Plan of Study 

The purpose of the Plan of Study is to design an appropriate program to meet the specific needs of a given student in his chosen field of specialty as determined by the Advisory Committee. Students should file a Plan of Study with the Graduate School by the end of their second semester. The Plan of Study should be worked out under the supervision of the major professor and members of the Advisory Committee. 

Changes in the Plan of Study can be made at a later date with the approval of the Advisory Committee, the School Head (or his/her designee), and the Graduate School. Minor changes in the formal plan of study can be made easily in case of course offering deletions or schedule conflicts. These changes must be filed one week prior to the start of the final session of graduate study.

The course work must be selected to form a unified program of study. At least one related field of study outside the area of industrial engineering is required. Course work from one previous Master’s degree is included in the formal Plan of Study. 

Verify that all admission conditions are satisfied

Review your admission letter for details.


The Advisory Committee Composition Requirements:

  • Shall consist of at least 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.


Prerequisite and Core Courses

If students were missing any of the course requirements for admission (mathematics through multivariate calculus, differential equations, and linear algebra; applied probability and engineering statistics; basic techniques of operations research; proficiency in computer programming), then the student may admitted on the condition that they take these courses during the first semester. The student can meet this requirement by taking the prerequisites as Pass-Fail.

The purpose of the core course requirements is to assure adequate breadth of knowledge in the field of industrial Engineering outside the given area of specialization. Doctoral students are expected to have prerequisite course work in linear algebra and differential equations equivalent to MA 265 and 266 along with a course in applied probability and statistics equivalent to STAT 511. Ph.D. students must complete at least one course with a B grade or better in each of the following four areas: Engineering Economics/Decisions, Human Factors/Cognitive Engineering, Manufacturing Processes/Production, and Optimization/Stochastic Processes. In certain cases, a student may have completed comparable core courses at another university or by taking similar courses at Purdue. These students must obtain a statement waiving the course requirement from the faculty member in charge of the course in question, and they must have the waiver approved by the Graduate Advisor.


Requirements for PhD

The course work must include a minimum of 24 credit hours:

  • 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 may be:
      • other engineering disciplines
      • mathematics, statistics, computer sciences, biology
      • psychology, sociology
      • economics, management
  • Pre-approval is required for non-IE courses that are not on the related areas list and also for 1-credit courses
  • 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 Supplemental Note

Students must include the following supplemental note on their Plan of Study (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.

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.


Courses 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