Mechanical Engineering Master of science degree

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A focused, in-depth examination of mechanical engineering disciplines (e.g., dynamics, robotics, nanotechnology, biomechanics, and energy systems)  that prepare you to enter a career in industry or research.

The mechanical engineering masters produces graduates who are leaders in their respective fields who are ready to tackle high-level problems as practicing professionals. Designed for students who desire advanced training in specific areas of mechanical engineering, the master of science acts as a prelude to a career in either research or industry. Students can choose to focus on a variety of disciplines including dynamics, robotics, nanotechnology, biomechanics, energy systems, or more.

The MS degree in mechanical engineering consists of a minimum of 30 credit hours (24 credit hours of course work and 6 credit hours of thesis). A limited number of credit hours may be transferred from graduate courses taken outside the university, provided such courses complement a student’s proposed graduate program in the mechanical engineering department. An adviser will review course work for possible transfer credit. Upon matriculation into the MS program, the student should formulate a plan of study in consultation with an advisor.

Educational objectives

The MS in mechanical engineering program has set the following educational objectives to prepare graduates to:

  • practice mechanical engineering in support of the design of engineered systems through the application of the fundamental knowledge, skills, and tools of mechanical engineering.
  • enhance their skills through formal education and training, independent inquiry, and professional development.
  • work independently as well as collaboratively with others, while demonstrating the professional and ethical responsibilities of the engineering profession.
  • successfully pursue graduate degrees at the doctoral levels, should they choose.

Plan of study

The program includes core courses, focus area courses, elective courses, and a thesis. All full-time and full-time equivalent students are required to attend the weekly graduate seminar each semester they are on campus.

Focus area courses

All students must develop a focus area of study, with prior approval from their advisor and the department head. The focus area should consist of at least 9 semester credit hours of graduate study in mechanical engineering and be related to the student’s technical and professional development interests. Examples of focus areas include controls, materials science, thermo/fluids, and mechanics/design.

Independent study

Students may earn a limited number of credits by doing an independent study with guidance from a member of the graduate faculty. Areas for independent study include selected topics in applied mathematics, analytical mechanics, nonlinear mechanics, fracture mechanics, heat transfer, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, control systems, optimal control, thermal stresses, composite materials, and biomechanics.


Prior to completing 24 semester credit hours of graduate work, students should prepare and present a formal thesis proposal to their faculty advisor. An acceptable proposal (including a statement of work, extensive literature search, and proposed timeline), signed by the student and approved by their faculty advisor and department head, is required prior to registering for thesis credits. Students must form a graduate thesis committee in coordination with their advisor and present their proposal to their committee for review and approval during the first semester in which they have registered for thesis credit. Students are required to deliver a successful written and oral presentation of their thesis.


  • Automotive

  • Manufacturing

  • Defense

  • Aerospace


outcome rate of graduates


median first-year salary of graduates


Mechanical Engineering, MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
Engineering Analysis
This course trains students to utilize mathematical techniques from an engineering perspective, and provides essential background for success in graduate level studies. An intensive review of linear and nonlinear ordinary differential equations and Laplace transforms is provided. Laplace transform methods are extended to boundary-value problems and applications to control theory are discussed. Problem solving efficiency is stressed, and to this end, the utility of various available techniques are contrasted. The frequency response of ordinary differential equations is discussed extensively. Applications of linear algebra are examined, including the use of eigenvalue analysis in the solution of linear systems and in multivariate optimization. An introduction to Fourier analysis is also provided.
Advanced Engineering Mathematics
This is a course in partial differential equations focused primarily on separation of variable techniques, and teaches the necessary vector space theory so that the problem solving methodology may be understood completely. Algebraic vector space concepts, such as the basis, are extended to functions, and operator theory is introduced as a means of unifying the solution structure of linear algebraic and differential equation systems. Existence and uniqueness is examined by considering the null and range spaces of algebraic and differential operators, the adjoint operator, and Fredholm's Alternative. Eigenvalue analysis is extended to functions, including an examination of Sturm-Liouville theory. Solutions of Laplace's equation, the heat equation, the wave equation, and the biharmonic equation are examined in a variety of geometries.
Thesis In conference with an adviser, a topic is chosen. Periodic progress reports and a final written document with an oral examination are required.
Graduate Seminar
This seminar course presents topics of contemporary interest to graduate students enrolled in the program. Presentations include off campus speakers, and assistance with progressing on your research. Selected students and faculty may make presentations on current research under way in the department. All graduate students enrolled full time (whether dual degree or single degree) are required to attend a designated number of seminars.
Graduate Focus Courses
Total Semester Credit Hours

* Graduate Seminar (MECE-795) is required for all full-time and full-time equivalent students.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to the MS program in mechanical engineering, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Complete a graduate application.
  • Hold a baccalaureate degree (or equivalent) from an accredited university or college in mechanical engineering or a related field.
  • Submit official transcripts (in English) from all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work.
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 (or equivalent).
  • Submit scores from the GRE. Minimum scores of 302 (V&Q) and 3.0 (writing) and required.
  • Submit two letters of recommendation from academic or professional sources.
  • International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE. A minimum TOEFL score of 79 (internet-based) is required. A minimum IELTS score of 6.5 is required. The English language test score requirement is waived for native speakers of English or for those submitting transcripts from degrees earned at American institutions.

Learn about admissions, cost, and financial aid 

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