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Master's non-Thesis degree, MSE

Information concerning the pursuit of a Master's non-thesis degree in MSE, including degree requirements, time frame for completion, graduation details, and more.

The Master's degree program is designed to give students the opportunity to gain additional knowledge and necessary skills in a specific area of Materials Science. A non-thesis option Master's primarily involves academic course work followed by the defense of a written document, such as critical literature review, during the final term of enrollment. The structured research component of the MS with Thesis is not present in the non-thesis option.

Two forms of the MS non-thesis are available to MSE students: 1) as a final degree, after which the student exits the program, or 2) as an intermediate degree earned upon successful completion of the Ph.D. Candidacy Exam.

  1. MS non-thesis as final degree. This degree does not involve laboratory research instead requiring more academic study than the MS with Thesis. Thus this degree track is best suited for working students, as it primarily consists of course work.
    Note: Pursuit of a MS non-thesis as a final degree is available only by means of a petition of the MSE Graduate Studies Committee. This petition should be submitted during the student's first term in the program.
  2. MS non-thesis based on Candidacy Exam. Students who successfully complete the Ph.D. Candidacy Exam may request to receive a MS non-thesis degree. This is optional, but serves as a tangible "mile marker" for the student. Students must meet the minimum graded graduate course work requirements for the MS non-thesis degree as detailed under "Degree requirements" below.

Time frame for completion

The typical length of time for completion of a Master's non-thesis degree while enrolled as a full time student is approximately three to six terms. For the MS non-thesis as final degree, the student will prepare a document, such as a critical literature review or technical report, which is defended before a two member committee of MSE faculty. Development of this document typically takes place in the student's final term in the program. For students earning the degree based on the Candidacy Exam, the Candidacy typically occurs in the third to seventh term of enrollment.

Degree requirements

Master's non-thesis degree requirements
MSE-specific requirements to earn a Master's non-thesis degree in materials science and engineering.