Graduate programs in the School of Engineering emphasize both theory and application of advanced engineering principles. The goal of the school is to produce professional engineers, scientists and researchers who can contribute significantly to society through their professional, scientific and research activities.
We offer a personalized learning and research environment and a dedicated full-time faculty that is on the cutting edge of research, complemented by adjunct faculty members who are leaders in professional practice. For full-time graduate students, the financial opportunities include teaching and research assistantships and fellowships. For working professionals, the classes are convenient and the tuition competitive with private universities in the Washington area. Our strong ties with local research institutions foster collaborations and enable our faculty to bring research experience into the classroom. There are many government agencies, research laboratories, and industrial headquarters in the Washington area, which results in excellent opportunities for internships, training, research collaboration and professional employment.
Grade Point Average (GPA) Requirements for Graduate Students
A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in course work taken in the School of Engineering is required for maintaining a good academic status in all graduate programs. Graduate students are subject to academic probation or dismissal if their cumulative GPAs are less than 3.0, or their semester GPAs are less than 2.5, or they receive Failing grades in two or more graduate level courses. In addition, students must have a minimum cumulative average of 3.0 to graduate. Please refer to the probation and dismissal policy of graduate students of the School of Engineering for details.
The Master's Degree
The university's general requirements for master's and licentiate degrees apply to all master's degree programs offered in the School of Engineering, with two exceptions: the competency in a foreign language and the comprehensive examination are not required. The minimum requirements for the master's degree are the successful completion of an approved program of study consisting of at least 30 semester credit hours. Individual programs may require more than 30 semester credit hours. For most of the Master's programs, two options are available to earn the required semester hours:
- Non-Thesis Option: A student may complete the required semester credit hours through graduate course work alone.
- Thesis Option: A student may write a master's thesis whose topic is approved by the appropriate graduate program. If this option is selected, the student will register for a total of six semester credit hours of master's thesis guidance. Upon approval of the written thesis, six semester credit hours will be posted to the student's academic record and will be counted toward the total number of semester credit hours required for the master's degree program.
Joint Master Degree Programs
To earn two master's degrees from the School of Engineering, a student must satisfy all requirements for both degrees and may be allowed to designate up to four approved graduate courses to help satisfy the requirements for both degrees. Typically, this would reduce the number of graduate engineering courses required to earn both master's degrees from 20 courses to 16 courses. Contact the office of the dean of the School of Engineering for more information.
The Doctoral Degree
The university's general requirements for the doctoral degrees apply to all doctoral programs of the School of Engineering, with one exception: the foreign language competency is not required. The requirements for a doctoral degree (Ph.D.) include:
- A minimum of 53 semester hours of graduate work in a program of study prepared and approved in consultation with an advisor, including ENGR 991 Directed Study - Doctoral Qualification;
- The successful passing of a comprehensive examination upon completion of graduate coursework.
- The approval of a dissertation proposal submitted and presented by the candidate; and
- The approval and successful defense of the dissertation in an oral examination conducted as specified by university procedures and following School of Engineering doctoral dissertation defense guidelines.
Graduate Scholarships and Financial Aid
Each department in the School of Engineering offers Teaching Assistant (TA) and Research Assistant (RA) positions to outstanding graduate students, primarily for doctoral study. Decisions are made based on GPA, performance on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE), related research experience and potential, etc.
To apply for or inquire about these positions, please apply to our doctoral program and email a detailed curriculum vitae, GRE scores, undergraduate/graduate transcripts, and a description of your research interests to the relevant department chair and/or to one of our faculty members whose research interests align with your own.