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Master's Degree Program

Photo of IE students

Students with undergraduate preparation in engineering, the physical sciences, or mathematics are encouraged to apply for admission. Although a baccalaureate degree in industrial engineering is advantageous in some areas of specialization, students with backgrounds in mathematics, computer science, physics, and other engineering disciplines (particularly mechanical and electrical engineering) have found that the graduate programs in industrial engineering offer advantageous professional opportunities. Students from psychology with a good background in mathematics and the physical sciences have been quite successful in the human factors area. Admission to the Master’s program is based on total academic and professional achievement. 

Two programs of study are available, the thesis and non-thesis options:

  • The thesis options (Research Track) provide an opportunity for independent research in a given area of Industrial Engineering. Students who intend to earn the doctoral degree must pursue this option. It also prepares the student to enter professional practice immediately after graduation.
  • The non-thesis options (Application Track) are intended for students seeking a higher level of competence in the practice of industrial engineering upon entering professional practice after graduation and who do not intend to pursue the Ph.D. immediately after obtaining the master’s degree. The program stresses breadth as well as depth in subject matter and provides an opportunity for engineering design experience.

Both programs build on the industrial engineering undergraduate curriculum. The following prerequisites are recommended for all incoming students:

  • Mathematics through multivariate calculus, differential equations, and linear algebra (MA 265 and MA 266 or equivalent).
  • Applied probability and engineering statistics (IE 230 & IE 330 or STAT 511. Alternately, students can include STAT 516 and STAT 517 in their plan of study and earn graduate credit for these courses).
  • Basic techniques of operations research (IE 335 & IE 336).
  • Proficiency in computer programming equivalent to CS 156 and IE 231.

Credits earned in basic prerequisite courses are not used in the plan of study for the master’s degree. Some graduate courses can be taken concurrently with the above prerequisites.