The MS Degree Program

Requirements for all MS Degrees
MS Degree with Thesis
MS Degree without Thesis
Checklists for MS Degrees
Graduate Options and Joint Programs
Degree Conferral
Time Limitations

Requirements for all MS Degrees

  • All graduate students must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 to continue in the AE Graduate Program.  The cumulative GPA is computed on all courses taken for credit except thesis and seminar courses in which DF, S, and U grades are recorded. 
  • All graduate students must register in the seminar course AE 590 and must attend all seminars each semester while they are on campus. 
  • MS students are expected to select courses in consultation with an MS advisor.

MS Degree with Thesis

Candidates for the MS with thesis degree are required to complete a minimum of 24 hours of graded course work and 8 hours of thesis credit, selected in the following ways:

  • At least 12 hours must be in the 500-level courses, and at least 8 of these 12 hours must be in Aerospace Engineering (may include up to 4 hours of 599 research credit).  
  • No independent study courses (i.e. 497 or 597) may be counted towards the MS with Thesis degree.
  • 16 hours must be AE designated courses (i.e. AE 4XX or AE 5XX). Of these 16 hours, 8 hours may be thesis credit (i.e. 599).
  • All students in the MS with Thesis option must complete a breadth requirement by taking one course from two of the three areas listed among the Aerospace Engineering Breadth Requirements. The courses listed among Aerospace Engineering Breadth Requirements cover fundamental concepts and are prerequisites for more advanced courses.
  • Graduate students are expected to exhibit competence in applied mathematics. MS students may meet this requirement by taking a minimum of 3-4 hours of courses listed among Mathematics Requirements.
  • A master's thesis for a minimum of 8 hours credit in AE 599 must be submitted. Only 8 hours of credit in AE 599 counts towards the MS degree even if the student registers for more AE 599 hours during the program.
  • Students should seek out faculty members with research interests similar to their and explore possible thesis topics as early as possible. In many cases, faculty members will advise students to read various articles or to take specific courses in order to obtain the necessary background for conducting research in their areas of interest. Recommended courses for various areas of research are also listed in the Suggested Program Tracts.
  • The MS with Thesis Check List needs to be completed in consultation with your advisor to plan your program. A DARS Audit is an unofficial audit of progress toward the undergraduate student degree that reflects courses currently in progress.

MS  Degree without Thesis

Students should indicate their intention to seek the non-thesis MS option when applying to the AE graduate program or through a departmental petition.  The MS without Thesis degree is designed to be completed in 1 year (16 hours per semester) of self-supported, full-time study.  The Department of Aerospace Engineering does not provide funding for students in this program.  It is expected that students pursuing the MS without Thesis degree will pay tuition and fees for the duration of their studies.  Students wishing to switch to the MS with Thesis program must have a faculty member who will advise their thesis and provide funding.  Department approval is required for the change in program. 

In the non-thesis option, 32 hours of graded course work are required, selected in the following ways: 

  • At least 12 of these hours must be in 500-level courses, and at least 8 of the 12 hours must be in Aerospace Engineering.
  • All students in the MS non-thesis option must complete one course from all three areas listed among the Aerospace Engineering Breadth Requirements.
  • Graduate students are expected to exhibit competence in applied mathematics. MS students may meet this requirement by taking a minimum of 3-4 hours of courses listed among Mathematics Requirements.
  • The MS without Thesis Check List needs to be completed in consultation with your advisor to plan your program. A DARS Audit is an unofficial audit of progress toward the undergraduate student degree that reflects courses currently in progress.  

Checklists

All MS degree candidates must complete Check Lists with their advisors to plan their programs.

Graduate Options and Joint Programs

AE graduate students have the option of combining their AE degrees with joint programs offered through Computational Science and Engineering, the MBA Program, and the Medical Scholars Program.

Degree Conferral

MS and PhD degrees are conferred in May, August, and January. In order to receive a degree, the student's name must be on the graduation list for the appropriate graduation date. Students should submit their names to the AE Departmental Office at the beginning of the semester in which they intend to deposit their thesis.

The Department of Aerospace Engineering does not have a separate commencement ceremony. Students graduating with a degree from the AE Dept. attend the College of Engineering and/or University of Illinois commencement ceremonies.

Time Limitations

Aerospace Engineering requires on-campus candidates for the non-thesis MS degree to complete all the requirements within four semesters and for the MS with thesis to complete all the requirements within five semesters.

 

 

Contact

Program Administration:

lambrosatillinois [dot] edu (Prof. John Lambros)
Associate Head, Graduate Programs

tankatillinois [dot] edu (Staci Tankersley)
Program Coordinator, Graduate Programs

Hours: 8:30 AM - 5:00 PM

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