Chemical Engineering, MSCHE

The Master of Science in Chemical Engineering is normally pursued by students with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering or closely allied fields. Students wishing to pursue the master’s degree but with undergraduate educational backgrounds other than chemical engineering may be required to complete supplementary undergraduate course work. These courses are in addition to the minimum course requirements. Students enrolled in the program are encouraged to seek guidance from their instructors and advisor regarding additional course work that may supplement the graduate curriculum.

Students originally admitted to the master’s degree program who wish to switch to the PhD program must petition the associate chair for graduate studies and follow the procedure detailed under the Administrative Procedure Section for the College of Engineering. If admission is granted, then the student must satisfy all the requirements of the doctoral degree program, including the requirements for doctoral candidacy. 

Course Requirements

A minimum of 32 semester hours of academic work is required to qualify for the Master of Science degree in chemical engineering.

If pursuing a thesis option, at least 8 semester hours of thesis credit must be included as part of these 32 semester hours of credits. In addition, each student pursuing a thesis option must enroll in the department’s seminar course for each semester they are matriculating toward their degree. Students enrolled in the department’s seminar course are encouraged to participate in the seminar by providing a research presentation regarding their research project under the guidance of their advisor. The faculty advisor and the student establish the sequence of courses that students take to pursue the Master of Science in Chemical Engineering. Full-time Master of Science degree students who complete the required 8 semester hours of thesis work (Thesis (CHME 7990) ) are required to register for Thesis Continuation (CHME 7996) each semester until their thesis is completed. Note that although no credits are associated with Thesis Continuation (CHME 7996) , a student registered for this course is considered full-time.

If pursuing a nonthesis option, students must complete a minimum of 32 semester hours of course work and no enrollment in the seminar course is required. See required core courses and example elective courses for all graduate students.

Thesis Requirements

Students pursuing a Master of Science in Chemical Engineering with thesis must submit to the Graduate School of Engineering a written thesis that is approved by the thesis committee and department chair. See the graduate school requirements and electronic submittal instructions. MS with thesis students must also complete an oral master’s thesis defense in order to successfully complete the program. The student will be expected to form a master’s thesis committee, composed of a minimum of three members—one who is the advisor, one other faculty member from the chemical engineering department, and one member from outside the department. The oral presentation will be open to the public, including students, faculty, and the candidate’s committee.

Part-time Students

Part-time students may progress according to their plans and time constraints but within the seven-year time limit. A minimum of 32 semester hours of academic course work is required for part-time students. The thesis and seminar course are not required for part-time students pursuing a master’s degree.

Master of Science students wishing to change their status from part-time to full-time must notify the chemical engineering department and make a formal petition to the Graduate School of Engineering. Refer to the regulations of the Graduate School of Engineering for further information on academic administrative policies.

Departure Prior to Thesis Completion

Occasionally, students have left the chemical engineering department prior to completion of all degree requirements. In such instances, longtime intervals have often elapsed before thesis or manuscript submission. Accordingly, the department has adopted the guideline that a student cannot submit a thesis for credit beyond three years after the student stops actively pursuing the research. Exceptions may be granted upon petition to the departmental graduate committee. Petitions must demonstrate extenuating circumstances and prove that the research is still of value to the profession.

Degree Requirements Thesis Option Nonthesis Option
Required core courses 16 SH 16 SH
Master of Science thesis 8 SH N/A
Seminar 0 SH N/A
Elective courses1 8 SH 16 SH
Minimum semester hours required2 32 SH 32 SH

Students may complete a maximum of 8 semester hours (thesis option) or 12 semester hours (nonthesis option) of course work for credit outside the Department of Chemical Engineering under guidance of their advisor and approval of the chemical engineering graduate program director.


Exclusive of any preparatory undergraduate courses.

Graduate Certificate Options

Students who are officially accepted into a graduate degree program in the College of Engineering may apply to pursue one of the following graduate engineering certificates in addition to the MS or PhD. Please visit the links below for additional information about each graduate engineering certificate program, related requirements, and how to apply.

Chemical Engineering

Computer Systems Engineering

Energy Systems

Engineering Management

Industrial Engineering

Telecommunication Systems Management

Gordon Institute of Engineering Leadership

Master's Degree in Chemical Engineering with Graduate Certificate in Engineering Leadership

Students may complete a master's degree in Chemical Engineering in addition to earning a Graduate Certificate 
in Engineering Leadership. Students must apply and be admitted to the Gordon Engineering Leadership Program in order to pursue this option. The program requires fulfillment of the16 semester-hour-curriculum required to earn the Graduate Certificate in Engineering Leadership, which includes an industry based challenge project with multiple mentors. The integrated 32 semester hour degree and certificate will require 16 hours of advisor-approved Chemical Engineering technical courses.

Engineering Leadership

Complete all courses and requirements listed below unless otherwise indicated.

General Requirements

CHME 7320Chemical Engineering Mathematics4
CHME 7330Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics4
CHME 7340Chemical Engineering Kinetics4
CHME 7350Transport Phenomena4


Complete one of the following options:

Course Work Option

Complete 16 semester hours from the course list below.16

Thesis Option 

Complete 8 semester hours from the following (CHME 7990 is repeatable):8
Complete 8 semester hours from the course list below.8

Certificate Option

Students completing this option receive a Graduate Certificate in addition to the master’s degree. Students should consult their faculty advisor regarding the certificate options.

Complete 16 semester hours of graduate certificate required course work.16

Course List  

CHME 5204Heterogeneous Catalysis4
CHME 5630Biochemical Engineering4
CHME 7201Fluid Mechanics4
CHME 7202Chemical Process Heat Transfer4
CHME 7205Numerical Techniques in Chemical Engineering4
CHME 7210Advanced Chemical Engineering Calculations4
CHME 7220Electronic Materials, Thin Films, and Nanostructures4
CHME 7221Thin Film Technology4
CHME 7222Principals of Membrane Processes4
CHME 7231Chemical Process Dynamics and Control4
CHME 7240Polymer Science4
CHME 7260Special Topics in Chemical Engineering4
CHME 7261Special Topics in Chemical Engineering2
CHME 7978Independent Study1-4
ENGR 5670Sustainable Energy: Materials, Conversion, Storage, and Usage4
ENGR 6150Nanotechnology in Engineering4

Program Credit/GPA Requirements

32 total semester hours required
Minimum 3.000 GPA required