Mechanical Engineering, Master of Science
This program assists students who wish to further their engineering education and acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to tackle challenging contemporary engineering problems. The plan of study features courses, on classical and contemporary topics, that prepare students on how to use traditional and modern engineering analysis, characterization and design tools to generate efficient and economic engineering solutions for dynamically evolving societal environments.
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What Can I Do with a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering?
The knowledge gained during this program, will prepare you for tackling real world engineering challenges, providing solutions to complex engineering problems, and creating products that will benefit the society. The Mechanical Engineering Master of Science will help you enter a satisfying, productive and exciting profession, or continue on to a doctoral degree.
The program will help you understand the application of your profession to a wide range of mechanical engineering problems. Faculty are engaged in research and its creative application to relevant problems, and you will have the opportunity to work closely with them.
Students wanting to earn their bachelor’s and master’s degrees simultaneously may qualify for our Accelerated Program which allows students to count six units toward both degrees, shortening the time to graduation.
Career opportunities that might be pursued:
- Positions in industry
- Research organizations
- Doctoral programs
With further education, one of these paths is possible:
- Post-doctoral appointment
- Academia or Research Institute
University Requirements Accordion Closed
To receive a master’s degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete a planned group of courses from one or more subject areas, consisting of at least 30 units of graduate-level courses. (Many master’s degree programs require more than 30 units.)
You must additionally complete:
- All requirements for your specific academic plan(s). This may include a thesis.
- All graduate work with a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0.
- All work toward the master’s degree must be completed within six consecutive years. The six years begins with the semester and year of admission to the program.
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In addition to University Requirements:
- Complete individual plan requirements.
|Minimum Units for Completion||30|
|Additional Admission Requirements||Admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.|
|Thesis||Thesis is required.|
|Oral Defense||Oral Defense is required.|
|Research||Individualized research is required.|
|Progression Plan Link||View Program of Study|
The Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering aims to educate mechanical engineers in advanced topic related to fluid mechanics, heat transfer, advanced materials, dynamics and controls, and applied mathematics. Through coursework and research, students are exposed to modern theories and techniques required to tackle modeling, analysis, and characterization of advanced mechanical systems. Upon completion of the program, students acquire knowledge and skills that provide them with a high level of versatility toward practicing successfully in the contemporary mechanical engineering environment, advancing their existent careers, or pursuing further studies in a doctoral program. Many mechanical engineers with advanced degrees are at the forefront of technological advances, researching, designing, creating, and testing nearly everything. Students’ exposure to the diverse topics covered in the coursework and research enhance their competitiveness in the local, regional, and global job markets. Our graduates can practice in many industries, including automotive, robotics, bioengineering, wind energy, solar energy, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.
Student Learning Outcomes
Demonstrate the ability to apply graduate level critical thinking skills to formulate and solve advanced mechanical engineering (ME) problems:
- Examine, analyze, and explicate contemporary ME topics and assess and apply ME specific computational tools.
- Identify, formulate, and solve advanced ME problems.
- Synthesize, explain, verify, and justify solutions to complex ME problems.
- Assess the state of the art in their field of study, including a thorough literature review.
- Design a research study of personal or professional interest and importance including: planning, organizing, scheduling, and executing the project with the guidance and input of their thesis advisor.
- Apply independently and creatively appropriate ME and cross-disciplinary engineering theories and tools towards finding a viable solution to the thesis topic.
- Perform and interpret complex quantitative analyses specific to the thesis.
- Evaluate the effectiveness of the research study and the implications of the resulting data
- Synthesize and present the relevance of the research study in both technical and non-technical terms.
- Conduct an oral thesis defense to a community of engineering faculty and peers.
- Create a publishable paper reflecting the integration of knowledge acquired through the research study.
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Additional Admission Requirements
- Admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.
- NAU Graduate Online application is required for all programs. Details on admission requirements are included in the online application.
- Undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution
- Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.00 (scale is 4.00 = "A"), or the equivalent.
- Admission to many graduate programs is on a competitive basis, and programs may have higher standards than those established by the Graduate College.
- For details on graduate admission policies, please visit the Graduate Admissions Policy
- International applicants have additional admission requirements. Please see the International Graduate Admissions Policy
Individual program admission requirements include:
- GRE® revised General Test
- B.S. degree in Engineering or completion of prerequisite courses (see department website for details)
- 3 letters of recommendation
- Personal statement or essay
Take the following 30 units:
- Graduate-level mathematics or statistics (3 units)
- Select from (12 units):
- Select from (6 units):
- Additional electives in consultation with your advisor. (9 units)
- A maximum of two courses, up to 6 units, may be at the 400-level.
- You must complete at least 18 hours of formal coursework, other than such individualized studies as independent study, directed readings, thesis and research.
Since the Mechanical Engineering M.S. program emphasizes interdisciplinary topics, students may wish to take courses outside of their primary emphasis area. Some courses may require prior completion of prerequisite courses. Other requirements for Mechanical Engineering Master of Science students include the following:
- You are responsible for choosing the chair and members of your advisory committee before completing 9 units of coursework.
- You must submit a plan of study that lists all coursework intended to satisfy the M.S. degree requirements by the first month of the semester in which you take your 10th credit. The elective and math/statistics courses are selected in consultation with and acceptable to the student's graduate committee and its chair.
Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also take. For prerequisite information click on the course or see your advisor.
Accelerated Bachelor's to Master's Program
This program is available as an Accelerated Undergraduate/Graduate Plan. Accelerated Programs provide the opportunity for outstanding undergraduates working on their bachelor’s degree to simultaneously begin work on a master’s degree. Departments may allow students to complete both degrees in an accelerated manner by approving up to 12 units applicable toward both degrees. Students must apply to the accelerated program and the master’s program by the application deadline, and meet all requirements as listed on the Accelerated Bachelor's to Master's Programs to be considered for admission. Admission to programs is competitive and qualified applicants may be denied because of limits on the number of students admitted each year. Be sure to speak with your advisor regarding your interest in Accelerated Programs.
Application requirements Accordion Closed
- Statement of purpose - This should be a short letter addressed to the Admissions Committee. It should state your reason for pursuing the intended degree, what relevant experience you already have, and what experience you hope to gain by completing the degree.
- Curriculum Vitae - This is an extended version of your resume. It should provide more information on your studies and experiences, and support your statement of purpose.
- Three letters of recommendation - These should come from individuals who could provide insight on your readiness and ability to successfully complete your graduate studies (e.g. faculty members, technical supervisors, or other individuals from the field in which you wish to pursue the degree). Within the online application you will be required to input the email addresses of your references and the system will automatically send the letter of recommendation request to each of them.
- Advisor- Please note in the application who you would like to be your advisor at NAU. We strongly recommend directly contacting faculty whose research interests you to inquire if they are currently taking students.
- Test scores
- Official GRE scores are required and the examination must have been completed no earlier than five years prior to the application. Competitive GRE scores are expected. Quantitative scores over 151, Verbal scores over 148, and Written scores over 3.0 are encouraged. Scores should be sent to Northern Arizona University, institution code 4006 without a department code. Please be aware, scores sent to other institution codes or with additional department codes cannot be retrieved and must be re submitted.
- International applicants from non-English speaking countries (or who didn't complete prior degrees with English as language of instruction) must submit TOEFL or IELTS scores. The minimum scores accepted for TOEFL and IELTS are 80 and 6.5, respectively. Applicants with lower scores may be considered for the Program in Intensive English.
- Transcript(s) - Your transcripts must be included in your application. GPA over 3.0 on a 4.0 scale is expected. Official transcripts are not required until admissions. If your undergraduate degree will not post until after your application is submitted, please send an email at email@example.com to let us know when you will send the official transcript with your degree posted.
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- Graduate Assistantships - Graduate Teaching Assistantships and Graduate Research Assistantships are available on a competitive basis and availability varies based on the needs of the program. Students interested in assistantships should indicate as much in their application. All graduate assistants receive health insurance, tuition remission, and a stipend. Full time graduate assistants, working 20 hours a week, receive 100% tuition remission, while part time graduate assistants, working 10 hours a week, receive 50% tuition remission. Stipend amounts vary by number of hours work and type of assistantship.
- Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP) - The NAU ME MS is part of the WRGP program, so qualified out-of-state students from the western US may be eligible for in-state-tuition.
- Financial Aid - Students may be eligible for additional financial aid and scholarships. See the Graduate College's webpage on financing your education for more information.