Degree Requirements, Mechanical Engineering

Graduate handbook information is updated and maintained by each program. Graduate handbooks are available within each program's office and online at https://utexas.box.com/v/UTAustinGraduateHandbooks. Please contact the program with concerns or questions.

Master of Science in Engineering

There are generally three options under which a student may pursue the MSEME degree. Most students follow the thesis option, which requires 30 semester hours of credit, including six hours in the thesis course. Students who are appointed as teaching assistants or research assistants are expected to choose the thesis option. Except for students in manufacturing and decision systems engineering (MDSE), the report option requires 33 semester hours, including three hours in the report course; the MDSE concentration requires 36 hours, including three in the report course. The option without thesis or report requires 36 hours of coursework. At least 18 hours (including the thesis or report, if any) should be in the major area; at least six hours should be in a supporting area. The supporting courses may be in mechanical engineering but must represent a specialty distinct from the major courses. Some areas of study have required core courses.

The Department of Mechanical Engineering also offers an online MSEME degree program designed for working professionals. Students may complete the 30-hour program in two years. Courses are taught online by faculty in the Department of Mechanical Engineering to the same standards as the traditional MSEME program. The online program is administered by the Cockrell School of Engineering’s Texas Engineering Executive Education, which publishes additional information.

Integrated BSME/MSE program. Admission to the integrated Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Master of Science in Engineering (BSME/MSE) program is open only to undergraduate students within the Department of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. It results in the simultaneous awarding of a BSME degree (integrated option) and an MSE degree. The MSE degree options and requirements for students in the integrated BSME/MSE program are identical to those for students in the traditional MSE program. Admission requirements and procedures for the graduate portion of the integrated BSME/MSE program are also the same as for the traditional MSE program except that the requirement for an undergraduate degree upon entering the program has been waived by the University.

See the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, integrated BSME/MSE program section of the Undergraduate Catalog for more details about the requirements of the integrated option BSME degree. Additional information about the integrated BSME/MSE program requirements and policies may be obtained from the mechanical engineering advising offices.

Doctor of Philosophy

The student must pass a qualifying examination consisting of either: a) an examination administered by faculty members in the area of specialty, or b) a written examination administered by the department, followed by an oral examination administered by a faculty committee formed by the student's faculty advisor. After passing the qualifying examination, the student applies for candidacy by submitting a Program of Work that includes a proposed dissertation topic and a suggested dissertation committee. The dissertation committee recommends courses to be taken as part of the Program of Work, which should include at least 18 hours (for students with a master’s degree) or 36 hours (for students without a master’s degree) of graduate coursework in the area of specialization. This coursework must be taken on the letter-grade basis. The Program of Work must be approved by the chair of the Graduate Studies Committee. Application for candidacy must be submitted before the student completes fifty hours of credit toward the doctoral degree.

Dual Degree Program

The Department of Mechanical Engineering offers the following dual degree program in cooperation with the McCombs School of Business. More information is available from the graduate advisor in each program.

Major(s) Degree(s)
Business administrationMaster of Business Administration

Graduate Certificate in Engineering Education

The Center for Engineering Education, in conjunction with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, administers a graduate certificate program in engineering education. The program is open to current graduate students at the University of Texas and requires completion of 16 hours of coursework. The graduate certificate will only be awarded at the time of degree conferral. Details on the certificate program are available on the Cockrell School of Engineering website.