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Materials Science and Engineering

Degree Types: MS, PhD

Northwestern’s Department of Materials Science and Engineering, the world’s first academic department of its kind, offers graduate programs leading to the MS and PhD degrees in diverse areas of materials science. These areas include nanomaterials, biomaterials, electronic materials, metals, ceramics, and polymers with applications in energy, sustainability, medicine, and additive manufacturing.

Strong interdisciplinary and collaborative research is a hallmark of materials science and engineering at Northwestern. We collaborate with other engineering and science departments, the Feinberg School of Medicine, and national laboratories including nearby Argonne National Laboratory.

Additional resources:

Program Contact

Contact Murphy Sharp
Program Assistant
847-491-7896

Degree Requirements

The following requirements are in addition to, or further elaborate upon, those requirements outlined in The Graduate School Policy Guide.

Master's

Total Units Required: 12

Courses only program:

Course Title
Departmental courses (8 units, 5 of which must be 400-level, excluding 499)
Elective courses (4 units, including courses from other departments)

Northwestern-Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) dual MS program:

While at Northwestern, students are required to take a total of 12 units, three of which must be MAT_SCI 590-0 Research. The remaining nine units are advanced (graduate level) 300 and 400 level courses, with a minimum of six units from materials science and engineering, of which five must be 400 level courses. The remaining courses may be in other technically related disciplines.

Last Updated: August 26, 2021

Degree Requirements

The following requirements are in addition to, or further elaborate upon, those requirements outlined in The Graduate School Policy Guide.

PhD

Total Units Required: 12

(Up to 6 units credit is given for the MS degree; see departmental guide.)

Course Title
MAT_SCI 401-0Chemical & Statistical Thermodynamics of Materials
MAT_SCI 402-0Structure of Crystalline and Noncrystalline Materials
MAT_SCI 404-0Imperfections in Materials
MAT_SCI 405-0Physics of Solids
MAT_SCI 406-0Mechanical Properties of Materials
MAT_SCI 408-0Phase Transformations in Materials
GEN_ENG 519-0Responsible Conduct for Research Training
Departmental Electives (2 units) 1
Electives (4 units) 2

Other PhD Degree Requirements

  • Examinations: preliminary evaluation based on research progress and coursework; qualifying examination emphasizing proposed dissertation research
  • Research/Projects: see departmental guide
  • PhD Dissertation: materials and results from supported research programs may be used for dissertation
  • Final Evaluations: public oral defense of dissertation
  • Departmental Seminar: attendance of research seminars
  • Teaching: a minimum of two quarters (to total 20 hrs/week) as a teaching assistant or grader

Last Updated: August 26, 2021