Graduate Program

The Department of Mechanical Engineering offers graduate study leading to the Master of Engineering and Doctor of Philosophy degrees with specializations in dynamics and controls in aerospace engineering, fluid and thermal sciences, applied mechanics and design and manufacturing. Graduate programs in Mechanical Engineering also include interdisciplinary degrees in Atmospheric Sciences and Materials Sciences.

Degree Requirements

All graduate students must take the following courses or their equivalent: MEEG-503, MEEG-505, MEEG-507and MEEG-512. Additionally, a minimum of two higher-level courses in advanced engineering mathematics are required for all students.

In addition to the degree requirements, all graduate students are required to enroll in the Graduate Seminar course offered each year. The seminar requirement is in addition to the minimum number of approved credit hours of course work and cannot be used as a substitute for course work.

See complete Descriptions of All Graduate Courses.

The following pages provide a detailed description of the master’s program and the doctorial program.

Master of Engineering

The Master’s program consists of 24 or 30 hours of course work for the thesis or non-thesis option respectively. These credit hours must include the following courses or their equivalent: MEEG-503, MEEG-505, MEEG-507, MEEG-512, ELEG-502 and ELEG-503. The remaining courses must be selected from the elective options of the various areas of specializations.

Candidates are offered the option to write a thesis or to complete a project. Students choosing to write a thesis must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours of course work, of which 24 must be in graduate or approved undergraduate courses in mechanical engineering or related fields and 6 credit hours of thesis research.

A student can also elect to apply for enrollment in the non-thesis option. Such students must complete a minimum of 33 credit hours of course work, of which 30 must be spent in graduate or approved undergraduate course work in mechanical engineering or allied fields, and at least 3 in project work culminating in a written project report. These students must pass a comprehensive examination after successfully completing 24 credit hours of course work with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.

Doctor of Philosophy

Candidates for the Ph.D. degree must complete a minimum of 72 credit hours beyond the baccalaureate, of which a minimum of 60 must be spent in course work and 12 in dissertation work. The 60 credit hours must include the following courses or their equivalent: MEEG-503, MEEG-505, MEEG-507, MEEG-512, MATH-245 and MATH-246. The remaining credit hours are to be selected from the elective options for the various areas of specialization, in consultation with the student’s advisor and in accordance with the individual’s needs and interests.

Candidates must receive a passing grade on a comprehensive examination and also demonstrate reading skills in French, German, Russian, or another language approved by the Graduate Program Committee. As an alternative, students must successfully complete approved courses in technical writing and speech, with a grade of B or better.

Students with no previous graduate work experience may be required to complete the academic requirements for the master’s program during the first 30 semester hours in the doctoral program.

Qualifying Examination

Each doctoral candidate must pass a written and oral qualifying or comprehensive examination, administered and supervised by the department. This examination must be taken at any time during the student’s first 48 semester hours of relevant course work beyond the bachelor’s degree credited toward the Ph.D. with the permission of the Graduate Program Committee. This examination is given only once each semester.

The Graduate Committee may pass one of the following resolutions regarding the student’s performance on the qualifying exam:

  • Pass. The student may proceed to complete the other requirement for the Ph.D.
  • Pass with Stipulations. The student has passed a majority of the areas covered in the examination but in lieu of reexamination in certain area(s), the student will be required to complete additional specified course(s) with a specified minimum grade at the earliest opportunity.
  • Reexamination. The student must appear for a reexamination to be given the following semester. The Committee may request the student to strengthen his/her knowledge in a specific area and then to appear for reexamination in that area, or the student may be asked to take the entire examination again. Any student who fails the qualifying examination twice will be automatically dropped from the Ph.D. program.
  • Termination. The student is not eligible to work towards the Ph.D., but may complete work for a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering. If the candidate already holds a master’s in Mechanical Engineering, it will be recommended that the student terminate graduate studies in the department.

Elective Options

For specialization in dynamics and controls of aerospace systems, elective options include the following courses: Mechanical Engineering 501, 505, 506, 520, 610, 612, 431, 503, 507, 509, 512, 515, 521, 613 and 615; Physics 206 and 207; Civil Engineering 536 and 513; Electrical Engineering 502/503, 555, 553 and 556; Computer Science 551, 628 and 339 and Mathematics 234, 245, 246, 235 and 236.

For specialization in fluid and thermal sciences, elective options include the following courses: Mechanical Engineering 503, 504, 505, 507, 509, 510, 511, 512, 519, 611, 514, 521, 607, 612 and 614; Physics 204, 205, 222, 223, 272, 216 and 273; Electrical Engineering 502/503; Mathematics 234, 236, 245, 246 and 237.

For specialization in applied mechanics, elective options include the following courses: Mechanical Engineering 505, 507, 508, 512, 521 and 612; Civil Engineering 524, 535, 536, 513, 514 and 520; Electrical Engineering 555 and 556; Mathematics 229, 245, 246, 230, 231, 232, 234, 236, 239, 247 and -248.

For specialization in computer aided design and manufacturing, elective options include the following courses: Mechanical Engineering 505, 532, 535, 606, 533, 534, 612, 616, 419, 436, 444, 501, 503, 507, 508, 511, 512, 521 and 609; Electrical Engineering 502, 503, 509, 510, 555, 561, 604 and 605; Computer Science 522, 548, 551, 552, 556, 615, 632 and 750; Physics -219; Mathematics 245, 246, 234, 235, 236, 240, 247 and 248.

See complete Descriptions of All Graduate Courses.

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