing and to graduate. All graduate courses are counted in the GPA. Grades of C− or lower are not acceptable for the MS degree.

Master of Science Structured Course Requirements

Core (four courses)

  • ENG MS/EC 577 Electrical, Optical, and Magnetic Properties of Materials* OR CAS PY 543 Introduction to Solid-State Physics (Only one of these courses can be used to satisfy credit requirements.)
  • ENG MS/ME 505 Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics
  • ENG MS/ME 503 Kinetic Processes in Materials
  • ENG MS/EC 574 Physics of Semiconductor Materials OR ENG MS 504 Polymers and Soft Materials OR ENG MS/ME 582 Mechanical Behavior of Materials OR ENG MS/ME 508 Computational Methods in Materials Science

Concentration (two courses from any one concentration area)

Biomaterials
  • ENG BE 506 Physical Chemistry of Cell Structure and Machinery
  • ENG BE 521 Continuum Mechanics
  • ENG MS/BE/ME 523 Mechanics of Biomaterials
  • ENG MS/ME/BE 524 Skeletal Tissue Mechanics
  • ENG BE 533 Biorheology
  • ENG MS/BE 549 Structure and Function of the Extracellular Matrix
  • ENG BE 726 Fundamentals of Biomaterials
  • ENG MS 727 Principles and Applications of Tissue Engineering
  • ENG MS/BE 736 Biomedical Transport Phenomena
  • ENG MS 742 Bio-fluids and Structural Mechanics
  • GRS PY 744 Polymer Physics
  • GRS PY 771 Systems Biology for Physical Scientists and Engineers
Materials for Energy & Environment
  • ENG MS/ME 527 Transport Phenomena in Materials Processing
  • ENG MS/ME 532 Atomic Structure and Dislocations in Materials
  • ENG MS/ME 535 Green Manufacturing
  • ENG MS/ME 545 Electrochemistry of Fuel Cells and Batteries
  • ENG MS/EC 573 Solar Energy Systems
  • ENG MS/ME 781 Electroceramics
Electronic/Photonic Materials
  • ENG EC 560 Introduction to Photonics
  • ENG EC 575 Semiconductor Devices
  • ENG EC 578 Fabrication Technology for Integrated Circuits
  • ENG MS/EC 764 Optical Measurement
  • ENG EC 770 Guided-Wave Optoelectronics
  • ENG MS/EC 774 Semiconductor Quantum Structures and Photonics Devices
  • ENG EC 776 Fundamentals of Nanoelectronics
Nanomaterials
  • ENG MS/ME 530 Introduction to Micro- and Nano-mechanics of Solids
  • ENG MS/ME 555 MEMS: Fabrication and Materials
  • ENG MS/ME 718 Introduction to Nanotechnology
  • ENG MS/ME 735 Computational Nanomechanics
  • ENG EC 777 Nanostructure Optics
  • ENG MS/ME 778 Micromachined Transducers
Other Courses (8 credits, non-thesis; 4 credits possible, with thesis)
  • ENG MS 500 Special Topics
  • ENG MS/ME 507 Process Modeling and Control
  • ENG ME 516 Statistical Mechanical Concepts in Engineering
  • ENG MS/ME 526 Simulation of Physical Processes
  • ENG MS/ME 534 Materials Technology for Microelectronics
  • ENG MS 539 Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering
  • ENG ME/EC 579 Nano/mMicroelectronic Device Manufacturing Technology
  • ENG MS/ME 580 Theory of Elasticity
  • ENG MS 700 Advanced Special Topics
  • GRS PY 745 Experimental Surface Physics and Chemistry
  • ENG MS 782 Advanced Materials Characterization
  • ENG MS 784 Topics in Materials Science
  • ENG MS 900 Research
  • ENG MS 901 Thesis
  • ENG MS 925 Graduate Project
  • ENG MS 951 Independent Study

Thesis

The MS candidate must write a thesis. Thesis students enroll in ENG MS 901 for at least 4, but no more than 8, credits toward their MS. Thesis work is likely to entail several semesters of research; as a result, completion of the master’s degree usually requires more than one year. Students are therefore encouraged to discuss their research interests with faculty at the beginning of their master’s program.

Before a student enrolls in ENG MS 901, a Thesis Committee must be formed and the student should submit to the MSE Graduate Programs Manager a thesis plan signed by the members of the student’s committee. The Thesis Committee consists of a thesis advisor and at least one additional reader (at least one member of the MSE faculty). The student must submit a written thesis proposal (approved by the readers) at least one semester before the thesis presentation, and no later than the first semester of enrollment in ENG MS 901.

The thesis is publicly presented with the members of the student’s Thesis Committee present, and the final version must be approved by all readers. The deadline for submission of the thesis is one month prior to graduation.