Master of Science Program
Welcome to the MS Program webpage of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas Tech University. The program overview, admissions information, and general rules guiding our MS program are provided in the sections below. You will find the required ME forms, contact information, and detailed policies in the Graduate Program Resource sections displayed on the right. To browse our faculty by their area, and read about their projects, use the Research tab on the left-hand side.
For mechanical engineering professionals in the 21st century it is often not sufficient to possess a deep understanding of fundamental engineering-science principles. To fully realize their potential, ME graduates should also be comfortable working in environments that require prior exposure to multidisciplinary research. The Master of Science program at the Department of Mechanical Engineering at TTU is designed to provide education that meets this demand. Our master's degree students receive a thorough education based on core courses in the traditional area's (i.e., thermal sciences and fluid mechanics, dynamics and controls, solid and mechanics and materials and design). In addition, acquiring a broad multidisciplinary knowledge is facilitated by a wide selection of elective ME courses as well as courses that students are encouraged to take at other engineering and science departments at TTU. Master's degree students also have ample opportunities to conduct supervised multidisciplinary research.
Students interested in admission to our MS Program should apply through the Graduate School Admissions portal (located in the Admissions Tab on the right), where detailed information regarding the process and requirements can be found. In addition to the Graduate School requirements, the Department of Mechanical Engineering requires GRE scores and three letters of recommendation. For more information, follow the links provided in the Graduate Program Resource section.
Direct MS and Combined BS/MS Programs
In the Department of Mechanical Engineering there are two types of programs leading to the Master of Science degree.
- Direct Master of Science Program — This track is for students who have already received a bachelor's degree.
- Combined BS/MS Program — The Combined BS/MS Program provides an opportunity for top Texas Tech Mechanical Engineering undergraduates to obtain both their bachelor's and master's degrees in approximately five years. The graduate-level requirements for students in the Combined BS/MS program are the same as for students in the Direct Master's program. In the combined program some of the graduate-level courses taken by students may also count as undergraduate electives. Texas Tech undergraduate students interested in the Combined BS/MS program should first submit the Mechanical Engineering Application Form to our Graduate Program Office (before formally applying to the Graduate School).
Coursework and Research Oriented Program Options
The department offers three Master of Science options, based on a different emphasis on research:
- Thesis Option— This option requires a minimum of 30 hours of graduate credit, of which 24 are earned by completing courses and a minimum of 6 are earned by performing thesis research. The coursework program of study is determined by the student and research advising professor to prepare the student for conducting the thesis research, and for writing and defending a Master's Thesis. Students should allow a minimum of 18 months to complete this option.
- Report Option — This option requires 36 hours of graduate credit, of which 33 hours are earned by satisfactorily completing courses and 3 hours are earned by conducting the MS Project Report research. The coursework program of study is determined by the student and research advising professor to prepare the student for conducting an independent research project and writing and defending a Project Report. Students should allow a minimum of 15 months to complete this option.
- Coursework Option — This option requires 36 hours of graduate credit consisting entirely of graduate courses. The coursework program of study is determined by the student and Graduate Advisor according to the desired core area of study. Students should allow a minimum of 15 months to complete this option.
Students should choose the option that fits their academic and professional goals.
All mechanical engineering master's degree students are required to take core lecture courses as follows:
- Engineering mathematics: Two lecture courses (6 credit hours)
- Concentration: Three ME lecture courses (9 credit hours) in the student's chosen concentration area
- Breadth: Two ME lecture courses (6 credit hours) outside the student's chosen concentration area
Core courses aim to ensure that students know the fundamentals of the engineering sciences; these courses have to be taken from the approved core-course list.
Our department offers a number of cross-disciplinary courses in the areas of healthcare and bioengineering, nanotechnology, advanced materials, and others. Elective courses can also be taken at other engineering or science departments at TTU. In addition, we offer a technology-commercialization course, taught jointly by faculty from the Mechanical Engineering Department and Rawls College of Business. The flexibility of the MS program and a wide range of courses that can be chosen by the student allow our master's degree students to obtain a broad and multidisciplinary education that suits their interests and answers the needs of modern high-tech industries. Within the limits specified in the Graduate-Student Handbook, some elective courses can be replaced by graduate research or internship courses.
Graduate Seminar Requirement
One credit hour of graduate seminar (ME 5120) is required for all students. Students register for this course in the first semester of their graduate studies and must attend seminars until graduation to receive credit at the end of their studies; the talks give our students an opportunity to learn about cutting-edge research and modern technologies from leaders in academia and industry.
Course Transfers and Leveling Courses
A limited number of courses can be transferred from a different graduate program at TTU or other academic institutions. Students who would like to have some of their courses applied to the Master's Degree in Mechanical Engineering, should provide the list of courses and their syllabi upon filing the Mechanical Engineering Degree Plan in the first semester of their studies. More detailed information regarding course transfers (including the number of transfer hours allowed) can be found in the instructions to the ME Degree Plan Form located in the Graduate Program Resource section of this webpage.
Students with a bachelor's degree in a field other than mechanical engineering may be required to take undergraduate leveling courses in preparation for graduate studies in mechanical engineering. The leveling course requirements are determined by the Director of Graduate Studies upon the student's admission to the Master's Program. Leveling courses do not count toward the MS degree coursework.
Submission of Degree Plan
In the first semester of their graduate studies, mechanical engineering master's degree students are required to submit a Degree Plan, which lists the courses that they intend to take and apply towards their master's degree. If needed, the Degree Plan can be changed by submitting an updated form. The final version of the degree plan should be submitted no later than the beginning of the semester of graduation.
The Degree Plan must conform to the coursework requirements of the MS Program. The Departmental Master's Degree Plan Form with instructions, the list of approved core courses, and an approximate schedule of graduate courses offered at the Mechanical Engineering Department are posted on this webpage. For more details regarding the program requirements see the Graduate Student Handbook.
Master's degree students in our mechanical engineering program have ample opportunity to engage in innovative research performed in our faculty's laboratories. The level of research involvement depends on the program option chosen by the student. For students in the Thesis and Report Options, research conducted under the supervision of an assigned faculty advisor is a required component of their course of studies. Students in the Coursework Option receive their education by taking lecture courses, but those interested in conducting research can replace one of the elective classes with the course ME 7000 Research. Information regarding research activities in our mechanical engineering labs is described on the departmental research webpage. Students should contact individual faculty members to inquire about openings in their groups.
Internships are treated as a valuable and integral part of the MS-level education at Texas Tech. Master's degree students may obtain up to three course credit hours for an approved internship. The grade for the Graduate Internship course is assigned based on the Internship Report submitted by the student and the evaluation of the student's performance received from the internship supervisor.
Academic regulations governing our Mechanical Engineering Graduate Programs are described in the Graduate Student Handbook. In addition to the departmental rules provided in the Handbook, all TTU Master's students must follow Graduate School regulations (for more details visit the Graduate School webpage). In particular, TTU graduate students must maintain grade average of at least 3.0 throughout their graduate studies.