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Plan of Study (PoS) Requirements for PhD

A Plan of Study (PoS) is required by the Graduate School Office for all graduate students. Review the following items to complete a PoS successfully.


1. Verify that all admission conditions are satisfied. Review your admission letter for details.


2. List at least 24 credit hours of course work from Purdue University on the Plan of Study. The course work must include:

  • One core course from each of the following with a grade of B or better:
    • Economics/Decisions; IE 545 or IE 546
    • Human Factors: IE 556, IE 559, or IE 577
    • Manufacturing/Production: IE 566, IE 570, IE 575, IE 579
    • Optimization/Stochastics: IE 535, IE 536, IE 580, IE 581
  • At least two 3-credit-hour 600 level industrial engineering courses taken at Purdue University, excluding unlabeled IE 690 (individual project), IE 697 (seminar), IE 698, and IE 699 (research PhD thesis)
  • Courses from at least one related field of study outside the area of industrial engineering.
    • Typical related areas for the courses are other branches of engineering, mathematics, statistics, computer sciences, psychology, sociology, biology, economics, or management.
  • A grade of C or better on every course listed in the plan of study and an overall GPA of 3.0 or better on all courses listed in the Plan of Study. 

PhD students must include the following as a supplemental note on their PoS (select either 24 course credits if you have a Master's degree, otherwise select 39 course credits): "I am a PhD student (with/without) a Master’s degree. The Plan of Study includes at least (24 course credits/39 course credits) not used toward any other degree. This Plan of Study includes at least one course each in engineering economics/decisions (list course identifier), human factors/cognitive engineering (list course identifier), manufacturing processes/production (list course identifier), and optimization/stochastic processes (list course identifier). In addition, this Plan of Study includes 6 credit hours of coursework (list course identifiers) in the related area (specify the name of the related area) and two 600-level courses (list course identifiers)." If you modify this supplemental note in any way other than filling in the italicized options, your Plan of Study may be rejected.


3. Courses that are NOT allowed on the Plan of Study:

  • Research credit hours
  • P/NP or S/US grade courses
  • Zero credit courses
  • Independent study (variable title or individual project) courses 

4. A plan of study is allowed to include up to 30 hours of course work from one previous master’s or professional degree as part of the 90 graduate credit hours. Please consult with your major professor(s) for current guidance on how to satisfy this requirement.


5. The Advisory Committee shall:

  • Consist of four members.
  • Include one major professor or two co-major professors, who is/are the chair/co-chairs of the advisory committee (When more than one Co-Chair is selected, ensure that both Chairs are listed as Co-Chairs).
  • Include at least one major professor from the School of Industrial Engineering.
  • Include at least one member other than the major professor from the School of Industrial Engineering (two major professors from the School of Industrial Engineering would satisfy this requirement).
  • Include at least one member from outside the field of industrial engineering.

NOTE: Changes to a Plan of Study can be filed as many as times as necessary to update the information such as courses, concentration, and advisory committee.