Master's Program

The Department of Aerospace Engineering offers graduate programs leading to the Master of Science (thesis and non-thesis option) and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Major areas of study include fluid dynamics, structural mechanics, controls, and autonomous systems.

Aerospace Engineering Graduate Program

The Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering prepares the student for continued progress toward the doctoral degree or to enter the workforce at a level of preparation more advanced than a bachelor’s degree would provide.

Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering – Thesis

8XXX Coursework at the 8000 level 12 hours
Additional graduate-level coursework 12 hours
Thesis research 6 hours
Total Hours 30

The student must choose a committee by the end of the second semester of study, consisting consisting of a major professor, who is a member of the graduate faculty in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, and at least two other members. At least fifty percent of the committee must be members of the graduate faculty in the Department of Aerospace Engineering.

Candidates for the Master of Science (thesis) degree in Aerospace Engineering must pass a final thesis defense upon completion of all course requirements.

Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering - Non-Thesis

8XXX Coursework at the 8000 level 15 hours
Additional graduate-level coursework 15 hours
Total Hours 30

The student must choose a committee by the end of the second semester of study, consisting consisting of a major professor, who is a member of the graduate faculty in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, and at least two other members. At least fifty percent of the committee must be members of the graduate faculty in the Department of Aerospace Engineering.

Candidates for the Master of Science (non-thesis) degree in Aerospace Engineering must pass a written comprehensive examination. Students entering the program must pass a written examination based on material taken from three courses, selected from a list of approved courses (see below), that appear on the student’s program of study.

Dynamics and Controls
  • ASE 6133 Automatic Control
  • ASE 6153 Advanced Performance
  • ASE 6813 Advanced Orbital Mechanics
  • EM 8313 Advanced Dynamics
Fluid Mechanics
  • ASE 8313 Advanced Compressible Aerodynamics I
  • ASE 8343 Incompressible Viscous Laminar Flow
  • ASE 8353 Turbulent Flow
Solid Mechanics
  • EM 6133 Composite Materials
  • EM 8113 Theory of Continuous Media
  • EM 8203 Applied Elasticity

Examination Rules

  • The comprehensive examination is to be administered by an Examination Committee appointed by the Department Head, with membership drawn from the Faculty within the Department. The Chair of the Committee shall have a Level 1 appointment to the Graduate Faculty at MSU.
  • These examinations shall be offered once each Fall/Spring semester on a date that observes university deadlines.
  • The comprehensive exam shall consist of problems taken from three courses selected from the list above that appear on the student’s program of study, with no more than two from the same topical area as defined above. There shall be two problems from each course and the student shall select three problems to work, one problem from each course. It is not necessary to earn a passing score on each problem, only to earn a passing score on the examination.
  • The Examination Committee shall be responsible for grading all examinations. After the Committee’s final review of the scored exam, a pass/fail determination shall be made in each topic, separately, for each student. Any grade appeal shall follow the University procedures (detailed in the Graduate Bulletin), with the Examination Committee Chair serving as the Instructor of Record for this purpose.
  • A student who fails the comprehensive examination can apply to schedule a second examination after a period of three months have elapsed from the date of the original exam. Two failures result in the student’s removal as a master’s degree candidate. The student is not required to choose the same courses for the retake; however, the selected courses must appear on the student’s program of study.