Materials Science and Engineering Advanced Certificate

A graduate certificate in materials science and engineering that develops a foundation of materials-oriented knowledge, conceptualization, product development, and production decisions needed to strive in engineering.


Study Options: Full-time or part-time for working professionals


Total credit hours that can be applied toward the MS degree


  • Unique, multidisciplinary program that combines collaborative experiences from the Kate Gleason College of Engineering, Golisano Institute of Sustainability, and housed within the College of Science.
  • Diverse faculty from the physical, chemical, and biological sciences, in addition to leaders in engineering.
  • Students develop skills that are in demand in many industries, including transportation, electronics, machinery, medical, consulting, utilities, education, government and retail.

The advanced certificate in materials science and engineering is specially designed to establish a common base of materials-oriented knowledge for students with baccalaureate degrees in chemistry, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, and related disciplines. The program provides a new intellectual identity to those interested in the study of advanced materials and offers a serious interdisciplinary learning experience in materials studies, crossing over the traditional boundaries of such classical disciplines as chemistry, physics, and electrical, mechanical, and microelectronic engineering.

The advanced certificate may be completed on a full- or part-time basis. Part-time students are normally limited to a maximum of two courses, or 6 credit hours, each semester.

Students who are interested in further study may apply the credits earned in thew advanced certificate to the MS degree in materials science and engineering.

What is a Graduate Certificate?

A graduate certificate, also called an advanced certificate, is a selection of up to five graduate level courses in a particular area of study. It can serve as a stand-alone credential that provides expertise in a specific topic that enhances your professional knowledge base, or it can serve as the entry point to a master's degree. Some students complete an advanced certificate and apply those credit hours later toward a master's degree.


Curriculum for Materials Science and Engineering Adv. Cert.

Materials Science and Engineering, advanced certificate, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
Materials Science
This course provides an understanding of the relationship between structure and properties necessary for the development of new materials. Topics include atomic and crystal structure, crystalline defects, diffusion, theories, strengthening mechanisms, ferrous alloys, cast irons, structure of ceramics and polymeric materials and corrosion principles. Term paper on materials topic. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Fall).
Theoretical Methods in Materials Science and Engineering
This course includes the treatment of vector analysis, special functions, waves, and fields; Maxwell Boltzmann, Bose-Einstein and Fermi-Dirac distributions, and their applications. Selected topics of interest in electrodynamics, fluid mechanics, and statistical mechanics will also be discussed. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Fall).
Experimental Techniques
The course will introduce the students to laboratory equipment for hardness testing, impact testing, tensile testing, X-ray diffraction, SEM, and thermal treatment of metallic materials. Experiments illustrating the characterization of high molecular weight organic polymers will be performed. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lab 3 (Spring).
Total Semester Credit Hours


Polymer Science
Polymers are ubiquitous. They are used in everyday applications as well as for specialty and cutting-edge technologies. This course is an introduction to the chemistry and physics of synthetic polymers, which include plastics, elastomers and fibers. The synthesis of polymers, their fundamental properties, and the relations between their syntheses, structure, and properties will be studied. Among the topics discussed are the morphology, thermal behavior, solubility, viscoelasticity and characterization of polymers. Copolymerization, tacticity and sustainability of polymers will also be covered. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Spring).
Material Degradation
This course introduces the basic electrochemical nature of corrosion and considers the various factors that influence the rate of corrosion in a variety of environments. Various means of controlling corrosion are considered with demonstrations. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Fall).
Solid State Science
This course is an introduction to the physics of the solid state including crystal structure, x-ray diffraction by crystals, crystal binding, elastic waves and lattice vibrations, thermal properties, the free electron model of solids, and band theory and its applications. (This course is restricted to MSENG-MS Major students.) Lecture 3 (Fall).
Theory of Microsensors and Actuators
This course introduces the theory and development of sensors at the molecular and ionic levels. Mechanism details for operation of the sensors and actuators will be discussed. Fundamental aspects related to chemical, biochemical, piezoresistive, magnetic, thermal, and luminescent sensors will be discussed with an emphasis on the development of innovative products. Control systems based on ion selectivity for biomedical applications will be covered in detail. Neurotransmitters, neural network, and directional selectivity using conducting polymers will also be covered. (This class is restricted to degree-seeking graduate students or those with permission from instructor.) Lecture 3 (Spring).
Independent Study
This course is a faculty-directed tutorial of appropriate topics that are not part of the formal curriculum. The level of study is appropriate for a masters-level student. (Enrollment in this course requires permission from the department offering the course.) Ind Study (Fall, Spring, Summer).

* Additional approved electives comprise graduate courses offered by programs in the College of Science, Kate Gleason College of Engineering, College of Engineering Technology, Golisano Institute for Sustainability, School of Individualized Studies, and the Saunders College of Business. Prerequisites for all approved electives include Graduate Standing and may require permission of instructor.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to the advanced certificate in materials science, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Complete an online graduate application. Refer to Graduate Admission Deadlines and Requirements for information on application deadlines, entry terms, and more.
  • Submit copies of official transcript(s) (in English) of all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work, including any transfer credit earned.
  • Hold a baccalaureate degree (or US equivalent) from an accredited university or college in chemistry, physics, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, or a related field.
  • Recommended minimum cumulative GPA of 3.2 (or equivalent).
  • Submit a current resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Two letters of recommendation are required. Refer to Application Instructions and Requirements for additional information.
  • Not all programs require the submission of scores from entrance exams (GMAT or GRE). Please refer to the Graduate Admission Deadlines and Requirements page for more information.
  • Submit a personal statement of educational objectives. Refer to Application Instructions and Requirements for additional information.
  • International applicants whose native language is not English must submit official test scores from the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE. Students below the minimum requirement may be considered for conditional admission. Refer to Graduate Admission Deadlines and Requirements for additional information on English language requirements. International applicants may be considered for an English test requirement waiver. Refer to the English Language Test Scores section within Graduate Application Materials to review waiver eligibility.

Candidates not meeting the general requirements may petition for admission to the program. In such cases, it may be suggested that the necessary background courses be taken at the undergraduate level. However, undergraduate credits that make up deficiencies may not be counted toward the advanced certificate.

Any student who wishes to study at the graduate level must first be admitted to the program. However, an applicant may be permitted to take graduate courses as a nonmatriculated student if they meet the general requirements mentioned above.

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