Skip to main content

Masters of Science Program

The Interdisciplinary Masters of Science (MS) in Materials Science & Engineering is a research based degree program, culminating in a Masters thesis. All students accepted into the MS Program are supported financially by a faculty member. Students take courses and conduct research year round from start to completion of degree. The degree is estimated to take 4-5 semesters for a full-time student. Contact with any questions about the program curriculum.

Content on this page is provided as a quick reference for planning. All official course descriptions/degree requirements/admission standards/program learning outcomes/etc. are published on the Graduate Catalog site. Updated 10/3/2023

Program Requirements

Course Requirements

Required Core
MSE 605 Crystallography & Crystal Chemistry4
MSE 608 Solid State Thermodynamics4
MSE 618 Phase Transformations/Kinetics4
Technical Emphasis Requirement9
Choose 9 credits from 500-level or 600-level courses in
science and engineering fields chosen in consultation
with the advisor and approved by the graduate
MSE 593 Thesis Research9

Other Requirements

Entrance Exam

All students in the Materials Science & Engineering Interdisciplinary Graduate Program are admitted provisionally and must pass the MSE Entrance Exam with an 80% or better within the first year of enrollment. The exam is designed to help ensure all MSE graduate students have an appropriate level of knowledge specific to materials science & engineering. Each student will receive more information about the exam prior to the first semester of enrollment.


For the Master of Science degree, the thesis documents original research carried out by you while enrolled in the graduate program. A thesis is characterized by a clearly stated proposition or hypothesis that is investigated using analysis and synthesis of data or other scholarly evidence; the thesis must include a discussion of the relevant literature and demonstrate the ability of the student to independently and successfully address a significant intellectual problem with concepts and methods that are accepted in the major field of study.

Final Oral Exam

As part of your program, you must defend your thesis through a final oral examination. The examination consists of three sequential parts in which you will present and defend your thesis research: (i) a public presentation, (ii) a public question and answer session, and (iii) a private question and answer session conducted by the student’s Supervisory Committee addressing any questions they have on your research. The outcome of the final oral examination can only be pass or fail and is determined by a majority vote of the Supervisory Committee.